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Middle East

Ex-Saudi Intelligence Head Weighs In on Afghanistan

Saudi Arabia’s ‘Afghanistan File’

The closest Prince Turki al-Faisal comes to expressing regret is when he writes that he and his American counterparts might have been too focused on the immediate aim of winning the war in Afghanistan, rather than the potential long-term consequences of their actions.

In Cracking Jokes, a Satire Publication Takes Aim at Authoritarians’ Grip

A Satire Publication Takes Aim at Authoritarians' Grip

Satire won’t change anyone’s mind, but it might get someone sitting on the fence to consider another perspective. Satire won’t topple thrones, but it will unsettle their occupants. It won’t change rules on freedom of speech (except maybe in the wrong direction), but it will remind people what freedom of speech looks like.

How Benjamin Netanyahu’s Former Vassals Dethroned “King Bibi”

How Benjamin Netanyahu’s Former Vassals Dethroned “King Bibi”

The very political figures that Israel’s longest-serving prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu nurtured and elevated conspired to end his reign. They did so, not out of ideological resolve, but out of exasperation that Netanyahu’s last days were following the Trump playbook.

Neri Zilber
Lines in the Sea

Lines in the Sea

The maritime dispute between Israel and Lebanon has implications for the claims of other states and the energy industry’s perception of the region as a viable space for development. If Israel and Lebanon manage to work out their differences, others may follow suit.

Michael Harari,
Gabriel Mitchell
The Seven Hanging Odes of Mecca

The Seven Hanging Odes of Mecca

Seven ancient Arabic odes are still unknown to the West despite having a bedrock status as “Beowulf” does in English: the mu’allaqat or hanging odes, so-called because they were allegedly stitched in gold and draped on the shrine of the Kaaba at Mecca as masterpieces.

Kevin Blankinship
The Gifts of Jewish Arabists — and Arab Jews

The Gifts of Jewish Arabists — and Arab Jews

While many European Jews regarded themselves as honorary “Orientals” or “Arabs,” there were (and still are) Jews who were indeed Arabs. In fact, Middle Eastern Jews played an active role in the formation of modern Arab identity and nationalism.

Khaled Diab
The Palestinian Dispossession at the Heart of the Gaza Conflict

The Palestinian Dispossession at the Heart of the Gaza Conflict

At the root of the new conflagration in Israel-Palestine is not the obtrusive violence but the silent dispossession of Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, enabled by Israeli courts, which is foreclosing any chance of a peaceful resolution

Diana Buttu