Middle East

Israel threatens Iran over Bulgarian bombing

By Peter Symonds, 21 July 2012

The real purpose behind Israel’s unsubstantiated denunciations of Tehran is to create the pretext for military strikes on Iran.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

20 July 2012

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US navy fires on fishing vessel in Persian Gulf

By Peter Symonds, 19 July 2012

The incident reflects the deliberate heightening of tensions in the region by the US as it prepares for war against Iran.

The self-immolation of Moshe Silman

By Chris Marsden, 19 July 2012

The self-immolation of Moshe Silman raises fundamental questions of political perspective before workers and youth in Israel and throughout the Middle East.

Israeli man immolates himself over social crisis

By Patrick Martin, 18 July 2012

Moshe Silman, 57, was comatose and in critical condition at a hospital in Tel Hashomer after setting himself on fire at a protest over homelessness and destitution.

Clinton renews military threat against Iran

By Peter Symonds, 17 July 2012

In recent months, the Pentagon has built up its forces in or near the Persian Gulf.

Cyprus the focus of escalating regional tensions

By Jordan Shilton, 14 July 2012

The government of Cyprus has indicated its intention to seek financial support from Russia, even as officials from the European Union (EU), European Central Bank (ECB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) determine the requirements of a potential bailout.

Palestinian Authority to exhume Yasser Arafat’s body to test polonium murder claim

By Jean Shaoul, 6 July 2012

The Palestinian Authority has announced that it will exhume the body of Yasser Arafat, the president of the PA who died in a French hospital in November 2004.

Workers Struggles: Europe & Africa

6 July 2012

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US-Iran confrontation enters dangerous new stage

By Peter Symonds, 5 July 2012

The Obama administration has declared that all options, including the military one, remain on the table if Tehran fails to bow to US demands.

US escalates military threat against Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 4 July 2012

The Obama administration has carried out a major buildup of military forces in the Persian Gulf as economic sanctions imposed by both the US and the European Union have sharply escalated tensions with Iran.

US expands military intervention into Yemen

By Will Morrow, 4 July 2012

What is being presented as an offensive against the local Al Qaeda affiliate is in reality an intervention to prop up the widely despised Yemeni regime.

US and EU impose crippling sanctions on Iran

By Peter Symonds, 2 July 2012

Together with harsh new US penalties, the EU oil embargo can only raise tensions in the Persian Gulf, heightening the danger of military conflict.

Saudi Arabia—a social tinderbox

By Jean Shaoul, 2 July 2012

No less than in any of the other countries in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia is a social tinderbox.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

29 June 2012

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US-backed Bahrain regime upholds jail sentences for doctors and nurses

By Will Morrow, 28 June 2012

The medics were arrested during a wave of repression in March 2011 and sentenced to up to fifteen years in prison after they treated protesters wounded by security forces.

Israeli police arrest social protest movement leader and break up demonstrations

By Jean Shaoul, 27 June 2012

Israeli riot police have detained dozens of activists demanding social justice, after violently breaking up demonstrations.

US seeks casus belli

Downed Turkish jet pretext for new provocations against Syria

By Joseph Kishore, 26 June 2012

The major imperialist powers, led by the United States, have issued a series of bellicose statements after Syria shot down a Turkish war plane that had entered its airspace.

Washington’s hypocrisy over Russian arms in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 23 June 2012

Western denunciations of Russia for sending back refurbished helicopters to Syria recall nothing so much as the old adage, “Do as I say, not as I do.”

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

22 June 2012

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International talks on Iran’s nuclear program fail

By Peter Symonds, 21 June 2012

The Moscow summit broke up with no further talks planned between the major powers and Iran other than a low-level technical meeting in Istanbul.

Washington’s “democratic” hypocrisy: The cases of Egypt and Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 20 June 2012

The hypocrisy of US imperialism’s pretense of promoting democracy on the world arena is manifest in Washington’s markedly different reactions to the Iranian elections of 2009 and the recent military coup in Egypt.

Bleak prospects for talks on Iran’s nuclear program

By Peter Symonds, 16 June 2012

If negotiations fail, as appears likely, tensions will rapidly escalate with the imposition of harsh new sanctions on Iran and the heightened threat of a US or Israeli military attack.

Threat of war grows in the Caucasus

By Clara Weiss, 15 June 2012

In the southern Caucasus, where US interests collide with those of Russia and Iran, there is a growing danger of war between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh.

Workers Struggles: Europe & Africa

15 June 2012

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New wave of sectarian violence in Iraq kills more than 70

By David Walsh, 14 June 2012

A series of bombs exploded in various parts of Iraq on Wednesday in the midst of Shi’ite pilgrims marking a major religious festival, killing more than 70 people.

