Home / In Depth (page 10)

In Depth

Saudi Arabia and Oman Have Different Experiences With Extremism

By Gary A. Grappo* – First published in Fair Observer- Saudi Arabia and Oman possess differing national identities, varied social and cultural roots, and divergent approaches to tolerance that may explain their different experiences with extremism. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Sultanate of Oman share significant characteristics: language; basic …

Read More »

The future of the Muslim Brotherhood in the Gulf

By Kristin Smith Diwan for THE WASHINGTON POST – A Muslim Brotherhood supporter in front of the United Arab Emirates Embassy in Cairo on Jan. 13, 2013, protesting the trial of 94 people in the UAE, including some Egyptian citizens, on charges of trying to overthrow the government. The banner …

Read More »

The Houthi “Ansarullah”.. The Zaidis Revival

By Dr. Haytham Mouzahem** After seizing power in the Yemeni capital Sanaa and the resign of President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi last month, the Ansarullah group has dissolved parliament, and created a supreme security committee to run the state until the formation of a presidential council. Last week, the Houthi …

Read More »

The social strategy of ISIS

THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – By Ali Hashem – Aleppo, October 2013, more than 150 pro ISIS loyalists arrived in the region from Kazakhstan. Kazakh fighters with their women, children and some of their elderly, decided it’s time to immigrate to “Darul Islam” or the land of Islam, whereas any other …

Read More »

The Voice of Bahrain vs. The Voice of Arab Uprisings

By Jelisaveta Blagojevic* – Media platforms in Bahrain have come under increased pressure from the regime, after the eruption of the protest against it at the beginning of 2011. As the main international and Bahraini research organizations reported (Freedom House, Reporters without Borders, Human Rights Watch, the Bahrain Centre for …

Read More »

The Islamic World Versus ISIS

The Levant News – BY THOMAS STACKPOLE FOR FOREIGN POLICY – The war against the Islamic State, and the brand of extremist violence it exemplifies, won’t be won or lost on the battlefield. Defeating the group, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said Thursday, will instead …

Read More »

Trying my hand at a novel on the Middle East

By Graham E. Fuller  for http://grahamefuller.com/ –   I remember some 20 years ago, while writing a RAND study on Sudan, I spent a number of hours with the fascinating and distinguished former Foreign Minister of Sudan, Francis Deng. He is actually from southern Sudan, when it was still part of …

Read More »

Saudi Arabia: A Time for a Ruthless Reckoning

By: Fouad al-Ibrahim for Al-Akhbar English – The new king takes revenge from his predecessor. This, briefly, describes what secretly transpired in Saudi Arabia on January 24, signaling a resurgence of the Sudairi clan which is working to restore its power and liquidate the legacy of King Abdullah. The late …

Read More »

Muslims and Nationalism—a Different Model

by Graham E. Fuller – grahamefuller.com – In the last blog I talked about four key historical reasons for Muslim resistance to the West—apart from the well-known factors of imperialism, and regular western political and military intervention. http://grahamefuller.com/why-is-it-specifically-muslims-who-are-resisting-the-west/ There is at least one more important characteristic of the Muslim world, …

Read More »

Hezbollah answers Israeli attack

By Ali Hashem for Al-monitor – The situation in south Lebanon was calm, but with a touch of nervousness in the air the morning of Jan. 28, when six missiles broke the silence. Everyone had been waiting for this moment to arrive. Ten days of waiting had come to an …

Read More »

King Salman’s Shady History

President Obama wants to work with the leader of the House of Saud. But the new king of Saudi Arabia has troubling ties to radical Islamists. BY DAVID ANDREW WEINBERG for FOREIGN POLICY –  President Barack Obama arrived in Riyadh today to offer his condolences on the death of the beloved …

Read More »

Islam in Haiti

By Dr. Geoffrey Cook for The Muslim Observer – Haiti is a benighted country that your author knows well having made working journeys there, and serving on a Committee in my home State of California to support that nation in her struggles (the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere) for …

Read More »

The New Drivers of Europe’s Geopolitics

By George Friedman for STRATFOR –  For the past two weeks, I have focused on the growing fragmentation of Europe. Two weeks ago, the murders in Paris prompted me to write about the fault line between Europe and the Islamic world. Last week, I wrote about the nationalism that is rising in …

Read More »

How the Houthis Did It

Regional rivalries and a botched post-Arab Spring political transition paved the way from the Houthis’ north Yemen base to the doors of the presidential palace. BY LAURA KASINOF for FOREIGN POLICY – Nearly four years ago, during the height of Yemen’s Arab Spring protests, when then-President Ali Abdullah Saleh was …

Read More »

Rolling Back Reforms in Riyadh

Will King Salman maintain Abdullah’s legacy of progress toward a more open and inclusive society in Saudi Arabia? BY CARYLE MURPHY for FOREIGN POLICY – Rolling Back Reforms in Riyadh King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, whose death was announced in Riyadh early on Jan. 23, led Saudi Arabia through …

Read More »

Saudi Arabia Faces Challenges in the New Year

By Michael Nayebi-Oskoui for Stratfor – The Middle East is one of the most volatile regions in the world — it is no stranger to upheaval. The 2009 uprisings in Iran and the brinksmanship of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s government were followed by the chaos of the Arab Spring, the spillover of …

Read More »

Saudi Arabia’s coming struggle

By David Ignatius for The Washington Post – Saudi watchers have been talking about the transition from King Abdullah for a decade, but now that it has arrived, it’s as mysterious as ever. The death of King Abdullah begins a period of generational change in the oil kingdom that may …

Read More »

Obama in the Middle East: All about ISIS and Iran

By Joyce Karam for Al Arabiya News – In his sixth and perhaps most eloquent State of the Union address to Congress, U.S. President Barack Obama left no doubt about his unwillingness to be drawn to wars and conflicts in the Middle East. Fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and …

Read More »

Why Is it Specifically Muslims Who are Resisting the West?

