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إسرائيل الثقافة نوشيروان مصطفى: تاريخ مكتوب بدماء The Master Plans of Baghdad: Notes on GIS-Based Spatial History رسالة إلى كامو Media on Media Roundup
[Highway view of the National Archives building. Image by author]

Finding Your Way Around Tehran's Public Archives

Going to archives in Iran—the capital specifically—remains obscure to a great number of PhD students and researchers based outside of the country. Often, senior academics from whom students seek advice have not been to Iran’s archives for ...

[Image from Wikipedia.]

Yemen's War [Ongoing Post]

[This is an ongoing post that will be updated regularly. It was first published on 6 December 2016. The updates appear at the bottom.] The conflict in Yemen seems set to intensify as 2016 draws to a close. The deposed president Abd ...

[نوشيروان مصطفى. الصورة من ويكيبيديا]

نوشيروان مصطفى: تاريخ مكتوب بدماء الضحايا

مات نوشيروان مصطفى (١٩٤٤-٢٠١٧) الذي كان نائباً للسكرتير العام للاتحاد الوطني الكردستاني، ومن ثم أسّس حركة التغيير «گوران». وبموته تطوى صفحة أخرى من صفحات الجريمة التي كتبت بدماء الضحايا، فكانت عرضة للتجاهل والنسيان!  موته يفضح دنس ...

[A Painting by the Iraqi Artist Ahmad al-Soudani]

When I Failed to Say Farewell to You…

It was winter and my Berlin nights were crowded with people yet full of loneliness. I don’t know what year it was. Maybe 2008. I was working as a journalist and producer for a German television station in Berlin.  My schedule used to ...


The Egyptian Regime's Crack Down On The Media Is Much More Than What You Think

[حتى المذيع الكروي علاء صادق أصبح خطرا على أمن الدولة-الصورة من موقع مصريات]

   ما يحدث الآن في مصر يتجاوز إشكالية التضييق على الإعلام بمراحل حملت الأسابيع القليلة الماضية العديد من نذر الشؤم التي تؤكد أن مساحة التعبير السياسي المستقل في مصر تدخل الآن مرحلة مقلقة للغاية. جاءنا النذير الأول عندما أكدت أحزاب المعارضة عزمها على المشاركة في الانتخابات المقبلة، وهو ما يعني المشاركة في مسرحية هزلية ومزورة بشكل غير مسبوق، وفي ذلك من تزوير للوعي كان يجب على أمثالهم التعفف عنه. وجاء النذير الثاني عندما باع <<عصام إسماعيل فهمي>> صحيفة <<الدستور>> لتحالف من رجال الأعمال يقوده الدكتور <<السيد البدوي>>، رئيس حزب الوفد. ثم توالت نذر الشؤم بسرعة مذهلة لم تتح للمعارضة المستقلة أي فرصة لالتقاط الأنفاس، فما بالكم ...

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Firing Ibrahim Eissa From Al-Dostour Exposes The Reality Of The Wafd's New President

[السيد البدوي، رئيس حزب الوفد، ومالك صحيفة الدستور]

وأخيرا خلع السيد البدوي برقع الحياء بفصله إبراهيم عيسى وطاقمه من الدستور   وحدث ما كنا نتخوف منه ونتوجس حدوثه. فقد أقال بالفعل مجلس إدارة صحيفة الدستور إبراهيم عيسى من رئاسة تحرير الجريدة أمس، ووقع القرار كلامن رئيس مجلس إدارة الجريدة د. السيد البدوي (رجل الأعمال المعروف ورئيس حزب الوفد الذي يتم تلميعه منذ شهور) والرئيس التنفيذي لمجلس الإدارة رضا إدوارد (وهو وعضو الهيئة العليا لحزب الوفد أيضا). وواجه صحفيو الدستور ذلك القرار على الفور باعتصام مفتوح بمقر الجريدة (بعد ساعات من صدور القرار)، وهو ما يعني دخول الجريدة في أزمة طاحنة لمدة لا يمكن لأحد التكهن بنتائجها. ثم تلى ذلك فصل كل أعضاء سكرتارية التحرير: شادي عيسي ومحمد فوزي، مساعدا رئيس التحرير، وعبدالمنعم محمود ...

