Beta
Must Read on Pocket

This is one of the most-saved, read, and shared stories on Pocket.

Recommendations from Pocket Users

Ian Mullane

Shared January 2, 2017

Digestible primer

Karan Goel

Shared February 10, 2016

There may be nowhere in the world with a history as rich as the land of Iraq.

Karan Goel

Shared February 12, 2016

A witness to one such mass killing in Solagh, a village south-east of Sinjar city, told Amnesty International that on the morning of 3 August, as he was trying to flee towards Mount Sinjar, he saw vehicles with IS fighters in them approaching, and managed to conceal himself. From his hiding place he saw them take some civilians from a house in the western outskirts of Solagh:

“A white Toyota pick-up stopped by the house of my neighbour, Salah Mrad Noura, who raised a white flag to indicate they were peaceful civilians. The pick-up had some 14 IS men on the back. They took out some 30 people from my neighbour’s house: men, women and children. They put the women and children, some 20 of them, on the back of another vehicle which had come, a large white Kia, and marched the men, about nine of them, to the nearby wadi [dry river bed]. There they made them kneel and shot them in the back. They were all killed; I watched from my hiding place for a long time and none of them moved. I know two of those killed: my neighbour Salah Mrad Noura, who was about 80 years old, and his son Kheiro, aged about 45 or 50.”

Mayur Moorthy

Shared January 17, 2017

Informative, humorous and very well-written. Perfect example of "If you've understood something well, you should be able to explain it in simple terms". Tim Urban never fails to amuse.

Mayur Moorthy

Shared January 17, 2017

Informative, humorous and very well-written. Perfect example of "If you have understood something well, you should be able to explain it in simple terms". Tim Urban never fails to amuse.

Mayur Moorthy

Shared January 17, 2017

Perfect example of "if you've understood something well, you should be able to explain it in simple terms".

Jitesh Patel

Shared February 16, 2017

Leave it to Tim Urban to explain every situation. An old, but highly educative read from one of my favourite longform writers.

Dickson Otieno

Shared December 7, 2015

Tim Urban explained it better.

Karthik Margabandu

Shared January 12, 2017

This is brilliant! Gives everything one needs to know about the middle eastern crisis. Informative read.

Dwarkesh Bagri

Shared September 17, 2016

Very interesting article.
History is always interesting. :)

History is a giant collective tangle of thousands of interwoven stories involving millions of characters, countless chapters, and many, many narrators.

And you know humans—that’s not how they like things. The human brain really, really likes to simplify things.

Jessica Hanks

Shared December 22, 2016

This is a good, fast summary of where the Sunni-Shia divide came from.

Sunil Gupta

Shared December 29, 2016

very concise and to the point

Tommy Doyle

Shared November 27, 2015

Good to know

Carlos Dagorret

Shared March 24, 2017

Great article

Omkar Mishra

Shared March 26, 2016

#TIL

Ricardo Briceño

Shared January 15, 2017

Me siento menos bruto después de leer esto.

Akshayrajsinh Jadeja

Shared January 29, 2017

Well worth a read! Explains almost everything.

Albaabur Rahman

Shared April 24, 2017

Well written. My muslim brothers may be offended by his historical take on Islam. Skip it then.

Nikhil Ambhorkar

Shared October 16, 2016

Chilling to the core.

Colton Ortolf

Shared December 12, 2016

Understandable why so many are willing to fight with the Kurds. If there is anyone we should be protecting in the region, it's them

Sanusi Ibrahim

Shared August 1, 2017

Better understanding

Redowan Nafi

Shared October 7, 2016

Been reading

Carlos Aguiar

Shared April 29, 2017

fantastic.

Gary Katz

Shared June 27, 2017

About right..

Arun N

Shared February 21, 2018


From

Ryan Goh

Shared February 17, 2017

Lengthy, but paints a better picture on the ISIS stiuation.

André Lima

Shared February 27, 2017

Best article about the Islamic history I have ever read.

Alexandros Papadopoulos

Shared June 5, 2017

A very interesting history of #religious madness (as always)

Jakub Spacil

Shared November 25, 2017

The thing about creating borders using a map, pencil, and ruler, is that it’s a terrible way to create borders. If you look at organically-created borders around the world—those that were formed over time by the local populations, based usually on ethnic and religious divisions, and often demarcated by mountains, rivers, or other natural barriers—they’re squiggly and messy. What’s a clear and satisfying straight-line-on-a-map border for imperial powers trying to keep things clean and simple for themselves is a complete disaster on the ground across the world where the actual place is.

