January 16, 2011 |
Hours after riots forced Tunisian President Zine el Abidine ben Ali to flee his country, hundreds of Egyptians poured into the streets of Cairo with a warning to their own authoritarian president, Hosni Mubarak. "Ben Ali, tell Mubarak a plane is waiting for him too!" they chanted late Friday night. "We are next. Listen to the Tunisians; it's your turn, Egyptians!" The slogans were a burst of envy and elation in a country where people have protested for years but have never ignited a mass movement to threaten Mubarak's nearly 30-year-old police state.
December 9, 2010
More than one miracle Re "Illuminating the possibilities," Opinion, Dec. 7 I appreciated reading Israeli Ambassador Michael B. Oren's thoughts on the horrible fire this week and how a global community, including adversaries of Israel, came together to help. I too was at the White House Hanukkah party and appreciated hearing President Obama send condolences to the Israeli people and promise aid and support. I hope that this will help American and Israeli Jews understand that the president has provided unprecedented security cooperation with Israel.
December 1, 2010 |
The Middle East has been suspicious of Iran for years, but the recent disclosure of diplomatic cables highlights the contempt that has spurred Arab countries to strengthen their defenses, including Saudi Arabia's $60-billion deal with the United States to buy missiles and F-15 fighter jets. Confidential memos from U.S. embassies made public over the weekend by WikiLeaks are not likely to reshape the region's political maneuverings. But they have further agitated the ill will between Tehran and Arab capitals over Iran's nuclear enrichment program and its influence on militant groups in Iraq, the Gaza Strip and other locales.
September 5, 2010 |
Something unexpected broke out at last week's relaunch of direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians: a glimmer of what looked almost like optimism. After two years of estrangement and truculence, Israel's Benjamin Netanyahu and the Palestinian Authority's Mahmoud Abbas put on their best behavior, said all the right things about seizing the opportunity and even huddled chummily together like old friends, which they are not. Of course, we have seen this opening ceremony before.
September 3, 2010 |
Arab countries are stepping up efforts to pry open Israel's nuclear program, according to letters by diplomats accompanying a new report by the International Atomic Energy Agency. The documents obtained by The Times reveal a behind-the-scenes battle between the West and developing countries over whether to place the Israeli nuclear program under international controls, as demanded by an Arab-sponsored resolution adopted by the IAEA's 151 member states last year. Israel said then that it would not comply "in any way" with the resolution.
July 4, 2010 |
The publisher was on a rare and delicate mission to translate and mass-market books from America for a part of the world that often rails against American values. Carol Sakoian, a vice president of Scholastic Inc., brought a small group of Arab officials into a conference room to screen a stack of stories. They read and read, about caterpillars, volcanoes, Amelia Earhart, and a big red dog named Clifford. Who would imagine that Clifford could be considered inflammatory?
February 15, 2010 |
Holding her baby above her head, Rihanna Mohammed tumbled out of a boat in rough seas and swam to the Yemeni shore. "It is a wicked, wicked journey," said the refugee from Somalia, her feet wrinkled and yellowed, her face speckled white with sand. "Waves were crashing over us the whole way. We were terrified." But she was lucky. Mohammed, her 1-year-old daughter and 48 others made it alive, fleeing the war and poverty of their native land for the uncertainties of a new one. Thousands make the journey every week in fleets of battered fishing boats sailed by smugglers.
January 6, 2010 |
The poet's glasses slide down his nose, his hair is combed in front but not in back, white patches of missed stubble glimmer on his cheeks. He sighs: "You'll have to excuse me -- I am in despair." Abdel Aziz Maqalih pauses. Conversation is like verse, it needs rhythm to pinch and sting. He begins a winding sentence, moving through the troubles and civil war in his native Yemen to the wider Arab world, which he says is attacking itself like a family bickering in a house of broken dreams.
June 3, 2009
Re "Showdown on settlements," editorial, May 30 In its editorial criticizing Israel for building settlements, The Times, almost as an afterthought, admits: "We do not believe that Israeli settlements are the whole problem or even the worst of the impediments to a meaningful peace." If that's true, then why write the editorial in the first place? Instead, how about an editorial on the stubborn refusal of much of the Arab world, including many if not most Palestinians, to recognize Israel's right to exist?
March 15, 2009 |
Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has called Israel's offensive on Gaza a "holocaust" and accused Arab leaders of not doing enough to stop the fighting, in his latest audio recording aired on Al Jazeera. Bin Laden accused some Arab countries of "collaborating" with Israel on the offensive in December-January that killed about 1,300 Palestinians. He did not name any specific Arab countries in the brief audio played on Al Jazeera. The Arabic satellite channel did not say how it obtained the recording, and the authenticity of the tape could not be verified.