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Cemile Cagirga: A Girl is Freezing Under State Fire

[The body of Cemile Çağırga in a deep freezer. Image courtesy of Sol]

Cemile Çağırga: A Girl is Freezing Under State Fire “As a child born in the southeast, after the ‘90s, you’re not really a kid. During your infancy, you’re really a child between 1-5 years old. As a 6-year old, you’ve actually grown up and are considered to be 15 years old. When you turn 10, you’re actually 20. After 15, you feel like you’re 40 years old.” İmren Demirbaş, 16-year old Kurdish girl, Diyarbakir [1] “Look here, here, underneath this black marble A child is buried; if he had lived for one more recess He would have risen from nature to the blackboard. He was killed in a lesson of the state.” Ece Ayhan “The photograph is like a quotation, or a maxim or ...

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Garbage Crisis Exposes Arrogance and Conflict Among the Political Elite of Lebanon

[Screenshot from

The government just does not seem to get it. Protests that kicked off in Lebanon a few weeks ago are no longer about the garbage crisis. They are fundamentally about the failure of successive Lebanese governments to provide basic services for citizens. They are about corruption associated with managing public resources, and the subsequently high prices that Lebanese are forced to pay for very poor services. Let us take power for instance: many Lebanese pay two bills—one to unreliable EDL (Electricité du Liban), and the other for an overpriced private generator. The same holds true for water. As of last year, we have been forced to pay more money to public water ...

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Lebanon, August 2015: Notes on Paralysis, Protests, and Hope

[Protestors Clashing With Police: Image from AP]

The past ten years in Lebanon have been a study in political paralysis and escalating anger and frustration among citizens and residents of the country. To recap only the most basic of facts, since 2005 the country divided and polarized into two “camps”—March 14 and March 8, led by the Future Movement and Hezbollah, respectively. In these ten years there has been a war with Israel, armed clashes between these two camps, and a series of political assassinations. These years have also brought the military destruction of a refugee camp (Nahr Al-Bared), armed clashes between the army and Islamists in Saida and Tripoli, a war in Syria that has again polarized the population, ...

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Sinai: War in a Distant Province

[Aftermath of the assassination of Anwar al-Sadat in October 1981. Photo from Wikimedia commons]

The July 1 battle in which the Egyptian Armed Forces regained control of a small border town from the self-proclaimed Sinai Province of the Islamic State (formerly known as Ansar Beit al-Maqdis or Supporters of Jerusalem) has heightened fear, anger, and above all self-congratulation among both the government’s supporters and its critics. Days after still unknown assailants had assassinated the country’s Prosecutor General by means of a car bomb, IS fighters attacked a series of checkpoints in the northern Sinai peninsula and appeared briefly to have taken control of Shaykh Zuwayed near the border with Gaza and Israel. The attack occurred more or less on the ...

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Breaking the Myths of Power: The Struggles of the Haitians, Algerians, and Greeks


What do the struggles of the Greek people have in common with those of the Haitian slaves at the end of the eighteenth century or those of the Algerians in the middle of the twentieth century? Of course, these struggles are incomparable in many ways, but there is one important parallel that can be drawn. Both moments of anticolonial resistance compelled ruling power to show its true face and managed to shatter the myths informing that power’s universal claims and its so-called humane intentions. The Greek people are now doing the same thing with the myth of the “European Compromise.” The clear-cut rejection of European austerity policies in the recent referendum is yet ...

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Egypt under the New July Republic

[President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi and government officials at the funeral of Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat who was killed in a car bomb attack on 29 June 2015. Source: Official Facebook Page of the Spokesperson of the Egyptian Armed Forces.]

The prevailing characteristic of the time before the revolution, all those moons ago, was Egypt’s political moribundity.  There were elections of sorts, or at least votes went in ballot boxes but their provenance was not always from voters. Political parties did politics, sort of, following a script. There was a parliament. But outside of university campuses and the workers’ movement genuine politics was largely absent from public life. Egyptian Facebook was a very different animal back then, and while it would prove useful for mobilization in 2011 and beyond, the majority of people ignored both political developments, when there were any, and the routine and ...

