Latest from Alex Rowell
The Cairo Agreement, signed on this day 54 years ago, serves as a byword for the diplomatic folly that set Lebanon on a path to doom. It is so notorious that when one analyst described a recent proposal as “another Cairo Agreement in the making” their Lebanese audience fully understood the danger.
If Saghieh is branded today by fans and detractors alike as the dean, or grand old man, of Arab liberalism, he certainly did not begin his intellectual journey in that vein. It was only after 30 years of espousing every stripe of radicalism that he met with an insurmountable crisis of faith and “recovered,” as he puts it half-jokingly, from the “fever” of political extremism that would otherwise have killed him.
Egypt's President Sisi has long sought to cast himself as a second Gamal Abdel Nasser. But, as rare public protests early this week illustrated, Egyptians now appear to have lost patience with the performance.
The language used by early Arab poets to appraise wine shows striking parallels to the style of wine criticism we know today. Arab and Muslim poets writing hundreds of years ago used a vocabulary to evaluate wine that would only become current in the West in the late 20th century.