[The Middle East Studies Pedagogy Initiative (MESPI) brings you the third in a series of “Peer-Reviewed Article Reviews” in which we present a collection of journals and their articles concerned with the Middle East and Arab world. This series will be published seasonally. Each issue will comprise one-to-three parts, depending on the number of articles included.]
Acta Politica (Volume 52, Issue 2)
“Why religion? Immigrant groups as objects of political claims on immigration and civic integration in Western Europe, 1995–2009”
By: Joost Berkhout, Didier Ruedin
Abstract: Under which circumstances do politicians differentiate among immigrants? When they do, why do they in some countries focus on Muslim immigrants rather than national or other groups? We use claims-making analysis to capture how immigrant groups are differentiated in seven Western European countries. As explanations for variation in claims-making about Muslim immigrants (1995–2009) we consider socio-structural and citizenship-regime differences across countries, the parliamentary presence of anti-immigrant parties, the 9/11 WTC attack and the direct political context in which claims-making occurs. We find that Muslim-related claims-making is associated with the parliamentary presence of anti-immigrant parties and the policy topic under discussion. By contrast, the evidence for policy-oriented and socio-structural explanations is inconclusive. There is a need for further theory development on the effects of the political debate (topics, arguments, actors) on (migrant-)group differentiation in particular and politicization in general.
American Anthropologist (Volume 119, Issue 1)
“Heritage Management and the Community in Lebanon”
By: Assaad Seif
Abstract: Not available
“Heritage Management, Tourism, and World Heritage on Malta”
By: Reuben Grima
Abstract: Not available
American Economic Review (Volume 107, Issue 5)
“Redesigning the Israeli Psychology Master’s Match”
By: Avinatan Hassidim, Assaf Romm, Ran I. Shorrer
Abstract: We report on the centralization of a two-sided matching-with-contracts market, in which pre-existing choice functions violate the substitutes condition. The ability to accommodate these choice functions was critical for the success of our design. The new mechanism is stable and strategy-proof for applicants. It is well accepted by both sides of the market. Our study provides a strong empirical validation for the practical relevance of recent theoretical advances on matching without substitutes.
“Who Will Fight? The All-Volunteer Army after 9/11”
By: Susan Payne Carter, Alexander A. Smith, Carl Wojtaszek
Abstract: Who fought the War on Terror? We find that as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan progressed, there was an increase in the fraction of active-duty Army enlistees who were white or from high-income neighborhoods and that these two groups selected combat occupations more often. Among men, we find an increase in deployment and combat injuries for white and Hispanic soldiers relative to black soldiers and for soldiers from high-income neighborhoods relative to those from low-income neighborhoods. This finding suggests that an all-volunteer force does not compel a disproportionate number of non-white and low socio-economic men to fight America’s wars.
American Ethnologist (Volume 44, Issue 1)
“Competing ethical regimes in a diverse society: Israeli military refusers”
By: Erica Weiss
Abstract: All Jewish military refusers in Israel defy state law and incur public acrimony for their transgression. Yet different social groups use distinct ethical regimes to justify this controversial act. While liberal Ashkenazi refusers cite personal conscience, ultra-Orthodox refusers rely on scriptural authority, and Mizrahi refusers often appeal to familial responsibilities. In addition, refusers of different groups condemn one another as ethically misguided, despite their shared act. The stakes of these ethical rifts concern not only questions of military service and legitimate refusal but also larger issues of cultural hegemony, the social contract, and collective legitimation within the Israeli state. The framework of “competing ethical regimes” captures the intersection of the ethical and the political, revealing the deep entanglement of cultural values and civic virtues.
“Routine and rupture: The everyday workings of abyssal (dis)order in the Palestinian food basket”
By: Irene Calis
Abstract: A strategic method of governing Palestinian lives in the West Bank is to maintain a relationship between spectacular and routinized forms of violence. The dissonant interplay of these forms comprises a particular system of control and terror as Israeli authority employs both coercive and administrative methods, which rupture social life while becoming an ordinary part of it. Key to the administration of these dissonant practices is bureaucracy, which codifies a social order of racial supremacy through seemingly mundane measures. “Order” here is itself predicated on an abyssal national order, a dynamic enterprise that is remade through changing policies as well as soldiers’ variable behavior. The combined effects of military (dis)ordering practices enact a systemic attempt to wear down both one’s ability and will to live.
“Ambivalences of mobility: Rival state authorities and mobile strategies in a Saharan conflict”
By: Alice Wilson
Abstract: How do ongoing histories of physical mobility in economic and political life affect rival state authorities’ claims over a disputed territory? In the conflict over Western Sahara, wide-ranging strategies of mobility challenge familiar tropes of migration scholarship, in which states constrain people’s movements while subjects seek to escape such control. Both the Moroccan state and its rival, the liberation movement Polisario Front, have curbed mobility while their mobile Sahrawi subjects evade their authority. Simultaneously, however, both these state authorities encourage people to circulate in order to support claims over territory, while Sahrawis move to strengthen their position vis-à-vis either state authority. Mobility, then, emerges as an ambivalent means of mediating and transforming power relations, especially between governing authorities and their subjects.
“The right to know: Suffering, human rights, and perplexities of politics in Lebanon”
By: Shea McManus
Abstract: For decades, families in Lebanon have fought in vain for the release of information about their missing relatives. Their struggle has become increasingly entangled in a transnational configuration of experts, discourses, and practices, a configuration that is sustained by the humanitarian imperative to alleviate suffering and by an appeal to trauma, victimhood, and human rights. This appeal animates new legal and judicial forms of activism that have expanded the scope of the families’ rights, compelled the government to release long-held information, and urged it to enact reforms in accordance with international standards. The convergence of these processes extends a framework of compassionate global governance that is supposed to work on behalf of subjects who are construed as victims and whose experience is essentially one of suffering.
American Political Science Review (Volume 111, Issues 1 & 2)
“Moral Power: How Public Opinion on Culture War Issues Shapes Partisan Predispositions and Religious Orientations”
By: Paul Goren, Christopher Chapp
Abstract: Party-driven and religion-driven models of opinion change posit that individuals revise their positions on culture war issues to ensure consonance with political and religious predispositions. By contrast, models of issue-driven change propose that public opinion on cultural controversies lead people to revise their partisan and religious orientations. Using data from four panel studies covering the period 1992–2012, we pit the party- and religion-based theories of opinion change against the issue-based model of change. Consistent with the standard view, party and religion constrain culture war opinion. Contrary to the conventional wisdom, but consistent with our novel theory, opinions on culture war issues lead people to revise their partisan affinities and religious orientations. Our results imply that culture war attitudes function as foundational elements in the political and religious belief systems of ordinary citizens that match and sometimes exceed partisan and religious predispositions in terms of motivating power.
“Spontaneous Collective Action: Peripheral Mobilization During the Arab Spring”
By: Zachary C. Steinert-Threlkeld
Abstract: Who is responsible for protest mobilization? Models of disease and information diffusion suggest that those central to a social network (the core) should have a greater ability to mobilize others than those who are less well-connected. To the contrary, this article argues that those not central to a network (the periphery) can generate collective action, especially in the context of large-scale protests in authoritarian regimes. To show that those in the core of a social network have no effect on levels of protest, this article develops a dataset of daily protests across 16 countries in the Middle East and North Africa over 14 months from 2010 through 2011. It combines that dataset with geocoded, individual-level communication from the same period and measures the number of connections of each person. Those on the periphery are shown to be responsible for changing levels of protest, with some evidence suggesting that the core’s mobilization efforts lead to fewer protests. These results have implications for a wide range of social choices that rely on interdependent decision making.
Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research (Issue 377)
“Ethnofabrics: Petrographic Analysis as a Tool for Illuminating Cultural Interactions and Trade Relations between Judah and Philistia during the Iron Age II”
By: Anat Cohen-Weinberger, Nahshon Szanton, Joe Uziel
Abstract: Recent excavations along the lower eastern slopes of Jerusalem yielded a number of sherds attributed to Late Philistine Decorated Ware. As this family of vessels is generally thought to derive from Philistia, petrographic analysis was conducted on the sherds, as well as on other vessels assumed to be locally made, which served as a control group. Late Philistine Decorated Ware sherds were found to belong to three distinct petrographic groups, two of which seem to originate in Philistia (i.e., the southern coastal plain and Judaean Shephelah), while a third group was found to be local to Jerusalem. The results also indicate that some vessels considered local to the area of Jerusalem were actually produced farther west. This article discusses the results of the petrographic analysis and the implications they have on understanding Judaeo-Philistine relations.
“From Stadium to Harbor: Reinterpreting the Curved Ashlar Structure in Roman Tiberias”
By: Rick Bonnie
Abstract: A salvage excavation in the modern city of Tiberias in 2002 exposed the remnants of a wide, curved ashlar structure. Based on its curved shape, its construction date, and its location, various scholars have identified this structure as the foundation wall of the Roman stadium mentioned by Josephus in relation to the First Jewish Revolt (66–67 C.E.). However, neither Josephus nor the later rabbinic sources imply the presence of a stone-built monumental stadium at the location of this site, nor does all of the exposed evidence related to the structure fit with the stadium theory. Therefore, a different interpretation for this structure is proposed. Based on the presence of a mooring stone projecting outward from the structure’s waterside and the complex’s strong similarities in structural characteristics and in elevation to the nearby late Hellenistic to Roman harbor of Magdala, it is argued that the remains should be identified as those of a quay, a stone platform built along the lakeshore to accommodate the loading and unloading of boats. If this interpretation is correct, it suggests the existence of a harbor structure in the northeast area of Roman Tiberias.
“The Qubur al-Walaydah Bowl: New Images and Old Readings”
By: Nathaniel E. Greene
Abstract: Discovered in the late 1970s and first published in the Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research by Frank Moore Cross in 1980, the Qubur al-Walaydah Bowl has become the object of more recent inspection by the current excavation team at the site. In 2010, Angelika Berlejung proposed new readings for parts of the inscription. This article seeks to analyze Berlejung’s proposed readings against Cross’s readings from his editio princeps. Furthermore, the present study utilizes reflectance transformation imaging in order to draw its conclusions. Ultimately, Berlejung’s proposed readings are not supported by reflectance transformation imaging.
“Local Production of a Small Rectangular Limestone Incense Altar at Tell Halif, Israel: Iconographic Considerations”
By: Seung Ho Bang, Oded Borowski
Abstract: This article studies local production of an incense altar found at Tell Halif in 2007 through examining its iconography. The carvings depict hunting scenes consisting of a human and various animals. These animals are positively identified as zebu, wild boar, Saluki-type hounds, and Nubian ibexes. The distribution of these five animals indicates that the southern Levant might be the source of primary influence for incense altar production, while southern Arabia is also a visible influential factor. Established trade between the southern Levant and southern Arabia, as early as the 12th–11th centuries B.C.E., might support the idea of cultural ties between the two regions. The taxonomical identifications strongly support the hypothesis that the object was locally produced. And this hypothesis is also in accord with the petrographic provenance analyses of the raw material used for the Tell Halif incense altar.
“Six Palmyrene Portraits Destroyed in Manbij, Syria: A Salvage Reading”
By: Jeremy M. Hutton
Abstract: Operatives of the Islamic State reportedly destroyed six Palmyrene funerary busts and statue fragments in Manbij, Syria, on July 2, 2015. This article considers the ethical implications of publishing photographs of antiquities that have been destroyed, arguing that in such dramatic cases as destruction, it is justified to publish readings. Photographs of these antiquities are then analyzed, their physical and iconographic characteristics described, and readings for three of the inscriptions suggested. Finally, the loss of data caused by the items’ destruction is measured against the loss of data occasioned by looting.
