Tag: Ottoman Empire

BEIRUT – The Syrian war has often been cast as a sectarian conflict between a Sunni majority population and a minority Shiite ruling elite. However, sectarianism is only one component of a multi-faceted conflict that is also partially driven by socio-economic grievances, according to Fabrice Balanche, a visiting fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institute. (More…)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been savage in his criticisms of the EU. “The European Union’s court, the European Court of Justice, my esteemed brothers,” Erdoğan exclaimed after an ECJ ruling in March allowing employers to ban the headscarf, “have started a Crusade against the Crescent.” (More…)

During the past hundred years, ten new states have appeared on the map of Europe: Greece, Belgium, Serbia, Italy, the German Confederation, Rumania, Montenegro, Norway, Bulgaria, and — possibly — Albania. (More…)

On the very first day of my arrival at Jerusalem I had made some observations, during a visit to the church of St. Francis, which gave me any thing but a high opinion of the behaviour of the Catholics here.  (More…)

Of all perplexing subjects in the world few can be more baffling than the distribution of races in Macedonia. The Turks classify the population, not by language or by physical characteristics, but by religion. (More…)

Although never in Baghdad for long at a time, I generally had occasion to spend four or five days there every other month. The life in any city is complex and interesting, but here it was especially so. We were among a totally foreign people, but the ever-felt intangible barrier of color was not present.  (More…)

The country to which the name of Palestine is given by moderns is that portion of the Turkish empire in Asia which is comprehended within the 31st and 34th degrees north latitude, and extends from the Mediterranean to the Syrian Desert, eastward of the river Jordan and the Dead Sea. (More…)

It was commonly said at the beginning of this war that, whatever Germany’s military resources might be, she was hopelessly and childishly lacking in diplomatic ability and in knowledge of psychology, from which all success in diplomacy is distilled. (More…)

Ingenious scholars, surveying life from afar, are apt to interpret historical events as the outcome of impersonal forces which shape the course of nations unknown to themselves. This is an impressive theory, but it will not bear close scrutiny. Human nature everywhere responds to the influence of personality. In Greece, this response is more marked than anywhere else. (More…)

“My nation is Yezidi, my language is Ezdiki, my religion is Sherfedin” reads a poster in Cyrillic script on the wall of a Yezidi family home in Zovuni, a village on the outskirts of Armenia’s capital of Yerevan. A portrait of the tomb of Sheikh Adi in Lalish, northern Iraq – a major pilgrimage site for Yezidis – hung on the wall beneath it. (More…)

Don’t let his pro-Palestinian rhetoric fool you. Recep Tayyip Erdogan remains a close ally of the United States. The head of a socially conservative Islamic political party, the Turkish Premier nonetheless believes Turkey to be an integral part of the west, no less deserving of EU membership, for example, than decidedly secular, northern European states such as Germany. (More…)

There is a reason that Hajj is such an important part of Islamic teachings. The pilgrimage is one of abandoning earthly distinctions. It is a process of collective worship by massive crowds that are subject to the same conditions, down to a dress code of white sheets. Hajj emphasizes radical egalitarianism, and the individual abandoning the self for a collective submission under God. (More…)