[This is a monthly roundup of news articles, and other materials related to urban issues in the region, and beyond. It does not reflect the views of the Cities Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send recommendations for inclusion in the Cities Media Roundup to firstname.lastname@example.org, mentioning "Roundup" in the subject line. We also welcome your submissions to the Cities Page: please check details on cities.jadaliyya.com]
War and Cities
Isreali Strikes Destroy Urban Infrastructure in Gaza
Al Jazeera World repeats this episode aired in January 2013 that highlights the everyday challenges facing the people of Gaza in light of Israel’s recent strikes on the power plant, particularly in terms of water supply, sewage treatment and power supplied to medical facilities, and ultimately public health.
Infrastructure War on Gaza
In this blogpost entry, Derek Gregory analyzes the IDF “infrastructure war” tactics on Gaza, and the military strategy of depriving its people of power and water.
Isreali Drone Strikes and Infrastructure in Gaza
Eyal Weizman discusses on Al-Jazeera the findings of a UN inquiry into Israel`s use of drone strikes on Gaza as a "warning" system, and provides an analysis of the impact on urban infrastructure and society.
Isreali Urban Warfare Tactics
Nicola Perugini and Neve Gordon explore how Israel`s urban warfare tactics are not only about the re-signification of architectural structures, but also about the transformation of human beings into collateral damage, subjects who can be killed without violating international law.
Archeology War in East Jerusalem (In French)
Orient XXI reports on how colonization is happening in East Jerusalem through archeological excavations in the City of David undertaken by the Elad association.
Further Fortification in Baghdad (in Arabic)
This photo essay in Al-Masry al-Youm showcases the photos of a French photographer, documenting the increasing fortification of Baghdad after the occupation of Mosul by ISIS.
Destruction of Religious Sites in Iraq by ISIS
Yasmin Hafiz presents a series of photos published on social media that document the ongoing destruction of religious sites in Iraq by ISIS.
Urbanization’s Socio-Economic Impacts
The Gentrification of Istanbul
In the Cities’ blogger of the week’s feature of The Guardian, urbanist Yasar Adanali discusses Istanbul and the urban challenges its future faces because of real-estate development and gentrification.
Urbanization, Agriculture, and Water in Egypt (in Arabic)
Al-Masry al-Youm publishes a report and series of maps that reveal the urbanization over agricultural lands and lakes in the northern part of Egypt, over the past twenty-five years.
Urban Segregation Exacerbated in Amman
Patrick Sykes considers recent transformations of the Jordanian capital that have exacerbated urban divisions in light of the Abdali Project.
Urban Projects and Migrant Workers in Abu Dhabi
Molly Crabapple reports for Vice on the dark conditions of work and life of migrant workers in Abu-Dhabi working on building the Saadiyat island. The article includes remarkable illustrations by the author.
Urban Heritage in Cairo
Cairo Observer reports on the obstacles to meaningful urban change brought to light a recent citizen meeting with Cairo`s governor regarding the destruction of historic buildings across the city.
A Critique of Urban Heritage Policies in Lebanon
Florence Massena analyzes the failure of urban heritage preservation policies in Lebanon, comparing the cases of Jbeil and Sour.
Building Laws vs. Urban Heritage in Beirut
Al-Akhbar reports on an ongoing large-scale real-estate development project in Gemmayze in Beirut, which threatens to transform the urban character of the historical neighborhood, critiquing the building laws that facilitate such buildings.
Public Space Issues
Private Interests Topple Public Interests in Lebanon (in Arabic)
Hadeel Farfour reports for Al-Akhbar on the public space conference organized by Nahnoo, during which planning and legal experts examined the concept of public interest, property and private interests.
Public vs Private Property in Beirut
Mona Fawaz discusses in Executive Magazine why property prices are so high in Lebanon, analyzing social and regulatory institutions, and arguing that civil society`s claims should extend beyond reclaiming the "public."
Video: The Closure of Horch Beirut Public Park
In this YouTube video, BBC Arabic journalist asks why the biggest public park in Beirut is still closed. Footage includes the divergent narratives of the mayor of Beirut and Nahnoo`s director.
Public Space in Oran (Algeria) (in French)
Satirist writer Kamel Daoud criticizes the privatization of public space (beaches and sidewalks) in Algeria—a symptom of an ill political regime.
Representing the City
For a New Capital City in Cairo?
Al-Ahram features urban planner Mohsen Zahran’s argument for building a new capital city for Cairo.
Children of Cairo Imagine their City
BarakaBits features the workshop “Cairo’s mini-medinas,” organized for kids to reimagine their city, and their role as citizens.
Urban and Regional Policies
A New Metro for Riyadh
Spiegel reports on the Riyadh`s metro project, which aims to relieve gridlock and revive public life, including greater mobility for women.
Building Football Stadiums in Saudi Arabia
Orient XXI examines how the King is mobilizing Aramco oil company to build eleven giant football stadiums in KSA.
A Ministry for Informal Settlements in Egypt (in Arabic)
Al-Masry al-Youm features an interview with the minister of Urban Development and Informal Settlements in Egypt, Leila Iskandar, who explains the public policy for addressing informal settlements, away from demolition and relocation.
A Master Plan for Rural Tourism in Lebanon
The Daily Star reports on the draft rural tourism master plan of the Lebanese Ministry of Tourism, funded by USAID.
Featured Reports and Resources
Book Chapter: Public Space in Egypt (in French)
Delphine Pagès-el Karoui discusses the re-appropriation of public space during the Egyptian revolution in this book chapter from Les pndes de choc des révolutions (Beirut: Presses de l`IFPO, 2014).
Blog: Stanford Press Blog Features Leading Expert Analysis on Israeli Assault on Gaza
The Stanford Press blog presents a ten-part series, featuring essays from noteworthy scholars on the ongoing Israeli attack on Gaza, as well as reflections on the Arab-Israeli conflict writ large.
Report: Urban Destruction in Gaza
This new report by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) includes a breakdown of type of damage to buildings, as determined by UNOSAT, against Gaza maps at the governorate and neighborhood level.
Book Review: Allan`s Palestinian Life in Shatila
Bassam Abed reviews Diana Allan’s book Refugees of the Revolution: Experiences of Palestinian Exile for H-Net. The book challenges common assumptions about Palestinian identity and nationalist politics, and the camp experience of communal and economic life.
Critique of Harvey’s Rebel Cities (in French)
Sociologist Jean-Pierre Garnier reviews David Harvey’s Rebel Cities, critiquing his understanding of the Lefebvrian urban revolution.
Photo Essay on Akkar (Lebanon)
Mashallah News features a photo essay on Akkar by French photographer Constance Proux, focusing on the narratives of Syrian refugees.
Recently on Jadaliyya Cities
Essay: Enhancing Municipal Capacities in Lebanon
In this article published for Lebanon Support, Marwa Boustani advocates the establishment of RTOs (Regional Technical Offices) to strengthen the capacities of municipal unions and municipalities in Lebanon, and fortify their role in local development, especially with regard to the needs of Syrian refugees.
Sahrawi Realities: The Remembrance of Gdeim Izik (Part 2)
Samia Errazouki pursues her investigation of the Gdeim Izik camp, raised to dust by Moroccan authorities. She explains the context of the Sahrawi struggle, the dwellers’ modes of resistance and the violent tactics of Moroccan authorities used to silence and marginalize Sahrawi voices.
New Report: Housing, Land and Property Issues in Lebanon
UNHCR and UN-Habitat published a new report assessing the Syrian refugee crisis in Lebanon, using the Housing, Land and Property framework.