“Two (?) Lion Reliefs from Iron Age Moab: Further Evidence for an Architectural and Intellectual Koiné in the Levant?”
By: Martin Weber
Abstract: The collection of the Karak Archaeological Museum contains two carved basalt slabs, both of which show the rear parts and hindquarters of a leonine figure. Although the two slabs differ vastly in their state of preservation, a comparison of their physical properties and iconographic features suggests that the two reliefs originally formed a matching pair and were part of a single architectural feature. Comparing the slabs to the well-known corpus of northern Levantine monumental sculpture, it is argued that the reliefs constitute the remains of two gateway figures, most plausibly dated to the Iron Age. The Karak slabs thus provide the first likely evidence for the use of architectural stone sculpture by Moabite elites, a practice most commonly associated with the Iron Age kingdoms of the northern Levant. Lion sculptures were often employed as gateways figures in public buildings, especially in the northern Levant and northern Mesopotamia, attesting to the close relationship between these images and the royal ideology they helped to project. Through their existence, the Karak slabs not only provide further evidence for cross-cultural artistic interaction in the Iron Age Levant but also suggest that ancient Karak played an important role in these exchanges.
“An Aramaic-Inscribed Lamaštu Amulet from Zincirli”
By: Jessie DeGrado, Matthew Richey
Abstract: In the final volume of excavation reports from the Felix von Luschan expedition to Zincirli, Turkey, the editor, Walter Andrae, provided a brief iconographic description and an imperfect photograph of an Aramaic-inscribed Lamaštu amulet from the site. The Old Aramaic inscription was, however, largely invisible in the photograph, and the epigraph went untranscribed and untranslated in this and all subsequent mentions. The present article represents a full edition and discussion of the amulet and its inscription on the basis of our examination of the object at the Vorderasiatisches Museum, Berlin. This artifact represents the only known instance of a local Aramaic script’s use on an amulet dominated by Mesopotamian iconographic motifs, notably including Lamaštu. It is an important witness to cultural contact and combination in an Aramaic/Neo-Hittite city-state of the 9th-8th centuries B.C.E. Due to the general paucity of Old Aramaic inscriptions, the epigraph also represents a significant addition to the broader extant corpus and contributes important data for understanding Old Aramaic palaeography, orthography, and onomastics.
“The Philistine Cemetery of Ashkelon”
By: Daniel M. Master, Adam J. Aja
Abstract: From 2013 to 2016, the Leon Levy Expedition to Ashkelon excavated an Iron Age IIA cemetery immediately adjacent to the ancient city. This research uncovered over 200 individuals buried in simple pits, built tombs, and cremation jars. The discovery represents a fundamental contribution to the history of the Philistines, as it demonstrates, for the first time, a typical burial practice for Philistine adults in the Iron Age. As such, it becomes a type-site against which other southern Levantine discoveries can be compared and provides new information about Iron Age death and burial in the eastern Mediterranean.
“Tombs and Offering Pits at the Late Bronze Age Metropolis of Hala Sultan Tekke, Cyprus”
By: Peter M. Fischer, Teresa Bürge
Abstract: Hala Sultan Tekke is a large Bronze Age city close to the famous homonymous mosque near the international airport of Larnaca on the south coast of Cyprus. Previous research demonstrated that the city flourished mainly in the later part of the Late Bronze Age—viz., during the 13th and 12th centuries B.C.E.—but recent excavations confirmed that the city was occupied from as early as the Middle Cypriot III-Late Cypriot IA period around 1600 B.C.E. The current project, which started in 2010, exposed three new city quarters (CQ1–3) in the northern part of the city close to the ancient harbor—that is, today’s Larnaca Salt Lake. Geophysical surveys by georadar and magnetometer, which were carried out in Area A, a plateau approximately 600 m east of CQ1 and opposite the mosque, indicated more than 80 roughly circular anomalies. Among the seven anomalies excavated in 2016 are Tomb X and Offering Pit V, which are the main subjects of this article. Concentrated in these features were objects of high artistic value from a vast area of the eastern Mediterranean, including the Aegean, the Levant, Egypt, and possibly Anatolia. Both features antedate the occupation of the previously excavated city quarters.
“Embodiments of Death: The Funerary Sequence and Commemoration in the Bronze Age Levant”
By: Melissa S. Cradic
Abstract: This article presents an archaeological model for Levantine funerary rituals performed in the context of commingling inhumations. Using the case study of a masonry-constructed chamber tomb from Middle Bronze Age Tel Megiddo (Israel), the funerary sequence is reconstructed in three main phases: (1) pre-interment; (2) interment; and (3) post-interment. The sequential performance of funerary rituals in this shared burial space resulted in a high degree of skeletal fragmentation as previously interred corpses were moved aside to accommodate subsequent inhumations. However, rather than merely representing a functional aspect of burial, the repositioning of deceased bodies constituted a ritually meaningful practice that involved continuous physical interactions between the living and the dead. Drawing on theories of embodiment and methods of burial taphonomy, this article argues that mourners’ close encounters with deceased bodies played a major role in transforming the status of the dead after burial. Ritualized fragmentation and intermingling of human skeletal remains were integral components of becoming an ancestor.
Comparative Political Studies (Volume 50, Issues 1 & 2)
“Multiculturalism and Muslim Accommodation: Policy and Predisposition Across Three Political Contexts”
By: Matthew Writght, Richard Johnston, Jack Citrin, Stuart Soroka
Abstract: This article assesses the apparent effect of political multiculturalism on tolerance of Muslim accommodation among native-born majority members. Our principle goal is in understanding how public opinion on religious accommodation varies as a function of both federal multicultural policy, on one hand, and more deeply rooted notions of political culture, on the other. We do so by examining responses to a pair of survey experiments embedded in surveys conducted in Canada and the United States. The experiments allow us to convincingly demonstrate “Muslim exceptionalism.” Contextual comparisons across multicultural policy regimes (Canada and the United States) and within them but across distinct political cultures (Quebec vs. English Canada) lend credence to a fairly subdued role for policy and a much larger one for political culture. These effects are, we argue and show, strongly moderated by support for multiculturalism at the individual-level.
“Political Violence Cycles”
By: Matthew J. Nanes
Abstract: How do electoral incentives affect the counterterrorism policies chosen by reelection-seeking incumbents? This article tests the argument that governments alter their choice of security strategies as elections approach to signal competence to potential voters. Which policy they select should depend on the intended audience of the signal. Governments seeking support from their partisan base should select different policies than those courting the support of moderates. Using data on Israel-West Bank checkpoint closures and casualties in the Palestinian territories between 2000 and 2013, I find evidence that Israeli governments manipulate security strategies in the run-up to elections in a manner consistent with an attempt to attract support from core voters. As elections approach, left governments become more dovish on security, while right governments become more hawkish. The relationship between partisanship and policy choice raises concerns that electoral incentives may induce democratic governments to select inefficient or suboptimal security strategies around election time.
Constellations (Volume 24, Issue 1)
“Democracy’s Disappointments: Insights from Dewey and Foucault on World War I and the Iranian Revolution”
By: Nick Dorzweiler
Abstract: Not available
Contemporary Arab Affairs (Volume 10, Issues 1 & 2)
“Regime-change agenda: the Egyptian experience from 2011 to 2015”
By: Mediel Hove, Enock Ndawana
Abstract: This article discusses the role of the United States of America in the failure of the democratic revolution in Egypt during the Arab Spring. While appreciating the role of internal actors and the domestic dynamics, it demonstrates that regime change in Egypt was largely a consequence and a reflection of the US’s interests in Egypt and the region in general. It argues that the seemingly successful removal of the Hosni Mubarak regime by popular uprisings and the rise of Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood signalled the success of democracy. However, Morsi’s controversial overthrow and imprisonment, notwithstanding his weaknesses, led to the backfiring of the regime-change strategy. The subsequent rise to power of a former military man, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, and his administration has, thus far, demonstrated a contradiction to all the promises of the Egyptian revolution. It concludes that the drivers of regime change should re-examine the merits of their strategy in an effort to establish lasting peace in the country.
“Geopolitics of identity: Egypt’s lost peace”
By: Amr G. E. Sabet
Abstract: This paper attempts to provide a conceptualization of Egypt’s current predicaments by process-tracing historical critical junctures and sequences of causal mechanisms that contributed to bringing about the January 2011 events. Focusing on the period between the July 1952 Revolution led by Gamal Abdel Nasser and the events of 2011, it traces the developments and changing political and strategic trajectories of the three presidents Nasser, Anwar Sadat and Hosni Mubarak. The case of Egypt is examined here as ‘an instance of a class of events’ focusing on phenomena related to the tracing of causal factors or critical junctures, and mechanisms leading to a particular outcome on 25 January 2011. It further links the uprising to that country’s 1979 ‘Peace Treaty’ with Israel. This treaty ‘de-securitized’ the latter, allowing it significant regional freedom of action. This had a causal effect on challenging Egypt’s identity-motivated action, contributing, in the process, to undermining its identity structure. An increasing awareness among many Egyptians of the link between the treaty and their identity formation is one of the main reasons for summoning the legacy of Nasser’s leadership as a source of ‘ontological security’.
“A question of faith? Islamists and secularists fight over the post-Mubarak state”
By: Bjørn Olav Utvik
Abstract: Since the military coup of July 3, 2013, guns and batons have, broadly speaking, taken the place of open debate and elections in deciding the political future of Egypt. How can the political struggle be understood with regard to the shape and content of the reformed post-Mubarak state that took place during the period of relative free debate and of tentative steps towards a democratic system between February 11, 2011 and July 3, 2013. In light of the deepening polarization between the Muslim Brothers and the more secular political tendencies that characterized the period, the conflict is often portrayed by the media and by some researchers as between a project of Islamization and a secularist agenda. To what extent does this hold true? In this article I will argue (1) that what took place was rather a power struggle involving competing elites as well as what is sometimes termed the ‘deep state’, i.e., the entrenched power holders from Mubarak’s time, especially in the military, the police and the judiciary; and (2) to the extent that secularization was at stake, in some important aspects Islamists turned out to be, if anything, more secularizing than their secularist competitors. What follows is nothing near a full treatment of the transitional period. Neither is it a formal study of constitutional issues, although it does dwell on some important aspects of the new constitution finalized in 2012. The primary interest here is what the struggle over the new constitution, and more broadly over the path to be followed in the transition process, can tell us about the main forces at work at the heart of the intense political conflict that developed.
“The Christians of Jerusalem during the British Mandate, 1917–48”
By: Fawaz Awdat Alnaimatt
Abstract: This study sheds a light on the history of the Christians of Jerusalem during the period of occupation and the British Mandate, 1917–48. It relies on a set of sources and references, among the most important of which are reports, telegrams, messages and letters exchanged between the British leadership in Palestine and the British Foreign Ministry as well as the Ministry of British Colonies (British Colonial Administration); in addition to Palestinian daily and weekly newspapers; as well as modern sources, studies and memoirs.
