New Perspectives on the Middle East and North Africa

Muscat, Oman

Podcast: Castro’s Middle East, Oman’s Awkwardness, and Assault on Aleppo

Welcome to Middle East Weekly, JMEPP’s very own weekly news podcast. This week we’ll be exploring Cuban leader Fidel Castro’s legacy in the Middle East, Oman’s sometimes difficult relations with the Gulf states, and the Assad regime and Russia’s latest assault on Eastern Aleppo. Middle East Weekly will go behind...

Yasser Arafat and Fidel Castro

Middle East leaders mourn Fidel Castro

Fidel Castro, the revolutionary leader who ruled Cuba for nearly half a century, died on November 25 at the age of 90. Despite Cuba’s small size and the long distance separating it from the Middle East, Castro’s Cuba played an active role in the region in the 1960s and 70s....

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Russia and Iran: the best of friends, the worst of friends

Embed from Getty Images Since 2011, conflict and political upheavals have rocked the Middle East, challenging traditional alliances and the balance of power in the region. New relationships have developed – most noticeably cooperation between Russia and Iran, particularly in Syria. To look further into this new landscape, JMEPP spoke with Mark...

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Can we save civilians from war?

Embed from Getty Images War seems an inescapable fact of human life. But in past decades it has been civilians, not soldiers, that have borne a disproportionate brunt of warfare across the planet. Historians often reference that, in the last major battle of the 19th century in Solferino, 40,000 combatants...

Pro-Morsi protesters

Is Islamism a threat to democracy?

Since the turn of the millennium, discussion on political Islam has subsumed much of the discourse on the contemporary Middle East – both in the US and Europe, as well as in predominantly Muslim countries. An unfortunate result of this has been the muddling of definitions, terminology, historical references, and...

Syrian refugees in Turkey

Four innovative approaches to the Syrian refugee crisis

The number of refugees is at its highest-ever level, at more than 20 million worldwide. The Syrian civil war is the biggest source of refugees today, and neighboring countries Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey bear much of the brunt. Syrian refugees now represent roughly 20% of Lebanon’s population, which has put...