US excludes China from Iran sanctions waiver

By Peter Symonds, 13 June 2012

The new sanctions form part of escalating US threats, including of military strikes, to force Iran to shut down key aspects of its nuclear program.

Cyprus prepares for euro bailout

By Markus Salzmann, 13 June 2012

Cyprus is set to be the fifth of the 17 euro area countries to apply for money from the European bailout fund.

IAEA talks on Iran’s nuclear program collapse

By Peter Symonds, 11 June 2012

The failure of the International Atomic Energy Agency talks sets the stage for a breakdown of the broader international negotiations next week in Moscow.

Workers Struggles: Europe & Africa

8 June 2012

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Growing tensions between Iran and Azerbaijan

By Clara Weiss, 5 June 2012

The reason for strained relations is Azerbaijan’s close collaboration with the United States and Israel in war preparations against Iran.

Obama oversees cyber warfare against Iran

By Peter Symonds, 4 June 2012

The cyber attacks were acts of sabotage that destroyed uranium enrichment centrifuges and forced Iranian technicians to shut down many more.

Conflict over Syria threatens Lebanon’s stability

By Jean Shaoul, 4 June 2012

Lebanon’s government despatched troops to Tripoli, the Libyan capital, after sectarian clashes killed 10 on Saturday.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

1 June 2012

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Washington Post airs another unlikely Iranian assassination plot

By Peter Symonds, 31 May 2012

The article, which claims US officials in Azerbaijan were targetted by Iran, is another attempt to blacken Tehran as new sanctions and war loom.

Tensions with Iran rise after failed Baghdad talks

By Peter Symonds, 29 May 2012

The Baghdad meeting last week broke up without any agreement other than a decision to hold a further round of talks next month in Moscow.

Israel’s ruling Likud party incites racist attacks on migrants

By Jean Shaoul, 28 May 2012

Racist attacks injured dozens of asylum seekers, following a rally where leading members of the ruling Likud party made inflammatory remarks against African migrants.

Iranian nuclear talks on brink of collapse

By Peter Symonds, 25 May 2012

Two days of negotiations in Baghdad between Iran and the major powers were only salvaged through a last minute proposal for another meeting in Moscow next month.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

25 May 2012

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Baghdad talks on Iran’s nuclear program unresolved

By Peter Symonds, 24 May 2012

Sharp differences emerged after the US and its allies unveiled proposals requiring major concessions by Iran, but offering little in return.

Palestinian hunger strike ended after Egypt’s intervention

By Jean Shaoul, 23 May 2012

Palestinian prisoners have accepted a deal brokered by Egypt to end their hunger strike in protest against Israel’s use of detention without charge or trial and the inhuman conditions they face in jail.

Gulf monarchies and US foment sectarian clashes in Lebanon

By Jean Shaoul, 18 May 2012

Several days of clashes in and around Tripoli between Sunni Islamists and Alawites have left 10 people dead, 50 wounded and several kidnapped.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

18 May 2012

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US drone strikes kill civilians in Yemen

By Bill Van Auken, 17 May 2012

Missile strikes by US drones claimed the lives of at least a dozen civilians in Yemen’s southern Abyan province Tuesday.

US intensifies confrontation with Iran

By Peter Symonds, 14 May 2012

If the Baghdad talks next week collapse, the danger of military conflict initiated by Israel or the US will rise dramatically.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

11 May 2012

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Israel’s national unity government prepares ground for war

By Jean Shaoul, 10 May 2012

Less than two days after calling an early general election for September 4th, Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu announced that he had instead brought the opposition Kadima party into his coalition.

Netanyahu predicted to call early Israeli election

By Jean Shaoul, 7 May 2012

Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu is expected to announce a snap election for September.

Berlin: Israelis and Iranians protest danger of war in the Middle East

By our correspondents, 7 May 2012

Several hundred Israelis, Iranians and German citizens demonstrated in Berlin on Saturday against US and Israeli preparations for war against Iran.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

4 May 2012

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US deploys F-22 fighter jets in threat to Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 2 May 2012

The Pentagon has dispatched F-22 Raptors, its most advanced warplanes, to the United Arab Emirates in a provocative escalation of US war threats against Iran.

US steps up drone war in Yemen

By Patrick Martin, 27 April 2012

Dozens have been killed by US drone-fired missiles in Yemen, in addition to the hundreds slaughtered in Pakistan.

Yemeni president announces cosmetic changes to military

By Will Morrow, 25 April 2012

The reshuffle leaves the military hierarchy intact and relatives of former President Saleh in charge of key sections of the security apparatus.

