Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Dar’

Dar al-Hilal and ElBaradei’s shoes

April 14th, 2010 Comments off

Today I went to Dar al-Hilal, in the Mounira district of central Cairo. It’s a rather grand building that houses the publishing houses that puts out, among other things, al-Mussawar magazine. The picture above shows a stained glass window at the end of a long corridor where the fairly drab and depressing offices of the magazine are.

Al-Mussawar was once a great publication in the monarchy and Nasser eras, featuring fantastic photography, cartoons and articles. I have a small collection of old issues of al-Mussawar, some of which I found in Morocco. For instance, the one below dates from a few months before the October 1956 Suez Crisis and talks about war preparedness along the Suez Canal. 

 I can’t judge its editorial quality today — I almost never read it. But I did pick up the last issue, part of new wave of attacks on ElBaradei, which had the cover below, with the headline: “ElBaradei Pasha: Enemy of the Workers and Peasants.” I spoke to Hamdi Rizk, al-Mussawar’s editor about it. Rizk is an old-school populist-nationalist, critical of ElBaradei for essentially being a “khawaga” and a “pacha” with no knowledge of “people on the street.” It’s a critique I’ve heard from ordinary people and has much more resonance than the previous attacks focusing on ElBaradei’s alleged dual nationality. Rizk pointed to ElBaradei’s shoes on the cover, saying they are Clark’s, worth more than the monthly salary of an average Egyptian. Of course, I’m sure Mubarak and Gamal wear similarly expensive footwear, not shib-shib they picked up up in Sayyeda. I guess this is the equivalent of the perennial American debate about presidential candidates’ expensive haircuts.

Rizk was affable enough — not the terrible monster I’d imagined reading his violent attacks on the Muslim Brothers (his primary field of expertise alongside Sudan) over the years in al-Masri al-Youm, where he pens a column. What struck me is that, as much as he might be accused of engaging in ElBaradei-bashing on behalf of the Mubarak regime, he also represents something real.

Call it the populist false consciousness of a media that engages in relentless nationalist manipulation with occasional bouts of paranoid schizophrenia about the foreign conspiracy against the pure white hearts of the Egyptian people.

Or call it self-interest of the administrative class that has underpinned the regime for decades, the kind that obsesses with salary scales, bonuses, club memberships and safeguarding idea of state control over society and economy in an age of globalization.  

Or perhaps even call it a truly representative sample of a part of public opinion that resents (as Rizk does) Gamal’s team of economic reformists as much as it resents ElBaradei — these “khawagized” Egyptians who “think Egypt can be run from laptops” (Rizk’s phrase). Maybe Rizk is earnest about his opinions, and thinks he’s doing a public good by attacking ElBaradei. He makes no secret of his love for Mubarak and hope he will run again next year. He wants the next president to be like Nasser and Mubarak, to “come from the streets.”

Maybe we need to start thinking about this phenomenon as Egypt’s equivalent to the Tea Party movement, the manifestation of resentment against sinking purchasing power, culture wars with the elites, and a widening chasm of inequality.

P.S. I forgot to mention that the new issue of al-Mussawar’s editorial is by Mr. Egypt himself, Zahi Hawass. He also attacks ElBaradei, with the headline: “I am the most famous person in Egypt” in answer to ElBaradei’s similar recent statement to Austrian media. 



Go to Source

Madrasa in Sufi Hands

February 18th, 2010 Comments off


Students at Dar al-Mustafa in Tarim, Hadramawt

The image of the Islamic madrasa is severely tainted in the West. One of the oldest educational institutions in the world, and a pedagogical system that had influence on the evolution of colleges in medieval Europe, is generally portrayed in the media as a reactionary base for hateful anti-Western propaganda. Now that Yemen has surfaced as yet another “terrorist haven,” the idea of Islamic education in Yemen is likewise viewed negatively. One of the most important historical centers of Islamic education in Yemen remains Tarim in the Hadramawt valley. Yes, indeed the very Hadramawt from which the ancestors of Osama Bin Laden migrated. But Tarim has an international focus that many people are not aware of. For centuries Hadramis, including Sufi missionaries, have established strong ties with the people of India and Indonesia. The largess of Hadramis abroad has led to substantial support for schools back in Tarim. These are not backward enclaves with firebrands but devout Sufi masters who have long preached tolerance and the quest for spiritual truth. There is a video report posted on Al-Jazeera by Hashem Ahelbarra on “Students in Yemen fight Stereotypes” that is worth watching. For more information on Dar al-Mustafa, which is featured in the video, click here.

