The Middle East Journal

The Middle East Institute has published The Middle East Journal quarterly since 1947. The Journal provides original and objective research and analysis, as well as source material, on the area from Morocco to Pakistan and including Central Asia. The Journal provides the background necessary for an understanding and appreciation of the region's political and economic development, cultural heritage, ethnic and religious diversity. Become a member and receive a complimentary individual subscription. Or subscribe to the MEJ for your institution. Each issue of The Middle East Journal includes: * Articles written by renowned scholars, foreign policy analysts and area experts. Each article offers unique insights invaluable to the scholar and lay reader alike. * A Chronology maintained continuously since 1947. Organized by subject and country, the chronology is a reference source without rival. * Book Reviews that are among the most respected, comprehensive, and up-to-date in the field of Middle Eastern studies. Full-length reviews, as well as annotations of recent publications, permit the serious reader to keep abreast of current literature on the area. Every subscriber to the Journal receives complimentary access to the electronic version of the Journal. This fully searchable, downloadable version includes access back through 2004

Articles from Vol. 69, No. 4, Autumn

Anonymous Soldiers: The Struggle for Israel, 1917-1947
ISRAEL Anonymous Soldiers: The Struggle for Israel, 1917-1947, by Bruce Hoffman. New York: Alfred A. Knopf 2015, 618 pages. $35.Bruce Hoffman's book about Jewish terrorism against the British Mandate in Palestine concludes that terrorism was an effective...
At the Borders of Public and Private: The Oturmalar of Kayseri
This article examines the political implications of the vibrant social life of the city of Kayseri in Turkey. By using qualitative data collected by participant observations and in-depth interviews, we discuss the traditional form of gatherings called...
Breaking Faith: A Novel of Espionage and an American's Crisis of Conscience in Pakistan
PAKISTAN Breaking Faith: A Novel of Espionage and an American's Crisis of Conscience in Pakistan, by Graham E. Fuller. Bozorg Press, 2015. 484 pages. $18.95 paper.Reviewed by Marvin and Francine WeinbaumA successful political novel seamlessly intertwines...
British Imperialism and 'The Tribal Question': Desert Administration and Nomadic Societies in the Middle East, 1919-1936
In this interesting, thoroughly researched, and very thought-provoking book, Robert Fletcher explores the phenomenon of "'the Tribal Question': an empire-wide debate over the nature of nomadism, the future of arid environments, and the challenges both...
Captive Society: The Basij Militia and Social Control
IRAN Captive Society: The Basij Militia and Social Control, by Saeid Golkar. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2015. 289 pages. $60.Much has been written about revolutionary Iran. However, precious little scholarly work has been done on the Islamic...
Chronology: Afghanistan
See also Libya, PakistanApr. 18: A suicide bomb attack outside of a Jalalabad bank killed 33 civilians and wounded over 100. Many government workers were lined up outside the bank to collect salaries. The Taliban denied responsibility for the attack,...
Chronology: Algeria
See also Libya, TunisiaMay 7: A court handed down 14 jail sentences in addition to fining seven foreign companies in the conclusion of a high-profile corruption case. The case addressed allegations of corruption, money laundering, and embezzlement of...
Chronology: Arab-Israeli Conflict
ABBREVIATIONSAFP, Agence France-PresseAJE, Al Jazeera EnglishAP, The Associated PressBBCCNNDawnDS, Daily Star (Lebanon)The GuardianHaaretzLA TimesNYT, The New York TimesRFE/RL, Radio Free Europe/Radio LibertyReutersVOA, Voice of AmericaWP, The Washington...
Chronology: Central Asia and the Caucasus
Apr. 16: The Baku Court on Grave Crimes sentenced human rights worker Rasul Jafarov to six and a half years in prison. The Azerbaijan court found Cafarov guilty on multiple counts of tax evasion, which were charges that Jafarov and his lawyers said were...
Chronology: Egypt
See also Arab-Israeli Conflict, LibyaApr. 19: Eleven soccer fans were sentenced to death for their role in the deaths of 74 people in a riot at a soccer stadium in Port Sa'id in 2012. The sentence was the result of a retrial, held after an appeals court...
Chronology: Iran
See also Bahrain, Syria, YemenApr. 20: A Washington Post reporter who had been in Iranian prison since July 22, 2014, was finally charged with a crime. Jason Rezaian was charged with espionage, a claim his lawyers denied. Rezaian had been the Post's...
Chronology: Iraq
See also Afghanistan, Bahrain, Egypt, Israel, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco and Western Sahara, Palestinian Territories, Saudi Arabia, Syria, YemenApr. 17: The governor of Salah al-Din Governorate announced the death of 'Izzat Ibrahim al-Duri,...
Chronology: Israel
See also Arab-Israeli Conflict, Egypt, Iran, Palestinian TerritoriesMay 3: Fifty-three Israeli police officers and 12 protesters were injured when protests by Ethiopian-Israelis and their supporters against police brutality and harassment in Tel Aviv...
Chronology: Lebanon
See also SyriaApr. 24: The Shi'a militia Hizbullah built a runway in the northern Biqa' Valley designed for its fleet of unmanned aerial vehicles. The airstrip was built about six miles south of the town of Hermel. [JP, 4/24]May 5: Hizbullah fighters...
Chronology: Libya
See also TunisiaApr. 19: Tripolitania Province of the Islamic State, an affiliate of the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) released a video reportedly showing its fighters executing 30 Ethiopian Christians, some by beheading and others by shooting,...
Chronology: Pakistan
See also Afghanistan, MauritaniaApr. 21: Chinese president Xi Jinping visited Islamabad, spoke to the National Assembly, and unveiled his plan for $46 billion of investment in Pakistan's infrastructure and energy resources. In a meeting with Pakistani...