“Security sector reform, disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of militias: the challenges for state building in Libya”
By: Youssef Mohammad Sawani
Abstract: Even though the rebels, later turned ‘revolutionaries’, actually had an insignificant role as combatants in the violent downfall of the Gaddafi regime in Libya in 2011, they became involved in acts of war in many parts of the country in what came to resemble a civil war. Their militias flourished thanks to the lucrative financial handouts that governments paid to them. To complicate matters, additional militias sprang up in the absence of any sort of viable state/institutional control on the part of the nascent ‘state’ or an inability to restrict and monopolize the use of force. Therefore, disarmament, demobilization, reintegration and security sector reform have not been possible, and the Libyan case demonstrates the failure to emulate international best practices, thus hindering any state-building. This paper seeks to analyse the Libyan case and provide an approach and framework for dealing with the genuine causes of the current situation in order help put the appropriate disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) and security sector reform (SSR) policy in place, while simultaneously not ignoring other major, contributing factors. This study suggests that the case of Libya is unique and likely to prove challenging to both established and evolving theoretical approaches to both DDR and SSR. Experiments in the country that have ignored the holistic security sector reform will be examined and its programmes analysed to ascertain whether these have produced any effective state-run structures and mechanisms, norms and procedures, or whether they have only served to reinforce the de facto roles of militias. The article argues that unless the state-building approach is revitalized and national reconciliation made a top priority, Libya’s current debacle and instability is most likely to continue.
“Limiting violent spillover in civil wars: the paradoxes of Lebanese Sunni jihadism, 2011–17”
By: Tine Gade
Abstract: Research on violent spillovers in civil war has often exaggerated the potential for conflict contagion. The case of Lebanon is a counter-example. Despite the massive pressure of the horrific war in next-door Syria, it has, against all odds, remained remarkably stable – despite the influx of more than 1 million Syrian refugees and almost complete institutional blockage. This paper, based on ethnographic research and semi-structured interviews from Lebanon, studies the determination to avoid a violent spillover into Lebanon from the perspective of the country’s Sunni Islamists. Recent trends in the scholarly literature have shown that Islamists are not inherently revolutionary, nor always dogmatists, and often serve many social purposes at home. The main argument is that the Syrian war has not been imported into Lebanon; instead, the Lebanese conflict is externalized to Syria. Lebanon’s conflicting factions, including the Islamists, have found the costs of resorting to violence inside Lebanon to be too high. Even those Lebanese Sunnis who have crossed the borders to fight in Syria do so because of domestic reasons, that is, to fight against Hezbollah on Syria soil, where they can do so without risking an explosion of the Lebanese security situation. Sectarianism, in the sense of opposition to Hezbollah and the Lebanese Shia, is the main driver of radicalization for Lebanese Sunnis.
“The pedagogy of inquiry and deliberation in higher education in the Arab region”
By: Kamal Abouchedid
Abstract: This paper examines the extent to which the official discourse of 36 institutions of higher education in 15 Arab countries pronounces four meanings depicted in the extant literature on the pedagogy of inquiry and deliberation: cooperative/collaborative learning; problem-solving; critical thinking; and discussion/debate. Results derived from the discourse analysis showed a weak emphasis on cooperative learning and discussion/debate while problem solving comprised the highest number of sentences in the discourse followed by critical thinking. Information analysed from interviews and course syllabi provided a portrait of how teaching might be carried out in the universities surveyed. However, for a complete picture of pedagogy of inquiry and deliberation to be drawn, research emphasis should be shifted into action research and observational case studies that tend to yield an in-depth account of teaching and learning in higher education.
“Open public data (OPD) and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC): challenges and prospects”
By: Stuti Saxena
Abstract: This paper seeks to assess the nature and scope of open data in government (OPD/open public data) in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries of Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Following a qualitative approach, OPD portals of GCC countries are being studied besides seeking inputs from secondary data sources which are relevant in providing theoretical understanding of OPD. The paper shows that OPD in the GCC countries is in its nascent stage and little academic interest has been shown in this area. Future research should highlight the prospects of OPD implementation in the GCC countries given their strategic importance for many reasons. To ascertain that the OPD implementation gathers pace in the GCC countries, governments need to make more robust strategies in terms of physical and research infrastructure for better data analytics and utility. Hitherto, there has been no study covering the significance and implications of OPD in a GCC context; this is the first study to undertake this as its research theme. Furthermore, academic research on OPD in the GCC countries is lacking; the present study seeks to fill this gap.
“Evolution of Moroccan defence diplomacy”
By: Ahmed El Morabety
Abstract: This paper addresses Morocco’s defence diplomacy through a consideration of two research matters. The first concerns the military and security cooperation of the country with the United States, the European countries, as well as the Arab and African ones. The second focuses on Morocco’s participations in United Nations and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) peacekeeping operations. The objective of this study is essentially to show to what extent Morocco contributes to restoring regional peace and security across the world.
“Oil production and abrupt institutional change: the multi-cyclic Hubbert model and the case of Iraq”
By: Omar A. M. El Joumayle
Abstract: Iraq, one of the world’s leading crude oil producers with the fifth largest share of proven global oil reserves, recently ranked as the second-largest producer among Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) members. Nevertheless, performance of the upstream subsector in terms of oil production volume has been subject to severe disruptions for more than four decades. The main sources for these fluctuations are multi-institutional changes caused by nationalization, wars and United Nations sanctions. This article applies to the Iraqi case an extended version of the multi-cycle Hubbert model, developed by Reynolds and Kolodziej in 2008 and 2009. This econometrics model explores and attempts to quantify statistically the relationship between oil production and multi-institutional changes within Iraq. Findings indicate the negative and significant impacts of abrupt institutional change on the performance of the oil industry where this adverse impact varies in magnitude from one episode to another. As Iraq is still yet in the midst of a turbulent transition, the article also discusses the major challenges of the post-2003 era, associated with the present and potential future development of the Iraqi oil-producing sector. This is especially with regard to the increasing economic and political fragmentation that stems from the absence of a unified oil policy.
“Qatari-US military relations: context, evolution and prospects”
By: Brahim Saidy
Abstract: Military cooperation is one of the most intriguing dimensions of the Qatari-US relationship. It has progressively evolved, driven by a changing geopolitical landscape and security threats in the Middle East. In fact, it has a significant impact on the overall bilateral relationship, especially economic ties. It rests upon four pillars: a bilateral defence agreement, the use of military facilities, arms sales and military-to-military contacts. This paper analyzes the development of the military relationship that exists between Washington and Doha and offers an assessment of the issues that animate it.
Dead Sea Discoveries (Volume 24, Issue 1)
“Writing Jewish Astronomy in the Early Hellenistic Age: The Enochic Astronomical Book as Aramaic Wisdom and Archival Impulse”
By: Annette Yoshiko Reed
Abstract: The full publication of 4Q208 and 4Q209 in 2000 has enabled a renaissance of research on the Enochic Astronomical Book, illumining its deep connections with Babylonian scholasticism and spurring debate about the precise channels by which such “scientific” knowledge came to reach Jewish scribes. This article asks whether attention to Aramaic manuscripts related to the Astronomical Book might also reveal something about Jewish scribal pedagogy and literary production in the early Hellenistic age, particularly prior to the Maccabean Revolt. Engaging recent studies from Classics and the History of Science concerning astronomy, pedagogy, and the place of scribes and books in the cultural politics of the third century BCE, it uses the test-case of the Astronomical Book to explore the potential significance of Aramaic sources for charting changes within Jewish literary cultures at the advent of Macedonian rule in the Near East.
“Prayers of the Antediluvian Patriarchs: Revisiting the Form and Function of 4Q369 Prayer of Enosh”
By: Justin L. Pannkuk
Abstract: This article reassesses the evidence for determining the form of 4Q369 “Prayer of Enosh” and, in light of this assessment, considers how the composition could function rhetorically. Based on textual and comparative literary evidence, the article proposes that the extant text is structured by a genealogical framework (1 i 9–10) in which historically-oriented prayers are attributed to specific patriarchal figures like Enosh (1 i 1–7) and Enoch or one of his near descendants (1 ii 1–12). These formal aspects of the composition are seen to have important rhetorical consequences: they position the implied audience as a third party between God and the esteemed figures from the remote past and they frame the prayers as accurate forecasts of salvation history. Together these features provide grounds upon which pious readers could have confidence in the inevitability of God’s fidelity until the eschaton.
“’The Final Priests of Jerusalem’ and ‘The Mouth of the Priest’: Eschatology and Literary History in Pesher Habakkuk*”
By: Pieter B. Hartog
Abstract: This article argues that 1QpHab 2:5–10 and 1QpHab 9:3–7 are later additions to Pesher Habakkuk. As these are the only passages in Pesher Habakkuk which explicitly refer to “the latter days,” I propose that these additions constitute an explicitly eschatological literary layer, which was presumably added to Pesher Habakkuk in the Herodian era. This literary development of Pesher Habakkuk demonstrates that the Pesharim are no static entities, but partake in a living and fluid interpretative tradition.
“’Taken from Dust, Formed from Clay’: Compound Allusions and Scriptural Exegesis in 1QHodayota 11:20–37; 20:27–39 and Ben Sira 33:7–15”
By: Wally V. Cirafesi
Abstract: This article argues that, in 1QHa 11:20–27; 20:27–39 and Sir 33:7–15, the use of allusions to humanity’s creation from dust in Genesis 2–3 and to its formation from clay in Isa 29:16; 45:9; Jer 18:4, 6 represents a conscious exegetical process in which the Genesis and prophetic traditions were read and used in light of one another. Although originating within different social environments—one sectarian and the other as part of a more mainstream scribal context—both make use of the same two scriptural allusions and evince a similar pattern of interpretive reflection. The goal of the study is to demonstrate that the allusions function together, in a compounded manner, to present (1) a composite portrait of God as creator and determiner of all human outcomes, and (2) a corresponding composite portrait of humanity in its universal mortality and complete subjection to the deterministic will of God.
“Remains of Tefillin from Naḥal Ṣeʾelim (Wadi Seiyal): A Leather Case and Two Inscribed Fragments (34Se 1 A–B): With Paleographic Analysis by Ada Yardeni”
By: Yonatan Adler
Abstract: The present study presents and discusses the tefillin (phylactery) remains found in Cave 34 at Naḥal Ṣeʾelim within the framework of Yohanan Aharoni’s first 1960 expedition to the Judean Desert. Presented here are a leather tefillin case, never before reported upon, and two inscribed tefillin slips (34ṢePhyl A and 34ṢePhyl B) which have until now received only preliminary treatment. Very few close parallels to the Naḥal Ṣeʾelim tefillin slips are known from elsewhere in the Judean Desert. Both the tefillin slips and the case appear quite compatible with rabbinic descriptions and prescriptions, although there is little reason to label these ritual objects as in some way or another “rabbinic”. The paleographic analysis of the tefillin slips suggests that the texts were penned sometime in the second half of the first century CE. While a Bar Kokhba period date for the deposit of the tefillin remains in Cave 34 does not appear at all unlikely, an earlier dating—possibly First Revolt period—must not be precluded.
Defence and Peace Economics (Volume 28, Issues 1 & 2)
“Community preferences, insurgency, and the success of reconstruction spending”
By: Travers B. Child
Abstract: Existing theory on counterinsurgency does not adequately explain persistent insurrection in face of the reconstruction work currently underway in Afghanistan and Iraq. We starkly depart from the literature by developing a simple model of reconstruction allowing misalignment of occupier spending with community preferences. Insurgency arises endogenously as a result of the mix of spending rather than its level. Occupier insistence on its preferred path of reconstruction may lead to fewer projects of any kind being completed. In equilibrium, the occupier may accept an endogenous insurgency to achieve a preferred project mix, or be constrained in its choice even when no insurgency occurs.
“The economic impact of peacekeeping. Evidence from South Sudan”
By: Raul Caruso, Prabin Khadka, Ilaria Petrarca, Roberto Ricciuti
Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of the deployment of United Nations Blue Helmets on economic activity in South Sudan with a special focus on agricultural production. Since UN troops are predicted to improve security, in particular, we expect a positive relationship between deployment of UN blue Helmets and cereal production. We test our hypothesis using an original data-set including all the 78 South Sudanese counties over the period 2009–2011. We control for the non-random assignment of UN troops through an Instrumental Variables approach. Our empirical results show that a 10% increase in the size of the troop allows the production of additional 600 tonnes.