By Graham Fuller – Source: grahamefuller.com – Why Is it Specifically Muslims Who are Resisting the West? Many people ask why it appears to be specifically Muslims who are in confrontation with the West today, as compared to other ethnic groups who also bear historical grievances from treatment at the …

Read More »

Who Are the Houthis of Yemen?

Source: THE NEW YORK TIMES – The Houthis, an insurgent group based in northwestern Yemen, have been fighting the government intermittently since 2004, when the country was still led by President Ali Abdullah Saleh, a longtime autocrat and United States ally. While Yemen is mostly Sunni, the Houthis belong to …

Read More »

Golan attack ‘colossal failure’ for Hezbollah, analysts say

Source: Al Arabiya News – An Israeli helicopter attack killed five members of Hezbollah operating out of Syria over the weekend. Among the dead were senior Hezbollah figures and an Iranian general, raising tensions in Lebanon of a potential return to hostilities between the two neighboring countries. The attack – …

Read More »

How will Hezbollah respond to Israeli strike?

By Jean Aziz for Al-monitor – Translated by Pascale el-Khoury – Hezbollah announced the killing of six of its fighters in a raid Jan. 18 which it accused the Israeli air force of carrying out against a group of its members on Syrian territory. The incident has preoccupied the Lebanese …

Read More »

Graham Fuller’s Five Middle East Predictions for 2015

By Graham Fuller* – Source: grahamefuller.com – Only a fool offers longer term predictions about the Middle East. I offer the following longer terms predictions about the Middle East for 2015. 1- ISIS will decline in power and influence. I have stated earlier that I do not believe ISIS is …

Read More »

Why the War on Terror Isn’t Working?

By Ali Hashem for The Huffingtonpost – Why is the world still suffering from terrorism? There might be several answers, some that could be fitted in a book, or maybe books. Yet the reasons given are always the same, or to be specific, the answers aren’t convincing. No it’s not …

Read More »

The power of religion

Special Report – On a Sunday in early June Muhammad Qatta, a roadside coffee-seller in the Syrian city of Aleppo, refused to serve a would-be freeloader. Even the prophet himself would have to pay, he said. Some bearded rebel fighters overheard him. Crying blasphemy, they shot him dead. Muhammad was …

Read More »

Why does ISIS hate Shi’a?

By Graham E. Fuller Published first on Graham Fullet’s Blog – ISIS has particularly targeted Shi’a as a key part of their brutal onslaught against any practice of Islam that does not conform to their narrow ahistorical interpretation view of their religion. We hear a lot from western commentators about …

Read More »

The meaning of being a Sufi

The Levant Exclusive – By Khaled Mohammed Abdou* – The Sufi: The traveller in the way of love To be human first and before anything, to realise the meaning of “within you the big world exists”. To remember that no matter how high or low, awake or heedless, forgetful or …

Read More »

Ahmed Ghappour Liberty and Security: Post-9/11 Initiatives

  THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – Silicon Valley – Dr. Geoffrey Cook –   The second speaker at the Muslim Legal Fund of America (MLFA) fund-raising dinner here last spring which your scribe is examining in micro-detail (i.e., each individual presentation per article) is Ahmed Ghappour. Ahmed is a clinical (law) …

Read More »

What Is Genuine Leadership in the Middle East?

By Graham E. Fuller – A supreme challenge to US policies in the Middle East—especially in the Arab world—has been dealing with the no-win dilemma of leadership in the Arab world. As we look out across the wreckage of the present scene in the Middle East, many observers, including myself, …

Read More »

Power struggle rages in Yemen

By Adel Moujahed al-Shurbaji for Assafir – Translated by Cynthia Milan for al-monitor- “Ruling Yemen is like dancing on snake heads,” former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh said, according to British researcher Victoria Clark. Poet Ibrahim al-Hadrani wrote, “The saddest and grouchiest people in the world are the ones who …

Read More »

Understanding Hizbullah in Lebanon

By Justin Salhani for the Media Line – [Beirut] — In American policy making circles, the name Hizbullah cuts a shadowy figure of a radical Islamist terrorist group, hell-bent on Israel’s destruction. Hizbullah, which translates to “Party of God,” describes itself as a Shiite-Muslim political and social movement that first …

Read More »

The Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra: A Looming Grand Jihadi Alliance?

THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi – The international coalition- led by the U.S.- against the Islamic State [IS], with additional American airstrikes targeting the ‘Khorasan’ al-Qa’ida group in Syria (in reality just al-Qa’ida veterans from the Afghanistan-Pakistan embedded with Syria’s al-Qa’ida affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra [JN])- has prompted media speculation …

Read More »