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Natural Resources

Après Ben-Guerdane : dépossessions, déstructurations et insécurité alimentaire dans le Sud-est tunisien

Paysage du sud-est tunisien, par Habib Ayeb (CC 3.0)

Le Sud-est tunisien est de plus en plus sous les regards croisés des observateurs, des décideurs et des médias. Marginalisée et oubliée pendant des décennies, cette vaste région « frontalière » est ainsi devenue l’espace surveillé et l’objet d’un contrôle rapproché faisant appel à tous les moyens humains, techniques et technologiques dont disposent les autorités sécuritaires nationales et régionales (armée, forces de sécurité…) mais aussi les puissances et les organisation militaires régionales et internationales. Ce contrôle a été resserré d’un cran après l’attaque « terroriste » d’envergure (probablement plus de 50 ou 60 attaquants) sur la ...

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The Ouarzazate Solar Plant in Morocco: Triumphal 'Green' Capitalism and the Privatization of Nature

[Computer-generated image of what the entire NOOR solar power complex is expected to look like. Image from MASEN/Youtube]

Ouarzazate is a beautiful town in south-central Morocco, well worth visiting. It is an important holiday destination and has been nicknamed the "door of the desert." It is also known as a famed location for international filmmaking, where films such as Lawrence of Arabia (1962), The Mummy (1999), Gladiator (2000), and Kingdom of Heaven (2005) were shot, as was part of the television series Game of Thrones. That is not all what Ouarzazate has to offer as its name has recently been associated with a solar mega-project that is supposedly going to end Morocco's dependency on energy imports, provide electricity to more ...

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Oil: The Stuff of Mass Delusion

[President Obama meets Saudi King Salman. Image from creativecommons/]

Military primacy, and the routine use of deadly military force, remains the cornerstone of US foreign policy in the Middle East. The 2015 nuclear non-proliferation accord with Iran represents a rare yet fleeting bright moment for diplomacy in a region where wars—in Libya, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen—and the mass displacement of peoples continue unchecked. The United States has done much to precipitate the violence through its unjustifiable and destructive 2003 invasion of Iraq. Today the Obama administration abets the devastation from the air and by arming, directly or indirectly, its weak and embattled client governments. These include Iraq, the Saudi-backed forces seeking ...

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اتفاقية باريس: أهم ملامحها ومدى تأثيرها على تغير المناخ في العالم

[مصدر الصورة أي .بي]

تم اعتماد اتفاقية باريس، الحلقة الأحدث في التحرك الدولي الذي بدأ منذ أكثر من 20 عامًا من أجل مواجهة تغير المناخ، في 12 ديسمبر 2015 في العاصمة الفرنسية. وتداولت وسائط الإعلام عقب الإعلان عن اعتماد الاتفاقية مشاهد احتفالية تعبر عن الابتهاج والإشادة بالاتفاقية كإنجاز عظيم، كما تداولت أيضًا مشاهد الاحتجاجات والتعليقات التي تحط من شأن الاتفاقية وتصفها بالفشل الذريع. تحاول هذه المقالة تحليل اتفاقية باريس، ودوافع الحفاوة والازدراء أو مواطن القوة والقصور بها وعلاقتها بمواجهة آثار تغير المناخ في مصر. لماذا اتفاقية باريس؟ - كانت اتفاقية الأمم المتحدة الإطارية عام 1992 هي أول اتفاقية دولية من أجل تغير المناخ، وقد استهدفت الاتفاقية وضع إطار عام للتدبر فيما يمكن القيام به للحد من ...

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The Geo-Economics of Gulf Food Imports

[An irrigated wheat project of Saudi Al Rajhi group in Sudan. Image from author's archive.]

What a difference two decades can make. In the early 1990s, Saudi Arabia was among the world’s top ten wheat exporters. Now it is among the crop’s top ten importers. The Saudi government’s vision to overcome the geopolitical vulnerability of food import dependence with domestic wheat self-sufficiency lies in tatters due to lack of water. To make matters worse, the global food crisis of 2008 only heightened this sense of vulnerability. The meatification of diets in emerging markets like China, biofuel mandates in developed countries, and increased participation of financial investors in markets for agricultural commodities had caused a demand surge in these products. At ...

