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Religion and World Politics part 20
ISIS and the Fight for Westphalia

As we enter May 2017, the city of Mosul, held stub­born­ly by ISIS forces, has still not fall­en. What has become a siege of the city is now a fight almost on a street-by-street basis for the old city.

Religion and World Politics part 19
Hamas and the Nationalist Project

As Israeli Zionism began acquir­ing a greater and greater ortho­dox deter­mi­na­tion, a deter­mi­na­tion to expand bor­ders to what they were at the height of the Biblical sense of what had been Israel under­neath King Solomon, the response of the Arab states and the response of the Palestinians was very divided.

Religion and World Politics part 18
Zionism and Its Discontents

It’s an emo­tive term, a value-laden term, every time we men­tion Zionism. In fact, as a mod­ern doctrine—and that’s what it is, quite a mod­ern doctrine—it’s only real­ly been around a rel­a­tive­ly short time. Really it came into being at the end of the 19th cen­tu­ry, where pres­sure groups and Jewish con­gress­es led by peo­ple like Herzl began to con­tem­plate the pos­si­bil­i­ty of a home­land for the Jews.

Religion and World Politics part 13
Turkey and Gülen: The Priest and the Pasha

A num­ber of Islamic states had rev­o­lu­tions that turned them in a par­tic­u­lar post-war direc­tion. And in this post-war direc­tion the empha­sis was on two key things. The first was mod­ern devel­op­ment. In this sense it meant catch­ing up with the met­ro­pol­i­tan Western world. And the sec­ond dri­ving force behind all of this was the assump­tion that this would be best done by insti­tut­ing sec­u­lar states.

Religion and World Politics part 6
The Advent of Al-Qaeda

Our tale begins in Afghanistan with the Soviet inva­sion in 1979. This came out of a blue sky, mil­i­tary speak for there were no clouds, there were no warn­ings. But sud­den­ly the Soviets invad­ed the coun­try in sup­port of a Soviet-inclined gov­ern­ment. But a gov­ern­ment which aroused huge resent­ments and resis­tance on the part of many many peo­ple in Afghanistan. 

Religion and World Politics part 5
The Siege of Mecca and Its Treacherous Consequences

If the 1979 Iranian rev­o­lu­tion was a turn­ing point in late 20th cen­tu­ry his­to­ry, what fol­lowed set the scene for a series of betray­als and revivals of the sort that the Western world could not have envisaged.

Elif Şafak Makes a Case for Women’s Rights in the Middle East

One of the pri­ma­ry ques­tions, or prob­lems as I see it, is this illu­sion” that same­ness will bring safe­ty. People start to think­ing that if we are sur­round­ed by sim­i­lar peo­ple, like-minded peo­ple, if we have com­mu­ni­ties based on same­ness, that will bring us safe­ty. That’s an illu­sion. That’s not the case at all. 

Forbidden Research: Rites vs. Rights — Islam, Women’s Rights, and Global Security

If we look at a lot of the things we’ve been speak­ing about today, be it genet­ic engi­neer­ing or the things that occur in our dai­ly lives, the chal­lenge of repro­duc­tive rights, or glob­al peace and secu­ri­ty, a lot of the stag­na­tion, a lot of the chal­lenges, are actu­al­ly root­ed either in the per­cep­tion of reli­gion or in the polit­i­cal manip­u­la­tion of religion.

Khaleeji Design: An Imported Aesthetic?

If you are giv­en the task to lec­ture on design some­where in the Middle East, do you think you’ll need to tai­lor your approach? Maybe think about your ref­er­ences, the lan­guage, the vast­ly dif­fer­ent back­ground? The answer most prob­a­bly is yes.” But the real­i­ty of design edu­ca­tion in the Middle East, and more specif­i­cal­ly the Gulf Region, prove otherwise.

Privacy, cen­sor­ship, and secu­ri­ty in the Middle East

So I got curi­ous, and I asked myself what is the Iranian Internet, and who is the Iranian user? I was pissed off enough, like I said, to take a step or to feel the urge to do some­thing. To feel the urge of mak­ing some­thing. And the thing that I real­ly want­ed to bring across was that cen­sor­ship is hap­pen­ing in a dif­fer­ent coun­try, where it’s being used to bring across infor­ma­tion, to make voic­es heard. 

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