Editorial note – December 2013

Since our inaugural edition in December 2012, the editorial team at Asfar have been fortunate to work with a fantastic number of young writers and photographers. This edition of Asfar would not have been possible without their hard work and dedication and we are keen that the growing interest and engagement in the journal can … Continued

Dilemmas of Nuclear Negotiation: Netanyahu versus Rouhani

The presidency of Hassan Rouhani has ushered in a wave of hope for Iranians and non-Iranians alike. The standoff over Iran’s nuclear program, exacerbated by conservative president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s messianic prophecies, has left many Iranian nationals and the international community in search of a solution for peace. The recent election this summer of the moderate … Continued

How do you Solve a Problem Like Migrant Workers?

Migrant workers from far-flung and often less economically developed countries come to the oil-rich Kingdom of Kuwait in search wealth and prosperity. However, the reality is often far removed from this ideal; so what exactly is happening on the ground? The concept of citizenship relates to both a person’s legal status and their official rights … Continued

Caravans, Yörüks and the Balkar Mountains

When it comes to the last term of the penultimate year, every student is thinking about the topic of their dissertation. The thesis, which will cap off there undergraduate life, and for some will be the foundation of future learning, research and even greatness in their subject of choice. For others it will be just … Continued

Chasing fair chimneys in Cappadocia

Cappadocia’s combination of fairy chimneys, rock-cut churches, and cave dwellings make for a unique, visually stunning landscape that brings to mind a lunar surface or an abandoned film set from a science fiction movie. Through the ages, Cappadocia has been home to Persian aristocrats, Byzantine armies, persecuted Christians, and Seljuk warriors, and its storied history … Continued

The role of social media in the Syrian Crisis

In 2011 I was in Syria when the so-called “revolution” started, after a few weeks one thing became clear: social media would play a pivotal role in this crisis. In a country such as Syria, where information is held by a dictatorial government, social media has became fundamental in “shaping how the crisis is portrayed … Continued

The Diversification of the Emirati Economy

The leadership of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) understands the perils of rentier state economics and has worked diligently in recent decades to diversify its economy away from exclusive reliance on oil revenues. The Emirate of Dubai is the most striking example of this long-term push toward diversification. Billing itself as an ‘international city,’ Dubai … Continued

Lebanon: The Next Syria?

Strategically situated on the coast of the Eastern Mediterranean, and bordered by Syria to the north and east and Israel to the south, is Lebanon. Historically, Lebanon has been a fragile state, attempting to reconcile the interests of seventeen official religious sects. It is no stranger to conflict, which has been inflicted on the country … Continued

Locked out of Baghdad: The Faili Saga

The 2003 removal of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein triggered a host of changes to the state and entirety of the Middle East. One of the more positive developments within post-Ba’athist Iraq has been the steady improvement in conditions for the Kurdish population and the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG). While the internationally recognised semi-autonomous zone, Kurdistan, … Continued

All writers' views in articles are their own and do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Asfar team.

Published by Asfar in London, UK - ISSN 2055-7957 (Online)