Dynamics of Asymmetric Conflict (Volume 10, Issue 1)
“The stability of the Islamic State (IS) narrative: implications for the future”
By: Lawrence A. Kuznar
Abstract: Quantitative analysis of IS thought leader discourse is used to examine the extent to which the IS narrative has changed throughout its history, and the degree to which it has been similar to the rhetoric of other extremist organizations. The IS narrative has remained remarkably stable, indicating an ideological commitment to the narrative by its propagandists. Furthermore, the narrative has worked well for IS as a recruiting and inspirational tool. Therefore, their core narrative is predicted to remain stable, despite future manifestations of the organization. This stability has implications for how the narrative can be countered and the need for credible allies in that effort.
European Journal of Development Research (Volume 29, Issue 2)
“The Influence of Internal Migration on Migrant Children’s School Enrolment and Work in Turkey”
By: Motoi Kusadokoro, Ai Hasegawa
Abstract: This study investigates the effects of internal family migration on the schooling and work situations of children in Turkey, where large regional economic gaps generate large internal migration flows. Using 2003 Turkey Demographic and Health survey data, conventional regression analyses suggest that migrant children are more likely to leave school and engage in economic activity. These effects of migration are considerable compared with those of wealth and parents’ education. However, if we control the selection bias caused by the non-randomness of migration decisions, only the effects on the work situations of children remain significant. Internal migration directly impacts work than schooling for migrant children. In Turkey, only a few migrants obtain high returns from migration. Migrant children whose parents failed to get the expected returns may start to work in the destination.
International Studies Quarterly (Volume 61, Issue 1)
“The Psychological Logic of Peace Summits: How Empathy Shapes Outcomes of Diplomatic Negotiations”
By: Marcus Holmes, Keren Yarhi-Milo
Abstract: Why do some peace summits succeed while others fail? We offer an explanation that highlights the importance of empathy between leaders. Studies in negotiations and psychology show that empathy—the ability to take the perspective of others and understand their cognitive and affective states without necessarily sympathizing with them—is critical in overcoming biases, transcending long-held enmities, and increasing the likelihood of cooperation. We show that empathy is perceptual in nature. Actors can convey it through both words and expressive behaviors in face-to-face interactions. From these, leaders gain an understanding of whether the other side is willing to negotiate in good faith and what a potential agreement might look like. Additionally, we argue that all is not lost if the leaders of warring states prove unable to cultivate these beliefs about each other. A skilled mediator can step in and build relational empathy between disputants. We assess the empirical ramifications of conveyed and relational empathy by comparing two of the most salient Middle East peace process summits with divergent outcomes: success at Camp David 1978 and failure in 2000.
“Diplomatic Practices, Domestic Fields, and the International System: Explaining France’s Shift on Nuclear Nonproliferation”
By: Florent Pouponneau, Frédéric Mérand
Abstract: France took a hardline stance against Tehran’s nuclear program. Yet for several decades, the French government adopted a softer line with regard to nonproliferation. France was the last permanent member of the UN Security Council to ratify the 1968 Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). In the 1960s and 1970s, Paris sold nuclear facilities to Israel, Iran, and Iraq, some of which had potential military uses. Why did France change its policy on nonproliferation? By reconstructing the evolution of France’s position with respect to Iraq’s and Iran’s nuclear programs since the 1970s, this article explains how Paris shifted from reluctant loner to one of the main promoters of the norm of nonproliferation. The changing role of a second-tier power stems from transformations in the division of diplomatic labor inside and outside the state. Drawing on archival and interview data, we show how a group of French diplomats, followed by political leaders and nuclear scientists, mobilized the nonproliferation norm and carved out a role for France in the international system. Throughout this period, successive presidents faced fragmented domestic fields in which bureaucratic and political struggles shaped French policy. These struggles refracted the impact of the international system on France’s slow and uneven convergence with the US position.
Journal of Economic Cooperation and Development (Volume 38, Issue 1)
“The Potential Advantages and Synergies of an EU-Turkey Cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation”
By: Ágota Dávid, Tamás Szigetvári
Abstract: The Turkish economy has shown remarkable economic performance over the last decade. Currently, it is the 18th largest economy in the world. To increase its competitiveness and avoid the ‘middle-icome trap’, Turkey set research and development as a priority area for the next decade, with the ambitious goal of reaching 3% of GERD/GDP by 2023. Despite several controversies about the EU accession process in general, the EU is still the best partner for Turkey to reach these goals. Turkey is an active member of the European research area. It is an associated member of the RDI Framework Programmes since 2002, it participated in and coordinated various scientific projects, policy-coordination actions, mobility programmes and won grants for excellent researchers. In the Turkish national STI strategy the three vertical and six horizontal axes consist of various scientific areas like ICT, Energy, Defence, Water, Food, which have been also set as priority areas in the European H2020 programme. We would like to focus in our article on possible synergies between priority areas, as well as on the role of SMEs in the innovation chain, which are enjoying a special attention in both Horizon 2020 and in Turkish national science, economic and innovation policy.
“Trade Integration and Revealed Comparative Advantages of SubSaharan Africa and Middle East and North Africa Merchandize Export”
By: Hailay Gebretinsae Beyene
Abstract: To provide an input for policy makers on issues of economic integration, this study has been conducted to assess the “revealed comparative advantage” (RCA) of the two regions: sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and Middle East & North Africa (MENA), on merchandise goods export (Manufactures, Ores & Metals, Fuels, Agricultural Raw Materials, and Food) for the period 1995 to 2012. It is disclosed that SSA has revealed comparative advantage in ores & metals, fuels, food, and agricultural raw materials ranked in order of their strength of competitiveness. However, SSA region’s economic integration through merchandise trade in the world is lower than the average economic integration of low and middle income countries. MENA has revealed disadvantage in all sub-products except in fuel export, while MENA has stronger integration in the world. In contrast to MENA, the population growth in SSA is not accompanied by commensurate economic integration in the world. The study uncovers the existence of immense potential for the two regions to integ
Journal of Near Eastern Studies (Volume 76, Issue 1)
“Nanay and Her Lover: An Aramaic Sacred Marriage Text from Egypt”
By: Tawny L. Holm
Abstract: Not available
“Revision in the Manuscript Age: New Evidence of Early Versions of Ibn Ḥajar’s Fatḥ al-bārī”
By: Joel Blecher
Abstract: Not available
“Metalworking at Megiddo during the Late Bronze and Iron Ages”
By: Naama Yahalom-Mack, Adi Eliyahu-Behar, Mario A. S. Martin, Assaf Kleiman, Ruth Shahack-Gross, Robert S. Homsher, Yuval Gadot, Israel Finkelstein
Abstract: Not available
“The Figure of Nabopolassar in Late Achaemenid and Hellenistic Historiographic Tradition: BM 34793 and CUA 90”
By: Rocío Da Riva
Abstract: Not available
“The History and Distribution of ṭāb: A Survey of Petra’s Gaming Boards”
By: Alex de Voogt, Ahmad B. A. Hassanat, Mahmoud B. Alhasanat
Abstract: Not available
“Omride Palatial Architecture as Symbol in Action: Between State Formation, Obliteration, and Heritage”
By: Omer Sergi, Yuval Gadot
Abstract: Not available
“Examining the Late Medieval Village from the Case at Ambroyi, Armenia”
By: Kathryn J. Franklin, Tasha Vorderstrasse, Frina Babayan
Abstract: Not available
“Berlin Papyrus P. 13447 and the Library of the Yehudite Colony at Elephantine”
By: Christine Mitchell
Abstract: Not available
“Finding Hama: On the Identification of a Forgotten Queen Buried in the Nimrud Tombs”
By: Tracy L. Spurrier
Abstract: Not available
Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient (Volume 60, Issues 1-3)
“Modernity in ‘Antique Lands’: Perspectives from the Western Mediterranean”
By: James McDougall
Abstract: The critiques of modernity advanced since at least the 1980s have seldom focused on North Africa/the Maghrib, where Europe and non-Europe impinge so closely on each other. Nor have they often allowed us to recover an historical account of the making of modernity as a global condition, beyond the largely dichotomous or bifurcating categories introduced by modern relations of power and unequal exchange themselves. As an introduction to this collection of articles, this essay sketches what I call a “tectonic” approach to modernity as an historical process, with the aim of recapturing the dynamics by which, between the late eighteenth century and the mid-nineteenth, differently located people and places came to occupy divergent positions both in socioeconomic and political structures and in narratives of “modern” history.
“A World No Longer Shared: Losing the Droit de Cité in Nineteenth-Century Algiers”
By: James McDougall
Abstract: This article examines the rapid and dramatic shifts in position, perception, and possibility that characterized the onset of colonialism in the Maghrib. The focus is on a small, interrelated group of families of Algiers notables. Their heads, the merchant and state servant Ḥamdān ibn ʿUthmān Khoja and the banker and businessman Aḥmad Bū Ḍarba, played important roles in attempting to negotiate an accommodation with the French occupiers between 1830 and 1833. By 1836, they found themselves pushed out, both politically and physically, from the cité (both physical and symbolic) that they had, until then, imagined themselves as sharing on equal terms with interlocutors on the other shore of the Mediterranean. Closing down their possibilities of dialogue can be seen as the first, decisive step in the emergence of French definitions of a “monologic,” exclusively European articulation of the meaning of modernity in North Africa.
“Slave to Modernity? General Ḥusayn’s Journey from Tunis to Tuscany (1830s-1880s)”
By: M’hamed Oualdi
Abstract: Following the career of General Ḥusayn b. ʿAbdallāh, a prominent Circassian slave who served the Ottoman governors of Tunis from his childhood in the 1830s until his death in Tuscany in 1887, this paper attempts to grasp more than the colonial dimension of the North African past and to assess other global and transnational dynamics that molded the histories of modernity in the Maghrib. His exile in Florence redirects our attention to Mediterranean spaces, such as Tuscany, which were neither imperial nor colonial and which have been erased from the main narrative of colonized North Africa.
“Believe in the Border, or, How to Make Modernity in the Nineteenth-Century Maghrib”
By: Brock Cutler
Abstract: The Algerian-Tunisian frontier zone was much contested in the late nineteenth century, defying the logic of modernity that sought to establish territoriality. This modernity appeared only through an imbrication of raids, warfare, environmental shifts, and competing territorial claims. The violence of the territorial process, the changing geography of sovereignty, and uncertain frontier delimitation: these and other elements challenge the image of modernity arising in a fixed territory according to a linear chronology. This article argues that modernity in the Maghrib, seen through the lens of territory, is a temporally and spatially variable process: “modern” sovereign power existed only at certain levels of abstraction and within certain environmental relations. To consider modernity in the Maghrib, we will have to see how claims of sovereignty and the process of territorialization were understood by actors operating on local, regional, and imperial scales.
“Consuming Anxieties: Mobility of Commodities across Religious Boundaries in Nineteenth-Century Morocco”
By: Etty Terem
Abstract: This article examines a fatwa written in the late nineteenth century by Jaʿfar b. Idrīs al-Kattānī, a distinguished Moroccan legal scholar. The issue that gave rise to the fatwa was the subject of heated debates among Moroccan Muslims at the time: the legality of using goods manufactured by non-Muslims. New historical conditions brought by Moroccan modernity eroded religious and communal boundaries between Muslims and non-Muslims and accentuated concerns about the integrity of Islam. Suspicion and anxiety of the population found expression in widespread rumors about impurities in products manufactured by non-Muslims. By analyzing al-Kattānī’s fatwa, this article aims to offer insights into the relationships between the ʿulamāʾ, Islamic tradition, and modernity.
