From the Editors
It was an odd spectacle: Michael Bloomberg, the New York City mayor responsible for a quite a bit of repression against New York activists, was also the one chiding New York politicos for their threats to cut funding for the city’s public colleges. As he quipped, “If you want to go to a university where the government decides what kind of subjects are fit for discussion, I suggest you apply to a school in North Korea.” Brooklyn College’s hosting of activist Omar Barghouti ...Keep Reading »
The latest non-scandal scandalizing the American commentariat is whether Barack Obama will be able to nominate former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel as his new Secretary of Defense. The narrative is that the Zionist lobby is eager to scuttle Hagel’s nomination because he has uttered one too many words “critical” of Israel, and displayed too many sentiments suspected of being contrary to the agenda of the lobby: namely, destroying Iran. The narrative is true enough. That ...Keep Reading »
One of the more remarkable yet less remarked upon moments of the recent Israeli massacre in Gaza came when the Qassam Brigades gave a press conference on 17 November. They had a message for the Israeli public: “It was your leadership,” they said, “that dragged you into this and into the shelters to score cheap political points.” The causes for the latest Israeli massacre in Gaza are more complex than the Qassam Brigades statement made them out to be. The main driver is the ...Keep Reading »
Belén Fernández, The Imperial Messenger: Thomas Friedman at Work. London and New York: Verso, 2011. A researcher once carried out an informal study to try to find out whether or not people actually read the books on bestseller lists. To find out, he put envelopes in the reputedly high-selling books. In each envelope was a note saying that if those who found the envelopes were to send them to a designated address, the researcher would send them five dollars. According ...Keep Reading »
Dafni Leef has been at both bookends of the recent protests in Israel. They started in mid-July, when Leef, a Tel Aviv filmmaker, was met with a hike in her rent that she could not afford to pay. Instead of moving to a new apartment, she moved to a tent on Rothschild Boulevard, the city's sleekest thoroughfare, and set up a Facebook event calling on her compatriots to join her. The spark of dissent hit tinder, and then the flames alit on a social landscape desiccated by ...Keep Reading »
Max Ajl studies development sociology at Cornell University and has been published widely, including in Middle East Report, Historical Materialism, and the Guardian's Comment is Free. He is a contributing editor at Jacobin and is on Twitter at: @maxajl.