Middle East

Turkish extreme-right party leader to Greece: Remember what happened in 1922

Devlet Bahceli 1a LLLL

The leader of the extreme right Turkish Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), Devlet Bahceli openly threatened Greece that if its army wanted to be thrown into the sea again, the Turkish army was… DailyHellas Commenting on the recent increasing tensions between the two countries in the Aegean Sea, Mr…. Turkish extreme-right… Read More »

Netanyahu and the ‘apartheid state’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at a joint news conference with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (not pictured) at Kirribilli House in Sydney, Australia, February 22, 2017.   REUTERS/Jason Reed - RTSZQ7G

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has come up with a new, supposedly sophisticated answer for pesky journalists who ask whether he still supports the two-state solution. Akiva Eldar Al Monitor If Netanyahu responded that he hopes for the establishment of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, he would incur the wrath of his friends in the government, the Likud and the Knesset. On the other hand… Netanyahu and the… Read More »

Graphic novel illustrates life of Syrian refugees in Lebanon

Novel - Al Monitor

“Meantime” is a graphic novel project initiated in March 2016 by French nongovernmental organization (NGO) Solidarites International (SOL). Florence Massena Al Monitor Five French, Syrian and Lebanese artists spent weeks talking with Syrian refugees in Akkar and Tripoli in northern Lebanon to create five graphic stories, which have been available online since Feb. 21 in English, Arabic and French. According to the… Graphic novel illustrates… Read More »

Merkel slams ‘bitter’ detention of German journalist in Turkey

Caun 2b

Reporter Deniz Yucel has been placed in jail pending his trial on terrorism related charges. Deutsche Welle Scores of opposition journalists have been arrested amidst a crackdown on dissent by the government of… The outrage over the imprisonment of Turkish-German journalist Deniz Yucel prompted… Merkel slams ‘bitter… Read More »

War, conflict, economic strife: the world in 2017 is rife with hot spots, but leavened by hope

World - The Conversation

In all the attention rightfully given to the new US administration and Brexit, one could be forgiven for forgetting that other difficult political situations exist around the world. Susan Harris Rimmer The Conversation But they do exist, and in the uncertainty that surrounds global governance in 2017, this risk of human suffering is great. One London School of Economics… War, conflict, economic… Read More »

What is Russia’s role in Syria and the ‘post-West’ world order?

A man inspects a damaged house after an airstrike on al-Yadouda village, in Deraa Governorate, Syria February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Alaa Al-Faqir - RTSYUBP

It’s become customary not to expect much from the Syria peace conferences. Maxim A. Suchkov Al Monitor The warring parties argue around same mutual claims, often stick to maximalist positions and frequently seem more interested in trying to project a sympathetic image to outside observers than in discussing the issues on the agenda. External sponsors, in… What is Russia’s… Read More »

Is there a US diplomacy vacuum at the UN in Geneva?

UN - BBC

“Where is the US in all this? I can’t tell you because I don’t know.” Imogen Foulkes BBC News These were the words of the United Nations special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, days before a fresh round of peace talks began. Only a few months… Is there a… Read More »

Democracy, the military and mainstream media in Turkey

TUR - DS

Hürriyet’s manipulative article, which was ironically released at a time when Turkey is still trying to overcome the trauma of the July 15 coup attempt and going to a referendum soon, is a poor copy of the daily’s anti-democratic past Meryem Ilayda Atlas Daily Sabah Daily Hürriyet published an article written by Hande Fırat over the weekend, at a time when Turkey has been trying its best to overcome the trauma caused by the July 15 military coup attempt just ... Read More »

‘I spent the night at my Muslim friends”: Christians flee Islamic State in Sinai

Caup 2b

Ismailia, Egypt: Some fled with little more than the clothes they were wearing, terrified that the militants of Islamic State would come for them… Omar Medhat and Laura King WAtoday Los Angeles Times For a fourth day on Sunday, Coptic Christians – one of Egypt’s most vulnerable minorities – sought safe haven after a series of sectarian killings in and… ‘I spent the… Read More »

The latest UN Syria talks will fail, just like the last ones

Syria - Asia Times

Turkey, Iran, and Russia could set the delicate path to peace in Syria but the colossal differences that have appeared between them mean the latest round of UN talks will be as unsuccessful as the last ones. Sami Moubayed Asia Times The upcoming round of UN-mandated Syria talks, known as Geneva IV, will start in Switzerland this weekend. High hopes were… The latest UN… Read More »

Russia Expected to Veto UN Resolution Blaming Syria for Chemical Attacks

Edux 1a

UNITED NATIONS — Russia says it will veto a draft U.N. resolution blaming the Syrian government for some chemical weapons attacks in Syria if it is brought to a… Margaret Besheer VoA “The resolution prejudges the results of the investigation, it is one-sided [and] based on insufficient evidence,” Russian Deputy U.N. Envoy Vladimir Safronkov told reporters after a… Russia Expected to… Read More »

Why Iran wants Palestine back on regional agenda

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Fatima Navab Safavi is the daughter of Mojtaba Navab Safavi (1924-1955), an Iranian cleric and one of the first to mobilize Iranian masses against Israel back in the early… Ali Hashem Al-Monitor Donning the traditional black chador, Safavi told Al-Monitor in an interview, “Years before the… Why Iran wants… Read More »

Iran confirms: US paid ransom

Runs 1a

Back in September, I testified before the House Financial Services Committee on the allegation that the Obama administration had paid Iran a ransom—at the time it was believed to be $400 million but it was later revealed that the… Michael Rubin AEIdeas At the hearing, it is now clear that State Department officials lied outright to the… Iran confirms: US… Read More »

If You Want Israeli-Palestinian Peace, Stop Talking About A ‘Two-State Solution’

Two state - The Federalist

Before you get a state, you have to learn how to live in peace. David Harsanyi The Federalist Not the reverse. This week, an… If You Want… Read More »

Julie Bishop and Theresa May divided on Syria and Bashar al-Assad

Borris & Julie 1a Jack Taylor Pool

London: A split has opened up between Britain and Australia on the future of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, with Foreign Minister Julie Bishop rejecting British Prime Minister Theresa May’s demands for Assad to go, saying the… Latika Bourke The Canberra Times Mrs May on Thursday local time spoke with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull by… The pair discussed a… Julie Bishop and… Read More »

Slower May Be Better in Going at ISIS

The National Interest

A couple of tendencies that are all too common in policymaking and policy debate tend to make for unwise foreign commitments or overextended foreign expeditions. Paul R. Pillar The National Interest One is to treat a goal that is at most an intermediate objective as if it were an end in itself. Doing so obfuscates… Slower May Be… Read More »