NEWS

This combination shows dictators of Syria (Bashar Assad - L) and North Korea (Kim Jong Un)

What Is North Korea Sending to the Assad Regime?

Two North Korean shipments to a Syrian government agency responsible for the country’s chemical weapons program were intercepted in the past six months. A confidential report by a panel of independent UN experts, which was submitted to the Security Council earlier this month and seen by Reuters on Monday, gave no details on when or where the interdictions occurred or what the shipments contained.

LEVANT & MESOPOTAMIA

Trump Abbas and Netanyahu. (photo credit:REUTERS)

Israel-Palestine – a Deal in the Making?

From early on in his bid for the presidency Donald Trump was intrigued by the possibility of brokering a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians. On the campaign trail back in February 2016 he declared “I will give it one hell of a shot. I would say if you can do that deal, you can do any deal.” Later, as he earmarked his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to lead the peace-making effort, he said: “I would love to be the one who made peace with Israel and the Palestinians. That would be such a great achievement.” There is little doubt that…
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NORTH AFRICA

New Cairo, Sept. 2015: President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi (R) greets Sheik Ahmed El-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Al-Azhar; Egypt’s president is demanding the clergy tone down radical discourse on Islam (source: dpa)

Al-Azhar and Sisi’s Regime: Cooperation and Conflict

Tensions between Egypt’s religious leadership and its political leadership—represented by the Grand Imam of al-Azhar, Ahmed el-Tayeb, and Egypt’s President respectively—have reached a point where they can no longer be concealed. The underlying disagreement has become public, and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has raised this issue in his public speeches, the most recent of which dealt with verbal divorce, to the point where Sisi told el-Tayeb, “you’ve exhausted me, honorable Imam.” The Council of Senior Scholars, which is headed by the Sheikh of al-Azhar, rejected Sisi’s call for divorce to be documented in order for it to be recognized….
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ARABIAN PENINSULA

Source: Shahriyar Gourgi / LinkedIn

Saudi-UAE Moves Hint at Willingness to Engage With Iran

Recent moves by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates suggest that the two Gulf states may be looking for ways to reduce tensions with Iran that permeate multiple conflicts wracking the Middle East and North Africa. The moves, including a rapprochement with Iraq and a powerful Iraqi Shiite religious and political leader as well as prosecution of a militant Saudi cleric on charges of hate speech, and leaked emails, point towards a possible willingness to engage with Iran more constructively. A dialling down of Saudi-Iranian tensions could contribute to a reduction of tensions across the Middle East and North…
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TURKEY & IRAN

Turkish students attend a lesson at thei

Turkey’s New Curriculum: Less Evolution, More Erdoğan, More Islam

ISTANBUL — With President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s plans for greater powers firmly on track, Turkey’s government has set about shaping the country’s future outside the halls of parliament. Last month, as parliamentarians brawled over — and finally voted for — constitutional changes designed to establish Erdoğan’s long-awaited presidential system, the ministry of education published a draft curriculum for the new school year.

ATHEISTS AND MINORITIES

The rise of Arab Atheism

The Rise of Arab Atheism

Religious disbelief is viewed with alarm in most Arab countries. Two government ministries in Egypt have been ordered to produce a national plan to “confront and eliminate” atheism. In Saudi Arabia, the most recent anti-terrorism law classifies “calling for atheist thought” as a terrorist offence. This hounding of non-believers might seem especially strange at a time when concerns are high about those who kill in the name of religion, but Arab societies have a general aversion to nonconformity, and the regimes that rule them often promote an official version of Islam that suits their political needs. Thus both jihadism and…
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Monthly Issues

Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal - Homepage - TABLE OF CONTENTS THE ENIGMA OF ARAB-ISRAELI PEACE 158 By Syed Qamar Afzal Rizvi MEN’S HAIR IN THE BATTLE OVER LEGITIMACY OF POLITICAL ISLAM 167 By James M. Dorsey ORLANDO SHOOTING: IS IT ISLAM OR WESTERN HOMOPHOBIA? 170 By Iris Bendtsen FRANCE’S MIDDLE EAST PEACE INITIATIVE AND THE HAMAS CONUNDRUM 174 By Neville Teller ISLAM AND THE ENLIGHTENMENT 177 By Neil Davidson THE QUANDARY OF TURKEY’S EU BID 185 By Hakim Khatib & Syed Qamar Afzal Rizvi

Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal - Homepage - Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal – May 2016 - Volume 01, Issue 05 - THE GROWING BREACH IN MUSLIM UNITY: CAUSES & EFFECTS 124 By Hakim Khatib & Syed Qamar Afzal Rizvi IRAQ: MUQTADA AL-SADR FLEXES HIS POLITICAL MUSCLES 132 By Rick Francona TERRORISM: THEN AND NOW 134 By Conn M. Hallinan EUROPE’S REFUGEE CRISIS: GRAPPLE WITH COMPLEXITY WE MUST 137 By Richard Black OMAN IN DIVIDED REGION 140 By Fadi Elhusseini THE JIHADIST CIVIL WAR 143 By Neville Teller WHAT HAPPENS WHEN ARAB AUTOCRATS LEFT TO FEND FOR THEMSELVES? 146 By James M. Dorsey TRUMP’S DOCTRINE POSES THREAT TO HUMAN SPECIES 149 By Hakim Khatib & Syed Qamar Afzal Rizvi GLOBALISATION BETWEEN HOPE AND THREAT TO DEMOCRACY 153 By Burhan Ghalioun SOCIAL MEDIA IN SAUDI ARABIA IS TURNING PEOPLE GAY 156 By Hakim khatib

Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal - Homepage - April 2016 - Volume 01 - Issue 04 - Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal

Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal - Homepage  TABLE OF CONTENTS CESSATION OF HOSTILITIES IN SYRIA – WAS JOHN KERRY OUTPLAYED? 56 By Rick Francona ART BEYOND ASYLUM: SYRIAN ARTISTS IN GERMANY 58 By Hakim Khatib THE TRUTH INTERNATIONAL LAW PROCLAIMS ABOUT THE PALESTINIAN TERRITORIE 61 By Syed Qamar Afzal Rizvi THE COMMONWEALTH AND ARAB-ISRAEL RECONCILIATION 68 By Neville Teller IRANIAN ROLE TRUMPS TURKISH MODEL IN THE MIDDLE EAST? 71 By Fadi Elhusseini CULTURAL BRIDGING IN AMMAN – GRASSROOTS PROJECTS WITH SCARCE RESOURC 74 By Hakim Khatib SAUDI EXPORT OF WAHHABISM 76 By James M. Dorsey RUSSIA AND THE US BATTLE IT OUT IN SYRIA 80 By Neville Teller KHAMENEI’S STRATEGIC STEPS TO NAME IRAN’S NEXT SUPREME LEADER 82 By Yvette Hovsepian Bearce TERRORIST ATTACKS IN BRUSSELS – A CLASH OF WHAT? 86 By Hakim Khatib SUFI ISLAM TO PREVENT VIOLENT EXTREMISM? 89 By Syed Qamar Afzal Rizvi PUTIN’S TASK IN SYRIA 93 By Fadi Elhusseini

Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal - Homepage - Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal – February 2016 – Volume 01, Issue 02

Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal - Homepage - January 2016 - Vol 01 - Issue 01 - Mashreq Politics and Culture Journal - Hakim Khatib

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