Category: From the Field

City of the Hellenes

New York-A piece came out in the New York Times Business section titled “An Arrest in Canada Casts a Shadow on a New York Times Star, and The Times” after I spoke Ben Smith, the paper’s media columnist and former…

A Death in Raqqa

Pai- Recently, I discovered via Twitter that a man I briefly knew in Syria some two years ago was killed, and killed quite some time ago. I was doing frontline analysis for Jane’s Intelligence Review that resulted in my piece…

Bloody Easter Sunday

Pai- Seeing the news about the coordinated attacks in southwestern and eastern Sri Lanka has me back to thinking about the weeks I’ve just spent traveling the whole length of the once war-torn Indian Ocean island nation. It’s been a…

Other People’s Wars

Deir ez-Zor- I’ve spent so much of my adult life trying to unpack the intricacies of men fighting in societies other than my own. I make it my business to wade deep into the waters of armed conflicts that I…

Days Like These

Deir ez-Zor- I spent the weekend conducting field research in the eponymous district of Syria’s war ravaged eastern governorate to see what was going on beyond the headlines. I saw the press convoy leaving the temporary dormitory on the grounds…

A Day in Duhok

Duhok- I’ve arrived in this damp, green mountainous city in northern Iraq as part of my ongoing journey toward the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria. After a few days getting with Erbil and the Sorani Kurdish & Iraqi…