“The Persisting Spectre of Cultural Decline: Historiographical Approaches to Muslim Scholarship in the Early Modern Maghreb”
By: Ismail Warscheid
Abstract: This article examines how historiography has interpreted the development of Muslim scholarship in early modern North Africa. It focuses on the continuing influence of what I call the “decline narrative” on both national historiographies and Western specialist studies. Elaborated in the context of French colonialism and consecrated by nationalist-cum-reformist discourses, the denunciation of the centuries preceding colonial conquest as an epoch of decadence has hardly been challenged. Beginning with the French historian and sociologist Jacques Berque (1910-95), however, there was a vivid interest amongst social scientists in early modern Islamic culture. The main part of the paper will be dedicated to a methodological analysis of some of these works, and, in the concluding section, I will discuss the degree to which the study of the diffusion of Islamic literacy in rural areas may serve as a starting point for a renewed approach to Islamic literature and its social foundations.1
“The Local History of Kababir in Haifa: Constructing a Narrative of Uniqueness”
By: Na’ama Ben Ze’ev
Abstract: The neighborhood of Kababir in Haifa is known as the center of the Ahmadiyya community in the Middle East. It was established in the nineteen century as a hamlet, and was later annexed to the municipality of Haifa. The article traces the history of Kababir since its establishment until 1964 and observes the accelerated transition from rural to urban life at the periphery of an expanding city. The story of Kababir thus illustrates one path to urbanism within Palestinian society. Based on local written and oral sources the article also shows the role of collective memory in interpreting past events and constructing cultural identity.
“Fiscal System and Private Interests in Portuguese Asia under the Habsburgs, 1580-1640”
By: Susana Münch Miranda
Abstract: By examining the main features of the fiscal system of Portuguese Asia and the private interests that clustered around it, this article contributes to the recent historiography on the pluralistic and negotiated dimensions of the colonial government. It argues that, in the context of the European power struggle that opposed the Dutch and the English against the Spanish Habsburgs, the financial needs of the Portuguese crown deepened pre-existing political and social arrangements, with the result that royal officials and colonial elites increasingly gained a role in imperial governance and in preserving the Portuguese empire in Asia. The alignment of interests here can be observed by looking at the extraordinary taxation introduced between 1617 and 1623, which provided added opportunities to co-opt local elites.
“The Use of Charity as a Means of Political Legitimation in Umayyad al-Andalus”
By: Ana María Carballeira Debasa
Abstract: The principal aim of this study is to examine the use of charity as a factor of political legitimation by the ruling elite of al-Andalus in the Umayyad period. Accordingly, it explores the degree to which charity was an instrument in the hands of the authorities, and the manner in which this strategy was decisive in the process of consolidating power. In a broader sense, this analysis enables us to deepen our knowledge of the political elite in al-Andalus and to elucidate how charitable attitudes reflected a particular conception of power.
“May my nose and ears be cut off: Practical and “supra-practical” Aspects of Mutilation in the Egyptian New Kingdom”
By: Alexandre Alexandrovich Loktionov
Abstract: This paper investigates mutilation of the nose and ears in New Kingdom Egypt (c. 1550-1070BCE). The topic is first contextualised within cross-cultural mutilation research, before discussion shifts to focus more closely on Egypt. The threat of mutilation in oaths is considered, as is the possibility of mutilation not being enforced if such oaths were broken. The paper then investigates the lived experience of mutilation, encompassing both physiological and social impairments. Finally, a ‘supra-practical’ aspect is proposed, considering the esoteric connotations of mutilation, this latter understood as a set of practices including but not confined to actual physical dismemberment.
“Of Production, Trade, Profit and Destruction: An Economic Interpretation of Sennacherib’s Third Campaign”
By: Caroline van der Brugge
Abstract: Sennacherib’s campaign to the southern Levant in 701 BC is an extensively studied episode in the Neo-Assyrian period. Nevertheless, despite the abundance of sources, the existing scholarship has left several questions unanswered. Furthermore, although economic growth is suggested to have been a motor behind Neo-Assyrian expansion, current interpretations of the campaign do not consider this to have been its main goal. This article will present an analysis focussing particularly on this economic motive, an analysis that requires an alternative interpretation of the Neo-Assyrian royal inscriptions. The outcome sheds a new light not only on Assyrian confrontations with Egypt in the late 8th-century BC southern Levant but also on Judah’s and Gaza’s roles in the events, revealing altogether a world of long-distance trade.
MELA Notes (Issue 90)
“Cooperating to Build a National Collection of Middle East”
By: William J. Kopycki, Ahmed Mostafa El-Sayed Mostafa
Abstract: Not available
“Crossing Boundaries with Arabic Collections Online”
By: Justin Parrott
Abstract: Not available
“The Role of Middle East Studies Librarians in Preserving Cultural Heritage Materials”
By: Laila Hussein Moustafa
Abstract: Not available
“The Knowledge Quarter: The British Library’s New Initiative of Partnership”
By: Walid Ghali
Abstract: Not available
Middle East Quarterly (Volume 24, Issues 1 & 2)
“Turkey’s Slide into Authoritarianism”
By: Burak Bekdil
Abstract: Not available
By: Richard Landes
Abstract: Not available
“Israeli Defense in the Age of Cyber War”
By: Gil Baram
Abstract: Not available
“Saudi Arabia’s Flawed ‘Vision 2030’”
By: Hilal Khashan
Abstract: Not available
“Smoking Out Islamists via Extreme Vetting”
By: Daniel Pipes
Abstract: Not available
“The Muslim Brotherhood, Fountain of Islamist Violence”
By: Cynthia Farahat
Abstract: Not available
“Is Jordan’s Muslim Brotherhood Still the Loyal Opposition?”
By: Nur Köprülü
Abstract: Not available
“Obama’s Legacy, a Nuclear Iran?”
By: Emily B. Landau
Abstract: Not available
Middle East Review of International Affairs (Volume 21, Issue 1)
“Balancing India’s Foreign Policy in the Regional Rivalry Between Iran and Israel”
By: Adarsh Aravind
Abstract: The challenge of balancing relations with both Iran and Israel has been a growing concern for New Delhi. Due to India’s rapid economic growth and increasing energy and defense needs, its ties with both Iran and Israel are essential. This article provides an overview of India’s relations with each country followed by a brief history of Iranian-Israeli relations. It then discusses prospects of cooperation for India with each. It is in India’s interest to reduce the conflict scenario between Iran and Israel so that it can continue to reap the benefits of cooperation from both.
“Israel’s Relations with the Syrian Rebels: An Assessment”
By: Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
Abstract: Editor’s Note: A number of articles have been published in recent weeks on the subject of Israel’s relations with the Syrian Arab rebels in the area east of Quneitra Crossing. Some of these articles have suffered from an absence of on the ground knowledge and sourcing. The Rubin Center is therefore proud to present this MERIA special report from Rubin Center Fellow Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi, which represents the most in-depth and serious study on this important issue to have appeared until now.
“The Role of Azerbaijan in Israel’s Alliance of Periphery”
By: Aynur Bashirova, Ahmet Sozen
Abstract: Established in the 1950s, Israel’s alliance of periphery is a loose partnership between Israel and states in the region surrounding those countries that have negative relations with the Jewish state. Over the years, different countries have been part of this alliance. The following article examines Azerbaijan’s role as a peripheral ally of Israel since the early 1990s in the regional, energy, and trade realms. The Republic of Azerbaijan could be considered the most trusted Muslim and peripheral partner of Israel.
“Journeys to Mosul”
By: Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
Abstract: This paper is based on reporting trips undertaken by the author in March and April 2017 to Mosul city in Iraq and some surrounding areas, in particular on the left bank of the Tigris River (i.e. east Mosul). These trips focused on the current situation in general as well as comparisons with life under the Islamic State. Based on the observations, broader and policy recommendations for the Mosul area are also put forward.
“Egypt Confronts Economic and Security Challenges as It Attempts to Regain Its Position in the Arab World”
By: Seth J. Frantzman
Abstract: Six years after protests toppled Husni Mubarak, Egypt is still struggling with the aftermath of the “Arab Spring” and the chaos it unleashed. The removal of the Muslim Brotherhood from power in 2013 and Abd al-Fatah al-Sisi’s ascension to the presidency is sometimes seen as returning Egypt to its pre-2011 political landscape. Egypt is continually wrestling with how to deal with the past as well as trying to cultivate stronger ties abroad. This includes strengthening work with the new U.S. administration under Trump, securing Sinai with Israel’s cooperation, and walking a fine line on Saudi Arabia, Iran, Syria, and Russian influence in the region. This article, based on a research trip to Egypt and discussions and interviews with Egyptian insiders from various fields, provides an overview of the challenges facing Cairo and how its elites hope to meet them.
“Perspectives on Turkey’s 2017 Presidential Referendum”
By: Odul Celep
Abstract: Until the 1980s, Turkey’s long-standing parliamentarism had precluded debates about presidentialism. In the following decade, the two right-wing presidents, Ozal and Demirel, briefly promoted presidentialism but failed to initiate a system change. However, the Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) 2002 electoral victory ushered in a new period; after over a decade of political dominance, the AKP, under President Erdogan, began pushing for radical and controversial constitutional changes. The April 16, 2017, constitutional referendum, proposed a new “partisan presidential system” with almost no separation of powers and without any checks and balances. The Nationalist Action Party (MHP), with a split and polarized base, initially objected to systemic constitutional changes, but later not only expressed support for them but became the key actor for the referendum. The entire process of the referendum seems to have produced a new cross-cutting cleavage in Turkish politics.
Middle Eastern Literatures (Volume 20, Issue 1)
“Modeling medieval world literature”
By: Suzanne Conklin Akbari
Abstract: This article describes three models for integrating the study of medieval texts within world literature. First, “Mediterraneans” point to sites where diverse cosmopolitan regional centers are connected by a sea. Second, “distant reading” is deployed in tracing literary forms and themes over long periods of time and across cultures within medieval literature. Third, and most extensively, a model based on “moving things” is developed to track the ways in which objects and persons are used in medieval texts to precipitate cultural and social change on a large scale. Following the traveling objects in The Canterbury Tales, The Book of John Mandeville, the Kebra Nagast, and the Travels of Ibn Battuta, the article presents new patterns of conceptualizing literary history.
“Translation in the pre-modern world”
By: Karla Mallette
Abstract: Translation occupies a central place in current theories of world literature, but it is not the only way in which texts circulate beyond their original cultural and temporal contexts to become world literature. This article explores the shifting relationship between language and territory, contrasting modern languages as territorially bound by the nation-state with pre-modern cosmopolitan languages that transcended territorial location. Drawing upon the complex translation process of the works of Aristotle from the Abbasid translation movement of the eighth through 10th centuries to the multiple print editions of competing translations of Aristotle’s works published in Venice in the 16th century, the article argues that world literature often results from the confluence of the broad reach of a cosmopolitan language and the mobility of translation.
“Archive of errors: Aḥmad Fāris al-Shidyāq, literature, and the world”
By: Rebecca Carol Johnson
Abstract: Using Aḥmad Fāris al-Shidyāq’s semi-autobiographical fictional travel narrative from 1855, this article critiques current world literature paradigms that see literary modernity as the entrance into world literary space’s zones of equivalence. Al-Shidyāq’s text, the article argues, encapsulates debates over the origins of Arabic literary modernity, but rejects both the notion that Arabic literary modernity is a European import and that it is product of a national literary past. Rather, in the author’s reading, al-Sāq represents a combative archive of influences and intertexts that is self-consciously multilinguistic and trans-imperial. Analyzing al-Sāq’s engagement with European texts, the article argues for the power of productive misreadings and corrections, as al-Shidyāq places errors at the centre of his comparative methodology. Reading al-Sāq as participating in and theorizing the nahḍah’s own transnational currents, the article argues that al-Shidyāq analyzes literary and linguistic relationships through an attention to error and unintelligibility, posing literary modernity itself as an error-prone aggregation of foreign and domestic forms, styles, and references. Through error, al-Shidyāq creates a mode of world literature in which Arabic literature is not merely the product of a vertical development, but rather is embedded in a larger network of transnational, horizontal associations.
