News and Analysis (9/21/14)

“Tribal leaders hold the town up as an example of how the conflict with the Islamic State can be won, as the war brings together unusual allies against a common enemy…. Sunni tribesmen, the police and the Iraqi army fight side by side on the front lines of Thuluyah … joined by Shiite militias that are notorious for revenge killings”:

“Many observers expressed disbelief that the ruthless militant group would have relinquished such a big bargaining chip without getting something in return…. Erdogan denied having paid a ransom, although he was far less categorical when asked whether the government had swapped prisoners with the terror group”:

“Tens of thousands of Syrian Kurds crossed into Turkey Friday, fearing an imminent attack on the town of Ayn al-Arab. The border town is considered necessary for the militants to consolidate their gains across northern Syria”:

“Hawthi rebels captured the state television building on Saturday. Interior Minister Hussein al-Terb issued a statement Sunday calling on policemen in the capital to ‘cooperate’ with the Hawthis in maintaining security, a move seen as an attempt to stop the city from descending into lawlessness”:

“In Western feminist thought, religion is generally a tool of patriarchy. But for many Muslim women, religion is seen as a source of liberation rather than a source of oppression”:

“Families who have not succeeded in conceiving boys will designate young girls as honorary sons, allowing them to roam freely and masquerade as boys, with the tacit acceptance of others in their communities. At adolescence, most are switched back to young women, a transformation that can be traumatic”:

“Away from their bosses some of the younger ones express a wish for a return to the challenging journalism aimed at the government that characterised the revolution of 2011, but none felt able to say this openly. This extends to an apparent lack of concern over the detention of political opponents and the jailing of journalists”:

The Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan “acknowledged deep flaws in the June 14 run-off vote and said a U.N.-supervised audit was not adequate to weed out all the vote-rigging….. Ghani will share power with a chief executive proposed by Abdullah. The two will share control over who leads key institutions”:

“A backlash of hate crimes against the Muslim community after the police raids last week has also sparked a rash of social media comments such as ‘this is how they should deal with them’, ‘behead them all’, ‘give them a taste of their own medicine for a change’ and ‘we just need to blow up parramatta n bankstown'”:


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