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The Islamic World

The Turkish Model The Turkish Model
Thursday, March 24, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Considering the current upheaval in the Arab world, some optimists foresee the possibility of Islamic parties coming to power by democratic means and the consequent emergence of Turkish-style political systems. But how firm is Turkey's own commitment to democratic principles?
The Fate of Muslim Moderates The Fate of Muslim Moderates
Monday, March 21, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The recent uprisings in the Middle East seemed, at least at first, to send a reassuring signal to Western observers: not only did genuinely moderate Muslims exist, and not only were they capable of finding a political voice, but there was reason to hope that, given time to organize and grow in strength, they might succeed in winning out against the voices of repression and Islamist extremism.
Toward a Pluralistic Middle East? Toward a Pluralistic Middle East?
Thursday, March 17, 2011 by Aryeh Tepper | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

As the Middle East lurches through the present confusion of civil war, revolution, and mass protest, decent people everywhere wonder about the chances of a more pluralistic and democratic order emerging. One way of measuring progress in that direction will be to track the treatment of minorities like the Berbers and the Jews.
The Peace Plan Israel Needs The Peace Plan Israel Needs
Tuesday, March 15, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Israel's wobbly friends in Europe and the U.S. are renewing their pressure on Jerusalem to "do something" about the "unsustainable" stalemate in the "peace process." As German Chancellor Angela Merkel scolded Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: "You haven't made a single step to advance peace."
Purim Puzzles Purim Puzzles
Friday, March 11, 2011 by Lawrence Grossman | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Purim, Judaism's strangest holiday (which this year falls on March 20), is prescribed by what may be the strangest book in the Hebrew Bible, the scroll (m'gilah) of Esther. Two public readings of the book, one at night and the other in the morning, tell a story of Persian palace intrigue in the fifth century B.C.E., a recitation accompanied by the holiday's decidedly unspiritual noisemaking, tippling, and masquerade.
An Open Letter to the Arab Street An Open Letter to the Arab Street
Wednesday, March 9, 2011 by Benjamin Kerstein | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

First and foremost, congratulations. Even from our vantage point on the other side of a seemingly unbridgeable divide between our peoples, the extraordinary nature of what you have accomplished in recent weeks is obvious.
Follow the Money Follow the Money
Wednesday, March 2, 2011 by Alex Joffe | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The prestigious London School of Economics (LSE) is shocked—shocked—to discover that Muammar Qaddafi is a very bad man. So the once venerable institution is diverting some of the $2.5 million pledged through Qaddafi's son Saif al-Islam into a scholarship fund for Libyan students.
Strange Bedfellows Strange Bedfellows
Thursday, February 24, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

To the already boiling Middle East cauldron, add the prospect of new bilateral relations between two powers that have historically kept each other at arm's length: Egypt (Sunni, Arab, lately a client of the United States) and Iran (Shiite, Persian, patron of Hizballah and Hamas). One bone of contention between them has long been the Jewish state of Israel.
The Athens & Jerusalem Two-Step The Athens & Jerusalem Two-Step
Tuesday, February 22, 2011 by Aryeh Tepper | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The eastern Mediterranean is in a state of serious flux. Historically, under such volatile conditions, old bonds tend to dissolve and new partnerships to emerge. The present is no exception. One example of this is Greece's surprising new friendship with Israel and its outreach to the American Jewish community.
The Tribes Speak The Tribes Speak
Wednesday, February 16, 2011 by Alex Joffe | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Unrest is spreading in the Middle East, but everywhere it displays a unique character. Take Jordan. In an unprecedented public letter to King Abdullah II, thirty-six of the country's tribal leaders have warned that "Jordan will sooner or later be the target of an uprising similar to the ones in Tunisia and Egypt."
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Editors' Picks
Barter in Bartaa Tali Heruti-Sover, Haaretz. Straddling the Green Line, the village of Bartaa has become a booming market town. Or, rather, the Palestinian half has.
Who's Afraid of a Nuclear Iran? Douglas Murray, YouTube. Israel is—and since 1973, Israel has had reason to think that on the brink of its annihilation, Europe wouldn't act to save it. (Video)
Hard Times for Hamas Guy Bechor, Ynet. Its rhetoric is as fierce as ever, but since it's been strangled in Jordan, expelled from Syria, and defunded by Iran, Hamas lacks the friends and money to match.
The Mufti and the U.S. Election Rafael Medoff, JTA. A mufti calls for violence against Jews, Netanyahu demands Palestinian leaders disavow him, and America's presidential race could be affected. That could be a news report from last week. Or from 1946.
Assad in the Balance Daniel Freedman, Forbes. Of all Israel's neighbors, Syria has traditionally been the most hostile. But now that the Arab League has deserted him, President Assad might be open to rapprochement with Israel and the West.
Will Israel Attack Iran? Ronen Bergman, New York Times. Can Israel severely damage Iran's nuclear sites? Would a strike have international legitimacy? Is this the point of last resort? For the first time, at least some of Israel's leaders believe that the response to all of these questions is yes.
"My Name is Daniel Pearl" Giulio Meotti, Ynet. The barbarous murder of this American Jew, ten years ago this week, didn't awaken global public opinion to the most significant truth of our times: Today, every Jew in the world is on the frontlines of war.
Majority Rule Abraham Cooper, Fox News. As Western leaders and human rights activists fete democracy in Egypt, they turn a blind eye to the increasing restrictions being placed on Egypt's Jewish and Christian minorities.
The New Normal Jackson Diehl, Washington Post. In spite of the Islamist ideology of Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government, Turkey may prove to be a key U.S. ally in the Middle East during the coming decades.
Dividing the Waters Susan Hattis Rolef, Jerusalem Post. A new French report on water usage in the Jordan Valley allows political bias against Israel to mask the real challenges of water conservation facing every country in the region.