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Pixelated Intifada: An Interview with Palestinian Filmmaker Amer Shomali

[Image via Amer Shomali]

This interview was conducted in Ramallah, Palestine on 16 June 2015 following the local and international release of Amer Shomali’s film, The Wanted 18, which opens in US theaters on 19 June 2015. Isis Nusair (IN): Where did the idea of the film come from? Amer Shomali (AS): I grew up in the Yarmouk [Refugee] Camp in Syria. During the first intifada (in 1987), my parents would tell me stories about Palestine. As a kid, they could not tell me all that was happening. I remember one story about an uncle who was arrested by the Israeli authorities after he was hiding in a palm tree! These stories about Palestine and the nature of the people stayed with me. I was obsessed ...

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Her Yerdeyiz!

HER YERDEYİZ! 27 Mayıs 2015 Yaşıyorsak ve hala nefes alıyorsak, bilinmelidir ki o güzel çocukların gülen yüzü hürmetinedir!     Herkes biliyor, son iki yıldır artık farklı bir ülkede yaşıyoruz. Havası, suyu,  sesi,  kokusu farklılaştı bu ülkenin. İktidarı, muhalefeti, meslek odası, sendikası, genci, yaşlısı, işçisi, işsizi, Türkü, Kürdü artık farklı… Kabul eden için de etmeyen için de hayat farklılaştı… Bu ülke GEZİ’yi yaşadı. Haziran’ın sıcağını iliklerine akıttı.  Milyonlar şarkılarını dillerinden düşürmeden kararlı ve direngen bir duruşu tarihin içinden geçerek yaşadılar. Cesur yürekli kadınların ve ...

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New Texts Out Now: Bedross Der Matossian, Shattered Dreams of Revolution: From Liberty to Violence in the Late Ottoman Empire

[Cover of Bedross Der Matossian,

Bedross Der Matossian, Shattered Dreams of Revolution: From Liberty to Violence in the Late Ottoman Empire. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2014. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Bedross Der Matossian (BDM): I have always been interested in the history of the late Ottoman period, in particular the era of Abdülhamid II (1876-1909) and the Second Constitutional Period (1908-1918). Most of the scholarship about the period in the past has been written from the perspective of the dominant ruling elite/political center. It is only in the past decade that we see new studies that provide a broader picture of the period by incorporating non-dominant groups. It ...

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الثورات العربية في سياق الربيع العربي والديمقراطية


كثر الحديث عما سمي بالربيع العربي والذي يعبر في حقيقته عن سلسلة الثورات العربية السياسية التي اجتاحت أقطاراً عديدة في بلاد الشرق الأوسط العربية ضد ديكتاتورية الحكومات، انطلاقاً من تونس ثم مصر ثم ليبيا وأقطار عربية أخرى أبرزها سوريا التي لا تزال تشغل حيزاً في الإعلام الدولي حيث لا يعرف الكثير كيف ستنتهي هذه الثورة داخلياً، على الرغم من أن آثارها خارجياً أصبحت واضحة للعيان، فمنها انطلقت داعش وتوسعت داخل العراق لتحتل أراض واسعة تمتد عبر حدود البلدين، وتؤسس لكيان يعرف باسم" الدولة الاسلامية"، وقد دفعت أخيرا هذه الخطوة، متبوعة بسياسة الكيان العنيفة في إدارة الأراضي التي يسيطر عليها، قوى التحالف الأمريكي الأوروبي للتصدي إليه باعتباره خطراً كبيراً يهدد الإنسانية ...

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On May Day, We Are in Taksim and We Are Everywhere!

[Image via]

[This statement, by Müşterekler (Our Commons), was first published in Turkish on 28 April 2015. The original version can be found here. It was translated into English by Cihan Tekay.] We Have Been Here for a Thousand Years! On May Day, We Are in Taksim and We Are Everywhere! Look there, there, under that tree There, under that tree We are the there, rising from nature in that square. Look closely there, at that square, and you will see... Because we have been here for almost a thousand years!  Our voices, which have been bottled up in factories, offices, campuses, and homes, are filling the streets to the brim. Our anger resonates in Soma, Yırca, Akkuyu, ...

