ISIS and the West

ISIS is the expression of different social and political phenomena that must be understood separately. One of them is undoubtedly the significant amount of “Western” fighters of which some elements are also at the forefront of their media campaign. By Western I mean people who have lived and were educated in Western countries (mostly Western […]

Illusions of Terrorism and Democracy

The recent bombings in Beirut elevates Lebanon to the ironic status of a democratic country, in the modern Western sense of the term. Sadly, this is no privilege at all, more of a burden really. As I argued earlier, Terrorism as a particular form of carrying out political action is only possible if certain democratic […]

EU blacklisting Hizbullah’s military wing

EU’s decision to label Hizbulah’s military wing a terrorist organization is a silly decision, one that betrays a simplistic understanding of the politics of the Middle East in the last three decades. My intuition is that this decision is the fruit of years of erroneous analyses about the organization that is thought to have “changed”, […]

Who’s reading what and how?

Mali rebels torched library of historic manuscripts Fleeing Islamist insurgents burnt two buildings containing priceless books as French-led troops approached, says mayor Beyond the tragic implications of such an event, a small anecdote: The manuscripts had survived for centuries in Timbuktu, on the remote south-west fringe of the Sahara desert. They were hidden in wooden […]