Rain Returns Life to Iraq’s Marshland, For Now

Climate change, dams, and warfare have pushed Iraq’s legendary southern marshes to the edge. Rains revived them after they nearly dried up last year, but the wetlands’ uncertain survival depends on international cooperation.
Rain Returns Life to Iraq’s Marshland, For Now

Passport

The Titanic: My Grandfather’s Unsinkable Memories

The Titanic: My Grandfather’s Unsinkable Memories

After more than a hundred years, Nada Fayad remembers how her Lebanese grandfather survived the Titanic.
January’s Asian Cup Semi-Final Soccer Match Further Inflamed UAE-Qatar Tensions

January’s Asian Cup Semi-Final Soccer Match Further Inflamed UAE-Qatar Tensions

The ongoing diplomatic and political crisis between Qatar and the UAE, which began in June 2017, overshadowed the UAE-hosted Asian Cup 2019.

Readings of French Colonial Postcards in Morocco

Colonialism was able to spread not only through military power but also the creation and dissemination of biased images of the colonized. French colonial photography in Morocco worked along with military power to subdue the nation and legitimize French power.
Who is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and How Did ISIS Come to Be

Who is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and How Did ISIS Come to Be?

Washington’s recent announcement that ISIS was defeated in Syria and that it would immediately withdraw thousands of U.S. troops stunned the world and raised concerns about the resurgence of ISIS. To understand how the terrorist organization could be reborn in the future, it is necessary to understand its founder and how it was created.

Culture

Rain Returns Life to Iraq’s Marshland, For Now

Rain Returns Life to Iraq’s Marshland, For Now

Climate change, dams, and warfare have pushed Iraq’s legendary southern marshes to the edge. Rains revived them after they nearly dried up last year, but the wetlands’ uncertain survival depends on international cooperation.

Ramadan: What is it?

  The Five Pillars of Islam are the five obligations that every Muslim must satisfy to live a good and responsible life. The Five Pillars consist of, in order of importance: Shahadah: Reciting the Muslim profession of faith Salat: Ritual prayers five tim...

22nd Annual Sephardic Jewish Film Festival Honored Morocco on Opening Night

In our divided times, the New York Sephardic Jewish Film Festival creates space for much needed international and interfaith dialogue.

New York Welcomed Morocco to American Sephardi Music Festival

The American Sephardi Music Festival was one of several events celebrating Sephardi Jewish culture in New York City across February and March this year. Such events are instrumental in promoting tolerance and inter-cultural understanding.

Opinion

ARABIA THAT WAS

When Bigotry and Intolerance Reigned: The Expulsion of Moriscos from Renaissance Spain

When Bigotry and Intolerance Reigned: The Expulsion of Moriscos from Renaissance Spain

Muslim Moriscos converted to Christianity under duress, faced racial discrimination and systematic marginalization by mainstream Catholic Spaniards in Renaissance Spain. They were eventually exiled from their Iberian homeland, but their legacy remains.

Book Review

Oum Kalthoum and the Poet Who Loved Her: A Book Review of “I Loved You for Your Voice”

“I Loved You for Your Voice,” by Selim Nassib, is a timeless, exquisite, and underappreciated novel inspired by the life of Oum Kalthoum as recounted by Ahmed Rami, the poet who composed the lyrics of her songs and who loved her in vain.
Oum Kalthoum and the Poet Who Loved Her A Book Review of I Loved You for Your Voice

ARABIA THAT IS

Fairuz and the Rahbani Brothers Musical Legends Who Shaped Modern Lebanese Identity

Fairuz and the Rahbani Brothers: Musical Legends Who Shaped Modern Lebanese Identity

Lebanese musical icons Fairuz and the Rahbani brothers, Assi and Mansour, are credited with revolutionizing modern Arab music. They are also renowned for using their artistic voices to champion social and political causes in Lebanon and the wider Arab world.

IN-DEPTH

Extremists in Syria’s Idlib Threatened by Own Success

“Moderate” Extremists in Syria’s Idlib Threatened by Own Success?

As ISIS is cornered in southeastern Syria and the U.S. begins to withdraw from the Kurdish-held northeast, eyes are turning toward a resurgent, al-Qaeda-linked militant faction in the northwest. While that group, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, appears to be playing a savvy political game with Turkey, Russia, and Syria, internal conflict may threaten its dominance.

Muslim Hajj: From Religious Ritual to Lucrative Business

Attended annually by two to three million people from all over the world, the Hajj ritual is the fifth pillar of Islam required of Muslims who are able physically and financially to perform it at least once in their lifetime.

Tunisia’s Political Crisis: Domestic Power Dynamics Threaten National Stability

Domestic power dynamics in Tunisia threaten to destabilize the country by weakening governance within North Africa’s fledgling democracy. The political crisis in Tunisia that began earlier this year over whether Prime Minister Youssef Chahed should resign has revealed a ...

Iranian Women Dance on Social Media to Resist Government’s Attempts to Stifle Freedoms

When 19-year old Iranian teenager Maedeh Hojabri filmed videos of herself happily dancing in her bedroom to American and Iranian pop music and posted them on Instagram, she didn’t think she would end up in prison. Iranian authorities clamped down and arrested her without...

VOICES

Hoda Muthana The Case that Could Redefine Who Is Undeniably American

Hoda Muthana: The Case that Could Redefine Who Is Undeniably American

Citizenship acquired by birth should be undeniable, regardless of what crimes an individual has committed, unless the citizen is of a minority background, it seems. Hoda Muthana’s case could set a dangerous precedent.

Analysis

The West’s Double Standards on Repatriating Former ISIS-Member Citizens and their Families

Despite the UN’s insistence that governments develop a plan for the return of thousands of children born to their ISIS-member nationals who are now living in dire conditions in refugee camps in war-torn Syria, only a few Western countries have accepted the return of these minors.

Syrian Reconstruction and Sino-Lebanese Ties

Lebanon hopes to profit from the reconstruction in Syria and the country that it’s most seeking to work with in the process is China. Yet what remains to be seen is how willing the Chinese are to accept high-level risks when it comes to making large-scale investments in Syria that could benefit Lebanon.

Mass Executions in Saudi Arabia: What Is MbS After?

Having survived the Khashoggi scandal with seeming impunity, MbS’ recent mass executions and an actual crucifixion in Saudi Arabia during the Easter holidays indicates his resolve to consolidate political authority at home and ride the U.S.-led anti-Iran wave in the region.