Demonstrator shot dead ahead of Bahrain Grand Prix

By Jean Shaoul, 23 April 2012

Bahrain security forces shot dead an anti-government demonstrator, Salah Abbas Habib Musa, after angry clashes with the police on Friday night.

Mass protests in Bahrain in advance of Grand Prix auto race

By David Walsh, 21 April 2012

In advance of Sunday’s Grand Prix, tens of thousands of protesters took to a major highway in Bahrain Friday to demand democratic rights and called for the downfall of the country’s autocratic regime.

CIA seeks to widen assassination campaign in Yemen

By Patrick Martin, 20 April 2012

The Washington Post reported Thursday that the proposal for expanded killing authority was being discussed in the Obama White House.

Israel repeats military threat against Iran

By Peter Symonds, 19 April 2012

Defence Minister Ehud Barak made clear that an Israeli attack on Iran was possible, even as international talks proceeded.

Syria and Bahrain

By Bill Van Auken, 18 April 2012

While the US and its allies declare the ceasefire in Syria a failure and invoke human rights and democracy to justify stepped up intervention, these same powers turn a blind eye to the escalating crackdown in Bahrain.

Israel blocks pro-Palestinian “flytilla”

By Jean Shaoul, 17 April 2012

Israel mounted a massive international effort at the weekend to prevent pro-Palestinian activists from entering Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion international airport, en route for Bethlehem in the West Bank, to join the “Welcome to Palestine 2012” campaign.

Despite talks, US-Iran confrontation continues

By Peter Symonds, 16 April 2012

None of the substantive issues was discussed, let alone resolved, amid the threat of further sanctions and US and Israeli attacks on Iran.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

13 April 2012

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Stop the warmongers! Defend Günter Grass!

By Wolfgang Weber, 11 April 2012

The campaign of defamation against one of the world’s best known writers, a recipient of the Nobel Prize for literature and many other awards, makes clear that the German ruling class and its counterparts in Washington and Tel Aviv are intent on intimidating and silencing anyone who dares criticise the preparations for war against Iran.

US, Israel issue ultimatums to Iran

By Peter Symonds, 10 April 2012

The provocative demands prior to international talks set to begin Friday are intended to make any deal to end the US confrontation with Iran highly unlikely.

Israel: Documents show Defence Ministry planned West Bank land grabs

By Jean Shaoul, 10 April 2012

Recently released documents show that Israel’s Civil Administration, part of the Defence Ministry, has long earmarked up to 10 percent of the West Bank for new settlements or the expansion of existing ones.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

6 April 2012

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Obama gives green light for punishing sanctions on Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 3 April 2012

President Obama has issued the green light for punishing US economic sanctions aimed at forcing the Iranian government to submit to Western pressure over its nuclear program by starving the country of oil revenues.

The award-winning A Separation and the humanity of the Iranian people

By David Walsh, 30 March 2012

The US government and military-intelligence apparatus is relentlessly and recklessly driving toward war against Iran. Asghar Farhadi’s film A Separation offers a rare glimpse into the reality of Iranian society.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

30 March 2012

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Obama’s nuclear disarmament hoax

By Peter Symonds, 29 March 2012

The slogan of “disarmament” is one means used by the ruling classes to dupe working people as war is prepared.

Israelis protest war with Iran

By our correspondent, 28 March 2012

Saturday saw the first public demonstration in Israel opposing war against Iran.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

23 March 2012

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Nine years after the invasion of Iraq

By Peter Symonds, 22 March 2012

The absence of a mass anti-war movement today raises critical questions about the failure of the 2003 protests and how to renew the struggle against militarism and war.

US war game foreshadows Israeli attack on Iran

By Peter Symonds, 21 March 2012

The Pentagon exercise concluded that a strike on Iran would lead to a wider regional war involving the US.

Israel threatens Iran, continues air strikes against Gaza

By Jean Shaoul, 19 March 2012

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has insisted that Israel would act to defend itself against Iran even if Washington objected.

Obama menaces Iran with military threat

By Peter Symonds, 17 March 2012

Washington reportedly asked Moscow to tell Iran that it had one “last chance” to reach a negotiated settlement and avoid US military action.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

16 March 2012

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Israel expands deadly air strikes on Gaza

By Jean Shaoul, 13 March 2012

Israel on Monday carried out air strikes on Gaza for the fourth successive day, killing at least 22 Palestinians

Massive anti-government protest in Bahrain

By Tom Eley, 10 March 2012

On Friday, tens of thousands demonstrated against the monarchist regime in Bahrain, a key US ally in the Middle East.

Obama reiterates war threats as Iran, major powers agree to new talks

By Barry Grey, 7 March 2012

After a bellicose speech before a pro-Israel lobbying group and a White House meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, President Obama reiterated the US readiness to attack Iran.

