Behind The News

February 4, 2014

Lebanese emergency personnel inspect the wreckage of a minibus at the site of an explosion on February 3, 2014 in Shoueifat, south of the capital Beirut. (AFP)
11:25 GMT

The Daily Star talks to Beirutis shortly after a suicide bomber blew up a bus in the Shoueifat.

February 2, 2014

Many EU left-wing "extremists" went to the MENA region in the 1970s in solidarity with the "Anti-Imperialist International Struggle" (File Archive/AFP)
12:38 GMT

Jihadists and terrorism in Europe is far from new. In fact, some may argue that trends of young jihadists going to the Middle East from the EU is similar to migration in the 1970s of young left radicals flocking to MENA in solidarity with the "Anti-Imperialist International Struggle."

January 30, 2014

Syrian citizens build a wall to protect one of the country's archaeological sites (Courtesy of Unesco/Icom)
09:01 GMT

Destroying Syria's cultural landmarks have been used tactically by both sides to decrease the country's internal cohesion and identity, undermine the opponent's power, and "rewrite the history" of Syria for the future by removing all reminders of the past, but it has also been a lucrative industry and not just Syrians are involved....

January 28, 2014

The colonialism used to draw up the Middle East after World War I is of no use in modern, war-torn Syria. (AFP/File)
07:27 GMT

Christopher Dekki argues that the attempts of many to balkanize Syria will result in a power vaccum in the already unstable Middle East.

January 26, 2014

A Syrian refugee family in Lebanon waits to receive food vouchers from an NGO in the southern part of the country (Courtesy of Ya Libnan)
07:49 GMT

While many diplomats and organizations refer to them in mass numbers, a solution to be solved and other crisis jargon, refugees weigh in on their perspectives and opinions of Syria talks in Geneva.

January 21, 2014

While Saudi leadership will be present at the Geneva 2 talks Wednesday, Iran's invitation has been withdrawn (Courtesy of RT)
15:27 GMT

Was the Geneva 2 Iran drama a premeditated idea by the usual suspects to derail Syrian peace efforts, or is there more to the story?

January 19, 2014

Hundreds of Syrians were killed in government air raids in the city of Aleppo in December 2013 (File Archive/AFP)
12:14 GMT

The only way to end the Syrian civil war may be for the Islamic world to unite against the violence on political, economic and social fronts, says one analyst.

January 14, 2014

The Arab Spring is a term for the revolutionary wave of demonstrations and protests, riots, and civil wars in the Arab world that began on 18 December 2010. [Wikipedia]
11:22 GMT

On its third anniversary, what is left for the Arab Spring?

January 12, 2014

Many folks of the Arab world remember Sharon for his bloody massacre of Palestinians in Lebanon in the early 1980s (AFP)
08:10 GMT

How will Ariel Sharon's political activity be remembered throughout the Middle East and will it have implications for future diplomacy between Israel and the rest of the Arab world going forward?

January 9, 2014

Washington has been silent as infighting between Syrian opposition and Islamist rebels continues in the country's northern region (Courtesy of Front Page Magazine)
14:09 GMT

The United States' double standard policies in Syria and Iraq may undermine its ability and influence in the global fight against Al Qaeda and in the Middle East more generally.

January 7, 2014

Al Qaeda started off as a small service program in Afghanistan during the Soviet invasion in the 1980s (Courtesy of Foreign Policy)
13:21 GMT

Al Qaeda was not always a worldwide terrorist group. Here is the story behind how a small services office in Afghanistan transformed into its notorious status today.

January 5, 2014

A woman holds her ears while fleeing one of the many car bomb atacks that have targeted Middle East countries over the past year (AFP)
09:47 GMT

The series of car bombs throughout the Middle East in recent weeks are just not independent, random acts. Rather, the increase in violent chaos throughout the region may imply a weakening or shift away from meaningful diplomacy to resolve conflicts nationally, regionally, and internationally.

January 2, 2014

Al Azhar has been one of the key sites of pro-Morsi protests since the former Islamist president's oust in July (Courtesy of Voice of America)
10:39 GMT

With all the protests and violent crackdowns reported around Egypt's Al Azhar University, we take a look at what's really going on among the walls of the the world's oldest Islamic learning institution.

December 31, 2013

With Chatah’s killing, the possibility of a peaceful resolution has been dealt a serious blow. Today, there is no other figure on the Lebanese political scene with the stature and credibility to bring several battling factions to the negotiating table (AFP)
08:17 GMT

Irrespective of the strife and conflict they have been through, most Lebanese people desperately want to believe the famed signer Fairuz when she sings: Even in your madness I love you (Lebanon)/because your love /gathers us together /when we are dispersed. However, following the bombing of Mohamad Chatah on December 27, one wonders if their faith in a unified Lebanon will survive yet another round of violence.

December 27, 2013

Former Finance Minister Mohammad Shatah [thedailystar.com]
12:59 GMT

The assassination of former Finance Minister and advisor to Hariri Mohammed Chatah drew widespread condemnation from across the political spectrum on Friday as officials and politicians mourned the loss of a “moderate” voice.