Go to Source

THE INTERNATIONAL PRIZE FOR ARABIC FICTION 2010

December 16th, 2009 1 comment

THE INTERNATIONAL PRIZE FOR

ARABIC FICTION 2010

Shortlist Announced

www.arabicfiction.org

MUHAMMAD AL-MANSI QINDEEL, MANSOURA EZ ELDIN, RABEE JABIR, ABDO KHAL, RABA’I MADHOUN and JAMAL NAJI are today, Tuesday 15 December, named as the six finalists shortlisted for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction 2010 (IPAF), the prestigious literary award celebrating the very best of contemporary Arabic fiction.

The shortlist of finalists was announced by Taleb Alrefai, Chair of Judges for the 2010 prize, at a press conference at the Beirut International Book Fair in Lebanon.

The six books, selected from a longlist of 16, are (in alphabetical order):

Author Title Publisher Nationality
Al-Mansi Qindeel, Muhammad A Cloudy Day on the West Side Dar Al-Shorouk Egyptian
Ez Eldin, Mansoura Beyond Paradise Dar Al-Ain Egyptian
Jabir, Rabee America Al-Markaz al-Thaqafi al-Arabi (Arab Cultural Centre) Lebanese
Khal, Abdo She Throws Sparks Al-Jamal Publications Saudi Arabian
Madhoun, Raba’i The Lady from Tel Aviv Arab Institute for Publishing and Studies Palestinian
Naji, Jamal When the Wolves Grow Old Ministry of Culture Publications Jordanian

Chair of Judges Taleb Alrefai commented on the shortlist of finalists: “A democratic, objective discussion was held, the most important target of which was to reach a list approved by the judging panel. The selected books represent the opinion of the panel, with due respect to and appreciation of all the longlisted novels.”

The panel of five judges were also revealed today. All specialists in the field of Arabic literature, they come from Kuwait, Egypt, Tunisia, France and Oman. They are: Taleb Alrefai (Chair of Judges), Kuwaiti novelist and short story writer; Shereen Abu El Naga, Egyptian lecturer of English and comparative literature at Cairo University; Raja’ Ben Salamah, Tunisian lecturer from the Faculty of Letters, Arts and Humanities at Manouba University, Tunisia; Frédéric LaGrange, French academic, translator and Head of the Arabic and Hebraic Department at the Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV); Saif al-Rahbi, Omani writer and poet.

The prestigious literary prize, now in its third year, aims to recognise and reward excellence in contemporary Arabic creative writing and to encourage wider readership of such Arabic literature internationally through translation. It is run with the support of the Emirates Foundation and the Booker Prize Foundation.

At today’s press conference Jonathan Taylor, Chair of the Board of Trustees, said: “IPAF is increasingly regarded as the leading prize in the Arab literary world. Its impact is indisputable, with its winners and shortlisted writers recognised as some of the most significant voices in contemporary Arabic literature – many of whom are now available to a wider world in translation thanks to the prize.”

Salwa Mikdadi, Head of the Arts and Culture Programme at the Emirates Foundation, added: “The Foundation is proud of its association with this increasingly influential prize. In three short years, the intellectual strength and operational independence of both the board of trustees and the judging panels have made it into the major fiction prize in the Arab World.

The 2010 prize received 115 eligible submissions from 17 Arab countries – Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, Iraq, UAE, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Bahrain, Oman, Morocco, Libya, Sudan, Tunisia and Algeria – and the longlist of 16 titles was announced this November.

Joumana Haddad, the Prize Administrator, commented: “We are proud that the IPAF is contributing in increasing the interest in contemporary Arabic literature, whether reading or translating wise. No other Arab literary prize has ever enjoyed this much attention and influence, which proves that the IPAF came to fill an urgent need in our cultural life”.

The shortlisted finalists for the prize will each receive $10,000, with the winner receiving an additional $50,000. They can look forward to reaching wider audiences and potentially securing publishing deals – both within the Arab World and internationally. The previous two winners for the prize – Bahaa Taher (Sunset Oasis) and Youssef Ziedan (Azazel) – have not only secured English publications of their novels in the UK, through Sceptre (Hodder & Stoughton) and Atlantic Books respectively, but also a number of international deals as a result of the prize.

The winner of the International Prize for Arabic Fiction 2010 will be announced at an awards ceremony in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday 2 March 2010, the first day of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair.