When borders are drawn this way, two bad things happen: 1) Single ethnic or religious groups are sliced apart into separate countries, and 2) Different and often unfriendly groups are shoved into a nation together and told to share resources, get along, and bond together over national pride for a just-made-up nation—which inevitably leads to one group taking power and oppressing the others, resulting in bloody rebellions, coups, and sectarian violence. This isn’t that complicated.

Jakub Spacil

Shared November 25, 2017

Suddenly, Shias are in charge of countries all the way from Iran to the Mediterranean, creating a kind of Shia Axis. This is a great thing for the world’s largest Shia nation, Iran, and it scares the shit out of the region’s most powerful Sunni nation, Saudi Arabia. And what’s been happening is Saudi Arabia and Iran engaging in what is essentially a Cold War, vying for broader power, with conflicts like the Syrian Civil War and the current mess in Iraq serving as proxy wars that can tip the balance in the larger struggle. This is why Iran wants ISIS (a Sunni group) to disappear and why you keep hearing that the US and Iran might actually agree on something (though for different reasons). This is also why the Saudis have been rumored to have funded Sunni resistance movements in both Syria and Iraq, even possibly directing funds to groups like ISIS.

Javier Holguera

Shared December 26, 2016

The more I read about the area, the less I believe they'll ever figure this out

Bernie

Shared December 26, 2016

So interesting!

Carlos Daboin

Shared January 2, 2017

Excelente e ilustrativo resumen de la situación actual y sus antecedentes.

Hari Mohan

Shared January 4, 2017

I like the way he writes...it simplifies things.

Soham Joshi

Shared February 6, 2017

Insane read!

Soham Joshi

Shared February 6, 2017

Inane read!

Marc

Shared December 28, 2017

They knew they were removing a lid, but they seemed to think it was off a tupperware container of cookies, not a pressure cooker. And their plan to replace the wrought iron lid with a fresh sheet of democracy cellophane would have worked fine if it were a tupperware container of cookies. Just not if it were a pressure cooker.

Daniel Ribeiro

Shared December 22, 2016

😯

Kelechukwu Chinedo

Shared February 2, 2017

cruelty

– A World of Terror
A

Kyle Engdahl

Shared September 29, 2017

About 3 years old, but still an informative read... #sschat

lijith mohandas

Shared October 6, 2017

>Whatever I was holding, it was something bad, and I didn’t want to ask what it was. I asked. He pointed across the tent to a little boy and explained that I was holding part of his skull.

Yiwei Wang

Shared January 7, 2018

Long drive everyday so I have time to finish this amazing story on ISIS. One of the best in 2017

Shahjahan Khan

Shared April 24, 2018

Brief and well
Documented history of Islam rise and Fall

Mallika Mathur

Shared February 25, 2016

And what’s been happening is Saudi Arabia and Iran engaging in what is essentially a Cold War, vying for broader power, with conflicts like the Syrian Civil War and the current mess in Iraq serving as proxy wars that can tip the balance in the larger struggle.

Mallika Mathur

Shared February 25, 2016

I finally feel like I understand what's going on in Iraq.

When you add this all together—an unstable and divided new government with an amateur, questionably-loyal army and an angry minority population who feels sympathy for anyone who will resist the government; the interests of a giant neighbor, Saudi Arabia, aligned with a government overthrow; a civil war next door; and a group of western powers who have been determined to stay out—you have the perfect storm for the fiercest of terrorist groups to emerge from the fringe and conquer.

Ritesh Jain

Shared July 21, 2016

Great read!

Syauqy Aziz

Shared October 21, 2016

Baru tau Tim Urban punya tulisan dengan topik serius seperti ini

Zin Ko Hlaing

Shared December 19, 2016

Such a fascinating read

Joel A

Shared May 17, 2017

Very informative.

