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FULL MOON IN LIBRA - April 6-12

A standout idea, a winning proposal, a surprising decision: These are some of the things that will characterize your magnificent work week. There are no challenges where there is determination and will — of which you now have a lot. Wednesday and Thursday are the most interesting days to create memorable situations. When it comes to feelings, an external problem or responsibility will slow your rise. Be patient.

TEMPO: vivace in tripudio


It can't be said that this week will begin calmly. Monday and Tuesday will see a peak of irritability: Something or someone is obstructing your path. In work, for example, this could mean that there is a score to settle or an uncomfortable rivalry. In love it could be the presence of a family member who creates discomfort in projects with your partner, or the presence of an ex. Important decisions should be left until the weekend when there will be an improvement.

TEMPO: adagio nervoso


On Saturday, Venus will enter your sign. Charm and the desire for love will increase. Lonely hearts will sail in fresh waters; however for many it is not the time for commitment. Concentration is on work, but if you want my advice, given this time of crisis, I would make sure to get a good understanding first. This is a week that favors you, especially on Thursday, which marks the beginning of new work collaborations, as well as the end of poor relationships with partners or suppliers.

TEMPO: moderato con brio


An important week for work is coming. Around Monday and Tuesday there will be an interesting planetary situation that pushes a confirmation or good opportunity to reopen professional scenarios. Despite this period's expenditure, an influx of money will be facilitated. New love is protected by the stars, as are stable couples: By the summer you may decide to get married. Free yourself from the ballasts and set sail!

TEMPO: allegretto poco a poco


Again this week, especially around Monday and Tuesday, Mars and Venus are in a stressful aspect that create a climate of intolerance. Relationships formed recently don't convince you yet: There is interest to be together, but the other person's work, or some other external factor more generally, might annoy you. Couples fail to agree on anything — watch out if you have been in crisis for a while, because you might move on to brazen solutions. Even at work, caution should be exercised.

TEMPO: larghetto agitato


The planetary game puts pressure on financial issues and work. It's possible to reach a crucial crossroads in a family-economic controversy, or get first responses — albeit lukewarm — for a project. In both cases, a positive resolution is on the horizon. In love, the favorable winds of Mars and Venus continue, even if from Saturday on a little spat could call a connection into question.

TEMPO: vivace rallentando


By now you have learnt how to be a totem. The scales that find their middle between two weights are a distant memory, but, those who love you will follow you. This is as true in business as it is in love. Lonely hearts will find sparks with new encounters from Saturday on, while couples solve small disturbances that have plagued them recently.

TEMPO: allegretto marcato


An atmosphere of unrest and instability is still in the air. Many of your thoughts still with your partner, especially if you have been in a critical relationship for some time. Stable couples shouldn't worry, but still must cope with a lot of recent, unexpected expenses. Surely the tensions at work don't help — a boss hindering your career, delays in negotiations or in a recognition that never seems to come, etc. Keep looking ahead.

TEMPO: lento affaticato


This is a wonderful sky for lonely hearts. Around Wednesday there is a chance to get involved in fascinating plots with intriguing knowledge. Those who have recently experienced bitter disappointment don't want to commit now. To shoulder this, starting Saturday, Venus will be in opposition — teasing the minds of even long-term couples. An additional force, a professional confirmation is coming mid-week.

TEMPO: allegro indipendente


The focus this week remains on work. You feel that there is no time to lose and right now you can get something more. In this sense, the most interesting days will be Tuesday and Friday. Those who want to make a revolutionary change to their lives, such as a new job or transfer, will be favored. Love has the colors of passion, novelty and important decisions. But don't rule out — for those who truly want it — the return of old flames.

TEMPO: vivace appassionato


On Saturday, Venus returns favorably — but for the rest of the week there is a bit of swell when it comes to affections. Monday and Tuesday are especially to be noted as irritable days. I invite stable couples to be patient and be forward-looking in their projects: This too shall pass. Unlike the mood for those in crisis who will have to try to understand their partner or will come to loggerheads. Work needs a total overhaul, both in management and planning, as does relations with colleagues or partners.

TEMPO: adagietto ballerino


Good news, a job opportunity may already be arriving early this week! You are looking to change your life, more or less radically. So it is important right now to activate yourself and propose, without resting on your laurels. Love is less exciting, and around Wednesday the first signs of discontent in couples will be visible. To lend a hand, Venus steps in from Saturday: There will be moments of tensions and a potential 360° shift. Lonely hearts are dozing.