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DC Court Closes Door to Families of Men Who Died At Guantanamo

[Image from CCR-video link in text below]

On September 28, 2010, Judge Ellen Huvelle affirmed the D.C. District Court’s decision to dismiss Al-Zahrani v. Rumsfeld, a civil lawsuit brought by the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) and co-counsel concerning three men who died in detention at Guantánamo in June 2006. Her decision came despite new evidence from four soldiers stationed at the base, which strongly suggests the three men were murdered at a secret site at Guantánamo and that the government worked hard to cover up the true cause and circumstances of the deaths. The government reported the three men committed suicide by hanging themselves in their cells. The court acknowledged that the ...

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Mubarak's "Mubarak?" (Part 2)

[Image from unknown archive]

[Note: This is the second in a series of posts titled "Mubarak's "Mubarak?.” Click here to view the first post in the series] I argued in my previous post that the transition to a Gamal presidency has been underway for almost a decade now. There are many reasons to believe that the president’s son has already established control over major decision-making bodies and is president in all but name. Passing on formal presidential powers to Gamal, therefore, will not require any major overhauls of the political system—the government and the ruling party, the constitution, and (arguably) the opposition have already been remolded to accommodate the smooth advancement ...

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An Archive of Perversion; 1966 and a Desire to Criminalize

Image by Maya Mikdashi; An Opinion Issued in 1959 Regarding

On Friday I was at the library of the Lebanese Syndicate of Lawyers (Bayt al Muhaami), where I have conducted much of the archival research related to my dissertation. As I was researching decisions made by the Ministry of Justice's advisory body regarding religious conversion, I came across an advisory opinion issued by Hay'at al Tashri` wa'l-Istisharat in 1966 in response to an inquiry made by then Prime Minister Rashid Karami. The Hay'at al Tishree` Wa Al Istisharat is an extra-judicial body housed at the Ministry of Justice. Currently it is headed by the jurist Marie Denise Ma`ouche. Members of the Lebanese government can request advisory opinions on matters such ...

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Still at Sea: A Review of "Hope"

[Amal Basry/ Hope Press Kit]

Hope, directed by Steve Thomas. Australia, 2007. In one of his late poems, the Iraqi poet Sargon Boulus (1944-2007) wrote of “A million refugees clinging to his footsteps.” This was not poetic hyperbole. Boulus was haunted by a visceral tragedy. The invasion and occupation of Iraq back in 2003 and the sectarian civil war that followed displaced more than 4.5 million Iraqis and forced them to leave their homes. Around 2.5 million of them were internally displaced within Iraq. The rest were scattered in neighboring countries and some managed to reach other countries outside the region. These post-2003 waves of refugees fleeing death and destruction were only the latest ...

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Salaam Salim: A Review of The Oath

[Salim Hamdan. Image byJanet Hamlin; Abu Jandal. Image from The Oath.]

The Oath, directed by Laura Poitras. USA, 2010. The Oath by filmmaker Laura Poitras weaves a documentary account of the lives of two Yemeni men to offer a fresh perspective on the “war on terror.” The man you have probably heard of, Salim Hamdan, is conspicuously absent because it was shot while he was locked away in the US naval base on the south side of Cuba. Like a ghost, Salim haunts the other man, the film’s main protagonist, his brother-in-law “Abu Jandal.” It was Abu Jandal, a charismatic jihadist, who worked as Osama bin Laden’s bodyguard from 1997 to 2000 and who got Salim a job as his driver. Salim was captured by the Northern Alliance in November 2001 and ...

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The Pomegranate Alone (Excerpt)

[

She was lying nude on her back on a marble bench in an open place with no walls or ceilings. There was no one around and nothing in sight except the sand, which reached all the way to the horizon where clouds crowded the sky and took turns blocking the sun before rushing to disappear. I was nude, barefoot and dumbfounded by everything I saw around me. I could feel the sand under my feet and a cool wind. I moved slowly to the bench to make sure it was she. When and why did she come back after all these years? Her long black hair was piled next to her head. A few of its locks covered her right cheek, as if guarding her face, which the years hadn’t changed at all. Her ...

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Mubarak's "Mubarak?" (Part 1)

[Image from unknown archive]

With parliamentary elections only a few months away and a widely anticipated presidential election due next year, many observers have projected that change is coming to Egypt, possibly the kind of change that partisans of democracy can believe in. Looking at Egypt from the outside, there are many reasons to believe that a real transformation is in sight. After all, news reports from Egypt over the past few years have tended to focus on the deteriorating health of the 82-year-old president, street protests, riots, and sit-ins in response to various government failings, and Mohamed ElBaradei’s emergence as a potential contender for the Egyptian presidency. Such reports ...

