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David Hirst

For David Hirst's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Commentary / World Oct 2, 2003

Few know but many fear where the U.S. 'road map' leads

BEIRUT -- By the summer of 2002, U.S. President George Bush had firmly set his new course: "regime change" and reform in the Muslim and Arab worlds, and, where necessary, American military intervention to achieve it. Hitherto, it had been assumed that the United ...

Commentary / World Aug 14, 2003

The identity of the Arab world

DAMASCUS -- Fadil Shururu, chief political officer of Ahmad Jibril's Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command, has come a long way since I first met him 35 years ago in Jordan's Ghor Valley, seedbed of the newborn guerrilla movement that was to ...

Commentary / World May 17, 2003

Blasts send message to Riyadh

BEIRUT -- Such a spectacular al-Qaeda-style exploit might have come as no great surprise to moderate Saudi Islamists familiar with the thinking of the extremists in their midst. The Iraq war brought anti-American sentiments in the kingdom to new heights and increased the determination ...

Commentary / World Apr 10, 2003

War fuels Saudi fears and anger

RIYADH -- You won't find the newly published "Hatred's Kingdom" in any Saudi bookshop, but it is in such demand among high officials that the government has brought out a reprint of its own. Its author is Dore Gold, a hardline Israeli spokesman. According ...

Commentary / World Sep 12, 2002

For Arabs, a year of growing darkness

CAIRO -- There is no better place to take the pulse of Arab and Muslim sentiment than Cairo, pioneer or hub of the two great movements that have swept the region in recent times: the pan-Arab secular nationalism of which President Gamal Nasser was ...

Commentary / World Jun 8, 2002

Palestinian reform paradox

BEIRUT -- Following the hammer blows of the Palestinian intifada and Israeli repression, Palestinian reforms are the great new prescription for Middle East peacemaking, which is to be directed by an international conference. Rarely has there been such a show of unanimity. Everybody wants reform: ...

Commentary / World Apr 28, 2002

America's own 'rogue state'

BEIRUT -- Since the Taliban's defeat in Afghanistan, the United States has been focusing on that long-standing "rogue state" and newly anointed member of the "axis of evil," President Saddam Hussein's Iraq, as the next target of its "war on terror." The trouble is that ...