Ranj Alaaldin

Ranj Alaaldin is a Visiting Scholar at Columbia University and a Doctoral Researcher at the London School of Economics and Political Science, where he focuses on Iraq and the Middle East. He previously specialised in the law of armed conflict and the use of force.

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Kurds celebrate as they drive along a street in Diyarbakir, southeastern Turkey, on January 26, 2015

Isis has finally been defeated in Kobani — but what happens next?

There's so much to learn from the victory of a small but determined group of Kurds

Iraqi volunteer fighters celebrate the breaking of the jihadist siege on the Shiite town of Amerli on September 1, 2014

Bombs can't defeat Isis, but Iraq's Sunnis can

The new Iraqi government has an unmissable opportunity to unite its people against the jihadists before they tear the country apart

Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters look on as smoke billows from the town Makhmur, about 175 miles north of the capital Baghdad, during clashes with Isis militants

If Iraq is to survive, then it must be divided into separate regions

It is no coincidence that country's most stable areas are those where security and governance are in the hands of locally supported groups

File image: Bashar al-Assad has given his first American TV interview in two years, and denied his regime was behind the Damascus chemical weapons attack

Why Obama was right to call chemical weapons a ‘red line’

The West should pursue its initial course of punitive strikes

Iraqis inspect the site of a car bomb attack in Baghdad's impoverished district of Sadr City last month

Blame Iraq, not America, for sectarian civil war

Iraqi society is as polarised as ever. The ongoing battles over its future shape show that the country's divisions long pre-dated the Western invasion of a decade ago

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Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness