Which is more common, “Nahen Osten” or “Mittleren Osten”? Any difference? In English we don’t say “near east” as often, and it has a slightly different meaning. “Middle east” usually connotes the Arab world, like this map is a good estimate:
Whereas “near east” doesn’t extend quite as far east, mostly just the lands immediately around the east end of the Mediterranean, from Eygpt to Turkey.
Mittlerer Osten is used in American-influenced publications as well as in rather international magazines, Naher Osten is used in news or mainstream (not meant derogatory) media.
From our geographical location, it makes more sense to speak of the Naher Osten because Mittlerer Osten could be mistaken for Central Asia.