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Michael Jansen
By Michael Jansen - Mar 05,2014
During the 1950s and 1960s, Turkey was proclaimed the success story of this region. Experts argued that the country had transformed itself from the powerhouse of the Ottoman Empire to a secular, modernising, democratic, Western-oriented republic. But two factors were ignored: t
By Michael Jansen - Feb 26,2014
One must not be misled by the similarities between developments in Ukraine and the January-February 2011 and June 2013 events in Egypt. It is true that the hub of the uprisings was Maidan (Independence) Square and Midan Al Tahrir (Liberation Square) in both countries and that te
By Michael Jansen - Feb 19,2014
The suicide bomber who slew two South Korean tourists and the Egyptian driver of their bus last Sunday was dispatched by Ansar Beit Al Maqdis, the radical jihadist group operating in the northern Sinai, which is now expanding its reach into Egypt “proper” and southe
By Michael Jansen - Feb 12,2014
Good news from Syria is not news for many a quality Western newspaper.
By Michael Jansen - Feb 05,2014
“The US must reconsider its failed Syrian policy,” The Washington Post editorialised this week. Indeed. The Post, however, urged a more proactive policy, implying that air strikes on Syrian targets would be the right way to go. In September, US President Barack
By Michael Jansen - Jan 29,2014
The US-Russian sponsored Syrian peace process, dubbed “Geneva II”, has, for a week now, been in its Geneva phase, involving mediated talks between the government and expatriate opposition. The first phase consisted of a one-day gathering in Montreux of foreign mi
By Michael Jansen - Jan 22,2014
On Saturday, Egyptians are set to commemorate the third anniversary of the January 25 uprising that toppled their president of 30 years, Hosni Mubarak. While liberal and leftist secular youth are expected to flock to Tahrir Square to make the point that the “revolution&rdq
By Michael Jansen - Jan 15,2014
Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, 85, was, as they say, “a long time a-dying”. Eight years, to be precise. The stroke that made him comatose took place on January 4, 2006.
By Michael Jansen - Jan 08,2014
On Tuesday, Al Jazeera aired video images of a walled site in an insurgent-held district of Aleppo where 50 activists were reported to have been slain, and of a man being beaten with a length of cable on his bare back for failing to attend Friday prayers. Those said to be re

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