Middle East Report
POLITICS ON THE MOVE
Trump in the White House. Attacks on Christians in Egypt. Continued politicking in Lebanon. Appropriating Palestinian art in Egypt. Electricity in the Gulf. Asylum seekers in Sicily. The politics of American Jews on college campuses. The Middle East uprisings have not ended and US involvement in the region has not decreased since Trump came into office. The process of political transformation continues to manifest itself in new and different ways as the world and region drift toward an uncertain and contradictory era. The new issue of Middle East Report explores these politics on the move.
The municipalities of Lebanon have undergone intense politicization since the “You Stink” movement emerged. Ziad Abu Rish argues that as Lebanese elites have tightened representative institutions while decentralizing the state, activists and regular folk alike have turned to their local areas to make demands. The 2016 elections gave people a sense of hope and also allowed for shifting alliances and mobilizations. How these new forms of politics interact with Lebanon’s institutional legacies reveals new constellations of shifting power.
Sicily is not a location most think of in terms of escape from the destructive states of the Arab world. Yet the Italian island is absorbing many Middle Easterners looking for asylum. Silvia Pasquetti investigates the asylum industry in one Sicilian town and the tensions between asylum seekers and locals already marginalized by the Italian state.
Energy is nearly synonymous with the Arab Gulf. But most analyses focus on fossil fuels rather than electricity and other renewables. Zachary Davis Cuyler explores the movement from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Can the Gulf kingdoms mitigate climate change migration by focusing on renewable sources? Cuyler’s research suggests some answers to this question.
Dina Ramadan explores the appropriation of Palestinian artist Suleiman Mansour’s protest painting Camel of Burdens by counter-revolutionary forces in Egypt.
Also featured: Mimi Kirk reflects on the changing politics of American Jews on college campuses by examining the Open Hillel movement; an obituary of renowned literary scholar and MERIP friend Barbara Harlow; and more.
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Middle East Report is published by the Middle East Research and Information Project (MERIP), a progressive, independent organization based in Washington, DC. Since 1971 MERIP has provided critical analysis of the Middle East, focusing on political economy, popular struggles, and the implications of US and international policy for the region.