Posts tagged "Egypt"
Judean Death Cult

Judean Death Cult

As I read the article, I started shaking. Tears streamed down my face. It was about an old man in Beit Hanoun, Gaza. On Friday night, eight members of his family, including his sons, daughters and grandchildren, had finished their Iftar meal and sat down to watch a popular television show. A few minutes into it, an artillery shell ripped through their home, killing them all, including children aged six, two, and one. More»

Careful What You Wish For

Careful What You Wish For

If you live outside the United States, let me begin by saying that I am very sorry for what is about to happen. Despite the damage that the Republican Party and their right-wing fellow travelers have done to this country and, worse, to the rest of the world, it seems the American public is once again leaning in their direction. More»

Napoleon III in Egypt

Napoleon III in Egypt

Like many people, I was too optimistic about the June uprising that toppled Mohammed Morsi. I assumed that it would make inevitable struggles for a wider democratization of Egyptian society, and with it, the rest of the Muslim world. More»

Juma Calling

Juma Calling

When I was a child, my mother used to blow on me gently after namaz. It was a folk custom meant to cleanse me of her transgressions, and protect me from the djinn. I did my Juma prayers at Berlin’s Türk Sehitlik mosque seeking that same type of maternal protection. More»

Blair on Putin

Blair on Putin

Every now and then, Tony Blair pops up out of nowhere and reminds us all he’s still out there on his private jet. It’s almost routine now. Of course, it should go without saying that politicians like Blair have never been as interested in combating genuine issues, like climate change, as they have been in waging wars in the Middle East.  More»

Qutb and the Jews

Qutb and the Jews

For all of Sayyid Qutb’s positive contributions to the Muslim world (and there were a few, despite his influence on figures like Osama Bin Laden) we cannot ignore the negatives. The most infamous is his pivotal role in inspiring modern Islamic anti-Semitism with his influential work Our Struggle Against the Jews (1950). The irony is that Qutb often sounds very Jewish. More»

Ceaușescu's Egypt

Ceaușescu’s Egypt

Many analysts have become cynical about the Arab spring as a result of events in Egypt. There is certainly cause for it, especially since General al-Sisi is consolidating military rule while establishing a new cult of personality. I am not hopeless about it, though. There is a trajectory to cults of personality that always has the opportunity to end abruptly, as was the case of Nicolae Ceaușescu in Romania More»

The Forgotten Key To Israel-Palestine: Water

The Forgotten Key To Israel-Palestine: Water

Water is finally being discussed, however disingenuously, in regard to Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territories. But actually, water needs to be understood as a fundamental reason for the ongoing occupation. It came to the fore this week when the EU Parliamentary President mentioned it in his speech in the Knesset. More»

Do the Rabia

Do the Rabia

Never mind the quenelle. There’s a new hand sign in Egypt. The Rabia, as it is called, consists of holding up four fingers, with the thumb tucked in, as a protest against military rule. The gesture is Islamist, and refers to the massacre of supporters of deposed president Morsi, which took place in Cairo’s Rabia al-Adawiya Square on August 14th, 2013. More»

Obama of Arabia

Obama of Arabia

Nuclear weapons negotiations between the United States and Iran are looking increasingly likely to portend a seismic shift in the Middle East. That shift, though, is not the one that was hoped for in some quarters. Especially in Riyadh and Jerusalem, who fear being sidelined by an ending of hostilities between Washington and Tehran. More»

Spirit of the Sunnah

Spirit of the Sunnah

I’m currently reading an English translation of the Qu’ran that contains additional commentary. It’s often frustrating to read the analysis. The publisher makes the mistake of issuing a scholarly reading of the holy text to the letter, which ignores the myriad ways that Muslims use Islam to inform their lives. The result is that philosophical discussions about what Sunnah means become the domain of increasingly hardline clerics. More»

Smoke and Mirrors

Smoke and Mirrors

The US is desperately trying to maintain the illusion of functionality at the revived Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. But reality is intruding. I explore in my latest article at The Third Way. More»