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Politics

A Russian Su-25 crew at the Hmeymim airbase in the Latakia governorate in western Syria.
Russia's Involvement in the Syrian Conflict

Once perceived as a mere spoiler, Russia has become an agenda-setting power in the Middle East. Now that the US have pulled out politically, expectations are even higher. Can the Russians handle them?

Polarisation in the Syrian War

Why is it that both regime supporters and armed Islamist rebels can play so successfully on Syria's sectarian problems? On takfir and takhwin, two concepts of domestication that look flagrantly alike.

مسيرة مؤيدة للنظام في دمشق عام ٢٠١٢
Kawa and Majeda
The Kurdish Peshmerga from Karlsruhe

A young Kurdish-German takes up arms against Daesh and for the liberation of Kurdistan. His mother, who also happens to be a war hero, goes with him. And that’s where the trouble begins.

An Israeli gun boat passes through the Straits of Tiran near Sharm El Sheikh
Helmut Mejcher Interview

Despite Israeli commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the Six-Day War, what was a strategic victory from a military standpoint created many of the political problems that contemporary Israel still grapples with, argues historian Helmut Mejcher.

Olga Georges-Picot was the great-niece of François Georges-Picot, the diplomat who was a driving force in the signing of the Sykes-Picot Agreement.
101 Years on From the Sykes-Picot Agreement

It’s time to look beyond the “original sins” of the Sykes-Picot Agreement and European interventions in the Middle East. Europeans should calmly make plans for the region’s future, but explain their intentions clearly.

The entrance to the Layali Beirut club in Tunis.
Libyan Politics in a Nightclub in Tunis

In a nightclub in Tunis, a strange ritual is carried out where Libyans toss money to a singer, to sing the praises of their towns. It seems peace can be found at the cabaret – for a while.

Migration Camps in Libya
Photographer Ricardo García Villanova visited detention centres in Misrata, Libya which are home to many African migrants, both those who are trying to travel to Europe, and those who were rounded up after the revolution.