Arman Mahmoudian is a lecturer of Russian and Middle Eastern Studies and a Ph.D. Candidate in Politics and International affairs at the University of South Florida (USF). He is also a research associate at the USF Center for Strategic & Diplomatic Studies, where he focuses on Iran’s regional policy and Shia militias in the Middle East. Arman has appeared on Al-Jazeera and the BBC and has been published by Harvard Journal of Middle Eastern Politics & Policy, London School of Economics Middle East Center, Atlantic Council, Middle East Eye, Politics Today, New Arab, Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, and Trends Research and Advisory. Follow Arman on Twitter@MahmoudianArman. Giorgio Cafiero is the CEO of Gulf State Analytics. He is a frequent contributor to Middle East Institute, Atlantic Council, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Middle East Policy Council, Al Jazeera, New Arab, Qatar Peninsula, Al Monitor, TRT World, and LobeLog. Throughout Cafiero’s career, he has spoken at international conferences and participated in closed door meetings with high-ranking government officials, diplomats, scholars, businessmen, and journalists in GCC states, Iran, Turkey, and Egypt. From 2014-2015, he worked as analyst at Kroll. Cafiero holds an M.A. in International Relations from the University of San Diego.