Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, Emir of Dubai

Sheikh Mohammed was keen to initiate reforms and transform Dubai into an international trade and tourist hub while also making it less reliant on dwindling oil reserves. He thus launched several initiatives to further the emirate’s modernization and development process. Known as a man generally not satisfied with the status quo, Sheikh Mohammed’s first shake-up … Continue reading “Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, Emir of Dubai”

Crime Increases at Hysterical Rates in Syria

Syrians walk in old Damascus in front of a portrait of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, on June 16, 2020. LOUAI BESHARA / AFPHussein Al-Zoubi It seems that the theory of the renowned sociologist Ibn Khaldun still applies to our time, as he says in his book “Al-Muqaddimah“: “When nations fall, many astrologers, beggars, hypocrites, pretenders, … Continue reading “Crime Increases at Hysterical Rates in Syria”

The Political Identity and Entity Slips of the Palestinians

An Israeli female soldier checks the ID of a Palestinian man at the Kalandia checkpoint at the entrance to the West Bank city of Ramallah 17 February 2005. Dozens of police reinforcements have been deployed around Jerusalem’s disputed mosque compound for fear of an attack by Jewish extremists trying to sabotage the Gaza pullout plan, … Continue reading “The Political Identity and Entity Slips of the Palestinians”

Libyan Presidential Elections: An Inevitable Deferral

People gather at the Martyrs’ Square in Libya’s capital Tripoli on November 19, 2021, to protest against the candidacy Seif al-Islam Kadhafi, son of slain Libyan dictator Moamer Kadhafi to run in the country’s December presidential polls. Mahmud Turkia / AFPKhaled Mahmoud About two weeks before the holding of the first direct presidential elections in … Continue reading “Libyan Presidential Elections: An Inevitable Deferral”

Did the Turkish Lira Pay the Price for Erdoğan’s Obstinacy?

A teller holds Turkish lira banknotes at a currency exchange office in Istanbul. Yasin AKGUL / AFPAli Noureddeen At the end of last week, the Turkish lira had lost nearly half its value, compared to the beginning of this year. Last October alone, the Turkish lira lost almost 27 per cent of its value in … Continue reading “Did the Turkish Lira Pay the Price for Erdoğan’s Obstinacy?”

Nass El Ghiwane: A Moroccan Phenomenon in Committed Art

A cover photo of Nass El Ghiwane. Source: Wikimedia CommonsYoussef Sharqawi We can get to know Morocco through its music. It is characterized by a vast diversity of melodies that differs in its historical and geographical contexts, such as its origin and the conditions that helped create it. Moroccan music also reflects the country’s position … Continue reading “Nass El Ghiwane: A Moroccan Phenomenon in Committed Art”

Al-Atwani: Declaration of Homosexuality or Rebellion Against Social Norms?

A screenshot taken from a YouTube video for two youngsters participating in a wedding filmed by Zuhair al-Atwani in Iraq. Source: Al-Atwani Media, YouTube.Ali al-Ajeel It is no secret that the majority of Iraqis, like other countries of the Middle East, have lived since ancient times according to certain harsh laws, not constitutional but customary, … Continue reading “Al-Atwani: Declaration of Homosexuality or Rebellion Against Social Norms?”

Oil Markets: A War of International Interests

This photo shows climate activists from the Ocean Rebellion group, disguised in oil heads, at a demonstration outside the International Maritime Organization (IMO) headquarters in central London on November 22, 2021. Niklas HALLE’N / AFPAli Noureddeen During the past year, the average price of a Brent Crude oil barrel hit as low as $41.84, a … Continue reading “Oil Markets: A War of International Interests”

The Israeli Occupation of Palestine – Human Rights Violations

An Israeli settler walks past a Palestinian house with verandas covered in meshing with one bearing a protest sign reading in English “Arabs are prohibited, this is Apartheid St.”, along the Israeli-controlled Shuhada street (whose main entrance is blocked) in the flashpoint city of Hebron in the occupied West Bank on January 28, 2020.HAZEM BADER … Continue reading “The Israeli Occupation of Palestine – Human Rights Violations”

The Economic Crisis and Mass Impoverishment in Lebanon

A picture taken in the Lebanese capital Beirut shows the food products, that constitute a ration, part of a relief campaign to help families in need across Lebanon. Patrick BAZ / AFPAli Noureddeen Except for the economic collapses that accompanied major wars and mass displacements, recent history has rarely witnessed financial crises that led to … Continue reading “The Economic Crisis and Mass Impoverishment in Lebanon”

Etel Adnan: An International Citizen with Multiple Identities

Poet and painter Etel Adnan. Source: Wikimedia.Youssef Sharqawi Before Lebanon as we know it was born, poet, essayist, and visual artist Etel Adnan came to life in 1925. She was the daughter of a Greek Christian mother whose family lived in Izmir, and a Syrian father, a Damascene Muslim, and an officer in the Ottoman … Continue reading “Etel Adnan: An International Citizen with Multiple Identities”

