As Syria intensifies its clampdown on anti-government protesters, international pressure on the regime is being stepped up. It comes as new amateur video whose authenticity cannot be verified purports to show mass arrests in Deraa.
Middle East & North Africa Archive
As details of the successful raid against Osama bin Laden’s Abbotabad compound come to light, it is becoming clear that the assault was the most important, and probably the most successful, operation in the history of U.S. special operations forces. Instead of Air Force bombs or Navy missiles, President Barack Obama opted for the special skills and capabilities of a Navy SEAL team to eliminate the al-Qaida leader. The reason is simple: A bomb or missile might have more easily killed bin Laden, but only special forces could confirm his death, recover his body and capture a trove of materials […]
There has been a mixed reaction among Muslims around the world to the news of the death of Osama bin Laden. They range from deep suspicion to relief.
Not surprisingly, people in the Taliban-controlled areas along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border have turned out — some of their own volition, many under duress — to mourn Osama bin Laden’s death and to threaten the United States and its allies. Yet, as a Pew survey documented, the idolization once lavished upon bin Laden seems to have waned in recent years among Muslim polities. The sociopolitical change now being sought by Middle Eastern masses protesting their countries’ secular and religious autocracies is a far cry from the caliphate that bin Laden envisioned. Islamist militant groups like Hamas in Gaza have condemned the […]
With arguably the most notorious manhunt of all time now over, many are reflecting on the emotional significance Osama bin Laden’s death carries for a generation that has come of age since Sept. 11. With the gravity of the development sinking in this morning, World Politics Review contributor Luke Hunt reminded Trend Lines that what bin Laden did “has dominated and dictated our lives professionally for more than a decade.” Another WPR contributor, J. Edward Conway had this to say: “When I found my way into the U.S. Defense Department after Sept. 11, I was met by a sea of […]
With the weeks grinding on in an intervention that no one anticipated, the West finds itself increasingly embroiled in Libya’s civil war. In this special report, World Politics Review explores the strategic and diplomatic fallout of NATO’s intervention in Libya through articles published in the past two months. Below are links to each article in this special report, which subscribers can read in full. Subscribers can also download a .pdf version of this report from our document center. Not a subscriber? Subscribe now, or try our subscription service for free. U.S. Leadership Obama Abdicating U.S. Leadership in LibyaBy Thomas P.M. […]
After digesting the news that Osama bin Laden had been killed by a U.S. Navy Seals team, my first thought was about how his death, and the manner in which it happened, highlights the tension between the visible and the invisible in terms of terrorism and counterterrorism. Terrorism must be tactically invisible in order to effectively plan and carry out attacks, but it depends on the high visibility of those attacks for any strategic impact. In almost a perfect inversion, counterterrorism employs highly visible tactical measures — the kind of “security theater” best-illustrated at airports — to reassure the public, […]