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Political Economy

The Un-Islamic State

[A Vehicle Born Improvised Explosive Devise (VBIED) after exploding on a street outside of the Al Sabah newspaper office in the Waziryia district of Baghdad, Iraq. Image by Eli J. Medellin.]

Since the Islamic State (IS) movement seized control of Iraq’s second city of Mosul in early June 2014 it has achieved unprecedented levels of success in Iraq and Syria, seized territory in Lebanon, and expanded to the border regions of most surrounding states. As a result the international community, which had virtually forgotten about Iraq and was growing increasingly uninterested in Syria, put these conflicts back at the top of its agenda virtually overnight. The U.S. is once again engaged in hostilities in Iraq and considering direct, less covert means of involvement in Syria, as are a number of its partners. Regional governments, which had previously seen the IS as ...

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ما بعد الناصرية الجزء الثاني

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ميراث دولة للتجاوز لا للتجاهل ولا لإعادة الإنتاج انطلق ثم انحسر الحراك الجماهيري في مصر بين يناير ٢٠١١ ويوليو ٢٠١٤ فكما فتح متظاهرون المجال السياسي بكسر دولة مبارك الأمنية عادوا هم أو غيرهم ليغلقوا المجال نفسه وليأتوا بالجنرال كديكتاتورمفوض من الميدان ثم منتخب من قبل "الشعب" الذي يطمع في عودة الاستقرار بعد سنوات من الاضطراب وغياب الأمن. وإن كان الجمهور الحاضر في الميادين قد أتى وذهب بينما عادت الدولة المصرية العتيدة بسلطويتها كما هي وقد نجت من الحراك الاحتجاجي العارم فإن هذه الدولة لم تتغلب قط على أزمة الشرعية منذ ثورة يناير، ولا تزال سلطة الدولة تبحث عن مصدر لإعادة شرعيتها المفقودة يجعلها تأمن مكر "الشعب" في المستقبل، فلا تزال قطاعات مؤثرة من ...

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Home Surveillance and the Rights of Domestic Workers

[Migrant Rights logo. Image from @MigrantRIghts.]

[The following report was originally published by Migrant Rights on 25 July 2014 under the title "Home Surveillance Marketed Against Domestic Workers' Privacy Rights."] The alleged link between migrants and crime is a commonly regurgitated misconception in much of the migrant receiving world. In the Gulf States, local media particularly dramatize the ‘danger’ of migrant domestic workers to family privacy and child safety. Authorities further fuel these xenophobic narratives, regularly scapegoating migrants for any and all social problems, including the loss of cultural heritage and language. Saudi discourse particularly demonizes Ethiopian migrants, condemning ...

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The Violence of Climate Change in Egypt

[Arab Youth Climate Movement acts against climate change, Mansoura, Egypt. Photo courtesy of Omar Amir via Flickr.]

In the midst of the revolutionary battles of recent years, it is easy not to notice that climate change is fundamentally changing the Middle East and North Africa we live in. This gradual transformation, much of it already inevitable, threatens to displace millions, if not tens of millions, and change the region beyond recognition. Business as usual will allow elite classes to profit from the devastation of the majority–but a just future is possible, if we fight for it. The early arrival of summer this year brought with it a reminder of the violence of climate change. Rising temperatures kill, even if hot weather seems normal for the region. Heat waves like that ...

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What History Books for Children in Palestinian Camps?

[Dar al-Fata al-‘Arabi’s wall newspaper depicting Palestinian history. Courtesy of Dar al-Fata archive.]

Introduction A curious paradox reigns in research and publishing on Palestine and on the Palestinian people. While the post-Nakba importance of education for the Palestinian people is widely acknowledged, and has even given rise to an extensive literature in which many prominent scholars have participated, yet the part played by knowledge of Palestinian history in the field of education has barely been touched on in this literature. Even those writers who have focused on the special educational needs of a “community in exile”—to quote Ibrahim Abu Lughod—do not deeply explore the relationship between national liberation struggle, identity, and historical self-knowledge. ...

