Dispatches: Roots of a Fragmented Middle East

This piece has been published on The Hindu thREAD.

Nearly eight years have passed since that fateful December in 2010 when Mohamed Bouazizi, a Tunisian street vendor, set himself alight on the streets of Sidi Bouzid to protest repeated mistreatment by local police and the impossibility of earning a living wage in the country. That event kicked off the Arab Spring, which spread rapidly to other parts of the Arab world and led to millions of people demonstrating against oppressive, authoritarian regimes and the ineffective governance that had prevailed for years. Continue reading “Dispatches: Roots of a Fragmented Middle East”

“Songs of a Dead Laughter, Songs of Love Once Hot…”

June 2012
Denver, Colorado

Ever since I first heard of her, Gertrude Margaret Lowthian Bell has been a source of fascination to me. She was a lot of things—writer, traveller, political officer, an influential woman in a man’s domain and yet someone who vehemently opposed women’s suffrage—but she is perhaps best known for her contribution to British policy-making with regard to the Middle East, where she worked alongside the likes of Lawrence of Arabia and King Faisal of Iraq. Continue reading ““Songs of a Dead Laughter, Songs of Love Once Hot…””