Links 1-5 January 2013

First links of the year, after a long period in December when I did not post any (well, aside from Twitter anyway — remember there's always more there.)

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,