Al-Shater And The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s Quest For Political Dominance

Khairat Al-Shater made his bid to be Egypt’s next president official this Thursday by submitting candidacy papers at the Presidential Election Committee headquarters in Heliopolis. Thousands of youth rallied around Al-Shater and his family in a display of unity. They responded to accusations that a rift is growing within the upper echelons of the Egyptian…

Bahrain’s Stifled Spring

Over the course of the past year, peoples throughout the countries of the  Middle East and North Africa have risen up against repressive regimes to fight for democracy.  In each of the countries in which this “Arab Spring” has taken hold there has been widespread government crackdown.  In Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya, this has led…

Syria’s Fractured Opposition

As events become more tumultuous in Syria,  questions must be posed as to who the driving forces behind the “rebellion” are.  What began as a people’s movement for democracy has become clouded by an array of  factions serving seemingly incompatible interests. The fracturing of the conflict ridden Syrian National Council (SNC)  is just the most…

Sunni And Shia, Conflicting Views

Following up on our tour of the various factions involved in Middle Eastern affairs, we take a look at the evolution of the Sunni and Shi’ite sects of Islam and the growth of the state of Islam. The fracture between the two sects dates back to the death of the Prophet Muhammad. The Prophet’s father-in-law…

Who Are The Alawites?

The Alawites have inhabited the coastal mountain area of Syria for more than a thousand years. For the majority of that time, they knew only persecution from the Sunni majority inhabiting Syria.  Alawites generally keep the tenets of their faith secret to outsiders, however their religious observances do not include the emphasis on prayer, pilgrimage,…

The “Arab Spring”

While originating from the same desire for freedom and democracy as other nations of the “Arab Spring”, the Syrian uprising has become a far more complex beast, of which the consequences spread far beyond the middle east region.  Heated debate has sprung between nations who long have been at odds,  straining efforts in diplomacy between…

Why the Middle East Matters

The United States has a long history of interfering with the politics of other countries to protect US interests and at the expense of democracy and human rights. The history of US meddling is well documented and expands beyond the more well known CIA escapades in Latin America.