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عن إقتحامنا لبرنامج 'كلام الناس': التطوير العقاري لن يحقق أحلام الشعب اللبناني

[ اللافتة التي تم انتزاعها قبل ظهورها على الكاميرا. الحملة الأهلية للحفاظ على دالية الروشه ]

قام ناشطات وناشطون من «الحملة الأهلية للحفاظ على دالية الروشة» "باقتحام" حلقة الخميس 26 حزيران 2014 من برنامج «كلام الناس»، والتي كانت تتناول موضوع التطوير العقاري في لبنان، ببث مباشر للحلقة من معرض ”DREAM REAL ESTATE EXPO“ في البيال (وسط بيروت). وقد صبّت جميع مُداخلات المدعوّين لهذه الحلقة الخاصة من البرنامج، في تصوير الملكية السكنية كحلم جميع اللبنانيين وكحلّ لمشاكلهم السكنية يسعى القطاع العقاري الى تحقيقه. إضافة لذلك تم مُحاولة طرح هذا القطاع على أنه الركيزة الأساسيّة للإقتصاد اللبناني، وبأن نموّه يزيد فرص العمل، يحّل مشكلة السكن، ويشكّل سنداً أساسيّاً للدولة اللبنانية. كما عرضت الحلقة أهمية جمعية المطورّين العقاريين التي أُنشأت حديثاً من أجل ...

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Egyptian Investment Law Axing Proxy Litigation Harmful to Citizen Rights

[11 September 2011, protest in front of the State Council, Cairo, Egypt. Image originally posted to Flickr by Hossam el-Hamalawy.]

Days before its resignation on 24 February 2014, the Beblawi cabinet announced its intention to amend Egypt's investment law. The change would limit the right to challenge sales contracts of public sector companies concluded between the government and investors, by limiting that right [of challenging these contracts in court] to the two parties to the contract.[1] By the time the government resigned, the proposed amendment was not submitted to the State Council’s legislative department for its review.[2] The new government led by Ibrahim Mahlab has recently approved the law.
 The Right to Litigation: A “Luxury” Withheld From the Citizen
 During the rule of former ...

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المراجعات الاقتصادية الكبرى.. الاختراع الاقتصادي الأخطر في القرن العشرين: الناتج المحلي الاجمالي

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في قلب الأزمة الاقتصادية اليونانية، التي هددت حقا البلاد بالافلاس، حولت سلطات الإدعاء رئيس الجهاز الإحصائي الرسمي في البلاد آندرياس جيورجيو للمحاكمة في مطلع عام 2013 وتم فتح تحقيق برلماني. أما التهمة فكانت أنه عدل نسبة عجز الموازنة من الناتج المحلي الإجمالي بعد أن أعلن أن حسابات الناتج المحلي الإجمالي لليونان كان مضخمة ومبالغ فيها بأكثر من قيمتها بالربع على الأقل. قال جيورجيو، الوافد من صندوق النقد، إن مهمته كانت فقط تطبيق المعايير الأوروبية في تقدير وضع الاقتصاد، واتهمته السلطات اليونانية بأنه قدم بيانات تقلل من وضع الاقتصاد وزادت من الضغوط التي يقوم بها صندوق النقد والمؤسسات المالية على البلاد مما عرض "المصلحة الوطنية للخطر".   هذامسؤول كبير يحول ...

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هذا البحر لي: قطعة صوتية وكتيب البحث

 [حدود خريطة شاطئ بيروت]

"هذا البحر لي" هو عرض حيّ جرى في بيروت خلال صيف 2012 تضمَن رحلة على متن قارب صيد من ميناء عين المريسة حتى ميناء الدالية. اعتمد هذا "العرض الإعتراضي" في مضمونه على بحث مديني عن شاطىء بيروت كاشفاً للجمهور ملكية هذه الأماكن وممارسات مستخدميها والقوانين التي تحكمها. "هذا البحر لي" هو جزء من جهد مستمر تقوم به "مجموعة الدكتافون" للربط بين البحث المديني والفن الحيّ من أجل فتح نقاش عن علاقة الناس بحيّزهم العام في لبنان وإمكانية إعادة تصور المدينة.     كتيب البحث      يعرض كتيَب بحث "هذا البحر لي" معلومات عن ملكية الأراضي على شاطىء بيروت وعلاقتها بالأنظمة ...

