Once Upon A Time In Iraq

By guest reviewer,  Leyla Sanai If you haven’t yet watched Once Upon A Time In Iraq on the BBC or iplayer, you are missing out. It is a superb overview of the doomed 2003 war on the wicked but secular despot Saddam Hussein, and the violent chaos that was the war and its faction-ridden, terrorist-packed … Continue reading Once Upon A Time In Iraq

Honour the heroes of 1945 – reject nationalism

Above: veterans say their regretful farewells to the EU George Orwell famously distinguished between patriotism and nationalism: Both words are normally used in so vague a way that any definition is liable to be challenged, but one must draw a distinction between them, since two different and even opposing ideas are involved. By 'patriotism' I … Continue reading Honour the heroes of 1945 – reject nationalism

How the Arab-Israeli Conflict Divided the American Left: ‘what this book cannot offer is a useful political analysis’

Book Review by Barry Finger: Michael R. Fischbach, The Movement and the Middle East: How the Arab-Israeli Conflict Divided the American Left, Stanford, Stanford University Press 2020. It is the conceit of this volume that the history of the American New Left and its residual legacy can be fruitfully reexamined in terms of the divisions … Continue reading How the Arab-Israeli Conflict Divided the American Left: ‘what this book cannot offer is a useful political analysis’

Syria and the crisis in Idlib

Nearly one million people have been displaced since December in Idlib as a result of the military campaign against the western countryside and the advancement of the Syrian regime. Anas Alkharboutli/dpa/picture alliance via Getty From Syria UK The Syrian war has lasted nine years, and can be hard for many to understand. We have written … Continue reading Syria and the crisis in Idlib

Blowback in Iran

Iranian students demonstrate following a tribute to the victims of a Ukraine International Airlines crash, in front of Amirkabir University in Tehran, Jan. 11, 2020. Police later dispersed students chanting what were seen as "radical" slogans. One of the proudest achievements of Shiraz Socialist (at the Old Place) was to have debunked and discredited the … Continue reading Blowback in Iran

Soleimani assassination and the danger of war: what socialists in the region have to say

Unlike the UK Stop the War group (uncritical apologists for the Iranian regime), the Alliance of Middle Eastern and North African Socialists, about whom we at Shiraz know next to nothing, are able to simultaneously condemn Trump's reckless belligerence and  and the repression of democratic forces by Iran and other regional imperialist powers: Oppose U.S. … Continue reading Soleimani assassination and the danger of war: what socialists in the region have to say

On the Turkish offensive on north-eastern Syria

Excellent post on from Leila on the latest – Trump-induced – stage of the Syrian tragedy:

Leila's blog

EGghDIpX0AEU5Se Syrians flee their homes amid Turkish bombardment. Photo credit: Delil Souleiman/AFP

The recent Turkish offensive on north-eastern Syria and US withdrawal of troops from the region is unleashing yet another humanitarian catastrophe of epic proportions.

In the past few days over 130,000 Syrians have fled for their lives, in desperate search of safety. Dozens of civilians have been killed by Turkish bombs and assassinations by Turkish allied militias. Among the chaos ISIS prisoners have broken out of detention camps and are now running free – many of them foreigners, including children, whose respective states have refused to take responsibility for their nationals.

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Trump’s betrayal of Kurds puts Rojava at risk

Donald Trump's announcement of the withdrawal of American troops from Northern Syria gives effective consent to President Erdoğan to invade. This marks a slight shift from Trump’s previous stated position. Back in December he announced that American troops would leave Northern Syria within the medium-term future, but that it was conditional on guarantees from Turkey … Continue reading Trump’s betrayal of Kurds puts Rojava at risk

A lazy day in the office for Steve Sweeney

Above: White Helmets in action Life isn’t always easy for Steve Sweeney, International Editor of the Morning Star. Earlier this year he was detained and interrogated by Turkish police when he landed at an Istanbul airport. Thoughts of what had happened to Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate six months before in the same city … Continue reading A lazy day in the office for Steve Sweeney

50 years since troops went into Northern Ireland and the response of the UK left

A British soldier in Belfast, September 1969. In the background are local people. (AP Photo/Royle) Fifty years ago today (August 14th, 1969), the Labour home secretary James Callaghan ordered troops into Northern Ireland. This followed three days and two nights of violence in the mainly Catholic Bogside area of Derry. Trouble had also erupted in Belfast … Continue reading 50 years since troops went into Northern Ireland and the response of the UK left