A case study from the height of the Crusades in the 12th and 13th centuries illustrates that even the most brutal leaders can choose to compromise for stability.
Syrian Christians and Muslims offer prayers for nuns held by rebels, at the Greek Orthodox Mariamiya Church in Damascus, Syria, in 2013.
For many centuries, Syrian society has included people of many faiths – Sunni and Shi'i Muslims, Christians and Druze. This past is important to know to understand the present.
In Russia and China, Donald Trump now faces two centres of power that are no longer willing or feel the need to comply with America’s interests and priorities.
America’s relations with Russia and China are now mired in angst, uncertainty and mutual suspicion.
The future of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s reign lies with Vladimir Putin’s obstinacy and ability to withstand US pressure.
To understand the complexities of the conflict in Syria and what might happen next, it helps to untangle the three layers of strife in the war-torn country.
A pro-Assad protester during the 2011 protests.
The West's chosen solution to the Syrian conflict demands action that it's unwilling to take.
Orthodox Easter in Syria.
Christian calendars usually differ when it comes to Easter celebrations – but not in 2017.
Trump's attack on Assad's air force was opportunist and reckless. It was also long overdue.
Military strikes against a Syrian airforce base mark Donald Trump’s first big foreign policy test as president.
The US military's attack on a Syrian airforce base sets a worrying precedent of brashness and uncertainty in how the Trump administration may handle future crises in international relations.
Muscat in Oman is particularly vulnerable.
A new study suggests the enigmatic Makran region could see a magnitude 9 earthquake.
Inside Banksy’s Walled Off Hotel in Bethlehem.
Ayman Abuzuluf (supplied)
Banksy's Walled Off Hotel invites us to consider the value of tourism as a political tool.
Mosul’s residents are caught between Islamic State’s brutal violence and the amassed firepower of the Iraqi armed forces and their international backers.
Reuters/Khalid Al Mousily
The tragedy of Mosul is that while Islamic State's territorial project in Iraq is coming to an end, it is creating new problems that exacerbate the country's existing challenges.
Islamic State will change tack after Mosul, but Iraq isn't ready for what comes next.
Bernard Spragg. NZ/Flickr
Migrants keep going back to the vilified go-betweens that can get them construction jobs or domestic work.
Armée libanaise, Beirut, 1982.
Civil servants stand as forgotten actors of the Lebanon civil war, a historical case that has not been reproduced in more recent conflicts.
What was supposed to be a glorious triumph for Iraq has turned into an exhausting war of attrition.
The individual most directly responsible for a colossal humanitarian crisis is still in power – and might be for some time.
A Syrian architect reveals what makes her home town so special – and how locals can rebuild it.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Russian leader Vladimir Putin met in Moscow this week.
While US officials have consistently maintained that American military domination is essential, a resurgent Russia poses challenges.
Tokyo turns out for its returning athletes after the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
Since the 1970s, several Asian countries, such as China, Japan, and South Korea, have strongly increased their influence in the Olympic movement.
A family catches Mardi Gras beads during the Krewe of Thoth parade down St. Charles Avenue in 2000.
Each Mardi Gras, 25 million pounds of beads hit the streets of New Orleans. One researcher went to the Chinese factories that make them – and spoke to the workers who believe the beads will be given to royalty.