Manan Ahmed argues that violence over attempts to remove Pakistan's blasphemy laws reveal less about the crass “Islamisation” of the Pakistani public, and more about an entrenched political program that routinely marshals potent symbols against critical voices.
This report from Stratfor Global Intelligence analyzes the recent increase in anti-Christian attacks by Islamists in Egypt, and explains the historical context that has led to an uncertain political future for the country.
The recent bombing of a Coptic Church in Egypt underscores deep sectarian tensions and reflects the need for a more open and tolerant society, says CFR's Steven Cook, but Egypt's government would rather ignore underlying political causes.
Mohamad Bazzi says last year's unrest and violent crackdown in Iran were actually battles in a larger war that has been raging for centuries within Shiism: a struggle over who should rule the faithful, and how.
Mohamad Bazzi says that as Nouri al-Maliki has finally cobbled together Iraq's new government, the bitter compromises and power-sharing deals are likely to unleash a sectarian clash between Shias, the minority Sunnis, and Kurds.
CFR Senior Fellow for Africa Policy Studies John Campbell discusses the relations between Muslims and Christians in Nigeria. Campbell emphasizes that where religious divisions correspond to ethnic and economic differences, conflict often acquire a religious coloration.
Experts say Islamic law, or sharia, holds wide appeal for Muslim populations in many countries and is beginning to spread via democratic means, but it is also being used as a tool of Islamic militancy and extremism.
Gayle Tzemach Lemmon says that even though Bibi Aisha, the Afghan teenager maimed by her Taliban-sympathizing husband and his family, has relocated to the United States, her story does not yet have a happy ending.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.
The authors argue that it is essential to begin working now to expand and establish rules and norms governing armed drones, thereby creating standards of behavior that other countries will be more likely to follow.
The author examines Pakistan's complex role in U.S. foreign policy and advocates for a two-pronged approach that works to quarantine threats while integrating Pakistan into the broader U.S. agenda in Asia.