Beyond Religion: ISIS and the Crisis in the Middle East – Talks


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Zanan TV

8 October 2014


Beyond Religion: ISIS and the Crisis in the Middle East – Talks

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This is a Zanan TV production on the event hosted by SOAS Students’ Union in association with the LMEI and the Centre for Gender Studies, SOAS on 26th September 2014. There are four speakers, specialised in the Middle East, addressing ISIS and the recent crisis in the Middle East:

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Chair: Dr. Hassan Hakimian, Director of London Middle East Institute at SOAS, University of London.

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Ghias Aljundi: ‘ISIS and the Syrian cause’, Syrian writer and human rights activist.

The talk will discuss the emergence of ISIS in Syria and its expansion. It will also address the role of the Syrian regime and regional powers. Finally, the talk will also reflect on the damage ISIS has caused to the Syrian cause.

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Charles Tripp: ‘Iraq: the rentier Caliphate‘, Professor of Politics at Oriental and African Studies, University of London and a Fellow of the British Academy.

The talk will address the political economy of Iraq in which it emerged and how it reflects many features of that political economy. This is intended as an antidote to the focus on religiosity, ideology and identity that has largely been framed in the terms set by Da`ash itself.

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Nadje Al-Ali: ‘Gender, Violence and Minorities’, Professor of Gender Studies at SOAS, University of London

The talk will address the issue of gender-based violence and violence against religious and ethnic minorities in the context of Da’ash (ISIS) in Iraq. It will also reflect on the difficulty to talk about women and minorities in a context where sexual violence is being instrumentalised by both sectarian and imperialist agendas.

 

 

In this video Dr. Hassan Hakimian gives a few words about the relevance of the crisis in the Middle East and introduces the three other speakers, Ghias Aljundi, Charles Tripp and Nadje Al-Ali. The first speaker, Aljundi, breaks down the idea behind ISIS and its origin, the Syrian Revolution. He describes a influential “vacuum” at the hands of ISIS or Al Qaeda branches in Syria. The fear Syrians feel towards the ISIS crisis was emphasized and the damage done to the Syrian cause. Tripp was the next to speak. He broke down the factors of the political economy of Iraq and how Da’ash has affected those factors. Tripp also discussed the politics of Islamic identity and how the organization of ISIS came about in Iraq, and its vulnerabilities. The last speaker, Al-Ali, expanded on ethnic minorities, violence against women and the horrors of the prevalence of sexual violence amidst what is occurring in the Middle East.