The Problem with Abu Bakr, Osama Bin Laden and Zarqawi: An explanation of Arabic names

Writing about and covering Muslim jihadi militancy for more than half a decade now, I realise that Westerners, analysts, journalists or otherwise find Arab names extremely difficult to grasp. One of the questions I have been asked countless times by the uninitiated is: why is every single Jihadi militant named… Read more“The Problem with Abu Bakr, Osama Bin Laden and Zarqawi: An explanation of Arabic names”

To the Mountains: My Life in Jihad, from Algeria to Afghanistan

  Description The Algerian Islamist Abdullah Anas, ‘perhaps the greatest warrior of the Afghan Arabs’, fought the Soviet Union for a decade. As one of the earliest Arabs to join the Afghan jihad, he counted as brothers-in-arms the future icons of Al-Qaeda’s global war, from Abdullah Azzam to Osama bin… Read more“To the Mountains: My Life in Jihad, from Algeria to Afghanistan”

An Interview with Youssef Rakha: Author of The Book of the Sultan’s Seal

Youssef Rakha is the author of The Book of the Sultan’s Seal: Strange Incidents from History in the City of Mars.  Cairo where Rakha lives and works, is at the heart of much of his work. His vision is particularly interesting in the light of the Egyptian revolution. It echoes the general dissatisfaction… Read more“An Interview with Youssef Rakha: Author of The Book of the Sultan’s Seal”