Syrian air strike: missiles streak across Damascus early on Saturday. Photograph: Hassan Ammar/AP

When Syria shipped what it claimed was the last of its chemical weapons out of the country, in 2014, John Kerry, the US secretary of state at the time(...)

Men suspected of being Islamic State fighters are searched at a security screening centre near Kirkuk, Iraq, on October 1st. Photograph: Ivor Prickett/The New York Times

Its de facto capital is falling. Its territory has shrivelled from the size of Portugal to a handful of outposts. Its surviving leaders are on the run(...)

A man injured by last Saturday’s apparent Saudi-led air strike on a community hall sits on a hospital bed in the capital Sanaa, Yemen. Photograph: Mohamed al-Sayaghi

For the United States, it was simple retaliation: rebels in Yemen had fired missiles at a US warship twice in four days, so the United States hit bac(...)

President Barack Obama meeting King Salman of Saudi Arabia in the Oval Office of the White House last September. The relationship between the countries has become increasingly strained, but the US seems a long way from abandoning it. Photograph: Evan Vucci/AP

The Obama administration on Monday confronted the fundamental contradiction in its increasingly tense relationship with Saudi Arabia. It could not bri(...)

Vehicles bearing Syria’s national flag and playing pro-President Bashar al-Assad songs, parade through the streets in Damascus today. Photograph: Khaled al-Hariri/Reuters

The powerful brother of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is suspected of authorising the chemical weapons attack that killed hundreds of Syrian civili(...)