Chronology: Saudi Arabia
Apr. 28: Authorities arrested 93 people suspected of belonging to the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), 77 of whom were Saudi nationals. The group also included two people who planned a failed suicide car bombing of the United States embassy...
Chronology: Syria
Apr. 16: Dr. Mohamed Tennari, who ran the hospital in the town of Sarmin, presented the UN Security Council with video taken at his hospital during the alleged chlorine gas attack on Sarmin in March. The video showed the victims of the attack, mostly...
Chronology: Tunisia
Apr. 18: Interior Minister Najem Gharsalli claimed that the government had prevented nearly 12,500 jihadis from leaving the country in the past two years. Gharsalli also claimed that 1,000 people had been brought to courts in 2015 on charges of terrorism...
Chronology: Yemen
See also Oman, Saudi ArabiaApr. 16: Jamal Benomar resigned after over two years of serving as United Nations special envoy to Yemen. Benomar's resignation came amid accusations from Gulf countries that Huthi leaders had fooled Benomar with false peace...
Civil Uprisings in Modern Sudan: The 'Khartoum Springs' of 1964 and 1985
SUDAN Civil Uprisings in Modern Sudan: The 'Khartoum Springs' of 1964 and 1985, by W. J. Berridge. London: Bloomsbury, 2015. 304 pages. $112.Reviewed by John O. VollThe overthrow of an authoritarian military regime by civilian opposition activists is...
Editor's Note
Much has happened in Egypt since the revolutionary fervor of January and February, 2011. The turbulence of the years that followed has produced controversy and division. But with the passage of time it is also becoming possible for scholarship to shed...
Egypt in the Future Tense: Hope, Frustration, and Ambivalence before and after 2011
EGYPT Egypt in the Future Tense: Hope, Frustration, and Ambivalence before and after 2011, by Samuli Schielke. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2015. 260 pages. $30 paper.Reviewed by Nermeen MouftahIn addition to producing fine-grained empirical...
Islamic Women's Groups and the Quest for Political Representation in Turkey and Iran
This article presents Islamic women's framing processes in their campaigns to address women's political underrepresentation in Iran and Turkey. It argues that while Turkish women justify their claims through international human rights discourses, Iranian...
Politicized Identities, Securitized Politics: Sunni-Shi'a Politics in Egypt
This article explores Egyptian Salafis' attempts to securitize Shi'ism since the 2011 uprising. Taking into account the sectarian dynamics of the new Middle East, Salafis in Egypt have instrumentally used the specter of Shi'ism in their politico-religious...
Recent Publications
AFGHANISTANOne Million Steps: A Marine Platoon at War, by Bing West. New York: Random House, 2015. 320 pages. $18. Reporter Bing West's latest work of frontline journalism follows the experiences of 3rd Battalion 5th Marines (3/5) during the Americanled...
Reclaiming the Faravahar: Zoroastrian Survival in Contemporary Tehran
Reclaiming the Faravahar: Zoroastrian Survival in Contemporary Tehran, by Navid Fozi. Leiden, The Netherlands: Leiden University Press, 2015. 259 pages. $59.50.Zoroastrianism is one of the most influential traditions in the history of religions, having...
The Arab Gulf States and Reform in the Middle East: Between Iran and the "Arab Spring"
THE GULF STATES The Arab Gulf States and Reform in the Middle East: Between Iran and the "Arab Spring", by Yoel Guzansky. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015. 156 pages. $67.50.In spite of its title, this book is less about reform in the Gulf states and...
The Emergence of Ex-Jihadi Political Parties in Post-Mubarak Egypt
Following the overthrow of Husni Mubarak, al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya and members of Egyptian Islamic Jihad created two political parties. This article investigates these groups' organizational dynamics and internal dialogues in order to uncover the rationale...
The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World, Second Edition
ARAB-ISRAELI CONFLICT The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World, second edition, by Avi Shlaim. New York: W.W. Norton, 2014. 900 pages. $21.95.Reviewed by Matthew HughesThis is the second edition of a book published in 2000, one reviewed favorably at...
The Politics of Human Rights in Egypt and Jordan
Bosmat Yefet's The Politics of Human Rights in Egypt and Jordan is poised astride two defining shifts in the contemporary Arab world: the Arab uprisings of 2010-2013 that shook both the foundations of the Arab political order and the assumptions of many...
The Unraveling: High Hopes and Missed Opportunities in Iraq
IRAQ The Unraveling: High Hopes and Missed Opportunities in Iraq, by Emma Sky. New York: Public Affairs, 2015. 400 pages. $28.99.Emma Sky's memoir is a chatty, personalistic account of her time in Iraq that often notes various experiences she found moving,...
To the Gates of Jerusalem: The Diaries and Papers of James G. McDonald, 1945-1947
To the Gates of Jerusalem: The Diaries and Papers of James G. McDonald, 1945-1947, edited by Norman J. W. Goda, Barbara McDonald Stewart, Severin Hochberg, and Richard Breitman. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, in association with the United...
Upended Path: The Rise and Fall of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood
This article examines the rise and fall of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt after the 2011 uprising. It analyzes the Brotherhood's behavior and strategy since taking power in June 2012, exploring the underlying factors leading to their downfall in 2013....
Who Is Allah?
Bruce Lawrence is best known for his wide-ranging studies of South Asian spirituality, especially those of a Sufi or a syncretistic character, and a volume on Allah fits well into this oeuvre. Who Is Allah? is divided into five chapters, four of which...
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