Helena Cobban is an analyst of global affairs, with special interests in the Middle East and the international system. She is the author of seven books on world issues, four of which focus on the Middle East. She contributed a regular column on global issues to The Christian Science Monitor, 1990-2007. Ms. Cobban has a BA and an MA from Oxford. She worked as a Beirut-based regional correspondent 1975-81 for The Christian Science Monitor, The Sunday Times, and other outlets. She is fluent in French and Arabic. In 1982, took up a research fellowship at Harvard, where she wrote her first book, The Palestinian Liberation Organization. In 1985, she won a post-doc in International Peace and Security Studies, which she used to study strategic affairs and to write a book on US-Soviet interactions in the Syria-Israel theater. Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, she undertook numerous research/writing trips to the Middle East. From 2003 through 2010 she published “Just World News”, a blog on global issues that gained a broad global readership. In 2010, she founded the publishing company Just World Books, which over the next eight years published 38 original titles on Middle Eastern and other global issues. Since 2016, she has run Just World Educational, a small non-profit. In Spring 2019, she resurrected her personal “Just World News” blog. In 2007–08 she was a ‘Friend in Washington’ with the Friends Committee on National Legislation, and in 2008-11 a member of Search for Common Ground’s US-Syria Working Group. She is a Senior Fellow at the Center for International Policy.
In Moscow and Ankara, two strongly nationalistic leaders, both endowed with a wily realpolitik-style realism as well as a strong dose of paranoia, perform an intriguing and complex diplomatic dance around each other.