Category Archives: Uncategorized

How it feels to dig up Bosnia’s war dead

More than 30,000 people were missing after the conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina in the 1990s. After excavations from mass graves, DNA testing has helped to identify more than two-thirds of the bodies. How does it feel to meet the war dead? … Continue reading

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Hezbollah goes back to its roots in Lebanon: “We feel brave when we shout ‘Death to Israel’”

Thousands of people marched through Hezbollah’s stronghold in the southern suburbs of Beirut on Monday to protest US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The militia and political party organised the rally, “in solidarity with … Continue reading

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Thoughts from 2016 – no fiction is more interesting than reality

One day, Hollywood will make a film based on these people’s death and suffering, I thought, as I watched in horror the photos drop of crowds fleeing Aleppo in late December. And it will be sick and horrible, and, too … Continue reading

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An aside: anorexia will not finish with me

I have not written a first-person piece in a very long time and I do not intend to make them a regular thing. There are many other stories to be told. But the time was right for this one.  “I … Continue reading

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Eid al-Fitr for Syrians in Saidon: Assad’s eyes are everywhere

Youssef looked disgusted. “I cannot look at him”, he said, of the president of his country, Bashar al-Assad. It was the eve of Eid al-Fitr in the southern Lebanese city of Sidon. The 28-year-old carpenter from Latakia in Syria knew … Continue reading

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Gaziantep’s restaurateur from Palmyra

In the Orjinal Halep Lokantasi, paper-thin bread is singeing on a hot metal plate. The baker smoothes spicy muhamarra – crushed nuts and peppers –across the oval and covers it with flutters of salty cheese. This hot, thin sandwich is … Continue reading

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The bizarre charade of Merkel’s refugee camp visit

It is difficult to create original stories or interesting copy from press junkets. There is an inherent difficulty in writing on occasions organised by people whose job it is to control the media. But there was something altogether more bizarre … Continue reading

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