Extracting Castro from the Demonization
The mainstream US news media often lacks historical perspective, a problem most acute when the subject, like Fidel Castro, has faced Official Washington’s geopolitical demonization, as Lawrence Davidson explains.
Trump’s Reliance on the Military
Given how militaristic the State Department has become, it might make sense for President-elect Trump to turn to generals for his national security team, but there are risks in that, too, says ex-CIA analyst Melvin A. Goodman.
The Remarkable Story of Fidel Castro
Since Fidel Castro’s death, the mainstream US news media has been on a flashback to the Cold War presenting one-sided denunciations of the “communist dictator,” but there is another side to the story, explains Marjorie Cohn.
Aleppo’s Fate sealed but it Won’t End the Syrian War
The seemingly inevitable rebel collapse in a historic city that was once the heart of Syria’s economy will greatly bolster Assad’s position and his allies in any negotiations to end the war, stresses Ed Blanche.
The Hopes, Fears and Lost Role of Lebanon’s Christians
Absorbed by their own fears, divisions and interests, the Christians have probably missed a golden opportunity to try reconcile Lebanon’s Shias and Sunnis and be the driving force behind establishing a civil state, argues Dalal Saoud.
Publish, Punish, and Pardon
Pratap Chatterjee makes clear today, at least lift the all-enveloping veil of secrecy around the national security state and let the American public know just what has been done in Americans’ name in these years and what exactly is about to be handed over to his edgy successor.
Russia says OPEC, non-OPEC countries to meet in Vienna

Energy ministry says OPEC, non-OPEC members will meet in Austrian capital Saturday to discuss decision to cut global oil output.

Qatar to invest up to $13bn on 'mega projects' in 2017
Turkey seeks trade in local currencies to strengthen lira
OPEC output deal boosts Iran budget
Egypt raises tariffs on some imported goods
Nigeria and Morocco agree joint venture to link Africa to Europe
Erdogan urges Turks to convert currencies to lira
OPEC output cut boosts oil price
Plunging lira buffeted by fears over Turkey's economic performance
Louvre could house threatened treasures from Iraq, Syria

French President Francois Hollande says precious items could be kept at conservation facility due to open in 2019.

Ancient treasures unveiled at Lebanon's national museum
Tangier hosts fourth edition of Europe Orient Documentary Film Festival
Lebanon slaps ban on three films at international festival
Iraq marshlands named UNESCO world heritage site
Muhammad Ali's family prepares funeral
Cannes spotlight on Iranian cinema
Palestinian museum to open without exhibition
Peshmerga documentary makes late entry in Cannes
Egypt toughens penalties for female genital mutilation
Health ministry officials will monitor and oversee clinics and private hospitals to enforce anti-FGM law.
Gazans hope new Coke plant will revitalise economy
First Coca-Cola plant seen as rare positive moment for ailing economy in Hamas-run Gaza Strip.
Alwaleed calls for urgent end to driving ban on Saudi women
Outspoken Saudi billionaire tweets: Stop the debate: Time for women to drive.
Riyadh Motor Show back after three-year absence
Return of motor show has given some hope to car retailers experiencing drop in sales following widespread austerity in Saudi Arabia.
Palestinian start-ups defy unique challenges
Online start-ups avoid many of frustrations for other companies run from Israel-occupied Palestinian territory.
Iraqis near Mosul savour market life once again
New signs of old life are visible in areas close to front line around Mosul and formerly under control of IS extremists.
After hell under ISIS, displaced Iraqis face winter cold
With fighting raging inside Mosul, early winter and sub-zero temperatures bring added challenge.
Al Ain hosts 3rd National Traditional Handicrafts Festival
Festival includes multiple sections, pavilions highlighting authentic culture, heritage of Emirati city of Al Ain.
Swimmers cross shrinking Dead Sea
Charity event sees swimmers travel across the Dead Sea to raise awareness; experts believe degrading sea could dry out by 2050.
Iraqi Christians recall life in the 'caliphate'
Some Iraqi Christians were unable to flee when jihadists swept into their town demanding they either leave, pay tax or die.
Nearly flat CO2 emissions level not enough to save climate
Study finds CO2 emissions must do more than level off for world's nations to make true on the global pact to limit average global warming to two degrees Celsius.
Will more relaxed rules attract tourists to Iran resort island?
Even though Islamic rules are less strict on Kish, they are still in force -- creating major obstacle for investors.