Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Europe and Immigrants

Politicians as well as the wider public have recently started to discuss the failure of the exclusive approach toward immigrants in Europe, the multiculturalism. On one hand, politization of the whole issue emphasizing the immigrants’ role in the process of socio-economic destabilization within the receiving country’s society is often linked to populism of politicians to whom it serves as widening their electoral base. On the other hand, a rise of right-wing extremism and islamophobia reflects changes in perception over diversified societies of different ethnic minorities and consequently the changes towards multicultural approach as such.
The skip from a pure liberalism to a distrustful neo-conservatism has been significantly increased after the attacks of 9/11. This event and its linkage to Samuel Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations seen through the prism of reasons for Islamic terrorism brought an irrational hysteria onto a public scene.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Egyptian-Iranian Relations Resurrection: Beyond the Prism of With Us or Against Us

At the end of March, hot news about restoring diplomatic ties between Iran and Egypt appeared in the international media. This news churned up the international scene’s waters since the general awareness refers to the non-existence of full diplomatic ties since the Iranian Islamic revolution in 1979 when the relationship between these two countries collapsed. Consequently the relations were officially cut off after the Camp David agreements in the same year due to Egypt's diplomatic ties with Israel, which Iran does not recognize. Despite the fact that the establishment of full diplomatic relations and the appointment of new Ambassadors was later denied by both countries, an interesting debate may occur once the manner of this news’ depiction is discussed.

Islam in Europe: Object of Orientalism and Securitization

Europe as a relatively small area in comparison to other continent was never a homogenous place. European lands differed in culture, political establishment, and after the end of the Thirty Years’ War, officially even in religion. The new levels of globalization, however, cause a cultural blending Europe has never experienced before. At this time a faraway Islam of a modern history’s ‘orientalism’ became an every day’s reality present in all European countries. Irrespectively of this fact,

Iran's Membership of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women: Step Forward or Political Game?

While Iran is often described as a country with an expansive history, hospitable people and a deep cultural heritage, it is, unfortunately, its nuclear programme which has raised international attention of the Islamic republic and has turned Iran into one of the most widely discussed polities on earth. Following 9/11, Iran was castigated by the US as a ‘sponsor of terrorism' and cornered (together with Iraq and North Korea) as belonging to the ‘Axis of Evil,' and, recently, the enduring US-led sanctions regime was reinforced by the EU's own targeted sanctions, further depleting the country's economic position and, by extension, its political influence. In addition to its nuclear programme, most critics of Iran focus on its attitude towards human rights which invariably includes women rights.