Shashank Joshi

  • There can be few international summits in history where expectations have been as remarkably low as those for this week’s Syrian peace conference in the Swiss town of Montreux. The purpose of the conference, colloquially known as Geneva II, is to establish a transitional government of ...

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  • Shashank JoshiSyrian President Bashar al-Assad looks to be on the ropes. A countrywide uprising against his rule began in March, but it seemed manageable. Assad himself was seen as a reformist hemmed in by hardliners. In April, US Senator John Kerry called him “a man who understood the ...

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  • This year, the certitudes of the old Middle East dissolved with unseemly haste. A regional order frozen in place since the death of Egypt’s Colonel Nasser 40 years ago finally thawed. It produced a torrent of uprisings, coups, standoffs, civil wars, and an orgy of state-sponsored ...

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  • If you were watching Iraqi television early on Monday evening, you would have missed the end of the Iraq war. There were no live shots of the last US soldier crossing into Kuwait. No anguished chat show discussions about whether the war was worth it. Instead, there was some particularly dramatic ...

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  • If you watch one of Anwar al-Awlakis hundreds of YouTube videos, the first thing that strikes you is the American accent in which he delivers his exhortations to fight, a residue of his childhood in New Mexico. But its misleading. Awlaki spent his teens, and his final and most influential years, in ...

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  • Earlier this month, India's representative to the UN stood up at a conference and declared that if Syria changed Article 8 of its constitution which enshrines the supremacy of the Baath Party then that would be reform enough. The families of the thousands who have been murdered and tortured are ...

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  • The assassination of Burhanuddin Rabbani, a former Afghan president, who was trying to woo the Taliban makes peace talks even less likely. If Natos strategy in Afghanistan seems familiar, that may be because it increasingly seems borrowed from the Black Knight of Monty Python fame, who, after ...

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