-ends-

A Cloudy Day on the West Side Muhammad Al-Mansi Qindeel

Dar Al-Shorouk, Cairo, 2009

In his novel A Cloudy Day on the West Side, Muhammad Al-Mansi Qindeel evokes the period of great archeological discovery and nationalist struggle in Egypt. The novel tells the story of a young girl taken from home by her mother when she is forced to flee her abusive husband. After changing her name and fastening a crucifix around her tiny arm, the mother leaves her daughter at a village in Asyut. The fate of the girl, who grows up to become a translator, intersects with that of a number of historical figures from the period, including Howard Carter, Lord Cromer and Abdulrahman al-Rifa’i. This thrilling tale is brought to life by the author’s detailed and vivid descriptions of real historical events and places.

Egyptian novelist Muhammad Al-Mansi Qindeel was born in 1946 in the Egyptian delta city of al-Mahalla al-Kubra, where his father was a worker. His first novel, Breaking of the Spirit, was inspired by events surrounding workers’ unrest in the city. A medical school graduate, he worked as a doctor in the countryside before dedicating himself to writing. He currently lives in Kuwait, where he works as an editor for monthly magazine Al-Arabi. He has won two awards for his writing, the State Incentive Award in 1988 and the Sawiris Foundation Award in 2006. He has published several novels, short story collections and children’s books and his novel Moon over Samarkand has been published in English by the American University in Cairo Press.

Beyond Paradise Mansoura Ez Eldin

Al-Ain Publishing, Egypt, 2009

In Beyond Paradise, Mansoura Ez Eldin engages with Egypt’s rural middle class through the character of Salma. The editor of a literary magazine, Salma is trying to dispose of her negative self-image by liberating herself from a past loaded with painful memories. The process encourages her to write a novel in which she tells her family history: a history of love, a history of the body, a history of movement across the social classes within her village, a history of madness, and a history of writing.  Through this process Salma’s identity is split into two. On the one hand she observes and narrates in the present, whilst on the other she delves frantically into the hidden depths of her memory.

Egyptian novelist and journalist Mansoura Ez Eldin was born in Delta Egypt in 1976. She studied journalism at the Faculty of Media, Cairo University and has since published short stories in various newspapers and magazines: she published her first collection of short stories, Shaken Light, in 2001. This was followed by two novels, Maryam’s Maze in 2004 and Beyond Paradise in 2009. Her work has been translated into a number of languages, including an English translation of Maryam’s Maze by the American University in Cairo (AUC) Press. This year, she was selected for the Beirut39, as one of the 39 best Arab authors below the age of 40. She was also a participant of the inaugural nadwa (writers’ workshop) held by the International Prize for Arabic Fiction in Abu Dhabi this November.

America – Rabee Jabir

Al-Markaz al-Thaqafi al-Arabi (Arab Cultural Centre), Morocco and Lebanon, 2009

America evokes the story of the Syrians who left their homeland in the early twentieth century to try their luck in the young America.  Spurred on by a sense of adventure and the desire to escape poverty, they made the epic journey. Leaving their homeland with only a few belongings, their journey takes in everything from their travels across mountains and plains, to their gradual integration into American society, later becoming citizens of America and fighting its wars. In particular, the novel focuses on the character of Marta, who travels alone to New York in search of her husband, with whom she has lost contact. America is a tribute to those who left Syria in search of a new life from those who remained behind.

Lebanese novelist and journalist born Rabee Jabir was born in Beirut in 1972. He has been editor of Afaq, the weekly cultural supplement of Al-Hayat newspaper, since 2001. His first novel, Master of Darkness, won the Critics Choice Prize in 1992. He has since written 16 novels, including: Black Tea; The Last House; Yousif Al-Inglizi; The Journey of the Granadan (published in German in 2005) and Berytus: A City Beneath the Earth (published in French by Gallimard in 2009).

She Throws Sparks ­– Abdo Khal

Al-Jamal Publications, Baghdad/Beirut, 2009

A painfully satirical novel, She Throws Sparks depicts the destructive impact that power and limitless wealth has on life and the environment. It captures the seductive powers of the palace and tells the agonising story of those who have become enslaved by it, drawn by its promise of glamour.  She Throws Sparks exposes the inner world of the palace and of those who have chosen to become its puppets, from whom it has stolen everything.

