Volker Perthes

The End of the Middle East As We Know It - An Essay

Volker Perthes

Volker Perthes

Volker Perthes, born 1958, is the director of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs and is regarded as one of the most internationally renowned experts on the Middle East.

Sold to

Denmark (Ellekaer)


In many ways, the area between the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf has ceased to be the »Middle East we know« – or believed to know. We cannot foresee future developments in the area, but can definitely try to identify relevant trends. The biggest trend here seems to be the disintegration of regional order – without anyone there to restore it.

In his essay, the Middle East-expert Volker Perthes creates an overview of the driving forces and geopolitical trends in development in the region, examines the role of the IS as a »jihadi project of state formation«, analyses the dramatic change in the whole region and sketches scenarios of a possible future.


»In this enlightening essay, he disentangles and sorts the mess of protagonists and interests that collide in this region. That way, he shifts the focus to the big picture and the long line of developments that are too often lost in the rush of everyday politics.« Jan Kuhlmann, NZZ