Tam Hussein
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Tam Hussein is an award winning writer and journalist. He has spent
several years in the MENA region travelling, studying, and working. He is currently working as a consultant with various NGOs and cited by policy think thanks.

He speaks five languages and holds an MA in Near and Middle Eastern Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies.

His work appears in major publications including the Guardian, New Statesman, New Internationalist, The Majalla, Tunisia Live, Sharq Al-Awsat, Egypt Today and others.

Entries by Tam Hussein

Joining ISIS: My Meeting With Aseel Muthana

(7) Comments | Posted June 22, 2014 | 9:36 PM

There are an estimated four hundred British fighters currently fighting in Syria. The question as to how the Muthanas of this world join designated terrorist groups like ISIS is more complicated than the media would like you to think. The story of Aseel and Nasser Muthana illustrates this point well.

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Jumping Syria's Aid Queue: Solving Syria's Aid Conundrum

(0) Comments | Posted May 22, 2014 | 7:21 AM

The problem of aid delivery in Syria has become so grave that the UN is pressing the Syrian government to allow more aid to pass through Turkey to reach what it estimates to be 3.5 million people who have been isolated and cut off from any form of humanitarian relief.

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Syrian Rebels Have Not Lost Their Fighting Spirit

(3) Comments | Posted May 6, 2014 | 7:42 AM

In a safe house close to the Turkish border a group of injured rebels in various states of repair--or disrepair--bask in the sunshine. Many of them are recovering from the latest Anfal Operation in Latakia governorate on Syria's Mediterranean coast.

Dr. Safi Dabdoub explains that his private hospital in the...

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Jihad, Then and Now - Bin Laden's Comrade in Arms Warns Foreign Fighters to Stay Out of Syria

(0) Comments | Posted February 9, 2014 | 10:47 AM

As the situation in Syria grows worse and simultaneously more complicated day by day, the fears of observers of the conflict have become more focused on the foreign jihadists who have travelled to the war-torn country to take part in the fighting. With the chaos unleashed by some of the...

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Social Media Jihadi: The Inside Story of a Briton Who Died Fighting for ISIS

(1) Comments | Posted February 5, 2014 | 5:15 PM

Whilst debate rages on about the threat of foreign fighters returning home, there is one particular fighter who is being celebrated not only in his community but also on social media. Iftekhar Jaman, was killed on December 17 last year having been hit by a tank shell in...

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Moving Mountains in Syria: A View From the Ground

(0) Comments | Posted January 28, 2014 | 6:47 PM

A year ago the villages of Jebel Akrad were home to living, breathing communities. Tucked into the mountain range in Syria's northwestern corner, the village squares were occupied by old men drinking strong coffee and puffing on cigarettes. Children played in the streets, sporting "Free Syria" hats and armbands. The...

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The Egyptian Brotherhood Speaks: Morsi Is the New Mandela

(1) Comments | Posted January 21, 2014 | 4:48 AM

Dr. Abdel Mawgud Dardery enters the café in Cricklewood wrapped up in a Manchester United scarf, with the Rabaa badge prominently pinned on his jacket. Dardery has become a nomad wandering from country to country unable to return to Egypt after his party, the Muslim Brotherhood was designated a terrorist...

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Fetteh in ISIS Country: Despatch From Syria

(0) Comments | Posted January 16, 2014 | 11:56 AM

The last thing I expected on my latest trip to Syria at the very beginning of 2014 was to be able to eat a bowl of fetteh in Abu Salim's restaurant in Najjiyeh, in territory controlled by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). For sure, things have changed:...

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I, the Artist and the Syrian: A Profile on Tammam Azzam

(0) Comments | Posted December 15, 2013 | 2:13 AM

Tammam Azzam doesn't claim to be a representative of the Syrian people, but neither does he want to be treated as an individual. He wants to be one his fellow countrymen. And yet, as an artist, individuality is a necessity if one is to make a living. Perhaps...

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A Brotherhood Vision for Syria: Interview With the Former Leader of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood

(10) Comments | Posted December 2, 2013 | 6:00 PM

In Syria, Al-Qaeda and affiliated groups have gradually emerged as one of the main threats to the survival of the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad. Ironically, however, the presence of thousands of jihadists - always talked up by the pro-Assad media - has also provided the struggling Syrian government with...