Abdo Khal is a Saudi novelist born in al-Majanah, southern Saudi Arabia, in 1962. He studied political science at King Abdel Al Aziz University in Jeddah before starting writing in 1980. He is the author of several works, including: A dialogue at the Gates of the Earth, There’s Nothing to be Happy About, and Cities Eating the Grass. Some of his works have been translated into English, French and German. In addition to his writing, he is a member of the board of directors of the Jeddah Literary Club and the editor-in-chief of the Ukaz newspaper, for which he writes a daily column.

The Lady from Tel Aviv – Raba’i Madhoun

Arab Institute for Publishing and Studies, Beirut, 2009

In The Lady from Tel Aviv, Raba’i Madhoun tackles the Arab/Palestinian-Israeli issue, focusing on a pivotal time of anxiety and suspicion, with tensions on the point of boiling over. The novel’s protagonists are Palestinian exile Walid Dahman, who is returning home to Gaza after many years in Europe, and Israeli Dana Ahuva, who happens to be sitting next to him on their flight into Tel Aviv’s Ben-Gurion Airport. Their dialogue takes the reader into the far realms of memory, history and the self. The Lady from Tel Aviv is a novel that, in its complexity, intricacy and ambiguity, avoids the dogma of ready-made ideology.

Palestinian writer Raba’i Madhoun was born in al-Majdal, Ashkelon, Israel, in 1945. Along with his parents, he was uprooted from his homeland during the 1948 Nakba exodus and as a consequence his childhood was spent in the Khan Younis Palestinian refugee camp situated in the Gaza Strip. He studied at Alexandria University, Egypt, and since 1973 has worked as a journalist. His written works include the short story collection, The Idiot of Khan Younis, an academic study (The Palestinian Intifada) and his autobiography, The Taste of Separation. He currently works as an editor for Al-Sharq Al-Awsat newspaper in London.

When the Wolves Grow Old – Jamal Naji

Ministry of Culture Publications, Amman, 2009

When the Wolves Grow Old reveals the secret lives of the social climbers who have travelled from Amman’s poor quarters to positions of wealth and power, providing an insight into the world of the city’s preachers, politicians and charitable institutions. The book is told by a succession of characters who narrate incidents and scenes that repeat, conflict and develop from one character to the next. However the protagonist, ‘Azmi al-Wajih, remains silent and shrouded in mystery throughout the novel:  is he the only one of these wolves that does not grow old? When the Wolves Grow Old is a story of human frailty and the complex interaction between sex, religion and politics.

Jamal Naji is a Jordanian writer of Palestinian descent, born in the ‘Aqbat Jaber refugee camp, Jericho (Ariha) in 1954. He began writing in 1975 and his published works include: The Road to Balharith, Time, The Remnants of the Last Storms, Life on the Edge of Death, The Night of the Feathers, What Happened Thursday and The Target.  He was president of the Jordanian Writers Association from 2001-2003 and he currently works as head of the Intelligentsia Centre for Research and Survey in Amman, Jordan.

Tarim Journal

November 9th, 2009 Comments off


Tarim, a remote desert valley in Yemen with towering bluffs and ancient mud-brick houses, is probably best known to outsiders as the birthplace of Osama bin Laden’s father. Photo: Bryan Denton

Tarim Journal
Crossroads of Islam, Past and Present

By ROBERT F. WORTH, The New York Times, October 15, 2009

TARIM, Yemen — This remote desert valley, with its towering bluffs and ancient mud-brick houses, is probably best known to outsiders as the birthplace of Osama bin Laden’s father. Most accounts about Yemen in the Western news media refer ominously to it as “the ancestral homeland” of the leader of Al Qaeda, as though his murderous ideology had somehow been shaped here.

But in fact, Tarim and its environs are a historic center of Sufism, a mystical strand within Islam. The local religious school, Dar al-Mustafa, is a multicultural place full of students from Indonesia and California who stroll around its tiny campus wearing white skullcaps and colorful shawls.

“The reality is that Osama bin Laden has never been to Yemen,” said Habib Omar, the revered director of Dar al-Mustafa, as he sat on the floor in his home eating dinner with a group of students. “His thinking has nothing to do with this place.”

Lately, Al Qaeda has found a new sanctuary here and carried out a number of attacks. But the group’s inspiration, Mr. Omar said, did not originate here. Most of the group’s adherents have lived in Saudi Arabia — as has Mr. bin Laden — and it was there, or in Afghanistan or Pakistan, that they adopted a jihadist mind-set.