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Setups and Slander against Morocco's Dissidents: Sex, Drugs, Money, and Videos

[Image of a 2011 protest in Morocco. Image by Imrane Binoual/Wikimedia Commons]

A series of cases have touched resistance leaders and activists who participated or supported the 20 February Movement, from al-Adl wal-Ihsane (AWI) Islamists to members of secular institutions. Sex, financial, or drug scandals: for each activist, a "crime" was deployed to play on a taboo of their ideology in order to discredit and undermine the Moroccan version of the "Arab Spring."  On 17 March, a dozen plainclothes police officers arrested Hicham Mansouri, a journalist and activist with the Moroccan Association of Investigative Journalism (known by its French acronym as AMJI). The door to his apartment was violently smashed. He was beaten on ...

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انتفاضة بيروت: ما العمل الآن؟

 [ كتبت ناديا بوعلي هذه المادة وتم تداولها في أكثر من موقع. اضغط/ي هنا للنسخة الإنجليزية]  ما نشهده خلال اليومين الماضيين في شوارع بيروت يُفرح ويُقلق في آن.إن الصراع الاجتماعي ضد رأس المال النيوليبرالي وسلطة الدولة المتمثلة بجهاز إيديولوجي مدعوم من قبل السلطة الأمنية والعسكرية هو صراع صعب وطريقة قاسية وشاقة. لا بد لنا من أن نؤكد على أحقية هذا التحرك الشعبي وأن نتضامن معه بكل الوسائل من أجل تحقيق أهدافه الثورية.الصعوبات الأساسية التي تواجه المتظاهرين اليوم تكمن في كيفية التخلص من صيغة ...

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Quick Thoughts: Moe Ali Nayel on Lebanon’s Garbage Crisis and Protest Movement

[On 22 August 2015, what had in previous weeks been a small protest against the breakdown in garbage collection in Beirut turned into a major anti-corruption demonstration calling for fundamental political and economic change in Lebanon. The protesters have been met with escalating repressive violence, and the movement has thus far caught both coalitions of the severely polarized political establishment by surprise. Jadaliyya asked Moe Ali Nayel, a Beirut-based journalist, to explain the background and ...

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Two Years Later: Who Is to Blame for Rabea?

Two years after the bloody dispersal of the Rabea al-Adaweya protest camp that claimed the lives of more than 1,000 people in August 2013, the Egyptian state insists on one culprit for the violence: the Muslim Brotherhood. On Tuesday, Brotherhood Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie and a number of unnamed leaders in the outlawed organization were referred to criminal court on charges of organizing an armed protest camp, illegally possessing weapons, blocking roads, limiting people’s freedom of movement, ...

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مدينة الرقة السورية: من المدنية إلى مستقبل مجهول

منازل الدنيا أربعة (دمشق والرقّة والري وسمرقند)، هذا ما قاله الخليفة العباسي هارون الرشيد، أما الرقّة فهي محافظة في شمال شرق سورية تقع على ضفاف نهر الفرات، وفيها يلتقي رافده نهر البليخ، وفي اللغة العربية يعني اسمها الأرض الملساء التي يغمرها الماء ثم ينحسر عنها. أصبحت الرقة محافظة مستقلة عن دير الزور في ستينيات القرن الماضي، وحظيت باهتمام الحكومة السورية في السبعينيات بإقامة مشروعات حيوية مثل سدي الفرات والبعث إلا أنها تحولت خلال العقود القليلة الماضية إلى إحدى المدن المنسية، وسقطت من خطط الحكومة التنموية ...

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The Land of Fear and Oppression

Kazeboon revisits Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi's Egypt two years after the 3 July military coup. The video below serves as a collage of footage highlighting what sort of state Egypt has become under Sisi. Archival footage traces Sisi's rise to power and his broken promises, including his pledge not to run for the office of the president. The video brings to focus how Egypt under Sisi has faced increased press censorship, repression, and politicization of the judiciary. Torture and abusive practice have ...

