The History News Network has published my article on the so-called Islamic Caliphate in Iraq set up by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria alternatively known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. My article is entitled, “The 10 Questions You Need Answers to About the Caliphate.” In the article I look at the historical background to the Islamic Caliphate, dispel some myths about the origins of the Sunni and Shia divide, examine the historical significance of this so-called caliphate and what it means for Muslims and for the United States. Everything you need to know about the situation. Be sure to check it out, like, and share! http://hnn.us/article/156280
A month or so ago, Syria was all over the news as the international community turned its gaze to the ongoing conflict within the Middle Eastern nation. At the time, intelligence pointed to the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government against the rebel forces. This act was considered crossing a “red line” by several Western powers and led to talks of intervention, political maneuvering, and international diplomatic scrambling. There was an uproar among the American population that pushed against any intention of intervention, no doubt a reaction kindled strongly by the memory of our intervention in Iraq with its lead up, misrepresentations, and eventual consequences. Yet for many Americans, the sudden coverage of Syria and our governments talk of intervention was the first time they had any true exposure to the situation in Syria. Today, Syria has once more taken a periphery position in news coverage and only the occasional development make it to the wider American audience. However, the situation in Syria has been going on for over two years and continues until today.
Back in May, Kofi Annan presented at the Luskin Lecture for Thought Leadership at UCLA. The format involved 30 minutes of speech followed by 30 minutes of questions moderated by journalist Laura Ling, herself a UCLA alumni. The lecture was informative, interesting, and highlighted his experience at the United Nations and his hopes for the future.