It’s Not a Sunni-Shiite Conflict, Dummy

January 30, 2015

Atiaf Zaid Alwazir outlines ten reasons why the conflict in Yemen is not sectarian. Last week in Yemen, my young cousin in the second grade ran inside after an explosion shook the windows. “I don’t mind when the house shakes, I just don’t want to die in it,” he said out of breath. “You...

The Tribal Component of Iraq’s Sunni Rebellion

July 14, 2014

The GMCIR is emerging as one of the most powerful organizations in the Iraqi conflict. Following the Iraqi armed opposition’s seizure of Mosul on June 10, and the subsequent capture of large areas of Ninewah,...

Ashoura… or the Story of the Sunni-Shiite Schism

November 18, 2013

What lies at the heart of the Sunni-Shiite divide? Author's Note Last Thursday marked the holy day of Ashoura (“the tenth,” in Arabic). For the past 1,333 years, devout Shiite Muslims (as well as Alawites) all over the world join in deep grief on the tenth day of the Islamic month...

Sunni vs Shi’a: The Middle East Chessboard (Part 2/2)

September 06, 2013

Hostility between Sunnis and Shi’as has taken on an increasingly political core. This is the last of a two part series. Read part one here. This being said, gauging from personal interactions with many people hailing from both sects as well as the world of Twitter and Facebook, there is...

Sunni vs Shi’a: The Middle East Chessboard (Part 1/2)

August 30, 2013

Hostility between Sunnis and Shi’as has taken on an increasingly political core. This is the first of a two part series.  The logic is simple enough, right? In black, we have the Shi’a with the king being Iran. In the white, we have the Sunnis with the king being Saudi Arabia. The...

Sunni vs Shi’a: Opposition Fueled by Power Politics

August 08, 2013

The conflict between Sunnis and Shi'as is fueled by Islamists and power politics. Since it became clear in May 2013 that Hezbollah is fighting on the side of the Bashar al-Assad regime in the Syrian Civil War, there has been increasing talk about an escalating religious war between Shi'as and...