from The Great Debate:

How the Saudi king benefits from a cleric’s execution

January 6, 2016

Members of the Shi'ite ulema council hold a sign for Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr who was executed along with others in Saudi Arabia, during a protest demonstration in Karachi, Pakistan, January 2, 2016. The sign reads in Urdu, "Protest, Protest, Protest, we condemn the martyring of Ayatullah Shaikh Baqar al-Nimr and other Muslims, and demand human rights organisations take notice of the inhuman incident and bring fact-finding to the public". REUTERS/Akhtar Soomro  - RTX20S7T

Members of the Shi'ite ulema council hold a sign for Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr who was executed along with others in Saudi Arabia, during a protest demonstration in Karachi, Pakistan, January 2, 2016.  REUTERS/Akhtar Soomro

from The Great Debate:

The ‘marriage of convenience’ between Saddam Hussein’s men and Islamic State

January 4, 2016

Shi'ite fighters ride vehicles in Baiji, north of Baghdad, October 16, 2015. Iraqi forces and Shi'ite militia fighters recaptured most of the country’s largest oil refinery from Islamic State militants on Thursday, security officials said. The report could not be independently confirmed because it is too dangerous for journalists to enter the battle zone around the refinery near the town of Baiji, about 190 km (120 miles) north of Baghdad.  REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani  - RTS4SKI

Shi'ite fighters ride vehicles in Baiji, north of Baghdad, October 16, 2015. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani

from The Great Debate:

Islamic State has become an existential threat to the West

November 18, 2015

Militant Islamist fighters wave flags as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province June 30, 2014. The fighters held the parade to celebrate their declaration of an Islamic "caliphate" after the group captured territory in neighbouring Iraq, a monitoring service said. The Islamic State, an al Qaeda offshoot previously known as Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), posted pictures online on Sunday of people waving black flags from cars and holding guns in the air, the SITE monitoring service said. Picture taken June 30, 2014.  REUTERS/Stringer (SYRIA - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST CONFLICT) - RTR3WKNM

Militant Islamist fighters wave flags as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province June 30, 2014. REUTERS/Stringer

from The Great Debate:

Paris attacks: The West’s fatal misunderstanding of Islamic State

November 15, 2015

ATTENTION EDITORS - VISUAL COVERAGE OF SCENES OF INJURY OR DEATHGeneral view of the scene with rescue service personnel working near covered bodies outside a restaurant following shooting incidents in Paris, France, November 13, 2015.   REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer      TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY      - RTS6W3I

A general view of the scene outside a restaurant following shooting incidents in Paris, France, November 13, 2015. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer

from The Great Debate:

Podcast: The true horrors of life under Islamic State

November 11, 2015
Participants: Jason Fields, Matthew Gault, Kevin Sullivan

Many in the West think of the Islamic State as a loose collection of fighters -- rabble who kill, loot and burn. But the truth is more complex, though no less terrifying. Islamic State actually governs the territory it takes and it’s not terrible at it. The group levies taxes, teaches children and organizes garbage pickup.

from The Great Debate:

Are there any reasons for hope in the Middle East? Maybe.

August 27, 2015

An image distributed by Islamic State militants on social media purports to show the destruction of a Roman-era temple in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra

An image distributed by Islamic State militants on social media on August 25, 2015 purports to show the destruction of a Roman-era temple in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra. REUTERS/Social Media

from The Great Debate:

While Syria burns next door, Lebanon’s fabric is fraying

June 11, 2015

Lebanon's Hezbollah members carry Hezbollah flags during the funeral of their fellow fighter Adnan Siblini, who was killed while fighting against insurgents in the Qalamoun region, in al-Ghaziyeh village, southern Lebanon

Lebanon's Hezbollah members carry Hezbollah flags during the funeral of their fellow fighter Adnan Siblini, who was killed while fighting against insurgents in the Qalamoun region, in al-Ghaziyeh village, southern Lebanon May 26, 2015. REUTERS/Ali Hashisho

from The Great Debate:

Why do European Muslim girls look to Islamic State for marriage material?

March 4, 2015

Handout CCTV image shows British teenage girl Amira Abase walking through security at Gatwick airport before boarding a flight to Turkey


Left to right: Kadiza Sultana, Amira Abase, Shamima Begun. The British teenagers walk through security at Gatwick airport before boarding a flight to Turkey, Feb. 17, 2015. REUTERS/Metropolitan Police/Handout via Reuters

from The Great Debate:

The pope’s door is always open to ISIS. Why America’s should be, too.

December 8, 2014

Hamas fighter speaks on the phone as he sits inside the personal meeting hall of President Abbas after they captured his headquarters in Gaza

Pope Francis strayed into controversy recently when he said that, while he supported military action against Islamic State, he also would not rule out speaking to the group if it would help bring peace to Syria and Iraq. “It is difficult, one could say almost impossible, but the door is always open,” he said.

from The Great Debate:

We all know about jihadists, but what about those waging an ‘anti-jihad’?

October 1, 2014

Human rights activist holds a placard during an anti-Talibanisation protest in LahoreAs the UN Security Council tackles the entity claiming to be “Islamic State,” and President Barack Obama invokes global Muslim responsibility, many ask whether people of Muslim heritage do enough to counter extremism.