Startling new figures were released by the UNHCR today -- 60 million people worldwide are now displaced from their homes - more than at any other point on record. Within that 60 million, Syria is the largest source country of refugees.
The human rights-interfaith dialogue rhetoric employed by President Obama on May 22, 2015 at the Adas Israel Synagogue in Washington DC was wonderful and made people feel warm inside. But this type of rhetoric is, in fact, messianic -- it is for tomorrow, for a time when there is no more war. That day has not yet come, I am afraid. And to speak as if it has is very dangerous.
The military strategies of the United States and its regional allies focused on bombing campaigns, support for local militias, and inherently weak military forces to fight potential ground battles, have failed to defeat rebel forces in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Libya.
Shipping weapons to the dominant Kurdish party in northern Syria will not solve the strategic problems facing the United States in the Middle East, and could instead make them much worse.
VIENNA -- The success of the mainly Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party in capturing 13 percent of the vote in the recent election -- a total well above the party's core constituency -- should boost the Kurds' confidence and ease the way ahead in the peace process. But the far-right Nationalist Movement Party performed strongly in the election, capturing 16 percent of the vote, probably owing largely to popular opposition to the opening to the Kurds.
There will be no return to the fragile stability of even just five years ago. U.S. troops are greatly reduced in Afghanistan and Iraq. Humpty Dumpty cannot be put back together again.
Hunger engulfs almost a billion of the globe's citizens but inadequate nutrition is an even broader epidemic that consumes millions of healthy lives, from the richest nations to the poorest subsistence farmers.
The political capital invested by the Obama administration and the Rouhani government gives us good reasons to be not only "cautiously optimistic" but "optimistic" regarding the Iranian nuclear crisis.
Recently, I came across a young Ezdi, Nasser H. Kassow from Shingal (Sinjar) who is a student of English at a University in Zakho. Kassow had tweeted some of his impressionistic paintings on the state of Yazidis. As we engaged on social media, I interviewed him via Skype to know a little more about his work.
As rebel forces advance towards the mountainous Druze stronghold in Idlib province, Israel has to decide whether it should intervene in the Syrian civil war by arming the Druze while Saudi Arabia is faced with the choice between realpolitik and its religious doctrine which views the Druze as heretics.
Over the past couple of weeks, a small number of events made me realise that religion - some call it religiosity too - is playing once more an active ...
Washington's determination to defend much of the globe has made the U.S. an international sucker, especially vulnerable to manipulation by supposed friends.
A three-minute video, posted by a Saudi government-backed organization to YouTube on June 4, has garnered 150,000 views in 48 hours and sparked a discussion in the kingdom about how to stem sectarian conflict.
The value of democracy, when it works, is its capacity to change course. In both Greece, and now Turkey, recent elections have upended the status quo. With Greece having lost an astonishing 25 percent of its GDP through austerity policies, the Syriza government that came to power earlier this year has insisted on sticking to its popular mandate to resist the demands of creditors and hold out for debt relief. The prospects of default and an exit from the eurozone have never been closer. In Turkey, which has been seeking to join the European Union, the autocratic path set by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been stopped in its tracks by voters in this week's poll. (continued)
President Barack Obama has an opportunity to change the course of events in the Middle East, if he shows enough determination, boldness, and vision. This way, he could enter history as a bold leader.
Bashar Assad is no more the real ruler of what is, even nominally, under his control; no more than 20 percent of his territory. He is the messenger boy of the Iranian regime. His generals are subjected to the overall supreme orders of Kassem Suleimany, the chief commander of the Iranian Revolutionary guards, the actual High Commissioner of Syria.