“Multilateral Reception: Three Lessons from the Arab Hamlet Tradition”
By: Margaret Litvin
Abstract: Properly analyzing Shakespeare appropriations means asking exactly how international adapters have received their source texts. These complex reception histories matter whether one is analyzing an Arabic adaptation of an English play (mediated through Russian or French) or an English-to-English-through-English adaptation such as Harlem Duet, Black Canadian playwright Djanet Sears’s 1997 prequel to Othello. This article uses examples from two periods of the Egyptian Hamlet tradition (the earliest extant Arabic Hamlet, from 1901, and the period of Nasserist and post-Nasser political theatre, 1964–71) to show why artists’ global kaleidoscope of sources and models is both so important and so easy to overlook. The case of Harlem Duet demonstrates how this approach, developed in Arabic literary studies, can be fruitful for studying the circulation and transformation of world literary classics even within English-language literature.
“The Arab Oedipus: ancient categories, modern fiction”
By: Philip F. Kennedy
Abstract: This article examines the use of anagnorisis in five Arab adaptations of Oedipus Rex from the 1940s to the early 21st century. The article traces the progressive erosion of the force of anagnorisis in four of these plays—a reflection of a modernist and postmodernist move away from certainty, as well as the specific concerns of the Arab adaptors. The fifth play, Wajdi Mouawad’s Incendies/Scorched, is described as a return to the classical structure of anagnorisis with powerful effect. While this loose adaptation of Oedipus Rex explores universal themes, it is an undoubtedly Arab work and demonstrates that the role of anagnorisis is in large part culturally dependent on who or what we recognize.
“Locating Algerian literature in world literature”
By: Madeleine Dobie
Abstract: How do current theories of world literature construct their object and how do they map world literary space? This article examines these questions in light of the reception of “Global South” or “postcolonial” writers in theories of world literary culture, including those of Pascale Casanova, Fredric Jameson and Franco Moretti. Focusing on the case of Algeria, the article considers how several widely-shared narratives about world literary history have shaped the dynamics of critical reception. It also contends that narratives of world literature have tended to overemphasize the center–periphery divide, neglecting other geographies of production and circulation.
“Whitewashing Arabic for global consumption: translating race in The Story of Zahra”
By: Ghenwa Hayek
Abstract: This article argues that in reading comparatively the Arabic and English versions of Hanan al-Shaykh’s 1980 Ḥikāyat Zahra, a pattern of omitting race and racial language emerges in the English version, published in 1986. I use a close reading of the translation’s selective appropriation of the original’s racial and political language to argue for a more intersectional approach to Arabic women’s writing, even as I acknowledge the structural and institutional contexts and constraints under which they operate and circulate in the global market of “world literature.”
“Ghosts and doubles: Pamuk’s editors and translators”
By: Paulo Lemos Horta
Abstract: Taking Orhan Pamuk’s trajectory from an underground Turkish writer to a Nobel laureate as a case study, this article questions current narratives of the production of world literature that attribute agency to just a few central players in Paris and New York. It uncovers the role of a wide range of actors (including editors, publishers and translators) in establishing the distinctive “translatability” and “worldliness” of Pamuk’s writing. Contending that the 1990 publication of The White Castle represents Pamuk’s first breakthrough into global literary markets, the article demonstrates that Victoria Holbrook’s award-winning translation was in fact substantially rewritten, without reference to the original Turkish, by a junior editor at a small UK publishing house. English versions of Pamuk’s work in this early period typically enhance the worldly qualities of his prose by emphasizing parallels with, for example, the novels of Umberto Eco and Garcia-Marquez. The more unfamiliar a language is to publishing houses within global literary markets, this article argues, the more likely that editors and translators will shape the text’s entry into world literature.
Near Eastern Archaeology (Volume 80, Issue 1)
“Graphite-Treated Pottery in the Northeastern Mediterranean from the Chalcolithic to the Bronze Age”
By: Shannon Martino
Abstract: The practice of painting graphite onto pottery in southeast Europe began ca. 5000 B.C.E. The use of graphite as a slip on vessels from the Chalcolithic to the Bronze Age, however, has remained a side note in discussions of ancient pottery, and is often mistakenly identified. The author offers a synthesis of what we know about the presence of graphite on ceramics in the eastern Mediterranean from the Chalcolithic to the Early Bronze Age, and presents the results of a preliminary macroscopic and microscopic study of sherds from across the region. She places a special focus on the various ways in which graphite was incorporated into vessels, the technological complexities implied by the application of graphite to the surface of pottery, the ensuing difficulties in identification, and the need for further study and recognition of graphite application on pottery.
“Crossing Borders: Settlement Archaeology in Egypt and Sudan”
By: Julia Budka
Abstract: Some of the Egyptian New Kingdom towns in northern Sudan known today as Upper Nubia (Kush) are well preserved (e.g., Amara West and Sai) and offer the unique chance to conduct a detailed analysis of domestic life at the junction of Egyptian and Nubian culture. Based on the fresh data from AcrossBorders’ ongoing excavations on Sai Island, this article presents the current state of knowledge regarding the evolution of the Pharaonic town on Sai Island and its potential for settlement archaeology in New Kingdom Egypt and Kush. New evidence for a landing place in the early Eighteenth Dynasty as well as fresh information about the Thutmoside temple town is highlighted. Furthermore, AcrossBorders’ excavation results suggest that despite its urban planning as a royal foundation, the site of Sai illustrates dynamic aspects of Egyptian towns reflecting local microhistories and showing common deviations from what we usually consider as “standard types” in both architecture and material culture.
“Travel and Hospitality in Late Antiquity: A Case Study from Umm el-Jimal in Eastern Jordan”
By: Abdulla Al-Shorman, Abdelqader Ababneh, Akram Rawashdih, Ahmad Makhadmih, Saad Alsaad, Monther Jamhawi
Abstract: The legacy of travel and hospitality in Jordan extends back more than 1,700 years, as evidenced by the late-antique site of Umm el-Jimal. Travel and hospitality revolved around the axes of trade, and generated a suitable subsistence economy in an area with limited resources. Using architectural analysis, ethnography, and archaeological synthesis, the authors show that the city of Umm el-Jimal was built to serve the caravans on the route from Petra to Damascus. The architecture of its houses with courtyards was intended to offer accommodations to travelers. The infrastructure of the city, including its pioneering water system and general layout, contributed significantly to its success in the hospitality industry. The presence of eighteen churches in a very small area with an otherwise small population indicates their that they were used as well for visitors passing through.
“Egypt and Israel: The Never-Ending Story”
By: Shirly Ben-Dor Evian
Abstract: The significant interrelations between Egypt and Canaan during the Late Bronze Age are well known and have been studied in depth by various scholars. In comparison, the close ties between Egypt and Israel during the Iron Age are far less so. However, despite the Egyptian withdrawal from Canaan at the end of the Late Bronze Age, intense contact between the two regions never ceased, although their documentation in the historical record is scarce. This article presents the different manifestations of Egypto-Israelite interrelations that can be observed in the archaeological record of ancient Israel. Such a presentation will provide a better understanding of the relations between the two regions during the formative time in ancient Israel’s history.
“The Destruction of Archaeological Resources in the Palestinian Territories, Area C: Kafr Shiyān as a Case Study”
By: Salah Hussein A. Al-Houdalieh, Saleh Ali Tawafsha
Abstract: Many archaeological sites, both major and minor, situated in the Palestinian Territories, are suffering from an absence of meaningful control and protection. They are experiencing relentless destruction due to both modern urban development projects and illegal digging to extract marketable archaeological objects. In recent decades, this destruction of archaeological resources has entered an especially dangerous, sensitive, and complicated phase, as a large number of structures have been built on archaeological sites using heavy equipment that remove all cultural deposits down to bedrock, without any kind of archaeological documentation or supervision from institutions overseeing cultural heritage or urban-development planning. Khirbet Kafr Shiyān, which is land privately owned entirely by Palestinians yet under the sole administrative control of Israeli authorities, is a perfect example of this phenomenon. Over the last few decades it has suffered the complete destruction of approximately 42 percent of its cultural deposits. The authors provide an assessment of the recent destruction and offer suggestions critical for the protection of this and similar archaeological sites.
“The 2016 Dana Island Survey: Investigation of an Island Harbor in Ancient Rough Cilicia by the Boğsak Archaeological Survey”
By: Günder Varinlioğlu, Noah Kaye, Michael R. Jones, Rebecca Ingram, Nicholas K. Rauh
Abstract: Dana Island (ancient Pityoussa) is the largest island of the Taşucu Gulf in Rough Cilicia (Turkey). It is strategically located ca. 2.5 km off the shores of the rugged mainland along an ancient maritime route. In 2016, the island was the subject of investigations by the Boğsak Archaeological Survey (BOGA). The pedestrian, architectural, and shoreline survey revealed a lower settlement along the northwestern shore and an upper settlement associated with a fortress on the south summit. The ceramic assemblage and the architectural remains in the lower settlement indicate that it was built in the Early Roman period and reached its largest extent in late antiquity, when four basilical churches were constructed. As such, it likely functioned as a maritime station offering various services to travelers. The fortress on the southern summit of the island, which has a much earlier history, was refurbished in late antiquity and received a basilical church.
Polity (Volume 49, Issue 2)
“Scared into Demanding Action: The Effects of the Perceived Threat from Terrorism on Policy Salience”
By: Thomas M. Dolan, Nathan Ilderton
Abstract: What makes ordinary people demand that politicians address international terrorism? Using a cross-national survey, this article investigates the causes of terrorism policy salience in thirteen countries. Consistent with arguments that terrorists try to coerce governments by signaling to their residents that they are vulnerable to attack, we find that perceived personal threat from terrorism is a powerful and consistent predictor that survey respondents will make terrorism their first policy priority. Other variables, including age, ideology, gender, education, identification with terror victims, and military assertiveness, have more mixed relationships with policy salience.
“Military Commissions and the War on Terror: A Separation of Powers Tug-of-War”
By: Gregory Burnep
Abstract: Much of the literature on the war on terror overstates the power of the presidency and overlooks the respective roles of Congress, the courts, and the bureaucracy. The creation and development of military commissions in the war on terror demonstrates that our system of separation of powers and checks and balances has in fact worked in complex and surprising ways to constrain the presidency during wartime, with consequences both positive and negative. In this article, two insights loom largest. First, internal executive branch divisions often interact with the separation of powers in ways that limit presidential dominance. Second, national security policy is now a heavily legalized area, with important consequences for the separation of powers.
Progress in Development Studies (Volume 17, Issue 1)
“The long and the short of policy pantomime in Afghanistan”
By: Peter Blunt, Farid Mamundzay, Muqtader Nasary
Abstract: What roles do policies and policymaking play in the governance of the Afghan state? And what determines policy approval by cabinet? Based on the analysis of two subnational governance policies, this article concludes, first, that policy approval depends on the strength of political sponsorship, particularly personal relations with the president, and presidential political control, rather than the intrinsic merits of policy; and second, that policies and policymaking constitute pantomime-like behaviour designed to create an impression of developmental governance that conceals the realization of demand- and supply-side vested interests. Nevertheless, establishing the necessary (technical) conditions for good policy that can be utilized when sufficient (political) conditions are present is deemed worthwhile. And, although time is running out for constructive change in Afghanistan, to the extent that exposure of the incompetence, opportunism, hubris and mendacity of power makes policy pantomime and its tragic consequences less likely, so too are critiques like this.
