Most recent article by: Stefan Buchen

US Secretary of State John Kerry on a visit to the Iraqi prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, in Baghdad. Photo: Reuters

The Iraq crisis and the West

The ugly new order in the "Fertile Crescent"

Iraq is in the grip of a devastating inner-Islamic religious war. The conflict has an inherent dynamic that cannot be stopped by presidential wishful thinking or a hurried visit to Baghdad by US foreign minister John Kerry. Stefan Buchen commentsMore

An election poster for Abdul Fattah al-Sisi in Cairo that reads "He is the one we can trust" (photo: SN/APA (DPA)/MICHAEL KAPPELER)

Presidential election in Egypt


A nation marching in step

Anyone seen filming in Cairo these days should expect to be approached by an upright citizen demanding to see a permit and referring to the omnipresent threat of terrorism. On the eve of the presidential election in Egypt, fighting terrorism and not boosting the country's crippled economy seems to be right at the top of the political agenda. A commentary by Stefan Buchen in CairoMore

A statue of Justitia (photo: dpa/picture-alliance)

Open Letter to a Border Guard

Defending Our Borders against the Scum

In Germany, helpers of Syrian refugees are being put on trial. These lifesavers are being treated like enemies of the state. In his polemic, Stefan Buchen addresses a German border guard and encourages him to prevent the misery of the Syrian civil war from spilling over into EuropeMore

Protests against Prism and digital surveillance (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

Surveillance and Domestic Security since 9/11

Like Donkeys Carrying Books

The intelligence services' frenzied data analysis is the latest and for the moment, the last in a series of imbalanced responses to the attacks of 11 September 2001, says investigative journalist Stefan Buchen who, according to a report in the German news weekly Der Spiegel, has himself been the subject of security agency investigationsMore

Scene from 'Manuscript's don't burn' by Mohammed Rasoulof  (source: Festival Cannes)

Mohammed Rasoulof's ''Manuscripts Don't Burn''

Iranian Agents as Killers

The Islamic Republic's intelligence service is unmasked for the first time in a film based on a series of murders of Iranian writers and intellectuals in the late 1990s. Stefan Buchen introduces the new movie by director Mohammed RasoulofMore

Israeli fighter jet (photo: Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images)

Israeli Air Attacks in Syria

Blinding Flashes in a Shadowy War

The latest Israeli air bombardments of military facilities near Damascus throw a spotlight on the Israeli-Iranian conflict in the region, and apparent Israeli plans to fight Iran and Hezbollah on Syrian territory. Analysis by Stefan BuchenMore

Soldiers of the Afghan National Army are being trained by German Armed Forces in Camp Pamir near Kunduz (photo: dpa)

Afghanistan as the Western Troop Withdrawal Nears

The Failure of Dialogue

The end of the NATO mission in the Hindu Kush, scheduled for 2014, is fast approaching. The results to date are sobering. Mistrust and even mutual dislike between locals and representatives of the West in Afghanistan are striking and widespread. By Stefan BuchenMore

Gallows in Iran (photo: MEHR)

Justice in Iran

Petty Criminals Sent to the Gallows

Iran has begun handing down death sentences for robbery – a crime that previously carried much less severe punishments. In socially and politically uncertain times, the regime is increasingly resorting to Draconian measures in the hope that these will serve as a deterrent, reports Stefan BuchenMore

A member of the PKK warms herself by the fire at a camp in the Qandil mountains near the Turkish border with northern Iraq (photo: AP)

Alliance between the PKK and the Assad Regime

A Political Sect on the Wrong Track

Just as the Assad regime is foundering, the Kurdistan Workers' Party, PKK, is proving to be its loyal henchman. In this essay, Stefan Buchen writes that PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan made a deal with the Syrian regime back in the days of Hafez al-AssadMore

Yussuf al-Qaradawi (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

The Shia-Sunni Conflict

The Most Deadly Religious War of our Time

Preachers like the Sunni legal scholar Yusuf Al-Qaradawi or the Shia Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati are propagating sectarian hate and exacerbating the divide between Islam's two major denominations. In this essay, Stefan Buchen explains how the religious war they have helped to unleash within Islam is having a catastrophic effect on the Greater Middle EastMore

Anti-American mural at the former US embassy in Teheran (photo: Reuters)

The Iranian Writer Amir Hassan Cheheltan

The Loyal Dissident

Amir Hassan Cheheltan is one of a group of internationally known Iranian artists who have no intention of turning their backs on their country, and who will not allow themselves to be sidelined or frozen out by the regime. Stefan Buchen met him in BerlinMore