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قمامة لبنان من الفساد إلى صفر- نفايات: مقابلة للوضع بين زياد أبي شاكر ورانية المصري

في الحوار التالي يناقش المهندس والمنظّم زياد أبي شاكرسياسات الإدارة الفاسدة والفاشلة لنفايات لبنان الصلبة المسببة للتلوث، بالإضافة إلى الخيارات العقلانية لصفر نفايات.تتضمن المقابلة التالية أربعة أجزاء، بحيث يمكنكم أن تنقروا.عليهما بشكل منفصل. بوسعكم أن تقرأوا أيضاً النص العربي المدوّن المرافق. زياد أبي شاكر مهندس متعدد الاختصاصات متخصص في بناء مصانع لتدوير النفايات البلدية على المناطق المختلفة ويعمل ضد اتجاه  مصنع إعادة تدوير مركزي ضخم. وحين كان يقوم بالأبحاث في جامعة روتجرز في نيو جيرسي، في الولايات المتحدة الأميركية طوّر فريقه تقنية حديثة لمعالجة و تدوير النفايات بعد فرزها، تقوم على مبدأ التخمير السريع الذي يحول النفايات العضوية الى سماد زراعي بواسطة مواد تسمى ...

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New Texts Out Now: Franck Mermier, Récits de villes: d’Aden à Beyrouth

[Cover of Franck Mermier,

Franck Mermier, Récits de villes: d’Aden à Beyrouth. Arles: Actes Sud/Sindbad, 2015.         Jadaliyya (J): Qu’est-ce qui vous a fait publier ce livre? Franck Mermier (FM): Après des recherches sur la ville de Sanaa et sur l’édition dans le monde arabe, particulièrement à Beyrouth, j’ai réalisé des enquêtes sur cette dernière ville où j’ai vécu de 2002 à 2009. Je me suis intéressé notamment à la question des perceptions et pratiques de l’espace urbain dans une ville divisée en différents territoires politico-confessionnels. J’ai aussi enquêté sur la construction de la mosquée Muhammad Al-Amin et du campanile de la ...

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الثورة القادمة إلى شمال أفريقيا: الكفاح من أجل العدالة المناخية

الثورة القادمة إلى شمال أفريقيا: الكفاح من أجل العدالة المناخية حمزة حموشان وميكا مينيو-بالويللو بلاتفورم لندن، مؤسّسة روزا لوكسمبورغ وعدالة بيئيّة شمال أفريقيا. مارس 2015 يمكنكم قراءة الكتاب وتحميله هنا.   1- ماهو غرضكم من تأليف هذا الكتاب؟ هدفنا هو إلقاء الضّوء على عنف تغيّر المناخ في شمال أفريقيا والتّأكيد على الحاجة إلى استجابة محليّة. أردنا الإشارة إلى أنّ بقاء الإنسانيّة على قيد الحياة مرهون بالتغيير الهيكلي وعلى مواجهة تحدّي الحديث عن العدالة المناخيّة بالّلغة العربيّة. تغيّر المناخ هو حقيقة موثقة في شمال أفريقيا. عدة أشخاص يلاقون حتفهم والكثيرون يجدون أنفسهم مجبرين على ترك أراضيهم بسبب موجات الجفاف والعواصف الّتي أصبحت أكثر حدة ومتكرّرة ...

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Sweeping Waste Under the Oriental Rug

[Toxic Waste. Image by drp]

 "Just between you and me shouldn't the World Bank be encouraging more migration of the dirty industries to the Least Developed Countries? […] I think the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable and we should face up to that […] I’ve always thought that countries in Africa are vastly under polluted; their air quality is probably vastly inefficiently low compared to Los Angeles."  Lawrence Summers, leaked World Bank memo, 1991. The Trade in Toxic Waste Throughout the 1980s, the cost of hazardous waste disposal within developed countries rose dramatically. Luckily for waste-intensive ...

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Snapshot: Palestinian Spring

[In the northern West Bank. Photo by Ahmad Al-Bazz.]

As a Palestinian photojournalist living in the West Bank my daily work is very far from the quiet and fabulous nature that is seen in these pictures. Every week I spend hours covering protests, clashes, and the military operations of the Israeli occupying forces. In between I give myself some rest time, which I prefer to spend in hills and mountains around the trees and flowers, away from the usual places I work. Every year I try to take advantage of the spring season to take some green frames before the start of summer season when everything turns yellow. After a good rainy period and even before the official start of spring, Palestine has again turned green with ...

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Corporatization: Are Public Services still Public?