Review of Radical Political Economics (Volume 49, Issue 1)
“On the Possibility of a ‘Soviet of Technicians’”
By: Ahmet Öncü
Abstract: Contrary to his theoretical expectations, Veblen provided various reasons as to why a revolutionary overturn by the technicians was a remote possibility in America. In contrast to the American engineers, the engineers of Turkey have constructed an engineering outlook commensurate with Veblen’s abstract line of reasoning and participated in a political struggle against business interests. In this paper, using Veblen’s cumulative causation methodology, a theoretical answer for the origin, growth, persistence, and variation of the anti-business engineering outlook in Turkey is suggested.
Security Studies (Volume 26, Issue 1)
“From Israel with Deterrence: Strategic Culture, Intra-war Coercion and Brute Force”
By: Dmitry (Dima) Adamsky
Abstract: This study contributes to the debate on the role of nonnuclear (conventional) deterrence in international security by examining the Israeli practice of this strategy. By analyzing a case outside of Western strategic thought, which traditionally has dominated deterrence theory, it demonstrates how strategic thinking evolves differently in various ideational realms. The article highlights the impact of strategic culture on the Israeli conceptualization of deterrence, explores its deficits, and yields lessons for theoreticians and practitioners from the challenges of intra-war coercion operations. The study introduces the innovative term “culminating point of deterrence,” calls for improving analytical techniques for deterrence evaluation, claims that successful conventional deterrence perpetuates political conflict, stimulates the adversary’s dangerous innovations, and argues for a tailored approach not only for formulating deterrence strategy, but also for exploring deterrence policies of different actors. The findings of the study are applicable beyond the Israeli case and are relevant to actors utilizing coercion strategies.
Studies in Conflict & Terrorism (Volume 40, Issues 1-5)
“’Electronic Jihad’: The Internet as Al Qaeda’s Catalyst for Global Terror”
By: Martin Rudner
Abstract: The Internet has emerged as a key technology for Al Qaeda and other jihadistmovements waging their so-called electronic jihad across the Middle East and globally, with digital multiplier effects. This study will examine the evolving doctrine of “electronic jihad” and its impact on the radicalization of Muslims in Western diaspora communities The study describes Internet-based websites that served as online libraries and repositories for jihadist literature, as platforms for extremist preachers and as forums for radical discourse. Furthermore, the study will then detail how Internet connectivity has come to play a more direct operational role for jihadi terrorist-related purposes, most notably for inciting prospective cadres to action; for recruiting jihadist operatives and fighters; for providing virtual training in tactical methods and manufacture of explosives; for terrorism financing; and for actual planning and preparations for specific terror attacks. Whereas contemporary jihadist militants may be shifting from the World Wide Web to social media, such as Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter for messaging and communications, nevertheless the Internet-based electronic jihad remains a significant catalyst for promoting jihadist activism and for facilitating terrorist operations.
“#Westgate: A Case Study: How al-Shabaab used Twitter during an Ongoing Attack”
By: David Mair
Abstract: During the Westgate terrorist attack of 2013, al-Shabaab used Twitter to claim responsibility for and live tweet throughout the attack. This article analyzes 556 of these tweets to understand the motivations for using Twitter during ongoing terrorist operations and builds up a picture of how al-Shabaab interacted with Twitter throughout the Westgate attack. Conclusions arising from the analysis include that al-Shabaab were primarily concerned with controlling the narrative of the attack and retaining an audience. In addition, the tweets were aimed at a specific geographical audience, indicating that the Westgate attack was primarily motivated by territorial concerns.
“The Call to Jihad: Charismatic Preachers and the Internet”
By: Angela Gendron
Abstract: A range of psychological, social, and environmental factors render some individuals more susceptible to militant Islam than others. Research also suggests that there are certain “triggers,” which help to explain why it is that only some individuals exposed to the same societal structural influences turn to violence. This article seeks to contribute to future empirical research in this area by studying the significance of certain “charismatic” preachers in this process and examining the role the Internet plays in strengthening the charismatic bond. Difficulties in defining and measuring “charisma” may help in part to explain the paucity of research on this aspect of radicalization but since charismatic authority derives from the bond between preacher and follower, an examination of the activities, strategies, and techniques used to build relationships and win adherents to Salafi-jihadism may provide valuable insights for countering radicalization.
“Brothers, Believers, Brave Mujahideen: Focusing Attention on the Audience of Violent Jihadist Preachers”
By: Anne Aly
Abstract: The exponential growth in the use of the Internet and social media by terrorist actors and violent extremists has generated research interest into terrorism and the Internet. Much of this research is focused on the kinds of messages being spread via the various media platforms that host violent extremist content. This research has yielded significant insights into how organizations such as Al Qaeda and Islamic State craft their messages, the mediums they use to disseminate their messages, and the ways in which they reach their audiences. Yet we are still no closer to understanding why certain messaging appeals to certain people in certain ways and not to others. Within the literature on terrorism and the Internet, the audience—those individuals who receive messages, make meaning from them and then decide whether to act on them—is conspicuously missing. As a result, research into terrorism and the Internet can only hypothesize about the nature and extent of influence that terrorist messages wield. It is often based on an assumption that the violent extremist narrative works like a magic bullet to radicalize audiences already vulnerable and predisposed to becoming violent. Utilizing media theory approaches to studying the audience as an active agent in meaning-making, this article proposes a research framework for developing the current focus on terrorism and the Internet.
“Framing through Paradox: Egypt and the “Obama Supports Terrorism” Campaign”
By: Marco Pinfari
Abstract: This article presents and analyzes the “Obama supports terrorism” campaign, which was launched in Egypt in late June 2013 and was instrumental to the framing of some Islamist groups as terrorist both before and after the 3 July 2013 coup. The analysis of the visual material of the campaign highlights its reliance on various Western discourses from the War on Terror, including some whose religious and racial content is an odd fit for a non-Western, Muslim country like Egypt. Yet, despite the lack of a clear and unified causal narrative to justify such framing, the success of the campaign was crucially aided by the symbolic and rhetorical power its slogan, which provided a credible “schema of interpretation” for its supporters.
“What Does Dabiq Do? ISIS Hermeneutics and Organizational Fractures within Dabiq Magazine”
By: Brandon Colas
Abstract: The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS)’s flagship English-language magazine, Dabiq, is a puzzle. The magazine is not, despite appearances, primarily designed for direct recruiting efforts or inciting violence against the West. In fact, the primary audiences of Dabiq are English-speaking second generation Muslims or converts, Western policymakers, and a third group of current or would-be members of ISIS who are not integrating with the organization itself. The third audience—those members who are failing to function within the organization—is strange to include in an English-language magazine. Why publish organizational weaknesses, in English? One possibility for this puzzle is that the fundamentalist hermeneutics of ISIS is reflected in their own media efforts. One of the assumptions that ISIS holds about their sacred texts is that each text carries a single meaning that reflects the author’s original intent. There might be multiple applications of that intent, but each text can only have one intent, and therefore one meaning. Following this logic, a message meant for one person is unlikely to be of utility for another, and so this may be why ISIS exposes their weaknesses as part of the process of correcting their own members.
“Talking to Foreign Fighters: Insights into the Motivations for Hijrah to Syria and Iraq”
By: Lorne L. Dawson, Amarnath Amarasingam
Abstract: Little of the discussion of foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq is informed by primary data derived from talking with the foreign fighters. This article reports some initial findings from interviews with twenty foreign fighters in Syria. The findings are compared with three other recent studies of European foreign fighters, and aspiring fighters, based on some primary data. While those studies emphasize the role of low social and economic prospects in motivating the choice to go, this study found little evidence of such factors, and alternatively argues more attention should be given to existential concerns and the role of religiosity. Consideration is also given to the methodological challenges posed by using of terrorists’ accounts of their motivations.
“Yemen: Between Revolution and Regression”
By: Brian M. Perkins
Abstract: Yemen once again descended into chaos in November 2014, when the Houthis seized control of Sana’a. Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Cooperation Council partners, along with mainstream media, characterized the conflict as a sectarian proxy-war with Iran. However, this narrative fails to acknowledge the trajectory of Yemen’s Arab Spring revolt. This article refutes this narrative by using theories of revolution to connect the Arab Spring revolt to the current conflict. Situating Yemen within a broader revolutionary moment sheds light on patterns of revolution in Third World societies and the likely outcome of the current conflict.
“An Analysis of Inspire and Dabiq: Lessons from AQAP and Islamic State’s Propaganda War”
By: Haroro J. Ingram
Abstract: This study analyzes how Inspire and Dabiq seek to appeal to and radicalize English-speaking Muslims. It examines how each magazine strategically designs ingroup, Other, crisis, and solution constructs and interplays these via value-, dichotomy-, and crisis-reinforcing narratives. This analysis also explores how narrative, imagery, and counternarrative messaging are used to shape readers’ perceptions and polarize their support. While both magazines are dominated by narratives designed to empower readers toward action, Inspire relies heavily on identity-choice appeals while Dabiq tends to balance identity- and rational-choice messaging. This study concludes by identifying key lessons for counterterrorism strategic communications campaign and message design.
Terrorism and Political Violence (Volume 29, Issues 1-3)
“Hurdles to International Terrorist Alliances: Lessons From Al Qaeda’s Experience”
By: Tricia Bacon
Abstract: Despite the threat posed by international terrorist alliances, the conditions that foster and inhibit these relationships remain poorly understood. When seeking allies outside of their primary conflict and political market, groups struggle to forge credible commitments, particularly the requisite ‘shadows of the future’ and reputations conducive to cooperation, without third-party enforcers. Given their suspicious nature and strong in-group identities, terrorist groups sometimes balk at relinquishing independence for security. Alliances risk precipitating counterterrorism pressure, alienating constituents, and increasing the risk of betrayal. Even groups that enjoy alliance success, like Al Qaeda, experience these hurdles in their alliance. What helped to set Al Qaeda apart from most groups was its ability to navigate these obstacles, though some bedeviled its alliances efforts. This offers under-utilized opportunities for alliance disruption.
“Abd-el-Krim al-Khattabi: The Unknown Mentor of Che Guevara”
By: Mevliyar Er
Abstract: Abd-el-Krim al-Khattabi’s guerilla tactics are said to have influenced several renowned revolutionaries, such as Ho Chi Minh and Mao Zedong. There is evidence that Che Guevara equally employed at least some of the tactics and methods, which were devised by the Rifis. After all, Alberto Bayo, the much respected guerilla trainer of Che, had fought during his military career for a relatively long period of time against the Rifis. Castro, yet another role model for Che, mentions in his biography that he read about the battle of Annual, one of the most successful attacks against the Spanish initiated by Abd-el-Krim in 1921. There are also claims that Che had met Abd-el-Krim in 1959 in Cairo. Castro does not mention that he had discussed with Che anything about his readings on the Rif War, but he clearly states that Bayo used to teach in his camp guerilla methods that he had encountered during his assignments in Morocco. However, neither Bayo nor Che (or their biographers) mention that any of the tactics imparted during the training were from the time of Abd-el-Krim’s struggle. The only person praised by both men is the Nicaraguan rebel leader Augusto César Sandino. This article compares the tactical teachings of Bayo as well as the operational methods used by Che during his battles in Cuba with the methods applied by the Rifis under Abd-el-Krim’s leadership, and highlights a number of tactical similarities. It also finds that the guerilla tactics applied by Sandino have little in common with the methods described by Bayo.
