Building Sandcastles: Money Laundering Through Dubai’s Luxury Real Estate Market

Whether money launderers, kleptocrats, drug dealers, bank robbers, or ISIS, the common denominator of criminals worldwide is that they must move their money. With sanctions and tighter regulation in other places, Dubai has become a favored real estate market for pouring millions of dollars of illicit funds into luxury real estate.
Building Sandcastles Money Laundering Through Dubai’s Luxury Real Estate Market

Passport

Readings of French Colonial Postcards in Morocco

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.

Getting the Final Word: Endangered Languages in the Arab World

At the turn of the century, UNESCO designated February 21 as International Mother Language Day. In addition to celebrating the incredible linguistic diversity in communities around the world communities, this day also reminds us of the need to preserve indigenous languages.
Eight Years On: Does Gaddafi's Son’s Run for Election Mean the Libyan Revolution Failed?

Eight Years On: Does Gaddafi’s Son’s Run for Election Mean the Libyan Revolution Failed?

Seeking Russian support and vowing to “terminate turmoil and division in Libya,” Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, the son of former dictator Muammar Gaddafi, plans to run in the presidential elections expected to be held in 2019. What does this say about the Libyan Revolution eight years after it resulted in the ousting of the elder Gaddafi and the popular yearning for freedom from dictatorship?

Culture

Ancient Leblouh Tradition Continues to Endanger the Lives of Mauritanian Women

Ancient Leblouh Tradition Continues to Endanger the Lives of Mauritanian Women

Mauritania’s age-old practice of Leblouh, the tradition of force-feeding girls for the sake of beauty and marriage, continues to deprive its women of some of their most basic human rights.

What is Sufism and Why Do Islamic Extremists Reject it?

Sufis shun materialism and use prayer, music, and occasionally dance in their quest to get closer to God. Despite their dedication to divine love and peace, Sufis have increasingly become targets of extremist Islamic movements who view their practices as being incompatible with “true Islam.”

“Khat” it Out: Is the Narcotic Plant Holding Back Djibouti’s Development?

Khat is an important part of life in Djibouti. Although many in the small East African nation enjoy the euphoric effects of the narcotic plant, the social, political, and economic hardships caused by its abuse may begin to persuade Djiboutians to abstain from consuming it.

Omar and the Eastern Power: North Africa Meets Korea On a Volcanic Island

On a resort island off the coast of South Korea, a multi-dimensional, North African-Korean rock band is finding its voice.

Opinion

ARABIA THAT WAS

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

Book Review: “The Republic, As If”

Alaa Al Aswany’s 2018 novel “The Republic, As If” follows the events of Egypt’s 2011 revolution through the perspectives of both protesters of Mubarak’s regime and citizens set on upholding it.
Book Review: “The Republic, As If”

ARABIA THAT IS

Feminist Thought in the Muslim World From Secular Feminism to Islamic Feminism

Feminist Thought in the Muslim World: From Secular Feminism to Islamic Feminism

Feminist thought has evolved in the context of the historical, social, cultural, and political norms of the societies in which it has originated. In the Muslim world, two major feminist trends have emerged in recent years: Islamic feminism and secular feminism.

IN-DEPTH

“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

Afrikayna Brings Morocco Home to its Roots

Afrikayna Brings Morocco Home to its Roots

Using music and art, one association in Casablanca is trying to bridge the divide between Morocco and its African neighbors.

Analysis

Presidential Crisis: Venezuela’s Tripartite Partnership with Iran and Lebanese Hezbollah

Recent economic and political developments in Venezuela have captured the international media’s attention and prompted countless conversations about Venezuela’s...

Iraq’s Uneasy Road to a Green Economy

Faced with chronic electricity shortages, Iraq has set a target to meet 10 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2028 through deployment of large-scale solar, wind, and biomass sources.

Cuba’s Look to the Arab World

While Venezuela is bogged down with its internal political and economic crises and Washington hardens its stance against Cuba’s regime, Havana has essentially no choice but to seek new partners, prompting the island nation’s leadership to look to the Arab world.