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Stillbirth: The New Liberal-Conservative Mobilization in Turkey

[Prime Minister Erdoğan at the G-20 summit in St. Petersburg, Russia in September 2013. (Photo by Sergei Karpukhin, Pool/AP Photo)]

Liberal-conservatism was the dominant intellectual discourse in Turkey for more than three decades. The 1980s was its moment of departure. It suffered a hiatus under the shadow of the Kurdish war in the 1990s, but militaristic brutality also increased its sympathizers. The 2000s was its golden age. Its triumphalism reached an apex during the 2010 referendum. Ever since, its dominance has been crumbling. State versus Society, the Military versus the Civilians, the Authentic Bourgeoisie versus the Old Elite Among other factors, the 1980 coup convinced many intellectuals that the military was at the root of Turkey’s problems. Therefore, any civilian initiative deserved ...

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Gaza in 2020: A Liveable Place?

[The following report was issued by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East in August 2012.] Summary By the year 2020 the population of Gaza will increase to around 2.1 million, from an estimated 1.6 million people today. The substantial population growth rate will thus add some 500,000 people to a living area which is restricted and already heavily urbanized. Fundamental infrastructure in electricity, water and sanitation, municipal and social services, is struggling to keep pace with the needs of the growing population. By 2020, electricity provision will need to double to meet demand, damage to the coastal aquifer will ...

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The Everyday Experience of Humanitarianism in Akkar Villages (Part One)

[In this 30 May 2012 photo, a fifteen-year-old Syrian refugee boy rides a motorbike with his sister and his brother, who fled their home from the Syrian town of Tal-Kalakh. The photo was taken outside a school where they stay with their family and relatives temporarily, in Shadra village at the northern Lebanese-Syrian border town of Wadi Khalid, in Akkar, north Lebanon. Image by Hussein Malla via Associated Press.]

It is very common nowadays to come across reports discussing the negative impact of the Syrian humanitarian crisis on the Lebanese economy as a whole. On the one hand, there have been several attempts to focus on the victims and their plight, rather than looking at the complex dynamics of humanitarian intervention in the country. On the other, many organizations tend to disguise or justify their own political agenda in their impact assessment reports and fieldwork analyses,[1] which are mostly quantitative and have little focus on the qualitative impact of their projects. This article attempts to advance a grounded analysis of the social situation developed by the ...

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Israel's "Operation Status Quo": A Preliminary Assessment

Israel’s massive onslaught on the Gaza Strip in July-August 2014 has been a military and political fiasco. A regional superpower, it failed to impose its will on an isolated enemy operating in a besieged territory without advanced weaponry. Its sub-standard military performance was matched by a failure to reverse Palestinian reconciliation or deepen Palestinian fragmentation, and its overall strategic position has grown weaker. Led by a government too extreme to seize the initiative with proposals that ...

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The Ongoing Ceasefire Negotiations: Al Jazeera English Interview with Jadaliyya Co-Editor Mouin Rabbani

Al Jazeera English hosted Jadaliyya Co-Editor Mouin Rabbani for an interview on the situation in the Gaza Strip on 8 August 2014. The interview focused on current ceasefire negotiations in Cairo between Israeli and Palestinian delegations.   

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On Our Intervention in Kalam al-Nas: Real Estate Development Will Not Realize the Dreams of the Lebanese

On Thursday 26 June 2014, a number of activists from the Civic Campaign for the Preservation of Dalieh infiltrated a live broadcasting of an episode of LBC’s Kalam al-Nas in Downtown Biel’s “Dream Real Estate Expo.” The particular episode tackled the topic of real estate development in Lebanon, and aired live from from Downtown Biel’s “Dream Real Estate Expo.”  This special episode brought together a number of real-estate developers who participated in the Expo, showcasing ...

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تحت الرادار العلاقات الاقتصادية الإسرائيلية ــ الفلسطينية

في أعقاب الحملة التي قامت بها إسرائيل في الضفة الغربية بحثاً عن ثلاثة من المستوطنين الإسرائيليين الشباب المفقودين، واستخدمت فيها قسوة لم تُشْهَد منذ الانتفاضة الثانية، مع تكلفة يومية (أي خسارة) لاقتصاد الخليل وحده بلغت 12 مليون دولار، راحت أصوات فلسطينية متنامية تطالب بوقف «التنسيق الأمني» الإسرائيلي ـ الفلسطيني. وكانت قوات أمن السلطة الفلسطينية تنحت جانباً، في حين انتشر الجيش الإسرائيلي في مدن الضفة الغربية وقراها دون اعتبار لمناطق الولاية الأمنية الاسمية المخصصة للسلطة الفلسطينية بموجب اتفاقات ...