[Screenshot from

Public water and electricity are back in vogue. Yet, many state-owned utilities are now undergoing “corporatization,” i.e. they have legal autonomy and manage their own finances. Is this a positive development in the struggle for equitable public services or a slippery slope toward privatization? Sometimes driven by neoliberal agendas, there are examples of corporatization that could herald a brighter future for equity-oriented public services. The Municipal Services Project, both a scholarly and activist network based at Kingston University (Ontario, Canada), recently released a book, a blog post and a video, presenting the results of in-depth research dealing with the ...

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Expropriation, Lawlessness, and Resistance in Yirca's Olive Groves: An Interview with Olcay Bingol and Deniz Bayram

[Image by Ayşegül Ersoy.]

[This interview regarding the ongoing resistance and expropriation processes in Yırca (Soma) was conducted by Boğaziçi University students Çiğdem Artık and Mustafa Kaba. The interviewees are Olcay Bingöl, who is an ecological activist resisting in solidarity with the villagers in Yırca against the expropriation of their olive groves for a coal power plant, and Deniz Bayram, who is a lawyer for Greenpeace Mediterranean, which is following the case. This interview was originally conducted for the periodical publication of the Boğaziçi University Members Consumer Cooperative. It was first published in Turkish on Jadaliyya; that version can be found here. It was translated ...

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من يملك دولة أرامكو؟

في مقابلة مع مجلة الإيكونومست البريطانية في 4 يناير 2016، أعلن الأمير محمد بن سلمان، ولي ولي العهد السعودي و"رئيس المجلس الأعلى لأرامكو السعودية" أن حكومة بلاده تدرس فكرة خصخصة الشركة المملوكة للدولة بطرح أسهمها للاكتتاب العام. (1) بعد ذلك بأيام ، أصدرت "أرامكو-السعودية" بيانا بأنها تجري دراسة طرح "نسبة ملائمة" من أسهمها في "أسواق المال العالمية" (2) ،تبعه "توضيح" من رئيسها التنفيذي بعزم الحكومة السعودية، مبدئياً عى الأقل،الاحتفاظ ب"حصة مسيطرة" ...

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CFP: Unfolding Middle Eastern Landscapes (Beirut, 31 May-2 June)

Unfolding Middle Eastern Landscapes Changing Forms, Evolving Tools, Transforming Meanings Beirut, 31 May-2 June 2016 This conference aims to bring together landscape academics and professionals to reflect on the discourse of landscape in the Middle East. The organizers hope that speakers, contributors and participants will contribute to the environmental and cultural specificities shaping the emerging profession of landscape architecture in the Middle East. The conference is jointly organized by the ...

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New Texts Out Now: Eckart Woertz, Oil for Food: The Global Food Crisis and the Middle East

Eckart Woertz, Oil for Food: The Global Food Crisis and the Middle East. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013, paperback edition 2015. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Eckart Woertz (EW): In 2007-08, at the height of the global food crisis, I was living in Dubai, working for the Gulf Research Center. Food price inflation became a hot topic, and in 2008 Gulf countries started to make all these announcements about agro-investments in food-insecure countries like Sudan and ...

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ممنوع الاقتراب أو التصوير: الجيش والاقتصاد في مصر

يسود اعتقاد واسع أن القوات المسلحة المصرية تلعب دورا مؤثرا، بل وربما مهيمنا، في الاقتصاد القومي إذ أنه من الثابت أن القوات المسلحة تدير اقتصادا موازيا يقوم بإنتاج العديد من المنتجات الاستهلاكية من الغذاء والألبان والقمح إلى الاسمنت والأسمدة وتوزيع مشتقات البترول كما يحضر الجيش بقوة في قطاع البنية الأساسية والمرافق العامة مثل الطرق والموانئ والكباري والأنفاق. على أنه خلافا للاعتقاد الشائع فإن المعلومات المتوفرة والتي يمكن الثقة في صدقيتها ـ على ندرتها ـ تشير إلى أن الجيش بالفعل حاضر في العديد ...

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TandemWorks Launches its Rehabilitation Scheme of Beirut River

The founders of TandemWorks, Mayssa and Alia Badawi, are pleased to announce their inaugural project, Hammoud Badawi, in collaboration with theOtherDada (tOD) Integrated Architecture Lab, the Lebanese Center for Energy Conservation (LCEC), and UN-Habitat, as part of a scheme to rehabilitate the Beirut River. TandemWorks is a new, Beirut-based non-profit arts organisation which advocates social, cultural, and environmental change by means of multidisciplinary interventions in public places. Under the ...

