This Week in the Middle East

This Week in the Middle East

William Morris, Secretary General of the Next Century Foundation, discusses the new political issues of the week, with a particular focus on developments in the Middle East.

Episodes

January 1, 2022 24 min

William Morris, the Next Century Foundation's Secretary General,  gave this New Year's message for 2022. His podcast focuses on:

  • Though there are troubles in the Middle East, in Iraq, Palestine, Libya, Yemen, Bahrain and Afghanistan, there's hope
  • Though the great powers are predatory, there's hope
  • Though the environment is under threat, there's hope
  • Though the pandemic is killing millions, there's hope
  • Though we ...
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    SUFISM: a meeting on Rumi's concept of and approach to spiritual health and wellbeing. Note that this subject will be addressed by Ayatollah Safavi, the Head of the Safavid Sufi movement. 

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    December 3, 2021 14 min

    William Morris, Secretary General of the Next century Foundation, was asked to give a message to Iran for the Tehran conference titled "Future of Human Rights in West Asia" under the auspices of the Tehran based Foundation for Dialogue and Solidarity with the United Nations.
    William particularly emphasised Iran's initiatives in Iraq.

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    October 29, 2021 15 min

    The core principles which could be embodied in a secure and final peace settlement between Israel and Palestine. 

    LAND SWAP

    Since the 1990s, land swap has become part of the negotiations between Israel and Palestine. However, the disagreement on the principles from both sides undermines the formation of a consensus on the land swap issue. 

    In order to fulfill Palestine’s requirements on the completion of its sovereignty and Israel’s s...

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    Germany's Abrahamfests had an environmental edge this year. And Germany certainly talks the talk, but does it actually walk the walk?

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    William Morris reflects on his conversations with Lieutenant General Abd-al-Ameer Yarallah, Chief of Staff of the Iraq Army; Mr Adnan al-Fayhan MP; Mr Ahmad al-Asadi MP; General Jabbar Yawar, Secretary General of KRG's Ministry of Peshmerga; Hadi al Amri, the overall commander of the Hashid; NSA boss Kasem Alaraji; and ISCI Head Sheikh Homan Hamoudi.

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    William Morris talks with Lieutenant General Abd-al-Ameer Yarallah, Chief of Staff of the Iraq Army; Mr Adnan al-Fayhan MP; Mr Ahmad al-Asadi MP; and General Jabbar Yawar, Secretary General of KRG's Ministry of Peshmerga.

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    William Morris at the Rafidain Forum in Baghdad listening to and questioning Ammar al Hakeem, Head of the National State Powers Alliance, in regard to the controversial forthcoming elections in Iraq - themselves a response to the street protests against corruption.

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    September 24, 2021 13 min

    William Morris offers a few reflections from Baghdad, sharing thoughts garnered at the Rafidain conference from President Barham Saleh of Iraq, Mohamed al-Halbousi the Speaker of Iraq, Turkey's Ambassador Ali Riza Guney and Lieutenant General Abdul-Wahab al-Sa'idi of the Iraq Counter-Terrorism Service on issues including relationships with Syria, the forthcoming elections in Iraq, the PKK and terrorism.

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    August 18, 2021 10 min

    The Next Century Foundation has been in discussion with Taliban representatives through the good auspices of Prince Nadir Naim's Kabul Institute for Peace. Prince Nadir remains in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover. So too many of the Next Century Foundation's Afghan friends. These reflections follow on from discussions in recent days with friends left behind in Kabul.

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    The Next Century Foundation's Secretary General, William Morris, gives an Eid Message, in the aftermath of the Feast of the Sacrifice and in the run up to Islam's New Year for 1443.

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    Afghanistan has been lost to the Taliban and we are complicit in that loss. NCF Secretary General, William Morris LL.D., expresses his concerns and suggests one or two measures that could be taken to improve the current dire situation.

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    Gaza holds two of Israel's citizens that wandered in through a hole in the fence. Arguably they were not of sound mind at the time. Hamas also hold the bodies of two soldiers. There is talk of an exchange of prisoners. Is this relevant? Perhaps. We have a new government in Israel now. There are all sorts of little opportunities to nudge things in a better direction - perhaps. Anyone for a peace process? Or is that a dream too f...

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    May 29, 2021 14 min

    Are Syria's Presidential elections more a rubber stamp than a victory? That said, perhaps there is indeed the first hint of a new dawn

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    The  Gaza War is over - for now. And the plus side is that Mid East Peace is back on the agenda. However, the “postponed” Palestinian elections look like they could be postponed forever; with the flimsy excuse that Israel won’t allow the elections in East Jerusalem. 

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    On Saturday the Gaza Press Centre was bombed into the ground by the State of Israel in retribution for the Hamas rocket attacks on Israel, even though it bore no culpability for those attacks. The NCF Secretary General makes some observations in this regard.

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    May 11, 2021 22 min

    As Ramadan comes to an end William Morris shares a message for Eid and addresses issues in regard to Afghanistan, Syria, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon and Yemen. 

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    Israel’s fourth elections in two years held on 23rd March 2021 were yet again inconclusive. At stake was whether the electorate would give Benjamin Netanyahu the necessary 61 seats to form a government. A government that, consequently, would provide immunity from his corruption trial. This wasn’t granted, with the pro-Netanyahu bloc gaining 59 seats whilst the anti-Netanyahu bloc won 57 seats in the 120-seat Knesset. This left an u...

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    March 9, 2021 13 min

    As of 2021 the Republic of Yemen has entered its seventh year of conflict - conflict which has led to a disappearing of the socio-political fabric of Yemen’s tentative democratic tradition. Plagued by decades of political instability and rampant sectarianism, Yemen’s conflict can only be remedied through strong governance.

    A country divided between two governments: an internationally recognized government led by President Abdu Rabbu...

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    February 4, 2021 11 min

    Freedom of Speech matters. But does the new Twitter ban on Trump and a whole raft of others that Twitter has added to the list amount to a gross infringement of our democratic rights?

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