Since the outbreak of war in Syria, the entire Lebanese border has become a red zone: travellers from the West are advised by their governments to give it a wide berth. Yet once in the field, only the odd military checkpoint serves to remind travellers that tensions in the area remain high. In the Bekaa Valley, Hezbollah – the Party of God – holds sway. Wielding considerable political, military and social clout, this powerful Shia Islamist organisation is government, parliament and welfare state rolled into one. By Eric Lafforgue
Qantara dossier: European travellers in the Orient
Our dossier contains a selection of interesting biographies and reports on renowned European travelers to the Orient from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.More
Top 10 books about Muslims and Islam by Saadia Faruqi
Media stereotypes and misinformation about Muslims are nothing new. In post-election America, Muslims are finding more allies who often want to help but don’t know much about Islam. More and more non-Muslims have questions and are seeking answers.More
An eye-catching tableau for resistance: graffiti art in Bethlehem
In 2002, the then Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon approved the construction of a barrier wall that would run along the ceasefire line of 1949 with the intention of separating Israeli territories from the Palestinian West Bank. In Bethlehem, graffiti artists have started using the wall as a canvas for political protest and socially critical art. By Laura Overmeyer
Female Kurdish singer rallies the troops
Iraqi Kurdish singer Helly Luv was in Arbil, the capital of the autonomous Kurdish region of northern Iraq, filming the video to her latest hit. Luv is aiming for international fame as she releases her new English song 'Revolution', calling for action against terrorism and violence.More
The civil war in Syria, which has taken the lives of thousands since 2011, is becoming increasingly brutal. Valuable cultural sites are also being destroyed in the fighting. UNESCO has now provided reports on the damage.
"The Crusades: Holy War"
In this three-part documentary by BBC 2, Dr Thomas Asbridge presents a revelatory account of the Crusades, the 200-year war between Christians and Muslims for control of the Holy Land. More