- Karen Greenberg on Terrorism and "Rogue Justice"
What attracts young people to terrorism? Targeted killings, indefinite detention, mass surveillance--have Americans allowed too much power to be vested in the presidency? How are different governments grappling with the tension between civil rights and security? Security expert Karen Greenberg discusses these difficult questions.
- Southeast Asia—The Islamic State's New Front?
From Bangladesh to the Philippines, the Islamic State's efforts to win over South and Southeast Asians have been substantial and have increased over the past two years. What have been the results across the region, home to the largest number of Muslims in the world? What does the future hold?
- Living Together in Peace: Religious Diversity in Indonesia
"Indonesia is an interesting example of where increasing intensity of religious practices among Muslims and Christians is not the factor that creates conflict and violence. In fact, increasing intensity of religious practice often goes side by side in a society where the communities live in relative harmony and with respect for each other."
- Instagram Take-Over #10: Kashmir Photo Series by Ahmer Khan
Kashmir has been a flashpoint between India and Pakistan for over six decades. The violence in the area is the worst it has been since 2010, and the protests have triggered a heavy crackdown by Indian government forces, including strict curfews. Ahmer Khan is an independent documentary photographer based in Kashmir. Check out his moving photos.
- Reading List and Discussion Questions on Religion and Tolerance in Indonesia
Amid growing Islamophobia and populism in Europe and the United States, a more complete picture of Islam is crucial, and Indonesia can serve as an ideal case study to provide such a broader view. This 10.5-week Asia Dialogues reading list with discussion questions is a good place to start.
- Strangers in Strange Lands: Migration
In 2015, the number of international migrants worldwide—people residing in a country other than their country of birth—reached a record-breaking 244 million. And 65.3 million of these migrants were refugees, the largest number since World War II. We present a collection of useful resources on the ethical and practical challenges of migration.
- Islam and Pluralism in Indonesia
"It's going on 20 years that Indonesia has been engaged in a very important experiment, which is to create a democracy in a Muslim-majority place," explains journalist and scholar Margaret Scott. In this valuable interview, she untangles the complex relationships between various factions of Islam and politics in the world's most populous Muslim-majority country.
- "We Love Death as You Love Life": Britain's Suburban Terrorists
What drives people in the UK to become terrorists or jihadist fighters? Pantucci's years of research into this problem has implications for all Western countries. Most disturbingly, he concludes that there is no single profile. However, there are three factors to look for: a sense of grievance, social mobilization, and ideology.
- The Symbiotic Relationship between Western Media and Terrorism
Mass media and terrorism have become ever more intertwined in a mutually beneficial relationship often described as 'symbiotic.' This column examines that dynamic and outlines the need for news organizations to balance the public's right to know against the ability of militants to exploit news coverage to promote their beliefs.
- "Religious Harmony" Regulations Creating Dissonance in Indonesia
Andreas Harsono of Human Rights Watch discusses the complex situation in Indonesia, including the 2006 religious harmony regulation supposed to protect religious minorities, but which in practice has enabled religious majorities to discriminate against minorities; the draconian blasphemy laws; Islamic extremism; and much more.
- Ourania S. Yancopoulos' Presentation on Gender Equality at UN Wins Council's Student Research Conference
Ms. Yancopoulos' presentation was titled "Gender Equality—and the Lack Thereof—in International Politics: An Evaluation of Gender Balance in the Leadership of the United Nations Secretariat." Other presentation topics included robotic warfare, the ethics of civil resistance, and the portrayal of Muslims in the U.S. media.
- A Rage for Order: The Middle East in Turmoil, from Tahrir Square to ISIS
In this memorable conversation, "New York Times" journalists Robert Worth and Roger Cohen discuss Worth's latest book about the Arab Spring and its aftermath. Was its collapse inevitable? Could/should the U.S. have done more, especially regarding Syria? Despite all, Worth concludes the talk on a hopeful note.
- The Last Supper: The Plight of Christians in Arab Lands
There are 7.5 million Christians in the Middle East, who live under constant threat of death and humiliation. Danish journalist Klaus Wivel (not a Christian himself) asks: What is the story on the ground and why are so few journalists covering it? Why aren't we in the West doing more to defend the human rights of this beleaguered minority?
- Islamism: What It Means for the Middle East and the World
Until the mid-19th century, Islam was the sole basis of both political legitimacy and social identity across the Middle East. Islamists--a term that doesn't exist in Arabic--believe Islam should continue to be the region's primary identity. In opposition are nationalists and secularists who view Islamism as a serious threat. What will be the outcome?
- Eurasianism and the European Far Right: Book Launch and Update on Events in Europe
"Eurasianism and the European Far Right" is the culmination of an intensive two-year project spearheaded by the Council's U.S. Global Engagement Program. This expert panel from France, Hungary, and the United States examines the complex spectrum of the European far right and its connections with Russia and with the U.S.
- The Geopolitics of the Iran Deal: Winners and Losers
In the short term, one of the biggest winners in the Iran deal is China, and the biggest loser is Saudi Arabia. But 10, 15 years from now, we may see that the deal was a seminal factor in reintegrating Iran into the global political economy and strengthening civil society--making the U.S. and Europe the winners and countries like Russia and Syria the losers.
- Blood Year: The Unraveling of Western Counterterrorism
ISIS consists of three interlocked threats and is quite different from al-Qaeda, says counterterrorism authority David Kilcullen. To come up with a workable strategy going forward, we have to understand exactly what went wrong in the years since 9/11 and admit that everyone bears part of the blame, from "reckless" Bush to "feckless" Obama.
- What Went Wrong in the Arab Spring?
In the early days of the Arab Spring, non-violent civil resistance helped topple authoritarian governments in Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen. Yet these apparent triumphs were followed by disasters. What went wrong? Was the problem rooted in the popular movements themselves, or in their societies? And what's the best way forward now?
- The Unprecedented Jihadi Threat in Europe
"At this very moment, ISIS is recruiting probably 100 people a week from all over the world, including this very country. So it is not a European problem, it is not an Arab issue; it is a global threat and global challenge. That is why I insist on the fact that the threat has to be dealt with at the source, which is basically Syria."
- Afghanistan and Pakistan: The Re-emergence of the Taliban and the Arrival of ISIS
Ahmed Rashid and Barnett Rubin dissect the complicated situation in Afghanistan and Pakistan--a region of many competing terrorist groups--and also comment on ISIS in the Middle East and Europe. ISIS is actually a war within Islam, declares Rashid, and the West's main task should be to help mobilize and unite the Muslim world to fight it.