January 15, 2009 |
Osama bin Laden urged Muslims to wage jihad against Israel in a new message on websites used by Islamic militants. The Al Qaeda leader vowed to open "new fronts" against the U.S. and its allies and accused most Arab leaders of being allies of the U.S. and Israel. The White House dismissed the call to jihad, or holy war, saying it reflects Bin Laden's isolation at a time when his ideology and mission are being challenged. Bin Laden's first tape since May came nearly three weeks after Israel launched an offensive against Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip.
November 16, 2008 |
Despising America has long been a Middle East pastime, but then the country that brought war to Iraq and orange-suited prisoners to Guantanamo Bay elected a Facebook-friendly president who speaks in poems. What's a mullah to do? With the speed of a Twitter missive, the cultural game has shifted. Barack Obama's rise to the White House comes when the Arabs are intensely suspicious of U.S. intentions, and when Islam, through satellite TV and the Internet, is inundated with Western culture.
October 5, 2008 |
Israel accused North Korea on Saturday of covertly supplying at least half a dozen Middle East countries with nuclear technology or conventional arms. The allegation was made at an International Atomic Energy Agency meeting in Vienna, where world powers urged North Korea to stop reactivation of its nuclear weapons program. "The Middle East remains on the receiving end of the DPRK's reckless activities," Israeli delegate David Danieli said at the meeting.
September 28, 2008 |
Africa's abundant natural resources have long invited foreign exploitation. Over generations, foreign empires and companies stripped the continent of its gold and diamonds, then its oil. Rubber and ivory were plundered from Congo. Even Africa's people were exploited: captured and sold into slavery abroad. Now foreigners are enjoined in a new scramble in Africa. The latest craze? Food.
May 22, 2008
Re "Arabs feel bias in Bush's visit to Mideast," news analysis, May 19 You've got to be kidding! The Times points out that President Bush praised Israel during his visit to celebrate the country's 60th anniversary, but that the "mood was markedly different" when he addressed the Arab nations. And this is held up as an example of bias? Some simple questions: Do women have equal rights in the Arab nations? What is the status of gay rights? What about religious freedom? How about freedom of the press and freedom of speech?
May 19, 2008 |
In vivid contrast to his effusive stopover in Israel, President Bush ended a five-day Middle East trip on Sunday by criticizing Arab nations for political repression and urging them toward economic reforms and women's rights. The president's speech at the World Economic Forum in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el Sheik crystallized an approach that in Arab eyes stubbornly favors Israel over their own concerns and interests.
December 6, 2007 |
The dwindling possibility of a U.S. attack on Iran is changing the dynamics of Middle East politics and raising Arab concern that Tehran may now feel emboldened to strengthen its military, increase its support for Islamic radicals and exert more influence in the region's troubled countries. Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations opposed military action against Iran's nuclear program. But, analysts said, those governments were privately relieved that U.S.
November 29, 2007 |
This week's Middle East conference in Annapolis, Md., has highlighted Arab unease over the ability and will of a weak U.S. president to deliver peace. At the same time, it has stoked fears that Israel has scored a public relations coup while refusing to concede on such core issues as Palestinian refugees and the fate of Jerusalem. Arab nations, most notably Syria and Saudi Arabia, had been reluctant to attend the U.S.
November 26, 2007 |
Syria said Sunday that it had decided to attend a U.S.-sponsored conference on Middle East peace after concluding that the agenda would allow it to press its demand for a return of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. The decision raised the prospect that Israel might eventually resume peace talks with Syria, aiding what appears to be a nascent American effort to woo the Syrians away from their alliance with Iran.
November 24, 2007 |
Saudi Arabia and other key Arab nations Friday agreed to attend a U.S.-sponsored peace conference, a move that added credibility to Washington's attempt to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict before President Bush leaves office. The political guessing game over what countries would participate ended here when the Arab League announced that cabinet-level representatives from its major states, possibly including Syria, would attend the summit next week in Annapolis, Md.