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Lebanon

This category contains 432 posts

Allies and Opponents of the Islamic State

The Wikipedia page for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has a sidebar displaying the group’s banner, coat of arms, force strength, and a list of its allies and opponents. Among ISIL’s many enemies are included the following powers and their own enemies: The Syrian Armed Forces and the Syrian Opposition The … Continue reading

Thinking About a Post-Conflict Syria

I recently caught up with a friend of mine, Camille Otrakji, who is the founder of Creative Syria, Mideast Image, and was a longtime blogger for Syria Comment before some… artistic differences emerged, right around the spring of 2011. Camille has been working on something called “The Syrian Dialogue Project” and I thought some readers might be interested in checking … Continue reading

Of FreeCell and Phone Chargers: A Lebanese Parable

Lebanese politics often resembles a game of FreeCell to me. Or, for the millennials among us: 2048, which I often catch my students playing on their phones before class begins. For long stretches, the board is locked down. There is an occasional opening, a small shift in the grid, but it comes to nothing. Hardly anything moves for several rounds … Continue reading

Report on Syrian Students in Lebanon

There’s a report out about the situation of Syrian students in Lebanon, authored by a specialist team of researchers affiliated with the University of California at Davis, the Carnegie Corporation, and the Institute of International Education. I know a couple of the authors very well and vouch strongly for their knowledge of the region’s politics, societies, and … Continue reading

The Lebanese Presidency, Twenty-Five Years after Ta’if

Lebanon failed to elect a president this week, but the failure was rather dignified by recent standards. Unlike the 2008 election — preceded by twenty months of government paralysis, public demonstrations, a parliament building locked by its Speaker, and several high-profile assassinations —  it was a relief to watch 124 parliamentarians show up at the Chamber of Deputies last Wednesday and cast their votes. Most … Continue reading

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