The New York Times and “liberal” warmongering against Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 7 March 2012

The New York Times tried Tuesday to maneuver between Israel’s threats of imminent strikes against Iran and the Obama administration’s strategy of allowing crippling economic sanctions to force Tehran into submission before launching a shooting war.

Obama, Netanyahu discuss Iran war options

By Patrick Martin, 6 March 2012

The White House talks followed Obama’s speech to the principal Israeli lobby group in Washington, pledging support for Israel in any future military confrontation.

Arming of Syria’s opposition stepped up as demand for safe havens grows

By Chris Marsden, 6 March 2012

The Gulf States have now declared arming the Syrian opposition their policy, after months of doing so covertly.

Khamenei supporters win in Iran legislative elections

By Niall Green, 5 March 2012

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his clerical allies consolidated their hold over the government in Friday’s Iranian parliamentary elections.

Obama hardens threat of war against Iran

By Peter Symonds, 5 March 2012

Citing the maxim “speak softly and carry a big stick,” Obama warned: “Rest assured that the Iranian government will know of our resolve.”

Hamas aligns itself with US imperialism against Syria, Iran

By Sahand Avedis, 1 March 2012

Hamas leader Ismail Haniya delivered a speech in Cairo endorsing Syria’s Western-backed opposition and thereby confirming speculation that the Palestinian Islamist movement has found new patrons among the Middle East’s most reactionary regimes.

US, Britain gear up for war on Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 28 February 2012

The military commands in both the US and Britain have sought increased funding and stepped up deployments of arms and personnel in preparation for an anticipated war against Iran.

Israel steps up repression in occupied Palestinian territories

By Jean Shaoul, 28 February 2012

On Friday, Israeli forces fired on Palestinian protesters at a checkpoint near Ramallah in the West Bank, killing one young man and injuring four more.

Syrian conflict destabilizes Lebanon

By Niall Green, 27 February 2012

The conflict in Syria, where US-backed “rebels” are fighting the government of Bashar al-Assad, is exacerbating tensions in neighboring Lebanon.

Yemen: US-brokered presidential elections held with single candidate

By Will Morrow, 25 February 2012

The current vice president was the only candidate in Tuesday’s presidential elections, which are part of a US-brokered deal that maintains the existing regime.

US pressures India to back sanctions against Iran

By Deepal Jayasekera, 25 February 2012

While India has attempted to place some distance between itself and the US, New Delhi has repeatedly succumbed to pressure to back US policy against Iran.

IAEA inspection team intensifies pressure on Iran

By Peter Symonds, 21 February 2012

If Iran fails to satisfy the inspectors, the way is open for a negative report, escalating sanctions and military threats by the US and its allies.

US-backed Bahraini regime continues repression

By Niall Green, 18 February 2012

The crackdown on protests in Bahrain continued this week, with repeated police attacks on working class neighborhoods and protests.

US, Israel invoke terror to ratchet up war threats against Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 17 February 2012

Both Washington and Israel have seized upon a string of abortive bomb plots in India, Georgia and Thailand to escalate threats against Iran.

US-backed regime crushes protest in Bahrain

By Bill Van Auken, 15 February 2012

In the midst of drumming up support for a “Friends of Syria” gathering next week, the US government lent its backing to the brutal suppression of a mass demonstration against the dictatorial monarchy that rules Bahrain.

US navy prepared for war against Iran

By Peter Symonds, 14 February 2012

The remarks of Admiral Fox contain a barely concealed warning that the US navy was “ready today” to attack Iran.

Further revelations of Australian involvement in Iraq war crimes

By Will Morrow, 13 February 2012

The Guardian obtained secret US documents showing Australian forces played an “integral” role in operations at an illegal prison in Iraq in 2003.

Ongoing atrocities by NATO-installed Libyan regime

By Will Morrow, 11 February 2012

The war crimes and abuses being perpetrated by the TNC regime further expose the claims that the NATO allies intervened for humanitarian purposes to rescue the Libyan people from violent repression.

French law forbidding denial of Armenian genocide sent to Constitutional Council

By Antoine Lerougetel, 9 February 2012

On January 31a law penalising the denial of the Armenian genocide was referred to France’s Constitutional Council.

US and Israel in “lockstep” against Iran

By Peter Symonds, 8 February 2012

While publicly calling for a “diplomatic solution,” the White House is coordinating closely with Israel as it prepares military strikes on Iran’s nuclear facilities.

US war provocations against Syria

By Alex Lantier, 6 February 2012

Washington and its imperialist allies in Europe are escalating preparations for a full-scale military intervention in Syria.