Middle East

OPINION: Will There be Peace Between Iran and the West?

In just a few days, a meeting is scheduled that will be decisive for the security of the Middle East and of the whole world.

OPINION: Rivalry Between Sunnis and Shiites Has Deep Roots

When  the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) suddenly emerged in Iraq, it declared as one of its first targets the Shiites and what it called the Safavids. The Safavid dynasty (1501-1736) was one of the most powerful Iranian dynasties after the Islamic conquest. 

Iraqi Christians Seek Shelter in Jordan after IS Threats

Watching videos and pictures on social media of the advance of the Islamic State (IS) inside Syria made it all seem far from reality to Iraqi Marvin Nafee.

Democracy is “Radical” in Northern Syria

There was never anything particularly remarkable about this northern town of 25,000. However, today it has become the lab for one the most pioneering political experiments ever conducted in the entire Middle East region.

OPINION: The West Prefers Military Order Against History

More senseless bombing of Muslims, more defeats for the United States-West, more ISIS-type movements, more West-Islam polarisation. Any way out?

OPINION: How Obama Should Counter ISIS

President Obama’s speech at the United Nations on Sep. 23 offered a rhetorically eloquent roadmap on how to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). 

OPINION: ISIS Appeals to a Longing for the Caliphate

When, all of a sudden, ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) emerged on the scene and in a matter of days occupied large swathes of mainly Sunni-inhabited parts of Iraq and Syria, including Iraq’s second city Mosul and Tikrit, birthplace of Saddam Hussein, and called itself the Islamic State, many people, not least Western politicians and intelligence services, were taken by surprise.

OPINION: A New European Foreign Policy in an Age of Anxiety

The appointment of Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini as the new European Union foreign policy chief offers the opportunity for an overhaul of EU foreign and security policy.

New Operation Could Hide Major Shift in Europe’s Immigration Control Policy

‘Mare Nostrum’ – the largest search and rescue immigration operation ever carried out in the Mediterranean Sea – has become an issue of bitter brinkmanship between human rights groups and anti-immigrant lobbies.

Arab Region Has World’s Fastest Growing HIV Epidemic

At a time when HIV rates have stabilised or declined elsewhere, the epidemic is still advancing in the Arab world, exacerbated by factors such as political unrest, conflict, poverty and lack of awareness due to social taboos.

Europe’s Two-Time Turnabout on Syria/Iraq

Is this one of those rare occasions where policy-makers self-critically correct a gigantic blunder? Or is it a cold turnabout guided by pure self-interest?

OPINION: The Affinity Between Iraqi Sunni Extremists and the Rulers of Saudi Arabia

Which story line sounds the more credible – that linking the rebel movement ISIS (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) to policies pursued by Iran or that linking the Sunni extremist force to Iran’s adversary Saudi Arabia?

Lebanon’s Closed Doors for Palestinian Refugees

Tens of thousands of Palestinians living in Syria have been uprooted since the violent government crackdown on the uprising and the ensuing battles that ensnared their communities. For around 50,000 of them, Lebanon was their only safe route out but now it seems this door is being closed on them.

Russia May Seek to Emphasise Peace Broker Role in Mideast

As the Palestinian unity government announced June 2 receives a cautious welcome from many world leaders, Russia’s support for the new body is providing the Kremlin with an opportune platform to pursue its foreign policy ambitions and strengthen its domestic ideology.

More Than Generals and Troglodytes in Egypt

Unconsciously or not, most mainstream media and foreign correspondents here have been echoing Muslim Brotherhood voices by depicting Egypt's new president, Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, as the general who led the July 2013 “military coup” against the “legitimately elected” Islamist leader Mohamed Morsi.

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