Go to Source

Links for 10.28.09

October 28th, 2009 Comments off

? FT.com / Middle East – Wait goes on for Dubai’s £10bn bond | "Where is Dubai’s $10bn bond? The question has been making the rounds in Dubai business circles, as bankers and executives wonder when the emirate will bite the bullet and ask the United Arab Emirates central bank – which is bankrolled by Abu Dhabi – for the second tranche of a $20bn bail-out agreed earlier this year."
? FT.com / China / Economy & Trade – Qatar targets increased gas exports to China | China hydrocarbons imports from ME increase.
? Almasry Alyoum | Standing Up To Garbage | Interesting story about garbage collection problem, reveals govt. spending very little, military stepping in with recycling.
? Almasry Alyoum | NDP Promotes Gamal Mubarak On Facebook | Facebook users paid LE1500 to promote Gamal.
? Brown: Asking the wrong questions about Palestinian elections | Marc Lynch | Makes some good points about elections in the Arab world in general and the Palestinian ones in particular.
? Dar Al Hayat – The “Brotherhoodization” of the Arab World | Argues MB arrests only reinforce ideological core of the group and increases its popularity, allowing them to spread their intolerant populist message rather than engage in genuine politics.
? Arab winds of change | Brian Whitaker | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk | Whitaker provides a short take on his new book, which I will be reviewing shortly: the Arab malaise is not just the regimes, but also the people.
? The disabled Palestinian standup helping refugees find their funny side | Stage | The Guardian | Very nice story on Palestinian disabled standupcomics: "I am officially the most oppressed person in the world," Maysoon Zayid recently told an audience in California. "I'm a Palestinian Muslim with cerebral palsy."
? Israel rations Palestinians to trickle of water | Amnesty International | Amnesty's report on Israel cutting off water to Gaza.
? Envisioning an alternative Egypt, post-Mubarak – Haaretz – Israel News | Zvi Barel on Heikal and succession.
? bt – Waiting for a Trickle | "The boom, spurred by private and foreign direct investment, has paid off primarily for the country’s richest, according to the new report by the General Authority for Investment (GAFI)."
? The Race for Iran | New blog about the geostrategy of Iran, contributors include Flynt and Hillary Everett.
? Gaza water supply at ‘crisis point’ | "Amnesty International says Israeli policies and practices are denying Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip their fair share of the region's scarce water supplies"
? Amr Bargisi and Samuel Tadros: Why Are Egypt’s Liberals Anti-Semitic? – WSJ.com | WTF is the Egyptian Union of Liberal Youth? This argument is stupid, you take the liberals you have, not those you wish you had. And how do these people get into the WSJ op-ed page?
? Brother of Afghan Leader Is Said to Be on C.I.A. Payroll – NYTimes.com | No wonder Matthew Hoh resigned: "KABUL, Afghanistan — Ahmed Wali Karzai, the brother of the Afghan president and a suspected player in the country’s booming illegal opium trade, gets regular payments from the Central Intelligence Agency, and has for much of the past eight years, according to current and former American officials."



Go to Source

Links for 10.26.09 to 10.27.09

October 27th, 2009 Comments off

? LRB · Nicolas Pelham: Diary | Nic Pelham's diary about Gaza.
? Almasry Alyoum | NDP Talks Youth | Second in a series on youth and the NDP in Egypt: “We have to use the Internet, especially with so many people trying to turn our achievements into failures and to tarnish the reputation of public symbols. We have to be present online to correct those misconceptions.” Now who could they be talking about?
? Almasry Alyoum| Gamal Mubarak: Nepotism "Unknown To Private Sector" | In this story, Gamal says nepotism "is part of Egyptian culture." You don't say.
? Chomsky Receives Highest Pentagon Honor | Chomsky book "Interventions" banned in Gitmo.
? YouTube – Slackistan Trailer | This is a good and funny idea – you could do it in the Arab world, too.
? Inanities: The Gamal Show | About Gamal's Sharek event: "The Gamal Show is Gamal Mubarak’s attempt to convince us that he’s Barack Obama."
? Bakchich: Interroger des… interrogatoires | Accounts of police interrogations of non-fasters in Morocco, interrogates them about Abou Bakr Jamai (prominent editor forced into exile), and more. Thoroughly depressing.
? Arab Media & Society | The end of the beginning: The failure of April 6th and the future of electronic activism in Egypt | About online activism, its failure so far, and how to move beyond cynicism.
? Almasry Alyoum | Gamal Mubarak And The Power Of Web 2.0 | First in a series of articles about the NDP's efforts to attract young Egyptians to politics. This one focuses on Gamal Mubarak's "Sharek" (Participate) online Q&A event.
? J Street’s Ben-Ami On Zionism and Military Aid to Israel – Jeffrey Goldberg | A very revealing interview of J Street's Jeremy Ben-Ami which conirms my doubts about the whole project.
? Morocco press freedom on the decline, RSF study shows (Magharebia.com) | A marked increase in fines, imprisonement and intimidation of the press.
? Dar Al Hayat – A Presidential Battle without Candidates | Muhammad Salah on the Egyptian presidency.



