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Last updated: 20 July 2018

Latest items

Did Obama navigate Israeli-Palestinian negotiations without a map?

July 2018 – The Obama administration was reportedly unaware of the true extent of Israeli settlement activity. This reveals either a monumental level of ignorance or a post-facto attempt to justify the failure of the Kerry peace initiative.

The ghettoisation of Danish politics

July 2018 – The Danish government plans to force minorities out of what it classes as “ghettos”, but its Denmark’s mainstream that needs to escape its ghetto mentality.

Prisoners of our guilty consciences

July 2018 – The intensifying crackdown on the media and civil society in Egypt leaves Egyptians who are out of the country feeling powerless to help and guilty about the freedoms they enjoy.

Photo: ©Khaled Diab

The road less travelled: Navigating without algorithms

July 2018 – As I embark on my summer travels, I have resolved to ignore the recommended routes on my satnav and to get off the beaten track. Join me.

Image courtesy of Four Biscuits

When discrimination takes the biscuit… bake cookies

July 2018 – A group of entrepreneurial Egyptian women with Down’s Syndrome have proven that the only handicap they suffer is a financial one as they seek to expand their successful baking business.

Egypt: When the opium of football sharpens the pain of existence

July 2018 – Instead of acting as a pain killer for a traumatised country of heroes treated like zeroes, the World Cup has provided a painful reminder to Egyptians seeking escapism of just how desperate their situation is.

Podcast: Baladi – from bread to dance

June 2018 – Baladi is one of those elusive Arabic words that can mean different things to different people at different times.

Most ‘Muslims’ are labelled as such long before they can make any kind of informed decision about their faith.
Photo: ©Khaled Diab

What does being a Muslim actually mean?

June 2018 – In much of the world, ‘Muslim’ is often used as a marker of ethnic origin rather than of religion. This must change.

The drinker’s guide to Ramadan

June 2018 – Ramadan is the time of year when hundreds of millions of Muslims around the world abstain from food or drink. But one group of fasters suffers a special variety of thirst this time of year: Muslims who drink alcohol.

Egyptian atheists: Caught between Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

May 2018 – Atheists in Egypt have been enjoying greater public acceptance, but their increased visibility has also resulted in controversy, shrill panic and a growing tide of prosecutions.

 

An explosive musical comeback

May 2018 – Arab audiences are not ready for the return to music of a pop superstar who became a Salafist extremist and allegedly took up arms against the Lebanese state.

Bernard Lewis and the non-existent clash of civilisations

May 2018 – Bernard Lewis was the orientalist scholar of choice for American neo-conservatives. His dangerous ‘clash of civilisations’ theory was not only wrong but caused enormous damage in the Middle East.

Screen shot from one of Sherif Gaber’s YouTube videos.

Egyptian atheists: Caught between Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

May 2018 – Atheists in Egypt have been enjoying greater public acceptance, but their increased visibility has also resulted in controversy, shrill panic and a growing tide of prosecutions.

All Donald Trump had to do was install a new plaque reading “embassy” at the US consulate in Jerusalem, get his daughter, Ivanka, to unveil it and, hey presto, “history”.
Image source: US embassy in Jerusalem’s Facebook page

The Jerusalem embassy syndrome

May 2018 – The problem is not the new US embassy in Jerusalem. The problem is the reality which surrounds and underpins it.

When Mariette met Mary

May 2018 – The Virgin Mary appeared eight times to a child in Belgium and the rest is ‘alternative history’

Alt-jihad – Part II: Delusions of grandeur and persecution

April 2018 – In the second in a series of articles exploring the disturbing parallels between radical Islamic and White/Christian extremism, Khaled Diab examines the far-right’s dual sense of superiority and inferiority, as well as its persecution complex.

Alt-jihad – Part I: Dying to kill

March 2018 – In the first of a series of articles exploring the disturbing parallels between radical Islamic and White/Christian extremism, Khaled Diab examines whether far-right suicide attackers could become a phenomenon.

Image: ©Boštjan Videmšek

“Instead of protecting me, they treated me like a murderer”

March 2018 – In the two years since the EU’s inhumane deal with Turkey, the plight of traumatised refugees arriving on the Greek islands has worsened significantly. Instead of refuge, they are being offered prison.

Egypt’s 21st-century plagues

February 2018 – While the Egyptian regime battles for its survival, Egypt itself may not survive as a viable state, as it faces a ‘plague’ of potentially crippling environmental, economic and social challenges.

This protester spray paints the question: “What are you waiting for?”
Photo: ©Khaled Diab

The truth about Islamic reformations

January 2018 – Islam needs a reformation for Muslim societies to develop and prosper, is one of those rare convictions shared by both Islamophiles and Islamophobes. Tunisia has done just that: radically reformed its brand of Islam and established a vibrant democracy to boot, yet prosperity eludes it. Why?

Israeli pilgrim in Prophet Muhammad’s house

December 2017 – A visit by an Israeli Jewish blogger to some of Islam’s holiest sites has stirred up controversy and anger. But should it have?

Image: ©Boštjan Videmšek

Post-ISIS Mosul, pt 2: Home is where the hurt is

December 2017 – Despite the destruction, pain, trauma and dread for the future, Mosul’s tough and long-suffering are returning to the ruins of their devastated city.

Hypocrisy and the Holy Land

December 2017 – In their reactions to Donald Trump’s hypocritical Jerusalem declaration, many Arab and Muslims leaders have exhibited their own grotesque double standards.