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The Forgotten War

[Iraqi Casualties. Image from unknown archive]

Selective amnesia is often deployed or manipulated to package history in a more simple and palatable narrative. The process involves major elisions to edit out any event(s) that might complicate the desired reductive and truncated narrative. One such major elision in the reigning Iraq narrative is that of the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988). That destructive war claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and Iranians and predetermined the lives of millions of others. It impacted the societies of both countries in a visceral manner and many of its effects and repercussions can still be discerned today, yet it is rarely discussed beyond its name and a passing mention. ...

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Waiting for History: A Meditation on the Trial of Omar Khadr

Guantanamo military commission building

The Guantánamo military commission trial of Canadian child soldier Omar Khadr began on August 12. But at 4 p.m. on the first day, Khadr’s lawyer, Lt. Col. Jon Jackson, collapsed in the courtroom from extreme pain related to a surgery he had earlier in the summer. Jackson and all the other trial participants and attendees—except Khadr, of course—were transported back to the mainland. Had the trial not been interrupted, by now the forty-some scheduled witnesses would have testified, the seven-member military jury would have rendered its verdict, and we would already be pondering how to write this new chapter in the history of the “war on terror.” Jackson’s medical ...

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Kafala Politics and Domestic Labor in Saudi Arabia

[Image from Al-Jazeera Online]

As we prepare to land at Riyadh’s King Khalid International Airport, I grudgingly wear my abaya and wrap the headscarf around my neck. A few Saudi men in jeans and t-shirts rush to the bathrooms and change into their long, white thobes. When we touch down, I call my wakil, a male agent who has to be physically present in lieu of my male guardian to “collect me.” The word in Arabic is yistilimni. I ask him to meet me at the immigration counter. A few meters outside the door of the plane is the VIP entrance, which royalty and prominent Saudi citizens can access. A crowd of wukala (sing. wakil) hovers there to greet their clients, whom they escort to the male or female-only ...

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American Innocence and Its Victims (Part 2)

[See Part 1 here]   For a literary editor, Chotiner is quite selective in his application of interpretative skills. When the Granta contributors touch on what we are already programmed to understand as the ills of Pakistani society—misogyny, for example, or religious fundamentalism—he is fully prepared to accept this as a transparent rendering of “the crueler, more vicious aspects of Pakistani society.” When the same writers represent the widespread discontent with the role played by U.S. foreign ...

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American Innocence and Its Victims (Part 1)

[See Part 2 here]  We should be somewhat grateful, I suppose, that the New York Times Book Review dedicated its back-page essay to a review of the current edition of the literary journal Granta, a special issue devoted to Pakistan. After all, literature from Pakistan deserves a wider audience in the U.S., and in addition to publishing work by Anglophone writers such as Mohsin Hamid and Fatima Bhutto, who have already gotten some attention, the Granta special issue also includes translations from the ...

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Poverty in the Oil Kingdom: An Introduction

When Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz went to see one of Riyadh’s many poor neighborhoods in November 2002, pundits and lay people alike heralded the landmark visit as the beginning of the end of poverty in Saudi Arabia. After all, it was the first-and only- such visit by a high-ranking member of the Saudi ruling family, let alone a Saudi Crown Prince who also happened to be one of the richest men in the world. At the time, the Crown Prince said he wanted to visualize what Saudi poverty looked like, ...

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The Implications of the Latest Egyptian Delirium Regarding Hizballah

    الهذيان المصري الأخير عن حزب الله ودلالاته   تثير الأخبار الأخيرة عن المناوشات التي تجري الآن بين مصر و «حزب الله» الكثير من التساؤلات عن دلالتها وعلاقتها بالسيناريوهات التي يجري إعدادها لمستقبل المنطقة. وتأتي هذه الأخبار كالعادة مقتضبة ومبهمة، تخفي أكثر مما تعلن. كما تحمل في طياتها الكثير من الهذيان المصري عن «حزب الله». وهذا بطبيعة الحال يصعب من قراءة دلالاتها، وإن كان لا يقلل من أهميتها. أتى آخر فصول هذا الهذيان في خبرين رئيسين يتناولان العلاقة بين مصر و«حزب الله» ...

