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A decade after revolutions spread across North Africa and the Middle East, the hopes of a generation have been crushed.
The country desperately needs reform – but still there is no coherent political alternative to the status quo.
Since October, at demonstrations and sit-ins, Iraqis have been demanding clean politics, real independence and better lives.
At first I wanted to keep my illness private, but now hope more over-50s will get tested when they hear my story.
When the city falls to the regime, through blood or by negotiation, the war against Assad will, finally, be lost.
History shows that Israel’s military occupations cannot be sustained indefinitely.
The Syrian president is now far more secure than in 2013, when the West decided not to intervene. The latest air strikes do not change that.
The US has tried to turn away from the Middle East, leaving Russia as the dominant foreign power.
Across the Middle East the lack of jobs, particularly for the under-thirties, is creating a rage that always simmers and sometimes boils.
They cling to time in the water, if they can get it, as a last vestige of the lives they used to have.