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New Texts Out Now: Reem Abou-El-Fadl, Revolutionary Egypt: Connecting Domestic and International Struggles

Reem Abou-El-Fadl, editor, Revolutionary Egypt: Connecting Domestic and International Struggles. London and New York: Routledge, 2015.       Jadaliyya (J): What made you put together this collection? Reem Abou-El-Fadl (RA): Along with many friends and colleagues, I experienced the outbreak of the Tunisian and then Egyptian revolutions while far away, in my case based at Oxford in the UK. As time wore on, I had to try to make sense of all the momentous changes in the long ...

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Triple Exposure

During the wave of uprisings and resulting crackdowns on Islamists in Egypt in 2013, all the media outlets were accused of taking sides. “When you point a camera to a side you neglect the rest of the real scene,” a protester said to me. “People are following those media outlets that confirm what is already in their minds, not to get new information!” he added. For this project, I have been shooting many events related to the latest waves of the uprising in Egypt including the police storming of the ...

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Statement on the Anniversary of the Gezi Park Uprising

[This statement was released by the Taksim Gezi Park Association in May 2015.] Gezi Park Is an Indestructible Momumental City Park. Come and Breathe Freely Here As the symbol of the great Uprising of Turkey (2013), Taksim Gezi Park is a city park within the borders of Beyoğlu, a historically cosmopolitan urban district in Istanbul. Located between Taksim Square and Elmadağ, Gezi Park is well known as the first park of the Republican Era. ...

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المملكة العربية السعودية وحرب الشرعية في اليمن

 في 21 نيسان\إبريل، 2015 أعلن التحالف العسكري للدول العربية الذي تقوده السعودية أن "عملية عاصفة الحزم"، الحملة العسكرية ضد اليمن التي شُنّتْ في 25 آذار\مارس، دخلت في طور جديد أكثر سلمية، تحت مسمى "إعادة الأمل". بعد ذلك بوقت قصير، ألقى الرئيس اليمني عبد ربه منصور هادي خطابه الأول للأمة من منفاه في المملكة العربية السعودية، مكرراً الكثير من التهم والإنذارات نفسها ضد الحوثيين. وقد استُؤنف القصف بعد ساعات فقط من إعلان التحالف، وبعد أكثر من أسبوع، لم يُظهر أي إشارات تباطؤ. ويبدو أن ...

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تقرير خاص: اليمن: الصحفيون والمدافعون عن حقوق الإنسان معرضون للخطر أثناء الحرب

أصدر مجلس الأمن التابع للأمم المتحدة، في نيسان، قراراً يدعو لاستئناف سريع لمحادثات السلام ووضع حد للعنف في اليمن. ومع ذلك تواصل القتال في جميع أنحاء البلاد مع استمرار الغارات الجوية السعودية التي تستهدف قوات الحوثيين خلال الشهر الماضي والتي يدفع ثمنها المدنيون، وكذلك فإن القوات الحوثية تستهدف الأشخاص أو المجموعات التي تعمل ضدها بما في ذلك التحالف الذي تقوده السعودية. وفي الوقت الذي وعدت فيه المملكة العربية السعودية هذا الأسبوع  بإنهاء حملة القصف التي خلفت 1000 قتيل على الأقل وآلاف ...

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Academics for Palestine Ireland supports the organisers of the Southampton conference

Academics for Palestine, a group of Irish academics – from both the Republic of Ireland and the North of Ireland – set up to create awareness and build the academic boycott of Israel campaign in Ireland, expresses its support for the organisers of the International Law and the State of Israel: Legitimacy, Responsibility and Exceptionalism conference which was due to take place on 17-19 April 2015, at the University of Southampton, UK. The University blocked the conference citing reasons of ‘health and ...

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The Stages of Peaceful Resistance in the Occupied Western Sahara

Introduction In any history of occupation, the forms of resistance the colonized populations adopted have been shaped by, and shape, the modes of occupations. Peaceful resistance in the Western Sahara has been no different; Saharawi methods of nonviolent protest underwent transformations, first during Spanish colonialism and throughout several phases under Moroccan occupation. The Saharawi peoples’ ongoing struggle to secure their independence has faced repressive ways and means, either during the ...

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