Nuns cleaning their church for Easter in Caltanissetta, Sicily. Photo: Getty
A holy mess: the ongoing sacred soap opera of Radio Maria in Sicily
By Antonia Quirke - 18 September 9:20

In southern Sicily you often hear Maria in the background in shops, like an ongoing soap opera: the live Mass from Medjugorje, where there have been apparitions of the Madonna since 1981, or the replaying of news from Radio Vaticana.

Statesman and street fighter: Nixon showed foresight and skill in foreign policy but repeatedly resorted to sharp practices on the domestic front. Photo: Don Carl Steffen/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images
Rethinking Nixon: forty years after Watergate, can the 37th president be rehabilitated?
By John Bew - 18 September 9:09

It is now four decades since Richard Milhous Nixon resigned in disgrace as US president – he remains reappraised but not rehabilitated.

In the slums of Manila, inequality is so bad that the worst off have no chance to protest
By Paul Roy - 18 September 8:42

Independent filmmaker Paul Roy recounts his experiences in the Philippines in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan.

Romantic versions: an 1880 engraving depicting a US party in search of the missing Arctic explorer John Franklin and his team
What Canada – and John Franklin – can teach the UK about the independence game
By Noah Richler - 16 September 15:31

In the fortnight in which one of Franklin’s lost ships was found in the Canadian arctic, and Scotland – like Quebec before it – is voting on independence, the parallels between the UK and Canada have never been stronger. 

Islamic State video shows beheading of British aid worker David Haines
By Sophie McBain - 14 September 10:12

The Islamic State video appears to show the killing of a third Western hostage, aid worker David Haines, and ends with the warning that another British person will be next.

Members of the ANC Women’s League protest outside the court in Pretoria. Photo: Getty
Oscar Pistorius is not guilty of murdering Reeva Steenkamp, the woman he killed
By Sarah Ditum - 12 September 12:00

The South African athlete has been found guilty of culpable homicide, not murder, following the death of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. In a world where men kill women and not the other way around, that means justice must bend to the male version of events.

Oscar Pistorius arriving at court. Photo: Getty
Oscar Pistorius found guilty of culpable homicide
By New Statesman - 12 September 10:04

The South African athlete has been cleared of premeditated and second-degree murder.

The new badlands: Yazidi women driven from their homes by Isis wait to be rescued from the Sinjar Mountains of Iraq
John Simpson: how do we respond to this worldwide summer of violence?
By John Simpson - 11 September 10:00

Iraq, Libya, Syria, Nigeria, Afghanistan are all in danger of becoming black holes in which the nastiest groups can thrive. The only credible solution is to turn them back into proper countries.

The outskirts of Sukkur in Pakistan in 2010. Photo: Getty
Inside jobs and Israeli stooges: why is the Muslim world in thrall to conspiracy theories?
By Mehdi Hasan - 05 September 12:29

The “We’ve been lied to” argument goes only so far. Scepticism may be evidence of a healthy and independent mindset; but conspiracism is a virus that feeds off insecurity and bitterness.

A woman pushes her bicycle past a non-exploded rocket in Ilovaisk, 50km southeast of Donetsk, 4 September. Photo: Getty
When one mistake can lead to catastrophe: what next for Ukraine?
By David Patrikarakos - 04 September 16:56

A ceasefire has been agreed but it remains in doubt whether Russia plans to conquer eastern Ukraine or establish a quasi-autonomous state there. 

A military official announces Barack Obama's arrival at the Nato Summit in Newport, Wales. Photo: Getty
With his foreign policy, Barack Obama is trying to win by playing a loser’s game
By Ian Leslie - 04 September 15:54

If you’re playing a loser’s game, strategy is unnecessary. You avoid errors, but in dangerous times risk being buffeted by events.

Keep the black flag flying: a show of strength in northern Raqqa province, Iraq, to celebrate the declaration of the caliphate, June 2014. Photo: Reuters
From Bin Laden to Isis: Why the roots of jihadi ideology run deep in Britain
By Shiraz Maher - 04 September 9:38

From Riyadh via London to Damascus, Baghdad and Isis – the jihadist surge.

Displaced Iraqi children play at the Bahrka camp near Arbil. Photo: Getty
In the face of the threat from Isis, Britain can no longer just follow America’s lead in the Middle East
By John Bew - 04 September 9:15

There are severe limits to what the UK can do as a middle-ranking power. But it can do better than firefighting every crisis with an emergency meeting of Cobra.

French President François Hollande. Photo: Getty
Where has the French Left gone?
By Myriam Francois-Cerrah - 03 September 12:09

The recent dissolution of the government reflects the increasing pressure on Hollande to turn around a dire economic outlook.

Steven Sotloff, centre in black helmet, in Libya in 2011. Photo: Getty
American journalist Steven Sotloff "beheaded by Islamic state"
By Helen Lewis - 02 September 20:43

A video claiming to show the killing of another kidnapped American journalist, Steven Sotloff, has been released.

