Hamas' Tightening Grip on Power: Targeting Fun in the Gaza Strip

Hamas' Tightening Grip on Power: Targeting Fun in the Gaza Strip

SPIEGEL ONLINE - November 09, 2010

For the few with money in the Gaza Strip, a new water park provided relief from monotony and widespread misery. Hamas, though, has now burned it down -- and sent a message that even the elite must conform to the Islamists' restrictive rules. By Ulrike Putz in Gaza City more... Comment ]

Double Pay for Betrayal: The Palestinian Workers Who Build Israel's Settlements

Double Pay for Betrayal: The Palestinian Workers Who Build Israel's Settlements

SPIEGEL ONLINE - October 11, 2010

Like many thousands of his compatriots, Palestinian carpenter Haitham Asfur has a politically contentious job: He lays tiles for the enemy. He works on construction projects in the divisive Jewish settlements that currently threaten to derail peace negotiations. By Ulrike Putz in Sinjil more...


The Settlements of Hebron: A Stumbling Block for Middle East Peace Talks

The Settlements of Hebron: A Stumbling Block for Middle East Peace Talks

SPIEGEL ONLINE - September 23, 2010

Hebron is the West Bank in miniature. While diplomats and leaders seek to find a path to Middle East peace, Jewish settlers in the heart of the West Bank's second biggest city insist that they are going nowhere. Indeed, their thirst for settlement construction is far from sated. By Ulrike Putz in Hebron more...

Life in Baghdad's Slums: Fighting to Survive in Sadr City

Life in Baghdad's Slums: Fighting to Survive in Sadr City

SPIEGEL ONLINE - September 01, 2010

Iraq's poorest people live on trash heaps, sleep amongst the rats and drink polluted water. In the country with the world's third largest oil reserves, a million people live in misery, despite the fact that the US has spent $53 billion on the country's reconstruction efforts. By Ulrike Putz in Baghdad more...


US Withdrawal from Iraq: Baghdad Residents Mourn Departure of Former Enemy

US Withdrawal from Iraq: Baghdad Residents Mourn Departure of Former Enemy

SPIEGEL ONLINE - August 30, 2010

US combat troops are withdrawing from Iraq, where terrorist attacks are once again part of everyday life. The Iraqi population is suddenly mourning the departure of the once-hated occupiers, as fears of a civil war grow. By Ulrike Putz in Baghdad more... Comment ]

Israel-Lebanon Conflict: Lots of Questions, Few Answers in Border Skirmish

Israel-Lebanon Conflict: Lots of Questions, Few Answers in Border Skirmish

SPIEGEL ONLINE - August 04, 2010

Did Israeli soldiers really just want to move a tree? Who shot first and what role did a Shiite commander play? One day after an exchange of fire between Israeli and Lebanese soldiers, many crucial questions are still being addressed. And while it appears that a new war between the countries has been averted, Wednesday's quiet is deceptive. By Ulrike Putz in southern Lebanon more...


The Problem with Aid: International Donations Not Always Welcome in Gaza

The Problem with Aid: International Donations Not Always Welcome in Gaza

SPIEGEL ONLINE - June 04, 2010

The aid shipment that the Palestinian activists' flotilla was hoping to bring to Gaza before they were halted by Israeli commandos is now awaiting delivery. But Hamas will only let the badly needed goods into the territory under certain conditions. In the Gaza Strip, aid is not always greeted with enthusiasm. By Ulrike Putz in the Gaza Strip more...

Art in Iraq: New Life Stirring in Arab Cultural Capital

Art in Iraq: New Life Stirring in Arab Cultural Capital

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 21, 2010

For decades Baghdad was the cultural capital of the Arab world. War changed all that and it is only now that the Iraqi art scene is slowly blossoming again. As artists struggle with the aftermath of conflict and a lack of patrons, they say that the state of art is closely linked with the state of their nation. By Ulrike Putz in Baghdad more...


SPIEGEL ONLINE Interview with World Press Photo Winner: 'You Don't Have to Risk Your Life to Tell a Good Story'

SPIEGEL ONLINE Interview with World Press Photo Winner: 'You Don't Have to Risk Your Life to Tell a Good Story'

SPIEGEL ONLINE - February 23, 2010

Italian freelance photographer Pietro Masturzo, 30, won the prestigious World Press Photo prize for his picture of women taking part in night-time protests on a Tehran rooftop. He talks to SPIEGEL ONLINE about the risks of the job and defends himself against accusations that he was a coward for not photographing the street demonstrations. more...

Escape from Israel's Ultra-Orthodox: The High Price of Religious Defection

Escape from Israel's Ultra-Orthodox: The High Price of Religious Defection

SPIEGEL ONLINE - February 18, 2010

The community of ultra-Orthodox Jews in Israel is half a million strong and growing. They live in a parallel universe cut off from the modern world in tight-knit communities where everything revolves around religion. Only a few dare to abandon this life -- and the price for doing so is high. By Ulrike Putz in Tel Aviv more...