Go to Source

Protesters’ slogans in Iran

September 22nd, 2009 Comments off


A progressive Iranian who supports Palestinian rights does not believe that the slogan “No to Gaza” represents all protesters. She sent me this note (I cite with her permission): ” This one is very famous:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8R1Z3FEvKc
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WJqKHAMv0c
“mardom cheraa neshastin iran shode felestin” : why are you people sitting (not doing anything) while Iran is becoming Palestine?
This one is also very famous:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CzRCxlKdl6A “che iran che ghaze koshtane mardom base” : whether in Iran or in Gaza, killing people should be ended
This one was written on the signs during the protest. it’s part of this song that has been changed a little bit:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3BLcos6OPI “tofangat raa zamin bogzaar ke man bizaaram az didare in khoonbaar che dar ghaze che dar lobnan che dar ghodso che dar iran” : put down your gun; I am resentful to see this blood bath, whether it is in Gaza or Lebanon, whether it is in Qods or Iran
Less famous ones but still very interesting:
“Felestin Iran ast, estebdad viran ast” : Palestine is Iran, despotism won’t last (will be estroyed)
“marg bar estekbar, che dar iran che lebanon”: down with the imperialism whether it is in Iran or in Lebanon “raie ma khoon shode, iran felestin shode” : our votes turned to blood, Iran has become Palestine “felestin baa gheirat, hemaayat, hemaayat” : O proud Palestinians, support us, support us Attached is a photo of a sign of Qods day, it says: My Palestinian friend now I understand your feelings much better.” (above, top). Above: “It is made by Golrokh Nafisi and says: This soil belongs to us. Tehran. Jerusalem.” It was popular among bloggers.

Go to Source

A Lebanese Shi`ite Madoff?

September 1st, 2009 Comments off

There is a brewing scandal in Lebanon: a Lebanese Shi`ite Madoff? Apparently, he is linked to Amal and Hizbullah and may be behind the Hizbullah’s quasi publishing house, Dar Al-Hadi.

Go to Source

Links for 08.09.09 to 08.12.09

August 13th, 2009 Comments off

Get Good at Arabic « MediaShack | Good tips on picking up the lingo – this method really works although it means you must be disciplined and dedicated (and have no other job, ideally). Even if it might seem a tiny bit exploitative.
‘Just World News’ with Helena Cobban: Agha, Malley, and some other ideas | Helena Cobban's critique of the Malley/Agha op-ed, saying it's quite banal. Well yes and no: it's banal because experts and many Israelis and Palestinians have known it for a long time (that it's about 1948), but it's still important to reiterate the point because politicians (in Israel/Palestine, among the two diasporas and among foreigners) still pretend otherwise.
Op-Ed Contributors – The Two-State Solution Doesn’t Solve Anything – NYTimes.com | Malley and Agha say it's all about 1948: "For years, virtually all attention has been focused on the question of a future Palestinian state, its borders and powers. As Israelis make plain by talking about the imperative of a Jewish state, and as Palestinians highlight when they evoke the refugees’ rights, the heart of the matter is not necessarily how to define a state of Palestine. It is, as in a sense it always has been, how to define the state of Israel."
Les ministres israéliens divisés sur la libération de Marwan Barghouti – Proche-Orient – Le Monde.fr | Israelis pols split about whether or not to free Marwan Barghouti.
Dar Al Hayat – Ayoon Wa Azan (Why Are Men Allowed to Wear Dresses?) | Jihad al-Khazen suggests (jokingly?) that Gulf Arabs buy up the Observer, which is shutting down (alas, although perhaps they shouldn't have spent so much money on stupid lifestyle supplements and Nigella Lawson pageantry.)
Will the leader of Lebanon’s Druze really form an alliance with Hezbollah? – By Lee Smith – Slate Magazine | Weird Slate story in whcih Walid Jumblatt is celebrated as hero, disowns his old friends, and they react: "His former American friends are not amused. "I don't believe for a minute that he's sorry he met with the dreaded neocons, and I'm sorry he feels somehow compelled to say that," said Elliott Abrams, the Bush administration's deputy national security adviser for global democracy strategy. "I just hope he keeps sending all of us that nice wine from the Bekaa.""
Three soldiers, Al-Qaeda leader killed in Yemeni clashes – AL SHORFA | Note that this site is funded by US Central Command. I don't know much about Yemen, but isn't it rather odd to refer to the insurgents in Yemen to al-Qaeda (as opposed to people motivated by local grievances, as a recent International Crisis Group report argued)?
Le Figaro – International : Mauritanie : attentat suicidedevant l’ambassade de France | Suicide bombing outside French embassy in Mauritania.



