Bashar al-Assad’s Not-So-Secular Regime

Feb. 15 2021

Some defenders of the Syrian dictator have argued that, as secular ruler, he is an important bulwark against Islamic fundamentalism, and that support for his ouster amounts to support for the Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaeda, or even Islamic State. But even setting aside its close alliance with Islamist Iran, or its own role in Islamic State’s rise to power, the Syrian regime is in many ways anything but secular. Explaining why this is so, Asser Khattab first notes that official propaganda never mentions secularism:

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Read more at Newlines

More about: Bashar al-Assad, Middle East Christianity, Secularism, Syria

Forty Years after Israel Ceded the Sinai, the Territory Remains a Source of Trouble for Egypt

Last month, Egypt celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Israeli withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula, which it had lost in the Six-Day War. Since then Cairo has not used the territory to launch attacks against the Jewish state, but it has once again become a bastion of terror—most of which has been associated with Islamic State and aimed at the Egyptian government. Jonny Essa and Ofir Winter examine the situation in the Sinai, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s recent speech on the subject, and the implications for Israel:

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Read more at Institute for National Security Studies

More about: Egypt, General Sisi, Islamic State, Sinai Peninsula