Arab popular support for Gaza
How pro-Palestinian protests threaten Middle East autocrats
In some Middle Eastern countries, pro-Palestinian rallies recall pro-democracy protests from 2011. Now, the region's authoritarian leaders are worried the conflict in Gaza could alter the political status quo at home
Tehran dismisses university lecturers
University lecturers critical of the regime are being dismissed, while those loyal to the regime are being rehired: Tehran's Islamic regime is apparently reshaping the country's universities even more strictly according to its own ideas. By Iman Aslani
The Islamic Republic's dilemma
Iran's deal last spring with Saudi Arabia, brokered by China, highlighted the emergence of an unstable equilibrium in the Islamic Republic's foreign policy. Amin Naeni and Ali Fathollah-Nejad explore the inherent tensions
Mahsa Amini: one year on
Tehran has lost the battle for credibility
One year after Mahsa Amini died in police custody, sparking nationwide protests, the Iranian regime has quashed all displays of public discontent. But the 2022 protest movement was not a lost cause and its impact on Iranian history cannot be undermined, writes Leela Jacinto
Why a friendlier Middle East is more dangerous for activists
Authoritarian governments often harass and hinder their critics, even if those people are outside the country. As former enemies become friends in the Middle East, will they cooperate to shut down opposition voices? By Cathrin Schaer
Books on the Iran protests
Fighting for freedom in the "mullah state"
Women are the main drivers behind the new revolutionary movement in Iran. Four female authors offer inside views and moving snapshots from a variety of perspectives. Review by Rene Wildangel
Who wants to invest in Syria now?
Recent events may indicate the world wants to start doing business with Syria again, despite its government being accused of war crimes. But, asks Cathrin Schaer, how likely is it China, the EU and Gulf states will start spending big there?
What the Islamic Republic's propaganda tells us
Challenging one of the Islamic Republic's most identifiable symbols – the hijab – with some breathtaking, iconographic feminist art, Iran's activists have wrested ownership away from the clerics with regard to who represents the nation, defines its present and shapes its future. Essay by Kevin L. Schwartz & Olmo Goelz
A revolutionary resolution for the Middle East?
Saudi Arabia and Iran's reconciliation serves the interests of both sides and represents a major geopolitical shift in the Middle East, writes Maha Yahya. Where all this will lead is still up for discussion, but for the first time in many years, something appears to be changing
Art and the Iran protests
"Painting is like breathing for me"
Iranian artist Raoof Haghighi's latest exhibition, including works in support of the women of Iran, presents an intriguing range of styles and media. From stark, striking pencil sketches to lush portraits in oils, the art show from 7-16 April promises to be visually, intellectually and emotionally stimulating. Interview by Richard Marcus
'Maximum pressure' gears up
Protests drive Iran's Saudi deal
On 10 March 2023, the world woke up to the breaking news that Middle East rivals Iran and Saudi Arabia had forged a deal to restore diplomatic relations within two months and refrain from interfering in each other's domestic affairs. Ali Fathollah-Nejad and Amin Naeni examine Iran's motivations
Why Iran's revolutionary process will persist
Despite demonstrations waning during winter, the revolutionary process is poised to gain renewed momentum. After all, the regime is unable to address the combination of socio-economic and political crises driving the current unrest. Essay by Ali Fathollah-Nejad