“Confrontations on the Issue of Terrorism Between Iran and the U.S. after 1979”
By: Zhen Jiang
Abstract: The issue of terrorism has been a significant source of influence on the relationship between Iran and the U.S. since the Islamic Revolution. Iran’s friendship with extremist groups that are designated as terrorist groups by the U.S. State Department is seriously challenging America’s foreign policy. This article attempts to explore the prospect of confrontations on the issue of terrorism between Iran and the U.S. through a detailed analysis of their different interpretations and mutual recognitions of terrorism and through an in-depth analysis of the measures each party has taken regarding this confrontation. This article argues that the confrontation between Iran and the U.S. regarding the issue of terrorism is not strictly about terrorism. Rather, it is also about the conflicts of policies that result from different security interests and political values. Resolving the issue of terrorism depends on the reconciliation of the relationship between Iran and the U.S. Without mutual trust between the two nations, Iran will continue to support extremist groups in order to increase its influence against the external and internal pressures it is currently under, and the U.S. will continue to contain Iran’s regional ambitions and seek changes in its behavior.
“Israel’s Counter-Terrorism Policy: How Effective?”
By: Charles David Freilich
Abstract: The percentage of Israelis killed by terrorism is higher than in any other democracy. The article analyzes the threats Israel has faced, the impact terrorism has had on Israel, and the counter-terrorism policies Israel has adopted. Terrorism has had a decisive effect on Israeli elections and national security decisions, but not the economy. Israeli counter-terrorism has often been conducted without a coherent overall policy, has failed to reflect and conflicted with broader objectives, and has greatly undermined Israel’s international standing. Conversely, it has enabled Israel to live in relative security and thrive, and provided its leaders with the latitude to pursue various policies, including peace, should they wish to do so.
“How Muslim Defenders Became ‘Blood Spilling’ Crusaders: Adam Gadahn’s Critique of the ‘Jihadist’ Subversion of Al Qaeda’s Media Warfare Strategy”
By: Paul Kamolnick
Abstract: Adam Gadahn’s Abbottabad letter offers a rare opportunity to examine how this Al Qaeda Senior Leadership (AQSL) media operative and spokesman conceptualizes and executes media warfare. In this article, I first introduce, depict, and employ the author’s Terrorist Quadrangle Analysis (TQA) as a useful heuristic for conceptualizing and representing the four interrelated components of the AQSL terrorist enterprise: political objectives, media warfare, terrorist attacks, and strategic objectives. This TQA construct is then employed to conceptualize Gadahn’s media warfare acumen. Gadahn is shown to be an adept communications warfare operative who conscientiously disaggregates and evaluates key target audiences, messengers, messaging, and media. Gadahn’s vehement critique of select “jihadi” groups, in particular Tehrik-i-Taliban (TTP), al-Shabaab, and the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), is then described. Key here is how and why Gadahn denounces their indiscriminate, murderous terrorist attacks on Muslim non-combatant civilians and other protected persons as effectively subverting his intended AQSL media warfare strategy and undermining AQSL strategic and religio-political objectives. A concluding section briefly summarizes these chief findings, offers select implications for scholarship and counter-AQSL messaging strategy, and identifies study limitations.
“Predicting Revolt: Fragility Indexes and the Level of Violence and Instability in the Arab Spring”
By: Kevin Neil Buterbaugh, Costel Calin, Theresa Marchant-Shapiro
Abstract: This article is one of the first to systematically assess the ability of state fragility measures to predict violent protests and adverse regime changes in countries. We focus on the Arab Spring as an example of a situation that such measures ought to predict. Through a variety of analyses, we find that none of the measures are predictive. We then create a simple model using the literature of protest and revolts to predict both the level of violence and the extent of regime change in the Arab Spring countries. This simpler model does a better job of predicting the level of involvement in the Arab Spring than any of the complex State Fragility Indexes. Thus, the goal of this article is not to explain the causes of the Arab Spring, but to add to the discussion of the predictive value of measures of instability.
The Dialogue (Volume 12, Issue 1)
“Redress of Public Grievances in the Umayyad & Abbasid Era”
By: Ziaullah Rahmani
Abstract: In the contemporary world, the redress of public grievances has a central place in the states ‘administrative system simultaneously with the formal judicial systems. The prime example is the institution of the Ombudsman that exists in almost all countries of the world. The current article presents a glimpse of this system in a particular period of the Islamic history when the political institutions of the Muslims were in the early stages of evolution although sound foundations had been laid down by the Prophet Muhammad (S. A. W) and his Rightly Guided Caliphs. This submission shows that the Muslim rulers were quite conscious of the need of dispensing justice not only through the formal judicial systems but also sometimes through informal and speedy intervention to ensure that the abuse of power and authority is timely checked. These interventions gradually led towards having an institution for this purpose that was ultimately called ‘Wilayat al Mazalim’ (The Department of Grievance Redress). The article is restricted to the rule of two dynasties as the periods before and after, required separate inquiry and presentation that has been done in other articles.
“The National Security Policy Paradox in Pakistan: Strategic Constraints, Ramifications and Policy Recommendations”
By: Amir Ullah Khan, Zafar Nawaz Jaspal, Samina Yasmin
Abstract: The people of Pakistan have always faced with the paradoxical national security policy. It has also remained a mind boggling for the security policy makers in Pakistan. They have failed to engineer a unanimously accepted national security policy so as to establish a balance between the security of Pakistan and security of its citizens. While framing security policy the strategists in different eras have underestimated the balance between the external and internal security threats to Pakistan and its citizens. Extremism in shaping security policy in either form is dangerous for the solidarity and survival of the nation. The recent establishment of military courts under 21 st Constitutional amendment and accentuation on external security has severe futuristic repercussions. Instead of relying on one extreme form or the other form of security, the government with the consensus of all political and constitutional institutions needs to designs a balanced national security doctrine to ensure both the security of the country and its citizens as well.
“Capacity Building Initiatives for Hearing– Impaired Children’s Education in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan”
By: Rukhshanda Mushtaq, Amjad Reba
Abstract: The current study was designed to investigate the capacity building initiatives for hearing–impaired children education of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The objectives of the study were to identify the perceptions of teachers and hearing–impaired students, regarding their capacity building initiatives taken by different hearing–impaired schools, the problems they faced in their education, presented suggestions and recommendation for the improvement of their education. The descriptive research design was adopted to conduct the study. A close ended questionnaire with five point Likert scale was used for data collection from 52 hearing–impaired students’ (36 male and 16 female) and 12 teachers (6 male and female each), and was analyzed using SPSS. The results reveal that various services and facilities are provided free in hearing–impaired schools, but are not up to the mark, outdated curriculum, missing assistive aids, no teachers training trend, lack of teachers and supporting staff in all schools. In the light of the results, it was recommended that modification in the curriculum is the need of the day, launch teachers training modules after equal intervals of time, fill up all vacant posts of the teachers and supporting staff in the schools, initiate an awareness campaign on to create awareness in people about hearing impaired children education.
“Relationship among Students’ Academic Achievement, Students’ Evaluation of Teacher and Students’ Evaluation of Course”
By: Muhammad Sarwar, Mehwish Dildar, Ashfaque Ahmad Shah, Shafqat Hussain
Abstract: The effect of achievement on teachers and course evaluation has been topic of concern for faculty members in Pakistan after introduction of mandatory teachers and course evaluations as a measure of quality enhancement. The existing studies about the effect of achievement on the evaluation of teacher and course were marred by the inability to control the ability level of students. The low and high achievers may have different personalities and ability levels. The present study tried to overcome this difficulty by getting the data from the same students with respect to their achievement level. So, in this study low and high achievers were same persons hence ability level has been controlled. The present study intends to explore the relationship among students’ perceptions of course and teacher and achievement at higher level. The sample of the study was 157 students of public universities randomly selected by keeping in view the variation of subject, gender, and program. The questionnaires developed by higher education commission of Pakistan for teacher and course evaluations were used in the study. The analysis of the data revealed that the students gave credit of high achievement to teacher and course while blamed the subject and teacher for low achievement. The study has implications for teachers and management for improving their teaching and rearrangement of course contents for effective teaching.
“The Effect of Foreign Direct Investment in Postal and Courier Services on the Economic Growth of Pakistan”
By: Muhammad Tariq, Shahid Jan, Fazli Qadir, Irfan Ullah
Abstract: Previous studies were limited to analyze the relationship between foreign direct investment and economic growth of Pakistan. The present study is making addition to the literature by analyzing the relationship foreign direct investment inflows in the Postal and Courier Services and economic growth of Pakistan. The time period of the study is from 2005 to 2015. Ordinary least squares, Granger Causality test and Vector Auto regression has been applied for estimating the study results. The main findings of the study show that foreign direct investment inflows in the postal and courier services put a positive and significant and positive impact on the economic growth of Pakistan. The Granger Causality test shows a one directional relationship between the foreign direct investment inflows in postal and courier and economic growth. The VAR test results also supported the overall results. These findings show that foreign direct investment in postal and courier services is also an important indicator of the economic growth of Pakistan.
“Representation of the Afghan National Identity in Hosseini’s A Thousand Splendid Suns”
By: Rab Nawaz Khan
Abstract: The current study explores and evaluates the discursive representation of the Afghan national identity in Khaled Hosseini’s (2009) novel: A Thousand Splendid Suns. It also seeks to address how the novelist represents the Afghan nation in his work. The selected data is analysed from critical discourse studies perspective, and Fairclough’s (1989) dialecticalrelational approach to critical discourse analysis, especially description stage of his model regarding text/textual analysis, is applied for the analysis of the selected discourses on the Afghan national identity. The study concludes that the novelist as an Afghan-born American has associated various virtues and vices to the Afghans, such as pride, firmness, valour, fearlessness, hospitality, honour, dare/venture, challenge, help, slight recklessness, patriotism, rapid acquaintance-making, loyalty, love, care, courage, cultural richness, loud talking, independence-loving, exaggeration, defending nature, freedomfighting, melancholy, war-affectedness and double standard of the Afghan men. However, racism, ethnic nationalism, gender and ethnic discrimination have been associated with the Afghans like the Taliban and the tribal and traditionalist Pashtuns. The novelist’s representation of the Taliban and the tribal and traditionalist Pashtuns as racist and ethnic nationalist is exaggeratory, biased and political because ground reality, geopolitical and the socio-political history of Afghanistan manifest that the racial and ethnic prejudice, discrimination and inequality always circulate in almost all the Afghan ethnic groups with varying degrees.
“Metathesis in Balochi”
By: Hameed Baloch, Nasir Abbas Syed, Gul Hasan
Abstract: This paper aims to find out phonological complications in Balochi relevant to metathesis. Data for the research have been collected from daily conversation, books and Balochi dictionaries and have been analyzed through Feature Geometry. This study identifies CC (consonant – consonant) metathesis. It highlights the behavior of different phonemes that causes metathesis to occur. Phonemes with weaker acoustic cues and those with strong acoustic signals compete with each other for a better position in a syllable. The clusters that are not accepted by the language grammar adopt a reverse sequence through this process. In addition, stress and onset requirement also are factors that play significant role in metathesis in Balochi.
Washington Quarterly (Volume 40, Issues 1 & 2)
“Political Rationality in Iranian Foreign Policy”
By: Kayhan Barzegar, Abdolrasool Divsallar
Abstract: Not available
“Fight or Flight: How to Avoid a Forever War against Jihadists”
By: Daniel Byman, Will McCants
Abstract: Not available
“The Israeli Odyssey toward its National Cyber Security Strategy”
By: Dmitry (Dima) Adamsky
Abstract: Not available
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