Africa & the Middle East

Migratory animals such as elephants cover long distances over both public and private lands.

Day 2: What Can Researchers Do To Save the Savannah?

Between water shortages, erosion, and human population growth, the ecosystem and the animals of Kenya face serious risks

Smithsonian Secretary G. Wayne Clough travels to Nairobi, Kenya to understand the research programs and opportunities at the Mpala Research Centre.

Day 1: Seeing Kenya from the Sky

Despite many travel delays, Smithsonian Secretary Clough arrives in Kenya ready to study the African wildlife at the Mpala Ranch

Four hundred years ago, Isfahan was larger than London and more cosmopolitan than Paris.  The city's most famous bridge, Si-o Seh Pol (Bridge of 33 Arches) is nearly 1,000 feet long and 45 feet wide.

Isfahan: Iran's Hidden Jewel

Once the dazzling capital of ancient Persia,Isfahan fell victim to neglect, but a new generation hopes to restore its lost luster

Now ancient Famagusta, tucked into a modern city of 35,000 people, is largely forgotten, except, perhaps, as the setting for Shakespeare's Othello.

Endangered Site: Famagusta Walled City, Cyprus

Once located in the midst of high-volume shipping lanes, a forgotten city with multiple European influences could be lost forever without an intervention

Mohamed Mahmoud on the roof of his Al-Hamoni family library, of which he is curator, in Chinguetti, Mauritania.

Endangered Site: Chinguetti, Mauritania

The rapidly expanding Sahara Desert threatens a medieval trading center that also carries importance for Sunni Muslims

Hasankeyf is home to thousands of human-made caves, hundreds of medieval monuments and a rich-ecosystem.

Endangered Site: The City of Hasankeyf, Turkey

A new hydroelectric dam threatens the ancient city, home to thousands of human-made caves

At the Church of the Nativity, three rival Christian groups use their caretaking duties to maintain their claims to the basiilica.

Endangered Site: Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem

The basilica believed to mark the birthplace of Jesus Christ has survived invasions, rebellions and earthquakes

Seen from the aircraft that Steinmetz calls his "flying lawn chair," a salt-making site at the village of Teguidda-n-Tessoumt in arid northern Niger appears to be a vast work of abstract art. The clay-lined pools hold briny water that slowly evaporates, yielding salt solids that workers truck to southern Niger and Nigeria, where the minerals are given to livestock. The bluish pools bear a salty crust that reflects the sky.

Africa on the Fly

Dangling from a paraglider with a propeller on his back, photographer George Steinmetz gets a new perspective on Africa


Inside Cape Town

Tourists are flocking to the city, but a former resident explains how the legacy of apartheid lingers

A huddle grows around the high priests, with one young priest bearing an ikon, or holy picture, while others hold ornate gold and silver crosses.

Keepers of the Lost Ark?

Christians in Ethiopia have long claimed to have the ark of the covenant. Our reporter investigated

"We can no longer work in Iraq," says Haidar Hilou, an award-winning screenwriter.

Welcome to Rawda

Iraqi artists find freedom of expression at this Syrian café


Mixing Terrorism and Tourism

In this Q & A, Josh Hammer, author of "Peace at Last?," discusses the change from war reporting to travel reporting

Griswold has reported from the Middle East, West and East Africa and South and Southeast Asia.

An interview with Eliza Griswold, author of "Waging Peace in the Philippines"

Eliza Griswold discusses the U.S. approach on Jolo and applying these lessons to Iraq and Afghanistan


An Interview with Josh Hammer, Author of "Return to the Marsh"

Ben Block spoke with Josh about Iraq and reporting in dangerous regions of the world


An Interview with Peter van Agtmael, Photographer for "Return to the Marsh"

Van Agtmael spoke with Ben Block by phone from the American base Fort Apache in Adhamiyah, outside Baghdad

A New Day in Iran?

The regime may inflame Washington, but young Iranians say they admire, of all places, America


Letter from Lahore: Reinventing Pakistan

Welcome to Lahore, where an explosion of art and media is offering a vibrant alternative to the strictures of religious conservatives

View of Downtown Dubai

Dazzling Dubai

The Persian Gulf kingdom has embraced openness and capitalism. Might other Mideast nations follow?

Despite heavy internecine fighting near Kabul for more than a decade, the simple but majestic marble tomb of Mohammed Babur the Conqueror has largely escaped damage.

The Enduring Splendors of, Yes, Afghanistan

A writer and photographer crisscross a nation ravaged by a quarter century of warfare to inventory its most sacred treasures

Chefchaouene, Morocco
photograph by Joachim Ladefoged
Layers of history underlie an impromptu soccer practice in the old quarter of this ancient city, founded in 1471 and sacred to Muslims. The quarter also offered refuge to Jews driven from Spain at the end of the 15th century because they would not convert to Catholicism.

Africa: Beyond the Stereotypes

In a single day 95 photographers document a wildly diverse continent bursting with energy and promise

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