In The News

Hazem Balousha and Oliver Holmes February 26, 2018
Egypt opened its Rafah border, a rare occurrence since 2013. Gazans in need of medical treatment or refuge from Israeli military incursions hope to leave. Hazem Balousha and Oliver Holmes report for the Guardian: “Some 30,000 Gazans including medical patients, students and businesspeople are on a waiting list to travel through Rafah. But not all are guaranteed.” Under the joint control of the...
February 23, 2018
Russian-backed Syrian forces are pounding the rebel-held city of Ghouta with airstrikes that have left hundreds of people dead. About 400,000 people are reported to be trapped. The UN Security Council is considering a 30-day truce to allow aid and evacuations, but Russia called for changes in the draft proposal that will be voted on today. The Syrian government claims to be targeting terrorists....
Farah Najjar February 13, 2018
Multiple nations intevene in the Syrian civil war and this could expand the fighting. “A surge in Israeli-Syrian cross-border incidents has turned into the ‘biggest’ confrontation between the two countries in decades and confronted Russia with a new dilemma: how to preserve its ties with both sides,” reports Farah Najjar for Al Jazeera. “Israel and Syria have been at the brink of war ever since...
Mert Ozkan January 22, 2018
Turkey is attacking US-backed Kurdish fighters in the Afrin region of Syria. Reports suggest that Turkey notified the US and Russia. The Kurdish YPG fighters have been influential in containing the Islamic State extremists in Syria. “The three-day-old campaign has opened a new front in Syria’s multi-sided civil war, realigning a battlefield where outside powers are supporting local combatants,”...
Bill Chappell January 17, 2018
Aid is an essential tool for foreign policy, diplomacy and security. “The State Department is withholding $65 million it planned to send to the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees, calling for reforms and for other nations to step up their support — especially those that criticize the Trump administration's positions regarding Palestinians and Israel,” reports Bill Chappell for NPR. The US...
January 14, 2018
The Iranian government rejects US President Donald Trump’s proposal of reopening the 2015 nuclear deal for more negotiations. “The agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was signed by former US President Barack Obama and other world leaders after two years of intense talks, marking a significant shift after decades of animosity between Tehran and the West,” reports...
Raphael Ahren January 3, 2018
Showing no reticence on commenting about volatile regions or upending longstanding US policies, President Donald Trump started the year relaying a string of opinions over Twitter. “In under 100 words, he questioned America’s longstanding financial support for the Palestinian Authority, contradicted his own position on Jerusalem, and indicated that Israel would have to ‘pay’ in future peace...