Posts tagged "Egypt"
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»

A Holocaust Double-Standard

A Holocaust Double-Standard

I wrote recently about the apoplectic reaction of some members of Russia’s Jewish community to Stephen Fry’s very accurate comparison of the atmosphere in Germany at the beginning of Adolph Hitler’s Fascist regime and Vladmir Putin’s incitement to hate and violence against LGBT people in Russia. More»

Israel's New Frenemies

Israel’s New Frenemies

Chemi Shalev is one of Ha’aretz‘ best reporters, and his commentary Strange Bedfellows makes for valuable reading. It describes how the diminished role the US is playing in the Middle East is being interpreted, not without merit, as US weakness, and that is causing so-called “moderate Arab states” (which is a euphemism for those states which are willing, however clandestinely, to work with Israel) to increase their cooperation with Israel. More»

Murdoch's Egypt

Murdoch’s Egypt

In a piece published closely after the military ouster of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, the Wall Street Journal’s editorial board argued: “Egyptians would be lucky if their new ruling generals turn out to be in the mold of Chile’s Augusto Pinochet, who took over power amid chaos but hired free-market reformers and midwifed a transition to democracy.” More»

Anarchy in Turkish

Anarchy in Turkish

The consensus is clear. Middle Eastern equals conservative. So Westerners have come to assume after decades of politically over-determined news coverage, and militaristic foreign policy posturing, by the United States and its allies following the Iranian Revolution. The assumption is universal. Even Israel is subject to this distortion, albeit for different reasons, stemming from its conflict with the Palestinians. More»

The Global Hoodie

The Global Hoodie

There is no shortage of lessons to be learned from the acquittal of George Zimmerman. Americans of conscience, however they may feel about the verdict, should examine what this says about our attitudes. Those attitudes are reflected not only in how we deal with the violence on our own streets, but also around the world. More»

Egypt's Elusive Democracy

Egypt’s Elusive Democracy

It’s hard not to hope that Egypt gets the democracy it deserves. In the wake of the second ouster of a head of state in two years, such hopes might be elevated. However,  the current state of affairs in the Middle Eastern country is not an optimistic one. More»