TEMPO: marcia rivoluzionaria

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Geopolitics

Iran-Saudi Arabia Rivalry May Be Set To Ease, Or Get Much Worse

The Saudis may be awaiting the outcome of Iran's nuclear talks with the West, to see whether Tehran will moderate its regional policies, or lash out like never before.

Military parade in Tehran, Iran, on Oct. 3

-Analysis-

LONDON — The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said earlier this month that Iranian and Saudi negotiators had so far had four rounds of "continuous" talks, though both sides had agreed to keep them private. The talks are to ease fraught relations between Iran's radical Shia regime and the Saudi kingdom, a key Western ally in the Middle East.

Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian has said that the talks were going in the right direction, while an Iranian trade official was recently hopeful these might even allow trade opportunities for Iranian businessmen in Saudi Arabia. As the broadcaster France 24 observed separately, it will take more than positive signals to heal a five-year-rift and decades of mutual suspicions.


Agence France-Presse news agency, meanwhile, has cited an unnamed French diplomat as saying that Saudi Arabia wants to end its costly discord with Tehran. The sides may already have agreed to reopen consular offices. For Saudi Arabia, the costs include its war on Iran-backed Houthis rebels fighting an UN-recognized government in next-door Yemen.

The role of the nuclear pact

Bilateral relations were severed in January 2016, after regime militiamen stormed the Saudi embassy in Tehran. Amirabdollahian was then the deputy foreign minister for Arab affairs. In 2019, he told the website Iranian Diplomacy that Saudi Arabia had taken measures vis-a-vis Iran's nuclear pact with the world powers.

It's unlikely Ali Khamenei will tolerate the Saudi kingdom's rising power in the region.

He said "the Saudis' insane conduct toward [the pact] led them to conclude that they must prevent [its implementation] in a peaceful environment ... I think the Saudis are quite deluded, and their delusion consists in thinking that Trump is an opportunity for them to place themselves on the path of conflict with the Islamic Republic while relying on Trump." He meant the administration led by the U.S. President Donald J.Trump, which was hostile to Iran's regime. This, he said, "is not how we view Saudi Arabia. I think Yemen should have been a big lesson for the Saudis."

The minister was effectively admitting the Houthis were the Islamic Republic's tool for getting back at Saudi Arabia.

Yet in the past two years, both sides have taken steps to improve relations, without firm results as yet. Nor is the situation likely to change this time.

Photo of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei in 2020

Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei in 2020

commons.wikimedia.org

Riyadh's warming relations with Israel

Iran's former ambassador in Lebanon, Ahmad Dastmalchian, told the ILNA news agency in Tehran that Saudi Arabia is doing Israel's bidding in the region, and has "entrusted its national security, and life and death to Tel Aviv." Riyadh, he said, had been financing a good many "security and political projects in the region," or acting as a "logistical supplier."

The United States, said Dastmalchian, has "in turn tried to provide intelligence and security backing, while Israel has simply followed its own interests in all this."

Furthermore, it seems unlikely Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei will tolerate, even in this weak period of his leadership, the kingdom's rising power in the region and beyond, and especially its financial clout. He is usually disparaging when he speaks of Riyadh's princely rulers. In 2017, he compared them to "dairy cows," saying, "the idiots think that by giving money and aid, they can attract the goodwill of Islam's enemies."

Iranian regime officials are hopeful of moving toward better diplomatic ties and a reopening of embassies. Yet the balance of power between the sides began to change in Riyadh's favor years ago. For the kingdom's power has shifted from relying mostly on arms, to economic and political clout. The countries might have had peaceful relations before in considerably quieter, and more equitable, conditions than today's acute clash of interests.

For if nuclear talks break down, Iran's regime may become more aggressive.

Beyond this, the Abraham Accord or reconciliation of Arab states and Israel has been possible thanks to the green light that the Saudis gave their regional partners, and it is a considerable political and ideological defeat for the Islamic Republic.

Assuming all Houthis follow Tehran's instructions — and they may not — improved ties may curb attacks on Saudi interests and aid its economy. Tehran will also benefit from no longer having to support them. Unlike Iran's regime, the Saudis are not pressed for cash or resources and could even offer the Houthis a better deal. Presently, they may consider it more convenient to keep the softer approach toward Tehran.

For if nuclear talks with the West break down, Iran's regime may become more aggressive, and as experience has shown, tensions often prompt a renewal of missile or drone attacks on the Saudis, on tankers and on foreign shipping. Riyadh must have a way of keeping the Tehran regime quiet, in a distinctly unquiet time.

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