The Egyptian Hands in the Ethiopian Crisis

A man holds a candle during a memorial service for the victims of the Tigray conflict organized by the city administration, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on November 3, 2021. EDUARDO SOTERAS/ AFPKhaled Mahmoud The recent warning issued by the commander of the United States Africa Command “AFRICOM” was not unreasonable at all since the continuation … Continue reading “The Egyptian Hands in the Ethiopian Crisis”

Omar Souleyman: Questions of Art and Politics

Syrian singer Omar Souleyman poses at his home after his release in Sanliurfa, southeast Turkey on November 19, 2021. Souleyman was released after he was detained over alleged links to Kurdish militants, an AFP photographer said. Souleyman was detained on Novemer 17, 2021 in Sanliurfa, where he has been running a bakery since escaping Syria’s … Continue reading “Omar Souleyman: Questions of Art and Politics”

The Palestinian Political Arena: Between the Factions and Independent Figures

Politicians from the various Palestinian factions attend a meeting in Gaza City on November 20, 2021. Mahmud hams / AFPMajed Kayali The Palestinian political arena is not exclusive to factional political entities.  It also comprises a wide range of active and independent political figures. The list includes academics, intellectuals, writers, doctors, engineers, artists, and teachers, … Continue reading “The Palestinian Political Arena: Between the Factions and Independent Figures”

Riad Salameh: The Banker Surrounded by his Crimes

Lebanon’s Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh during a press conference at the bank’s headquarters in Beirut on November 11, 2019. Joseph Eid / AFPAli Noureddeen Away from the media’s eyes, prosecutors from seven different countries met in The Hague to coordinate the judicial files in each of these countries regarding the suspect Riad Salameh and … Continue reading “Riad Salameh: The Banker Surrounded by his Crimes”

Israel: Apartheid and Persecution in Two Reports

A Palestinian woman and a child fly a kite on the beach of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip, on November 11, 2021 in an event organised by the town’s municipality as part of a programme offering psychological support to the residents of the war-scarred territory. SAID KHATIB / AFPMajed Kayali This year witnessed … Continue reading “Israel: Apartheid and Persecution in Two Reports”

The Iranian Economy in Syria: A Shiite Persian Cloak

Syrians gather around a convoy carrying aid provided by Iran in the eastern city of Deir Ezzor on September 20, 2017 as Syrian government forces continue to press forward with Russian air cover in the offensive against Islamic State group jihadists across the province. LOUAI BESHARA / AFPHussein Al Zoubi The Iranian economic presence in … Continue reading “The Iranian Economy in Syria: A Shiite Persian Cloak”

Libyan Elections: Clashing Interests and Multiple Concerns

A Libyan man registers to vote inside a polling station in Tripoli, on November 8, 2021. Libya today opened registration for candidates in presidential and parliamentary elections, as the country seeks to move on from a decade of war. Mahmud TURKIA/ AFPKhaled Mahmoud Despite the doubts about the possibility of holding these elections, Libya will, … Continue reading “Libyan Elections: Clashing Interests and Multiple Concerns”

Gender equality in the Middle East and North Africa

Iraqi women celebrate World Women’s Day in Tahrir Square in central Baghdad on March 8, 2019. (Photo by Ahmad AL-RUBAYE / AFP) Contents Evolution of women’s rights Types of women’s rights Women’s institutions Women’s rights: a reality check Every human being has acquired rights that are established as soon as they are born, international laws … Continue reading “Gender equality in the Middle East and North Africa”

UAE at Expo 2020 and DDW: Ecology before Economy

Abwab 2021 winning architectural pavilion “Nature in Motion” by Dubai-based architect Ahmed El-Sharabassy – Photo by Maghie GhaliMaghie Ghali As the UAE continues to expand at a rapid pace, questions about the sustainability and environmental impact of Dubai have arisen over the years.  With the high energy-consuming Emirate striving for a cleaner footprint, environmentally-conscious projects … Continue reading “UAE at Expo 2020 and DDW: Ecology before Economy”

The Lebanese Banking Collapse: How did the Mass of Losses Accumulate?

Mock Lebanese banknotes bearing only zero digits and reading “Bank of Dreams” are seen at an art installation titled ‘Menhara’ (collapsed) by Lebanese artist Carlo Kassabian reflecting on the currency devaluation, at a club in Beirut on May 8, 2021. (Photo by ANWAR AMRO / AFP)Ali Noureddeen A few days ago, preliminary talks began between … Continue reading “The Lebanese Banking Collapse: How did the Mass of Losses Accumulate?”

Sabah Fakhri: The Second Citadel of Aleppo and Arab Singing

(FILES) In this file photo taken on May 13, 2010 Syrian singer Sabah Fakhri performs at the “Angham min al-Sharq” (Sounds of Arabia) festival in Abu Dhabi. Fakhri died at the age of 88 in the Syrian capital Damascus on November 2, 2021. EBRAHIM ADAWI / AFPYoussef Sharqawi For nearly 70 years, the Aleppine singer … Continue reading “Sabah Fakhri: The Second Citadel of Aleppo and Arab Singing”