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call for pa “Til Sect Do You Part?” On Sectarianism and Intermarriage in Lebanon Israel’s Big Business of War قصائد مختارة للشاعر والروائي تشارلز بوكوفسكي 'The King

“Til Sect Do You Part?” On Sectarianism and Intermarriage in Lebanon

In August 2017, a Christian man and a Muslim woman (Boutros and Marwa) made headlines when they married in Lebanon. Why? One might assume that the interreligious nature of the couple prompted this media attention. However, that was far ...

[المصدر موقع المواطن]

آخر أيّام المدينة - الجزء الاول

"آخر أيّام المدينة" أو "الحضارة في آخر أيامها" كما قال "آخر الرجال المحترمين" بدأ حضور "المدينة" في السينما المصريّة يأخذ شكلًا مميزًا خلال السبعينيات كنتيجة للفترة الساداتيّة التي وُعدت ووعَدت ...

[An image of Ahmed Ouyahia, current Algerian prime minister. Image from Wikimedia Commons]

Game of Mustaches: A Song of Mustache and Technocracy

It was the second unexpected sacking of an Algerian prime minister in less than three months. After Abdelmalek Sellal, Abdemajid Tebboune's turn came with no going-away party. The prime ministers fell one after the other, and one wondered ...

Istanbul: A Megacity in the Light of Turkey’s Political Transformation

Jean-François Pérouse, Istanbul Planète, La Ville-Monde Du Xxie Siècle. Paris: La Découverte, 2017. This book is the result of more than twenty years of social, economic, and urban observations and investigations by a geographer[i] ...

What Churchill Said

[Pashtuns at Malakand. Image from BBC.]

The end of the nineteenth century and beginning of the twentieth century were decisive years in British asymmetric warfare in its colonies and against colonial rebels. Those years were significant not only because of the consolidation of colonial war-fighting doctrine, as enshrined in Major General Charles Callwell’s Small Wars: Their Principles and Practice, but also because there emerged for the first time a concerted anti-war movement in the Metropole, which attempted to attenuate the effects of the imperial war in South Africa. What is striking is that those years, and those wars, had a chronicler in one of the most famous Englishmen of all ...

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Boat Rocking in the Art Islands: Politics, Plots and Dismissals in Sharjah's Tenth Biennial


On April 6th, Jack Persekian, director of the Sharjah Art Foundation and Art Director of the Sharjah Biennial was summarily dismissed by Sharjah ruler Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi. The Foundation is the umbrella organization that oversees the reputed Biennial. The reason, according to the Foundation’s statement, was the “public outcry” in response to a work exhibited in the Biennial. Although initially left unidentified, within days it became clear that the main work at the centre of the controversy was Algerian artist and writer Mustapha Benfodil’s work entitled “Maportaliche/Ecritures Sauvages” (It Has No Importance/Wild Writings). Benfodil’s piece, ...

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Culture III

[Painting by George Bahgory. Image from]

This is our third weekly edition of Jadaliyya's Culture. Previous weeks can be found here and here. This week's harvest includes: Boat Rocking in the Art Islands: Politics, Plots, and Dismissals in Sharjah's Tenth Biennial by Hanan Toukan Al-Shabbi's "The Will to Life"  by Gaelle Raphael Al-Maqaleh's Betrayal: Translation and Commentary by Stephen Day All culture posts can be found in the culture section here. We look forward to your comments and contributions. Please read and forward our Call for Posts, or contact us at The Culture Editors

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Al-Shabbi's "The Will to Life"

[Al-Shabbi's Face Carved in Stone in Touzer, Tunisia. Image from Unknown Archive]

Abu Al-Qasim Al-Shabbi The Tunisian poet Abu al-Qasim al-Shabbi (1909-1934) is well known and appreciated throughout the Arab world. His words are committed to memory and reproduced in textbooks. With the recent Arab uprisings, his poems, and more particularly “The Will to Life” and “To the Tyrants of the World,” have witnessed a revival, yet with a whole new tone. It seems that the Arab spring has infused "The Will to Life" with a newly found hope, a new urgency, and new life. Its opening lines have been chanted, recited, and written on signs and walls in Arab cities. Al-Shabbi was born in Al-Shabbiyya, Tunisia. He received a traditional Islamic education, ...

