Diplomacy behind Russia’s Syrian bombs

Obama and Putin’s hopes of rescuing the country from disintegration look overblown already

A boy, a cool clock and an American dream

Ahmed’s time experiment could be the best thing that’s ever happened to him

Putin keeps the west guessing in Syria

The Russian president appears to have shifted gear. And that has caught the US off guard

The blame game after a child’s tragic death

Though the world’s focus has been on Isis, the Assad regime still kills many more Syrians

Journalists, repression and ‘conspiracy’

Some governments use their courts to silence media critics or force them into dubious confessions

Matt Kenyon illustration
©Matt Kenyon

The real cost of the Iran deal

The US has fallen into the trap of appeasing the Islamic Republic’s rivals, not Tehran

Something rotten in the state of Lebanon

Support for the You Reek campaign has come from all religions and ethnicities

A Beirut house and the memories beneath

Reluctance to delve into the past is a reason why Lebanon has teetered on the brink of new conflict

Budapest’s battle of the billboards

A one-man party is taking on Viktor Orban, the authoritarian Hungarian prime minister

Netanyahu tweets against Iran deal

The Israeli prime minister launched a Twitter feed the day before the nuclear agreement – in Farsi

The ‘name game’ for Syria after Assad

Talk of a Syrian regime collapse is back in vogue and with it whispers of a new leader

Soap opera casts Islamists as bad guys

The programme’s political message is that President Al-Sisi is returning Egypt to its true nature

Britain deploys soft power against Isis

The government is to commit to a new UK fund to protect cultural property during armed conflict

Tourists meet Mediterranean boat people

Interaction between visitors and refugees feeds anti-immigration sentiment

Humour as a weapon in the fight with Isis

Anti-Isis satirical TV series, songs, plays and sketches are proliferating

Turkey’s Erdogan borrows some bad habits

The president seems to combine many vices in a single leadership

German scholars illuminate sacred book

The Corpus Coranicum project builds on tradition of Koranic study halted by the Third Reich

Saudi vies for Great Satan status in Iran

Persian-Arab enmity goes back centuries; Iranian-US hostility is only a few decades old

Art replaces adverts in the Islamic Republic

The billboard exhibition is a welcome distraction for some

Lebanon takes on its traffic problems

Unable to tackle the big issues, ministers are trying to improve citizens’ lives in small ways


Roula Khalaf Roula Khalaf is foreign editor and an associate editor of the Financial Times. She has worked for the FT since 1995, first as north Africa correspondent, then Middle East correspondent and most recently as Middle East editor. Before joining the FT, she was a staff writer for Forbes magazine in New York.

Roula oversees the FT's network of foreign correspondents and bureaus. She writes regularly on global politics and business.

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