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History > Middle East

This is real Tehran: a city that is hidden from view and rarely written about, where survival depends on an intricate network of lies and subterfuge. It is a place where mullahs visit prostitutes, drug kingpins run crystal meth kitchens, surgeons restore girls' virginity and homemade porn is uploaded onto the Internet and sol... read more

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In Baghdad: City of Peace, City of Blood, celebrated young travelwriter-historian Justin Marozzi gives us a many-layered history of one of the world's truly great cities - both its spectacular golden ages and its terrible disasters. "Justin Marozzi is the most brilliant of the new generation of travelwriter-historians". (Sund... read more

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"The power of the people is stronger than the people in power." Social media allow ideas to be shared. They are places where people can unite, Revolutions can begin. A new type of Revolution -- Revolution 2.0 Wael Ghonim used to be a man unwilling to publicly criticise the Egyptian regime. Like many, he was silenced by the fe... read more

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Jerusalem is the universal city, the capital of two peoples, the shrine of three faiths; it is the prize of empires, the site of Judgement Day and the battlefield of today's clash of civilizations. From King David to Barack Obama, from the birth of Judaism, Christianity and Islam to the Israel-Palestine conflict, this is the ... read more

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Jeremy Bowen has been the BBC's Middle East correspondent for twelve years and has been on the ground for them as the recent revolutions have swept through the region. Realising this as a game-changing moment in the history of the Middle East, The Arab Uprisings captures the thoughts and feelings of the people involved as the... read more

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For the past forty years the story of the Middle East has been simple. The news images flashing across our TV screens from the Middle East provoked anger, outrage and, sometimes military action from the international community. But now the handful of dictators who ruled over hundreds of millions of people with an iron fist ar... read more

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For troops in the desert, Cairo meant fleshpots or brass hats. For well-connected officers, it meant polo at the Gezira Club and drinks at Shepheard's. For the irregular warriors, Cairo was a city to throw legendary parties before the next mission behind enemy lines. For countless refugees, it was a stopping place in the long... read more

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Written by one of Israel's most notable scholars, this volume provides a breathtaking history of Israel from the origins of the Zionist movement in the late 19th century to the present day. Anita Shapira's gripping narrative explores the emergence of Zionism in Europe against the backdrop of relations among Jews, Arabs and Tu... read more

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Egypt is the most populous country in the world's most unstable region. It is the key to Middle East peace, the voice of the Arab world and the crossroads between Europe and Africa. Its historical and strategic importance is unparalleled. In short, Egypt matters. And the key to Egypt - its colourful past, chaotic present and ... read more

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The Arab Revolt against the Turks in World War One was, in the words of T.E. Lawrence, 'a sideshow of a sideshow'. Amidst the slaughter in European trenches, the Western combatants paid scant attention to the Middle Eastern theatre. As a result, the conflict was shaped to a remarkable degree by a small handful of adventurers ... read more

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This handy guide to Egyptian mythology explores how the ancient Nile-dwellers explained the world around them. It delves into the origins of life, the creation and evolution of the world, and the reigns of the gods on earth, before introducing us to the manifestations of Egypts deities in the natural environment; the inventiv... read more

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September 1997. In an Amman street, five men purporting to be Canadian tourists accost a Palestinian and inject a mysterious chemical into his ear. Within 48 hours it should kill him and leave no trace. The assailants were Mossad agents; their target was Khalid Mishal, head of Hamas's political bureau in Jordan. But, after 48... read more

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Between 1856 and 1876, five explorers, all British, took on the seemingly impossible task of discovering the source of the White Nile. Showing exceptional courage and extraordinary resilience, Richard Burton, John Hanning Speke, Samuel Baker, David Livingstone and Henry Morton Stanley risked their lives and their reputations ... read more

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The relationship between Jews and Muslims has been a flashpoint that affects stability in the Middle East and has consequences around the globe. This book challenges the standard media portrayal and presents an account of hope, opportunity, fear, and terror that have characterized these two people through the 1,400 years of their history.

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With nuclear aspirations, an Islamic theocracy, oil riches, and a leadership given to inflammatory rhetoric, Iran is the bogeyman of global politics. This book presents an account of a vast conflict being fought under the public's radar. It provides insight into the power struggle at the heart of the Middle East.

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'Not long ago, in a small rubber boat more suited to a beach than the Nile, I floated downstream for ten kilometres, from my suburb to the city centre. I passed an island where, according to legend, Moses was left in his basket; a few kilometres farther downstream was the spot where Joseph and Mary landed after their flight t... read more

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In the spring of 1839, the British invaded Afghanistan for the first time. Led by lancers in scarlet cloaks and plumed shakos, nearly 20,000 British and East India Company troops poured through the high mountain passes and re-established on the throne Shah Shuja ul-Mulk. On the way in, the British faced little resistance.... read more

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After 9/11, people who had never given much thought to the politics of the Middle East found themselves wondering why there was such rage brewing in the region. Many of them turned to Bernard Lewis for an explanation. The world's pre-eminent historian of the Middle East, Lewis was among the first to identify the phenomenon of... read more

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In the popular imagination, Afghanistan is often regarded as the site of intractable conflict, the American war against the Taliban a perpetually hopeless quagmire. But as Anand Gopal demonstrates in this stunning chronicle, top Taliban leaders were in fact ready to surrender within months of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan,... read more

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