Archive for the ‘Research and Study’ Category

How and When Did the West Become Interested in the Creation of a Jewish State in Palestine?

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Western interest in dominating the affairs of geographical Palestine goes back as far as Alexander the Great, followed, of course, by the Romans and the Byzantines.  The Crusades (1095-1291) represent an exclusively European Christian attempt to dominate the region.

However, the yearning for a Jewish state with Jerusalem at its political and religious center begins, so Barbara Tuchman argued, with the translation of the Bible into English.  Her book, Bible and Sword. New York: Ballantine Books, 1984 (first published in 1956), posits the following points in the development of this yearning:

1.  Translation of the Bible into English in the 16th century.

2.  The growth of English (and French) mercantile interests in the Far East (by way of the Middle East), 16th – 19th centuries.

3.  Puritan interest in the restoration of Palestine to the Jews as the necessary precondition for the coming of the Messiah as foretold by the Old Testament prophets, 17th century onward: see especially such early expressions as that of Joanna and Ebenezer Cartwright, who in 1649, petitioned the British and Dutch governments to become the first and the readiest to transport Izraell’s sons and daughters in their ships to the Land promised by their forefathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob for an everlasting Inheritance.  Puritans believed that the second coming of the Messiah could occur only after the Jews had been restored to Zion.

4.  Patronage of Anthony Ashley Cooper, Seventh Lord of Shaftesbury in 1840.  He coined the slogan, “A land without people for a people without land.”

The dream crossed the Atlantic with the Puritan pilgrims and quickly became established in North America.  At this point, the best source on the history of the dream is Michael B. Oren, Power, Faith, and Fantasy: America in the Middle East, 1776 to the Present.New York: Norton, 2007.

Georgetown University’s Center for International and Regional Studies

Monday, February 6th, 2012

CIRS, for short, publishes newsletters and other resources useful to Middle East studies.  The Center’s Fall, 2011 newsletter highlights Fouad Ajami and Rashid Khalidi discussing the “Arab Spring.”  You can listen to Ajami’s lecture by clicking here.  You can listen to Khalidi’s lecture by clicking here.

I’ve added a link to CIRS under IMEB Links on the right side of the page.


Articles of Interest From the GLORIA Center

Friday, December 23rd, 2011

The Global Research in International Affairs Center (GLORIA) and its journal Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) are reliable sources on trends in Middle East politics and culture.  GLORIA’s director is Professor Barry Rubin.  

In the current issue see particularly:

Barry Rubin, “Navigating the New Middle East: The Obama Administration is Lost at Sea and On the Rocks,”, Dec. 23, 2011

Harsh Pant, “Pakistan and its Discontents,”, Dec. 22, 2011


The GLORIA Center   (also linked under IMEB Links on right side of the page)

New Journal From the American University in Cairo

Thursday, June 9th, 2011

The American University in Cairo School of Global Affairs and Public Policy (GAPP) has launched a new journal, “The Cairo Review of Global Affairs.”  Click here, or, go to:

Excerpt from AUC’s announcement of the journal’s creation:

Release Date: January 24, 2011
Contact: Rehab Saad El Domiati tel. +202.2615.3705 mobile +2.016.881.5048
AUC Launches “The Cairo Review of Global Affairs”
January 24, 2010, Cairo, Egypt –The American University in Cairo (AUC) today announced the launch of a new quarterly policy journal next month to be called The Cairo Review of Global Affairs. It will be distributed worldwide in a print edition, and will be available online at   The journal is being published by AUC’s new School of Global Affairs and Public Policy (GAPP), the first school in the Arab world devoted to training future generations of policymakers. GAPP consists of the departments of Journalism and Mass Communication, Public Policy and Administration, and Law; and research and training centers focused on Middle East studies, American studies, women and gender studies, migration and refugee studies, and television and digital media training.   Nabil Fahmy, GAPP’s dean and editorial board chairman of The Cairo Review, said that the journal is intended to bring the insights of global policymakers, academics, public officials, journalists and others into the Middle East. “We also want it to be an interactive platform that gives perspectives from the region a greater voice in international policy conversations and debates,” said Fahmy, who previously served as Egypt’s Ambassador to the United States and Japan.     Fahmy announced that Scott MacLeod, a former TIME Magazine correspondent and a professor in GAPP’s Department of Journalism and Mass Communication since 2010, will be the managing editor of The Cairo Review.   In addition, Fahmy announced the formation of a 15-member Editorial Board. “We’re delighted that so many distinguished figures from diverse fields of public service, business and journalism have joined our editorial board,” said Fahmy.   The editorial board includes: David D. Arnold, president of the Asia Foundation; Lakhdar Brahimi, former under-secretary general of the United Nations; Prince Turki al-Faisal, chairman of the board of the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies and former Saudi ambassador to the United States and to the United Kingdom; Hassan Heikal, CEO of EFG Hermes; Walter Isaacson, president and CEO of the Aspen Institute; Rami G. Khouri, director of the Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs at the American University of Beirut;  Daniel C. Kurtzer, professor at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University, and former U.S. ambassador to Egypt and Israel; Marwan Muasher, vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment and former deputy prime minister of Jordan; Lubna S. Olayan, CEO of Olayan Financing Co.; David B. Ottaway, fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars; Thomas R. Pickering, former deputy U.S. Secretary of State for Political Affairs; Naguib Sawiris, executive chairman of Orascom Telecom Holding SAE; Mark Suzman, director of policy, advocacy and special initiatives, Global Development Program, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Mervat Tallawy, former under-secretary general of the United Nations and Egyptian ambassador to Japan and Austria.   For further information: Go to: and follow Twitter @CairoReview

June 9, 2011

New M.A. Program Opportunity in Israel

Sunday, November 1st, 2009

We have received notice of a new graduate program – “Politics of Conflict” – being offered by the Department of Politics and Government at Ben-Gurion University, Israel. The language of instruction is English. The website of the program is


Links to 100 Online Courses on Middle East Related Topics

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

From Rated comes a list of one hundred online courses on the Middle East or related topics. 

Link to the courses

Middle East Institute Announces New Resource on the Legacy of Camp David

Sunday, March 22nd, 2009

The Middle East Institute has announced a new free online collection of resource materials related to the Camp David peace process as part of its “Viewpoints” series. 

Go to the free collection: ” Legacy of Camp David: 1979-2009″

Sources for Middle East Country Studies

Friday, August 29th, 2008

BBC Middle East Country Profiles

Library of Congress Country Studies

U.S. State Department Country Pages

CIA World Factbook Country Briefings

Resource for Articles on Current Political Trends

Friday, August 22nd, 2008


Link to

Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA)

Saturday, February 23rd, 2008

The Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) is a superb online journal edited by Professor Barry Rubin.  In the most recent issue you’ll find an article by Jonathan Spyer on how the recent (2006) war in Lebanon failed to resolve that country’s political problems. 

More on Lebanon’s current political crisis