Cambodian Inspectors examine suspected medicine in a crowded market along Thai-Cambodian border during an inspection July 23, 2010 in Pailin province, Cambodia. Photo: Getty Images
Unregulated fake medicines are threatening the fight against diseases like malaria
By Paul Newton - 29 August 12:11

There is currently no international law or body that can organise the detection and prevention of fake medicines - and it's a critical threat to our ability to fight deadly diseases.

Israeli soldiers in front of the barrier at the Qalandiya checkpoint between Ramallah and Jerusalem. Photo: Getty
How we grew up: an Israeli veteran on the dehumanising power of military control
By Yehuda Shaul - 29 August 11:41

Yehuda Shaul writes of how he and his friends learned to glorify power, and lost their ability to see Palestinians as people whose lives are no less valuable. Now, he and hundreds of others are working to end the occupation.

Displaced Palestinians gathered at a makeshift camp inside the Al-Shifa hospital gardens, where Mohammed is being treated. Photo: Getty
Under fire: what happened next to injured Mohammed and his family
By Donald Macintyre - 28 August 10:02

Two weeks ago Donald Macintyre reported from Gaza on the plight of ten-year-old Mohammed Badran, blinded in an Israeli air strike. Here, he gives an update on his treatment. 

The PM is not alone in failing to articulate a clear set of principles for this new era.
After Cameron’s summer of indecision, who will give Britain a coherent foreign policy again?
By George Eaton - 27 August 21:47

The PM is not alone in failing to articulate a clear set of principles for this new era. 

Spread risk: a Monrovia classroom serves as a rudimentary isolation ward. Photo: John Moore/Getty
West Africa on a hope and a prayer: the desperate efforts to contain ebola
By Charlotte Lytton - 27 August 17:00

The 16 August attack on an ebola clinic in the Liberian capital, Monrovia, is a sign of just how deeply western medicine is mistrusted.

Iraqi Turkmen guard a checkpoint in the northern town of Taza Khormato. Photo: Getty
Islamic State stands for the deaths of journalists and of free speech
By William Horsley - 22 August 12:59

Making a global spectacle of the murder of a western journalist carries a uniquely powerful propaganda message for the jihadists.

Under threat: displaced Iraqi Christians take refuge in the garden of Saint Joseph church on the outskirts of Erbil, 12 August. Photo: Getty
With the beheading of James Foley by Islamic State, a red line has been crossed at last
By Jonathan Rugman - 22 August 10:28

Channel 4 News’s foreign affairs correspondent Jonathan Rugman on a dramatic week spent in northern Iraq.

Murder: a protester outside Buzz Westfall Justice Center where a jury began looking at the circumstances surrounding the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown. Photo: Getty
Welcome to America, where police shoot an unarmed black man six times – and then call him a villain
By Laurie Penny - 21 August 13:31

What is happening in Ferguson is about more than Michael Brown and his family. It’s a shadow play of a national crisis in race relations and class repression.

The cast of Chris Morris’s black comedy Four Lions. Photo: Magnolia Pictures
What the jihadists who bought “Islam for Dummies” on Amazon tell us about radicalisation
By Mehdi Hasan - 21 August 10:06

Pretending that the danger comes only from the devout could cost lives.

Never-ending exodus: Yazidis who fled to the Sinjar mountains after threats by Isis gather in Mosul. Photo: Getty
The tragic cycle: western powers and the Middle East
By John Bew - 21 August 10:00

History provides a sobering lesson about western involvement in the Middle East. It is that, when superpowers drift away, peace, progress, moderation and stability do not necessarily follow in their stead. 

Police watch as demonstrators protest the killing of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. Photo: Getty
Britain should not look at the militarised police in Ferguson and congratulate itself
By Harry Leslie Smith - 21 August 9:55

The UK may not have a police force that is equipped like an army, but through our arms trade we export death to some of the most volatile regions of the world. It has to stop.

James Foley photographed in Aleppo in 2012. Photo by Mano Brabo
ISIS video appears to show killing of US Journalist James Foley
By Sophie McBain - 20 August 8:06

Late last night, the militant jihadist group Islamic State (also known as ISIS) released a video purporting to show the beheading of James Foley, a US journalist who went missing in Syria in 2012. Foley was a fearless, generous and committed reporter, who had also been detained while reporting in Libya. 

Faisal II of Iraq, aged 18, taking his oath of office before parliament in 1953. Photo: AFP/Getty Images
Why Britain created monarchies in the Middle East
By James Dawson - 15 August 11:44

When was the most stable time in recent Iraqi history? Most likely it was during the British-sponsored Hashemite Kingdom of Iraq from 1921 to 1958.

Many Iraqis fled from Mosul when Isis swept in, but why have some supported the group?
Why is there Sunni Arab support for Isis in Iraq?
By Lucy Fisher - 15 August 11:30

Attempts to understand the success of Isis in Iraq would benefit from Marxist analysis, since social and economic factors are the key to explaining Sunni Arab support for, and complicity with, the group.

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