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Defending Mohammed Ahmed Mohamed is Defending British Justice

(0) Comments | Posted November 8, 2013 | 4:35 AM

A young man walks into a community center, he's a terror suspect and yet he doesn't know why or what the evidence against him is. He has not been allowed to defend himself. Why? National security of course. And so he is put under terrorism prevention and investigation measures (

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No Time for the Olive Branch: Profile on Samia Halaby

(0) Comments | Posted October 29, 2013 | 4:39 AM

In her words, Palestinian artist and academic Samia Halaby has the defiance of the Palestinian writers Ghassan Kanafani and Mahmud Darwish and the activism of 1970s New York. She is in London for her work, and yet she does not feel beholden to any critic. Years of jousting with cut-throat...

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Why Some Somali and Foreign Militants join Al-Shabab

(1) Comments | Posted September 30, 2013 | 6:37 AM

How many Westgates do we need to realize that US policy in the Horn of Africa is a major contributor to bolstering support for groups like Al-Shabab amongst Somalis and foreign fighters alike? In 2003, fresh out of university, I worked as a youth worker in Westminster on the Lisson...

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Understanding British Jihadis

(14) Comments | Posted September 4, 2013 | 2:10 AM

It is easy for security analysts, former Islamist penitents and politicians to rely on ready made narratives on why the UK is still producing Jihadists. Terms like self-radicalization, alienation, terrorism and hatred for the West have been accepted and bandied around without question. But ultimately acceptance of these easy narratives...

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The Absurdities of Life in Palestine: The Life and Art of Khaled Jarrar

(1) Comments | Posted August 10, 2013 | 7:36 AM

"I am not a political artist," insists Khaled Jarrar, the Palestinian artist who recently exhibited his work in London. "I don't do political art; I'm simply reflecting my own experiences," Jarrar told The Majalla. Although he does not want to be cast in the role of the rebellious...

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Tunisia's Militant Struggle: Elusive Militants of Chaambi Mountains Could be Linked to Algeria

(0) Comments | Posted August 1, 2013 | 5:21 AM

The Tunisian army is currently fighting militants on the Algerian border in the governorate of Kasserine. The military operation in the Chaambi Mountains is being conducted in close collaboration with their Algerian counterparts. In spite of this, the militants have inflicted considerable damage on the Tunisian army, the most recent...

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Far From the Maddening Crowd: An Interview with the Brotherhood After the Coup in Egypt

(1) Comments | Posted July 23, 2013 | 7:05 PM

Dr Mohammed Ghanem, the UK representative for the Muslim Brotherhood, is in Regents Park Mosque in the process of organizing a demonstration at the Egyptian embassy; but before the chants, the slogans and the crowds, he sits quietly drinking a cup of coffee, chomping on a muffin and reflecting on...

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A Deep State of Mind: Tunisia's Deep State Could be Combatted by Democratic and Social Reforms

(0) Comments | Posted July 6, 2013 | 7:17 PM

Following the assassination of Chokri Belaid, many opponents criticized Ennahda, the ruling Islamist party, with either direct involvement in his killing or helping to create an atmosphere where such events could take place. The Ennahda party's response to Belaid's assassination was curious.

They completely rejected the allegation that they had...

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Syrian Briton Ali Almanasfi Is Alive

(0) Comments | Posted June 11, 2013 | 10:29 AM

Ali Almanasfi, the Briton of Syrian heritage purportedly killed by a regime ambush in Idlib on 31 May is alive. He got in touch with me via Skype. We spoke for approximately an hour. I saw his face sporting a bushy beard, he looked well. His brother, Safwan Almanasfi, has...

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Qardawi's Blunder

(1) Comments | Posted June 4, 2013 | 12:24 PM

Last Friday evening, Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, the leading Sunni religious scholar, declared jihad on Bashar Al-Assad's forces and Hezbollah. He called on Sunni Muslims with military training to support the Syrian uprising against Assad. Qaradawi's pronouncement is nothing new in the region: such declarations are found in medieval Islamic history,...

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