As avid podcast listeners will know, the New York Times recently wrapped up its binge-worthy 10-part podcast series, Caliphate, which delves into the inner workings of the billion dollar operation that is/was the Islamic State. With thousands of 5-star reviews on iTunes, this dramatic podcast has hooked people by sharing unique, first-hand insights into what … Continue reading Caliphate: The addictive ISIS podcast that’s causing controversy
Today, millions of Iraqi Kurds will go to the polls to vote on whether they believe Iraqi Kurdistan should become an independent state, in a controversial referendum that could have far reaching implications for Iraq and the Middle East as a whole. Here are 5 things you need to know to understand the “Kexit”: 1. … Continue reading 5 things you need to know to understand the Kurdish independence referendum
Last summer, the Yezidis of northern Iraq marked the third anniversary of the attempted genocide of their people by the so-called Islamic State (ISIL). In August 2014, ISIL rampaged through their villages in Iraqi Kurdistan, killing the men en masse and taking the women and girls as slaves. These women and girls bore unimaginable suffering, … Continue reading Art as a means of recovery for the Yezidi women who escaped ISIL
The Last Optimist in Baghdad by Dr Brian Brivati is the true story of Ghassan Jawad Kadhim – an optimist, a peacemaker, a father, a friend. An Iraqi. This moving memoir of the resilience of one man manages to tell the tale of the ceaseless endurance of Iraq as a whole, providing a poignant insight … Continue reading The Last Optimist in Baghdad
Eyes have been on Libya in the wake of the bombing that killed 22 people in Manchester last Monday, as it has emerged that the bomber, Salman Abedi, was radicalised by Libyan jihadis and travelled to the country shortly before carrying out the horrific attack. Crowds gathered in Manchester last week to mourn those killed in the … Continue reading Islamic State, Libya and the new Cold War
The snowy city of Astana has, this week, played host to the latest round of talks aimed at bringing an end to the constant human suffering that has characterised the Syrian conflict. Delegations from the Syrian regime and various armed opposition groups gathered in the Kazakhstani city for two days of negotiations, brokered by a … Continue reading Astana talks: A turning point for Syria and the region?
The spoils of war. That is what many Yazidi women and girls have become as a result of the so-called Islamic State’s bloody and merciless rampage through Iraqi Kurdistan. Enslaved by the militants, girls as young as 13 are forced into marriage and subjected to violent physical, psychological and sexual abuse on a daily basis. … Continue reading Nareen Shammo: One Woman vs. the Islamic State