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The Beginning of the End of Palestinian Security Coordination with Israel?

While Mahmoud Abbas’s infamous speech at the conference of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation has sparked widespread condemnation and outrage among Palestinians, it has also provoked renewed questioning of the increasingly suspicious role of the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) security sector. In his speech, Abbas defended security coordination with Israel under any and all circumstances, claiming that such coordination is a “Palestinian national interest.” Meanwhile, he had previously characterized it ...

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هل خفف العمال السوريون من أزمة الاقتصاد اللبناني؟

"دعوة لإعادة قراءة الآثار الاقتصادية للهجرة السورية للبنان" لا نتساءل في هذه الورقة عن تأثيرات الأزمة السورية (1) بكل تفاصيلها في لبنان ولكن يقتصر تساؤلنا علي المهاجرين أو النازحين إلى لبنان. هل خفّفوا من آثار الأزمة الاقتصادية اللبنانية أم ضاعفوها؟ يطرح هذا السؤال نفسه في ظلّ الهجمة المسعورة التي يتعرّض لها المهاجرون السوريون في لبنان، وارتفاع معدلات العنصرية لتصل إلى درجة أن تقوم بلديات عديدة بمنع السوريين من الخروج من منازلهم في غير أوقات العمل. فمنذ أيام قليلة قامت بلدية برج ...

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New Texts Out Now: Gulcin Erdi-Lelandais, Understanding the City: Henri Lefebvre and Urban Studies

Gülçin Erdi-Lelandais, editor, Understanding the City: Henri Lefebvre and Urban Studies. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2014. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Gulçin Lelandais (GL): The idea of this book was born during a panel session on Henri Lefebvre at the 2011 Congress of the European Sociological Association, during which researchers from Hungary, the UK, France, and Turkey presented their approaches on Lefebvrian concepts like the right to the city, ...

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Tunisian Heritage is Not for Sale: Privatization Threatens Country’s Historic Sites

In a rather low-key, overlooked way, the Tunisian Minister of Culture, Mourad Sakli, announced yesterday on a radio program on Jawhara FM that the ministry plans on privatizing Tunisian heritage sites. The plan is to have private companies lease the sites for periods of twenty-five to thirty years. The minister justified the privatization plan by referencing the dire state of affairs over at the Tunisian National Heritage Institute. Namely, how the Institute only has six offices (in a total of ...

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The Art of Resistance: Labor, Debt, and G.U.L.F.'s Guggenheim Campaign

[This interview is the result of a month-long email conversation between the activists of Gulf Ultra Luxury Faction (G.U.L.F.) and Jadaliyya's Arabian Peninsula page editorial team.] Nate Christensen and John Warner (NC and JW): Can you give us a brief introduction to your work as artists and activists and to the political actions of G.U.L.F.? Can you describe how your work with G.U.L.F. fits in with your broader artistic visions? Global Ultra Luxury Faction (G.U.L.F.): G.U.L.F. stands for Global ...

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Egypt: How Not to Support the Undeserving and Discriminate Against the Poor

[The following report was authored by Yahiya Shawkat and published by the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights on 10 April 2014]   EIPR Policy Recommendations on New Income Conditions for the Social Housing Project   Introduction On 16 January 2014, the Egyptian cabinet issued new conditions for obtaining subsidised housing units within the Social Housing Programme (SHP) – also known as ―al-Million Wehda” or ―The Million Units. Some of these conditions, such as those ...

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Dignity Has No Price in Kuwait

[The following report was published by the Gulf Center for Human Rights on 23 April 2014] Introduction and Summary Kuwait’s reputation is as one of the most democratic states in the Gulf, the state with an elected parliament and the state in which there is a tolerance of freedom of expression and of assembly. All things are relative, however, and the experiments with democracy in the country have long been combined with distinct and targeted repression. Although Kuwait has sought to avoid dissent ...

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New Texts Out Now: Reinoud Leenders, Spoils of Truce: Corruption and State-Building in Postwar Lebanon

Reinoud Leenders, Spoils of Truce: Corruption and State-Building in Postwar Lebanon. Cornell: Cornell University Press, 2012. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Reinoud Leenders (RL): Since my first encounter with Lebanese politics and society in the mid-1990s, I have been fascinated with the nature and role of the state in this country. This was primarily because I became exposed to a lively array of contradictory narratives on the state when talking to ordinary Lebanese and living in and ...

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