Baby Jihad

Utterly ridiculous: German authorities are trying to get courts to back them in preventing a baby being named "Jihad" -- even though it is a completely common name in the Arab world. The most famous Arab columnist (for al-Hayat) is called Jihad al-Khazen. He is broadly speaking a secularist, albeit of the loyal to Saudi interest variety (he has a rich history of being close to virtually every prominent political figure in the region over his long career.) Of course the baby's father appears to be something of an Islamist, but so what? See Kafr al-Hanadwa's post for the details.

Issandr El Amrani

Issandr El Amrani is a Cairo-based writer and consultant. His reporting and commentary on the Middle East and North Africa has appeared in The Economist, London Review of Books, Financial Times, The National, The Guardian, Time and other publications. He also publishes one of the longest-running blog in the region,