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Snapshot: Palestinian Olive Trees

Text by Elle Kurancid, photos by Bryony Dunne. Olive tree felling is a longtime strategy of Israel’s occupation regime in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Since 1967, an estimated 800,000 Palestinian olive trees have been destroyed by Israeli authorities and settlers. In February 2015, Irish-born filmmaker and photographer Bryony Dunne traveled across the West Bank and encountered evidentiary support for such activity (in tree stumps and civilian stories). Over the course of one week, she moved through ...

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البروليتاريا الفلاحية والإقطاع الجديد : أسئلة الريف المفكك

بينما كان القطار المكيف المتجه إلى الوجه القبلي يشق طريقه مخترقا حقول ريفية شاسعة على جانبي الطريق، كان رفيقي في المقعد المجاور يُبدي تبرمه من عدم لحاقه بالطائرة المخصصة له، فهو وكيل شركة متعددة الجنسيات تعمل في مجال صناعة مواد البناء، ولها مصنعها الضخم في قلب الصعيد، فالوكيل لا يحتمل طول ساعات السفر في هذا الطقس الحار، حيث القطار المزدحم يقلل من برودة المكيف، كما أن المناظر الطبيعية مُملة - في نظره -؛ فهي متكررة وغير مثيرة، ولكن القطار - في لحظة الصدق- يتعطل قليلا فتزداد معاناة الوكيل، في ذات الوقت ...

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New Texts Out Now: Hamza Hamouchene and Mika Minio-Paluello, The Coming Revolution in North Africa: The Struggle for Climate Justice

Hamza Hamouchene and Mika Minio-Paluello, editors, The Coming Revolution in North Africa: The Struggle for Climate Justice. Platform (London), Rosa Luxemburg Foundation (North Africa), and Environmental Justice North Africa (EJNA), 2015. Jadaliyya (J): What made you put together this book? Hamza Hamouchene and Mika Minio-Paluello (HH & MM-P): The idea was both to highlight the violence of climate change in North Africa, and the need for an indigenous response. We wanted to point out that survival ...

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The Present and Future of Climate Change in Turkey and Beyond: An Interview with Umit Sahin

[In this interview, Dr. Ümit Şahin, an Sabanci University Istanbul Policy Center Senior Scholar and an ecological, anti-nuclear, and human rights activist in Turkey, discusses the politics of climate change in Turkey and the globe. In November 2014, Şahin published a thorough report called “Mapping the Actors of Climate Change Policies in Turkey.” Şahin explicitly states that Turkey’s antidemocratic and neoliberal developmentalist policies are in stark contrast with what is needed to fight climate ...

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Workshop: Carbon Democracy and Revolution: Perspectives from the Middle East and the Mediterranean

Social revolutions, civil war and crippling economic crises: What is going on in the Middle East and South Eastern Mediterranean? Are the revolutions and wars in Egypt, Syria or Libya connected to the economic crises in Greece, Italy or Cyprus? How do carbon resources and energy competition affect these tense social, economic and environmental inter-relations? What is the future of 'carbon democracy' and what are its geographic and political ramifications? Inspired by Timothy Mitchell's work Carbon ...

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Soma, Ermenek, Yirca: Can Anti-Coal Activists Defend Coal Miners and Olive Farmers?

The coal-mining town of Soma in the western Aegean region of Turkey hardly made headlines until last May. A mining disaster that took the lives of 301 mine workers in Soma on 14 May 2014 brought forward the country’s fragile mix of social injustice, lack of occupational safety, and a fossil-fuel-dependent energy policy. This was by no means the first time that miners had died in a coal pit several hundreds of meters beneath our feet. Indeed, as İş Güvenliği Meclisi reports, 1,235 workers were killed ...

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A French Atlas of the Gulf States

Philippe Cadène and Brigitte Dumortier, Atlas of the Gulf States. Leiden: Brill, 2013. Mapping as a French Academic Tradition and its Critics It seems that English-speaking geographers and urbanists publish many fewer atlases, and draw fewer maps, than their French and—at least until recently—German counterparts. In France, there has been a frenzy of publishing atlases of everything and everywhere since the 1990s. What was first, at the advent of digital cartography, limited to academia, soon became a ...

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