Juliano Franco

Shared May 21, 2017

Gráfico Da Morte ☠️

Prarthana Seth

Shared August 28, 2017

an unstable and divided new government with an amateur, questionably-loyal army and an angry minority population who feels sympathy for anyone who will resist the government; the interests of a giant neighbor, Saudi Arabia, aligned with a government overthrow; a civil war next door; and a group of western powers who have been determined to stay out—you have the perfect storm for the fiercest of terrorist groups to emerge from the fringe and conquer

Tomáš Novosad

Shared August 29, 2017

Simply must read. Reality is always very complex, but this article tries to keep on bare facts and explain the real basics of the conflict.

Joana Do Arco

Shared October 7, 2017

A confusão que afinal começou com ingleses e franceses mais uma garrafa de whisky.

Kieran Murphy

Shared November 28, 2017

A bit flippant at times but still an accessible read that sets itself a massive task but mostly succeeds.

Dustin Davis

Shared January 14, 2018

Confusing and foreign topic (at least to me) made super simple. The title seems boring, but I got sucked in and loved it.

Nipun Yerramalla

Shared February 4, 2016

Explains what is going on in Iraq right from the start.

Neel Shah

Shared August 14, 2016

In 570, a long-named baby was born to a prominent family in Mecca, a city on the west coast of what is currently Saudi Arabia—Abū al-Qāsim Muḥammad ibn ʿAbd Allāh ibn ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib ibn Hāshim. Today he’s just known as Muhammad.

Jay Adriaanse

Shared September 19, 2016

Hey man and his

Sunil Poduval

Shared October 10, 2016

to read list

Todd Page

Shared November 17, 2016

Remember the time I complained about anything? That was dumb.

Apolinar Reza

Shared December 25, 2016

Magnificent, absolutely topic domain and smart wording

Jas Teope

Shared December 28, 2016

One fifth through the post yet i find the writer funny and amusing ☺ Thank you for your writing ☺

Jatin Bhatia

Shared January 2, 2017

After ISIS took responsibility of Turkey attacks. This article is a must read for everyone who don't know about ISIS apart from its name. It's a long read but it's highly informative.

Randy Raja

Shared January 3, 2017

great article :)

Sourabh jamini

Shared January 10, 2017

Good and knowledgable

ghjhgf

Shared January 23, 2017

进 9 8 2 0 2 9.c o m 注册立即晋级VIP会员凭邮箱号申请66.6元。享受超高反水真人1.2起GNS电子超高反水1.8微信jsdc955

Bob Smith

Shared January 29, 2017

Very Interesting on Isis

abdulrhman askar

Shared February 2, 2017

Great job for what you did although I feel like you were easy in US

Gunther Furlong

Shared February 9, 2017

Good read.

Rishabh Paliwal

Shared February 10, 2017

MST

mel.hough

Shared February 12, 2017

Very interesting

Badri

Shared February 19, 2017

In case you were wondering how it all started

serenity Lee

Shared February 22, 2017

Fact. Fiction. Fault.

Terradactyl Hanks

Shared February 26, 2017

Cheeky but fact-full jump through Islamic history

Linn Brown

Shared March 4, 2017

Long read. And worth the time.

Jerry Wendt

Shared March 5, 2017

This Article will get you up to date as to what is going on in the Middle East.

amit anand

Shared April 14, 2017

Thanks

Ravi Prajapati

Shared May 20, 2017

good

Stephanie Loose

Shared May 23, 2017

Fascinating

Mademoiselle B

Shared July 10, 2017

Despite the light tone, tragically humorless. Enlightening.

Mariann H

Shared July 19, 2017

maps

mohammad shaikh

Shared August 11, 2017

096137

Lara

Shared February 7, 2018

Quite possibly the best description of how it came to be.

G Locke

Shared March 8, 2018

If

G Locke

Shared March 8, 2018

mean

mary Alexander

Shared April 15, 2018

good read

mary Alexander

Shared April 15, 2018

good read

JN B

Shared May 19, 2018

best story ive read

Tarun Gupta

Shared March 2, 2017

An old but highly relevant read providing insight into the whole middle east crisis and its origins.

Lorena Somoza

Shared April 19, 2017

read it

Mort Pakhomov

Shared July 5, 2017

Well written and captured my interest. Some of the levity felt a little inappropriate for the subject, but thats a taste thing.

Jilani Khan

Shared October 23, 2017

A wonderful piece of work about Muslim history

Joseph Maekalson

Shared May 28, 2018

I totally recommend this article, very well written and to the point information.....

Kelly Johnson

Shared June 4, 2018

excellent easy to read and understand