Middle East

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.

More Dead Than Red

The World Bank has declared the Red Sea-Dead Sea canal project feasible. Designed to “save the Dead Sea”, “desalinate water and/or generate hydroelectricity at affordable prices in Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority”, and “build a symbol of peace in the Middle East”, the scheme, green groups warn, is fraught with environmental hazards.

Opportunity Missed for Nuclear-Free Middle East

After the cancellation of an international conference to create a nuclear-free Middle East, leading experts have warned that an important opportunity to create stability in the region has been squandered.

OP-ED: Radical Salafis Overrunning the Syrian Revolution

The recent visit by Abd al-Halim Murad, head of the Bahraini Salafi al-Asalah movement, to Syria to meet with Syrian rebels is an attempt by him and other Gulf Salafis to hijack the Syrian revolution.

‘When’ to Attack Iran, Not ‘If’

“The quiet before the storm” is how Israeli pundits describe the countdown – not to Israel going solo on Iran’s nuclear and military installations, but to the meeting between due Monday next week between U.S. President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Hans Blix warned that all parties in the growing crisis over Iran

Ex-IAEA Chief Urges Talks to Defuse Threat of Attack on Iran

Even as U.N. inspectors expressed disappointment about the results of their visit this week to Iran, a former chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) urged all parties to make greater efforts to defuse rapidly rising tensions over Tehran's nuclear programme to avert war.

U.S.: To Arm or Not to Arm Syrian Rebels, That Is the Question

Just days before the opening meeting of the new international "Friends of Syria" in Tunis Friday, the debate over whether the United States should provide more support – including weapons – to opposition forces is gathering steam.

Palestinians Hear the Water

After a recent Israeli Supreme Court decision allowed Israeli companies to maintain quarrying and mining activities in the occupied West Bank, local human rights groups and activists say the decision has opened the door dangerously to Israel’s pillaging of other Palestinian resources.

Placing Dignity Above Food

JERUSALEM, Feb. 19, 2012 (IPS) – On the day Israel released some 550 Palestinian prisoners in the second half of a swap for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit who had been held for five-and-a-half years by Hamas in Gaza, an Islamic Jihad activist started an agonising hunger strike.