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Middle East Blog

Making Mosaics in Madaba, Jordan

While road tripping through Jordan in 2012, I made a stop along the Kings’ Highway in Madaba. Art is one of the means of gaining insight into a region’s cultures, and this town…

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Members of the Muzeina tribe - Bedouin tribal law in the South Sinai
Bedouin Tribal Law in the South Sinai (Video)

The Sinai, often described as restive and lawless, is actually not lawless at all. The region is ruled by two kinds of law - Egyptian government law and Bedouin tribal law. In this…

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Skyline of Doha, Qatar - first impressions of Qatar
An American Business Traveler’s Impressions of Qataris

Connect the Cultures’ silent partner, an American, traveled to the Arabian Gulf country of Qatar on business this spring, just six weeks before the day that Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen, the UAE and Bahrain…

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Sugarcane juice in Egypt
Making Sugarcane Juice with Mohammed in Egypt

Egyptians are one of the oldest cultures in the world, so in Egypt you can find some meals and drinks that have existed for thousands of years. One of my favorite drinks in…

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Rose of the Sinai

One of the young Bedouin women I’d met sitting in a circle around a fire the other day invited me back to her arish for more tea. Her house is in a recess…

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Khairuldeen Makhzoomi kicked off plane
A Year After Being Thrown off a Plane for Speaking Arabic – Khairuldeen Makhzoomi

On April 6, 2016, Muslim Iraqi refugee Khairuldeen Makhzoomi, a student the University of California, Berkeley and a Huffington Post blogger, was thrown off a Southwest Airlines flight at Los Angeles International Airport…

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3 Months in Egypt, Jordan and Israel – Month 1.5

Several weeks into my three-month journey through the Middle East I decided to split my #CTCmideast2017 trip into Part 1 and Part 2. Part 1 lasted six weeks to the day. You can…

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Will My Laptop Survive the Middle Eastern Travel Ban?

On Tuesday, March 28, 2017, I am going to be one of the first people in the world to fly from the Middle East to the United States under the new Middle Eastern…

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3 Months in Israel, Jordan and Egypt - Month 1 - Sabena
3 Months in Egypt, Jordan and Israel – Month One

One month ago today I landed in Cairo to begin my three-month journey through Egypt, Jordan and Israel for the purpose of sharing the cultures of the Middle East with the rest of…

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Friday Tea with Bedouin Women in Asalah, Egypt

Late on a Friday morning, as I strolled amongst the goats and chickens running about on a sandy back road in the Asalah district of Dahab, Egypt, a Bedouin woman covered in a…

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Education of Bedouins in Sinai (Video)

Most aspects of Bedouin life in Sinai, Egypt are very different from the developed world. However, I have learned, education is not so different, aside from one important area - the education of Bedouin girls…

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Samaan and Korolos, Zabaleen people of Garbage City
What the Zabaleen of Garbage City Want the World to Know

The Zabaleen people of "Garbage City" in Cairo are a misunderstood subculture of Egypt. Numbering approximately 60,000, the Zabaleen, which is Egyptian Arabic for garbage worker, handle the majority of Cairo's trash. They…

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