January 28, 2021

TURKEY’S TWISTS AND TURNS ON SYRIA

PDF version available here Since 2008, Turkey has gone from supporting the Bashar al-Asad regime, to encouraging Asad to undertake democratic reforms, to shifting to a policy of regime change (RC)--a full 180-degree turn in less than three years. Given Turkey’s twists and turns, is it possible for Turkey to reverse course again, as Asad consolidates his victories on the ground, and effectively switch sides in the interest of reestablishing its economic links with Syria? This article … [Read more...]

FURTHER INSIGHT INTO GLOBAL AND ARAB MUSLIM OPINION STRUCTURES: STATISTICAL REFLECTIONS ON THE 2013 PEW REPORT “THE WORLD’S MUSLIMS”

PDF version available here This article reevaluates the April 2013 PEW data on “The World’s Muslims” covering 23 countries and comprising at least 56.6 percent of the total global Muslim population. It presents population-weighted estimates of the 18 PEW indicators for the entire adult Muslim population in these 23 countries. The article also presents a UNDP type Index of Muslim Tolerance (Index of the emancipation of Muslim publics from authoritarian and Islamist thought … [Read more...]

THE ISSUE OF THE RECOGNITION OF THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE AS A POLITICAL PHENOMENON

PDF version available here This article focuses on the current perceptions of the Armenian genocide in the various countries involved, specifically within the EU, Armenia, and Turkey, in order to explore the political rationale behind the commitment of some states to recognize the historical events of 1915 as an act of genocide or the commitment of other states to refute this. A brief historical overview is followed by a discussion of internal EU perceptions of the essentiality of … [Read more...]

THE SHI’I CRESCENT’S PUSH FOR REGIONAL HEGEMONY AND THE SUNNI REACTION

PDF version available here In response to the September 11 attacks, the United States occupied Iraq. Baghdad effectively ended up in the hands of Iran, thus leading to the formation of the Shi’i Crescent. Riyadh has been leading the Sunni crusade to derail the march of Shi’ism. At the same time, to protect its nuclear facilities, Tehran has made Hizballah its Mediterranean defense line and Damascus its arms courier. The existence of an atomic bomb component in Iran’s nuclear … [Read more...]

THE SUNNI-SHI’I BALANCE IN LEBANON IN LIGHT OF THE WAR IN SYRIA AND REGIONAL CHANGES

PDF version available here In recent years, Lebanon has become an active front in the struggle between Sunni and Shi’i Muslims in the Middle East. While in previous decades, both sects were considered a single Muslim bloc in the political balance against Lebanon's Christians, over the 15 years of Syrian control in Lebanon following the end of the civil war in 1990, the relationship grew rocky, for political and geopolitical reasons. The assassination of Sunni ex-premier, Rafiq … [Read more...]