JAMES M. DORSEY: Today’s World Cup qualifier will be monitored closely by the authorities in Tehran
JAMES M. DORSEY: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is following in the footsteps of deposed autocrats by associating himself with one of Iran’s greatest passions: soccer.
LUKE R.E. PUBLICAN, TABSIR: Kansas legislators have opted for a ‘belt and braces’ approach to deal with any possibility of Sharia creeping into the State.
JAMES M. DORSEY: Held up as a model of a modern Islamic state Turkey faces some formidable difficulties
JUAN COLE: Forget Ahmadinejad, the real force in Iranian politics is Ali Khamenei. Shouldn’t we listen to what he has to say?
ROB L. WAGNER: As tensions increase all parties are beginning to make calculations regarding the effect of a possible conflict in the Arabian Gulf.
MICHAEL TOTTEN: You couldn’t make it up but conspiracy theories have a way of making odd bedfellows. Take Al Qaeda and the U.S in opposition to Iran. It’s true.
JAMES M. DORSEY: At face value, Saadi and Saif’s different positions appear to be at best a surprising reversal of roles with Saadi, described as “notoriously ill-behaved”.
MICHAEL TOTTEN: There have, according to Bashar Assad, been some ‘mistakes’. The only real mistake by Western powers however is to believe what the President tells them.
MICHAEL J. TOTTEN: Now that the Arab revolt is slamming hard into Bashar al-Assad’s Baath Party in Syria, no dictator will be able to sleep without consuming copious amounts of pills.
JAMES M. DORSEY: The calm with which Egyptians accepted defeat, contrasts starkly with riots that erupted on two continents in late 2009 when Algeria stopped Egypt making it to the 2010 World Cup.
JAMES M. DORSEY: For the first time in its history, Turkey is emerging as a true bridge between East and West. Unrest elsewhere however puts Turkish aspirations to the test.
STEVE ROYSTON: Regional fallout from the events in Tunisia and Egypt is expected. But other countries around the world have been watching.
JAMES DORSEY: Iran’s Football Federation has postponed league matches in Tehran to prevent celebrations of the 32nd anniversary of the Islamic revolution turning into anti-government protests.
JAMES M. DORSEY: Khamenei and other hard-line government officials and clerics argue that the presence of women at men’s sporting events violates Islamic law.
JUAN COLE: While U.S consumers bemoan oil price rises it’s smiles all round in Iran. The OPEC chair is in no hurry to do anything about spiraling costs.
DAVID ROBERTS: Under a section titled ‘He who got slapped’ someone from the US Embassy in Baku, Azerbaijan reported the confrontation…
OSAMA AL SHARIF: Focus on Iran or Afghanistan should not be at the expense of the Palestine Question, which remains crucial to peoples of the region.