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The Predicament of Independent Opposition (Part 3)

My emphasis in the original post on the predicament of independent opposition stands, but I felt compelled to say more about the context of the second wave of liberalization in Syria (L 1.2), which started in 2000/2001. This is a third in a 4-part series post (I promise I’ll stop at 4). In part 2 I discussed the official narrative regarding the accession to power of Bashar Asad in 2000. Below, I discuss the "other" narrative peddled by various independent observers (as an aside, see my fellow ...

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Make www.Jadaliyya.com your facebook profile/status for one day: Today, Wednesday

Dear Friends, As most of you know, we launched this Ezine last week and we have had a super warm welcome from all of you and from our increasing readership. But we are privately funded and need your help in spreading the word, provided you like what you see here by way of an alternative source of commentary on the region--and beyond. We are asking all our facebook friends to support us TODAY only (Wednesday, September 29) by using the Jadaliyya icon as their facebook profile and by ...

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Committee of Independent Experts: Israel Investigation Bad, But Not Bad Enough

On Tuesday September 21st, the Human Rights Council released an advance version of its report on the Independent Expert Commission created to assess the adequacy of Israeli and Palestinian domestic investigations of alleged war crimes committed during Operation Cast Lead pursuant to the UN Fact-Finding Mission recommendations, also known as the Goldstone Report. Oddly, while the 28-paged report finds that the domestic investigations fail to meet international standards of justice, it makes no ...

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Farewell Germany

وداعاً المانيا في ساعات الصباح المبكرة وأنا في طريقي إلى العمل، حين يكون المترو البرليني مزدحماً، غالباً ما يستوقفني منظر أولئك الذين يجلسون على المقاعد ويغفون فوق زجاجة الجعة التي بين أيديهم. يبدو عليهم وكأنهم سيهوون أرضاً في أي لحظة من الثمالة. كل هذا وعقارب الساعة لم تصل التاسعة صباحاً بعد. لم يكن هؤلاء الألمان في بال المصرفي الألماني تيلو سارازين ( 65 عامًا)  عندما كان يتحدث عن الألمان كشعب يكد ويعمل بشكل دؤوب وتمكن من بناء أحد أقوى الإقتصادات في العالم بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية. لا تكمن ...

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New Methods of Warfare Target Civilians--And it's Legal

The laws of war, or humanitarian law, are dynamic and read like a rich treatise on lessons learned-always commentary on the regulations of war that should have existed in order to avoid grotesque brutality. Consider that the International Committee of the Red Cross is the progeny of Henri Dunant's reflections on the lack of care for combatants in the Battle of Solferino, which he captured in his Souvenir de Solferino. The Hague Conventions of 1906 and 1907 came on the heels of Russo-Japanese War of ...

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What's in a City? (Part 1)

One night a few months ago, while spending some time in Beirut, I needed to get from the Sinn al-Fil neighborhood to that of Ras Beirut, and called a taxi to pick me up. After driving around for twenty minutes, it became clear that the cab driver had no idea how to get us out of the urban planning nightmare that is Sinn al-Fil. So we flagged down a family in a silver SUV to ask directions. “Brother, how do I get to Beirut?” the taxi driver asked. SUV driver stared at him. “We ARE in Beirut, man. ...

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Is Lebanon Ready?

هل لبنان مستعد؟ قبل ثمانية وعشرين عاما، كان الذباب يحوم حول أجساد ممزقة، بعضها ببطون مبقورة، وبعضها الآخر تهاوى على الأرض في صفوف منتظمة. بعضها كان أشلاء، وبعضها الآخر كان متجمدا بيد ترتفع حاملة بطاقة هوية. بعضها كان يعود لرجال، ونساء، الكثير منها كان لأطفال. بعضها كان لحيوانات.      كانت أرض خراب، صورة ما يمكن للإنسان أن يرتكبه من هول، بيدين عاريتين، وفي مواجهة ضحيته وجها لوجه. الذين عاثوا ما عاثوا في مخيمي صبرا وشاتيلا يومي السادس عشر والسابع عشر من أيلول العام 1982، كانوا ...

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The Predicament of Independent Opposition (Part 2)

In part I, here, the three waves of political liberalization in Syria were listed, but only the first was discussed. The second wave, L 1.2, is discussed below. The purpose of these narratives is ultimately to discuss the predicament of independent opposition in Syria, i.e., the opposition (to the Syrian regime) that is anti-US foreign policy, anti-Islamists who have their bases and some allegiances abroad, and the one that opposes the creeping dominance of business interests in the country. Many of ...

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