Go to Source

Links for 08.09.09 to 08.13.09

August 13th, 2009 Comments off

Moises Naim — A New Recipe for Autocrats Around The World – washingtonpost.com | Some good stuff there, but he goes to easy on Mossad and the CIA – they would not be scapegoats if it wasn't sometimes true!
The Groping Elephant in the Room: Sexual Harassment in the Arab World « the long slumber | More from The Long Slumber on sexual harassment in the Arab word – recommended, thought-provoking reading.
???? – ???? ????? ????? ??? ?? ???? ????? | Tell me this man is not running for president…
Fiji Water: Spin the Bottle | Mother Jones | Nothing to do with the Middle East, but outrageous.
BBC NEWS | Middle East | Frustrated dreams of young Egyptians | Living in the City of the Dead: "I dream of leaving this place. One day we will buy a new home and pretend we have lived there all our lives."
Get Good at Arabic « MediaShack | Good tips on picking up the lingo – this method really works although it means you must be disciplined and dedicated (and have no other job, ideally). Even if it might seem a tiny bit exploitative.
‘Just World News’ with Helena Cobban: Agha, Malley, and some other ideas | Helena Cobban's critique of the Malley/Agha op-ed, saying it's quite banal. Well yes and no: it's banal because experts and many Israelis and Palestinians have known it for a long time (that it's about 1948), but it's still important to reiterate the point because politicians (in Israel/Palestine, among the two diasporas and among foreigners) still pretend otherwise.
Op-Ed Contributors – The Two-State Solution Doesn’t Solve Anything – NYTimes.com | Malley and Agha say it's all about 1948: "For years, virtually all attention has been focused on the question of a future Palestinian state, its borders and powers. As Israelis make plain by talking about the imperative of a Jewish state, and as Palestinians highlight when they evoke the refugees’ rights, the heart of the matter is not necessarily how to define a state of Palestine. It is, as in a sense it always has been, how to define the state of Israel."
Les ministres israéliens divisés sur la libération de Marwan Barghouti – Proche-Orient – Le Monde.fr | Israelis pols split about whether or not to free Marwan Barghouti.
Dar Al Hayat – Ayoon Wa Azan (Why Are Men Allowed to Wear Dresses?) | Jihad al-Khazen suggests (jokingly?) that Gulf Arabs buy up the Observer, which is shutting down (alas, although perhaps they shouldn't have spent so much money on stupid lifestyle supplements and Nigella Lawson pageantry.)
Will the leader of Lebanon’s Druze really form an alliance with Hezbollah? – By Lee Smith – Slate Magazine | Weird Slate story in whcih Walid Jumblatt is celebrated as hero, disowns his old friends, and they react: "His former American friends are not amused. "I don't believe for a minute that he's sorry he met with the dreaded neocons, and I'm sorry he feels somehow compelled to say that," said Elliott Abrams, the Bush administration's deputy national security adviser for global democracy strategy. "I just hope he keeps sending all of us that nice wine from the Bekaa.""
Three soldiers, Al-Qaeda leader killed in Yemeni clashes – AL SHORFA | Note that this site is funded by US Central Command. I don't know much about Yemen, but isn't it rather odd to refer to the insurgents in Yemen to al-Qaeda (as opposed to people motivated by local grievances, as a recent International Crisis Group report argued)?
Le Figaro – International : Mauritanie : attentat suicidedevant l’ambassade de France | Suicide bombing outside French embassy in Mauritania.



Go to Source