January 27, 2014 | Press Release

FDD Launches New Website on the Military Balance in the Middle East


WASHINGTON – The Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) today launched an innovative new website, MilitaryEdge.org, designed to help users gain a better understanding of the complex military balance in the Middle East, complete with specifics on military armaments and capabilities.

Given the challenge of calculating the qualitative advantages of armed forces in the region due to changing regimes, shifting alliances and new weaponry, MilitaryEdge.org offers unique functionality. The website allows users to compare the military personnel and weaponry of both state and major non-state actors in the Middle East. MilitaryEdge.org also offers daily updates on arms acquisitions, skirmishes, and training exercises that could change the balance of power in the region. 

“There is a fascinating, complex and significant dynamic among weapons, troops and geopolitics in the Middle East,” said FDD's president Cliff May. “We are pleased to provide this useful tool to the policy-making community.”

“The term QME, or Qualitative Military Edge, has long been associated with Israel's efforts to acquire the right combination of advanced weapons to defend itself in a hostile region. This new site demonstrates that, in a changing Middle East, that calculus has become increasingly complex,” said Jonathan Schanzer, FDD's vice president for research. “The site also helps users understand the military balance of power between Sunni and Shi'a rivals in the region. This is an aspect of the region's military balance that has recently taken on increased importance.”

“The website should serve as a useful tool for policymakers on the Hill, around Washington and in capitals abroad,” said Toby Dershowitz, FDD's vice president for government relations. “To understand the role Congress has played, the site includes legislation related to QME, past and present.”

Maintenance of the site will be ongoing, reflecting the updates and changes to the military capabilities of the Middle East's fighting forces. Currently, MilitaryEdge.org refrains from analyzing intelligence capabilities, military training, specific ammunition stockpiles, or overall preparedness.

For more information or to speak with FDD's experts, please contact Josh Silberberg at [email protected] or 202-403-2921.