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English Translation of Interview with Hossam El-Hamalawy on the Role of Labor/Unions in the Egyptian Revolution

[Image from Jadaliyya interview with Hossam El-Hamalawy]

[Below is both the English translation and the video of the interview. The interview was conducted by Bassam Haddad, then translated and transcribed by Christine Cuk. It was also reviewed by Mohamed Aly and Bassam Haddad. Thanks to Christine and Mohamed for volunteering to make this interview available to English readers, per their many requests] Jadaliyya is hereby presenting the first (deliberately belated) installment in a series called "A Portrait of a Revolutionary," featuring interviews with an Egyptian journalist and activist who was at the forefront of the Egyptian protest movement, Hossam Hamalawy. Below is the first part of the ...

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ثوار تحت الإحتلال: الإنتفاضة العراقية 2011 [Revolutionaries Under Occupation: The Iraqi Uprising of 2011]

[متظاهرون أمام نصب الحرية في ساحة التحرير. المصدر غير معروف]

في تغطيتها للإحتجاجات في العراق، نشرت مجلة الإكونومست مقالاً تحت عنوان "حتى بلد تعم فيه الديمقراطية غير مصون من الإحتجاجات." والمقالة تصف العراق كبلد يتمتع بحكومة منتخبة، ومع ذلك فان التظاهرات تعمه بسبب فشل الحكومة في توفير الخدمات الأساسية. وتعكس هذه المقالة إتجاهاً عاماً في فهم الوضع العراقي في الصحافة السائدة. فالمظاهرات في العراق -إن تم تغطيتها أصلاً - تصور على إنها ضد إخفاقات الحكومة في توفير الكهرباء والأمن والخدمات فقط. وهذه الصورة تغفل حقائق جوهرية تتعلق بالعراق والإحتجاجات. فمن مطالب العراقيين الأساسية: إنسحاب القوات الإميركية الفوري من العراق وإسقاط نظام المحاصصة الطائفي. وهذا الإغفال ليس إعتباطياً أو سهواً. فعدم الإشارة الى ...

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Syrian Petition for Political Change: A Dramatic Missed Opportunity

[Image from unknown archive.]

Given the atrocities currently committed in Syria and the spectacularly bad press this generates for the regime, one would think that issuing an effective petition calling for political change in this country would be an easy task. All such a petition needs to do is to jump on the bandwagon of rapidly mounting protests and express the deeply felt anger across large sections of the Syrian population. In addition, any serious public appeal would demonstrate that there is a viable alternative to the regime; by way of clever proposals for political change and in reference to an impressive list of signatories from Syria’s brightest and most respected minds. Yet somehow the ...

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The Arab Uprisings and US Policy (Panel Video)

[Image from screen shot of video broadcast]

On Thursday, April 28th, 2011, the Middle East Policy Coucil held a one-day conference on Capitol Hill  in Washingtong D.C., "featuring a discussion of the populist movements sweeping across the Arab world, their regional and global consequences, and how they are impacting U.S. interests and policy choices." Jadaliyya Co-Editor Bassam Haddad was one of the speakers at the conference, as were Anthony Cordesman (Center for Strategic International Studies), Barak Barfi (New American Foundation), and Karim Merzan (American Studies Institute). To view the video, click here. Transcript of Bassam's talk is below. All transcripts can be found ...

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After Syria's "Great Friday": Al-Jazeera Interview with Bassam Haddad (conducted on April 23)

[Image from Al-Jazeera English]

Below is Al-Jazeera's interview on Syria with Jadaliyya Co-Editor Bassam Haddad after the events of "Great Friday" on April 22nd, the bloodiest day that Syria witnessed since the beginning of the uprisings. In this interview, conducted on Saturday April 23rd, Bassam discusses the events as a turning point in the confrontation and the prospects for cohesion on all sides. He also addresses the role of the media, and media wars.

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A Damascene Diary

[A Sign Held by a Syrian Protester

This account of events in Damascus, Syria, on Friday April 1st 2011 was originally published in Al Quds al ‘Arabi on April 7th, 2011. *** I will infiltrate the dreams of the killers. I will ask them: did you look into their eyes when your bullets closed in on their chests? Did you glimpse the hole of life? Before Damascus’ sky darkens, why don’t you look at the smooth red circles around their foreheads and stomachs, where our eyes will come to rest? Here in Damascus, the killers’ eyes will soon be sleeping. And we will keep watch over fear. Death is not a question. Death is a window we open out onto other questions. Like every other city, Damascus is more beautiful at ...

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Memoir and Mythology

[Greg Mortenson at Gultori School Pakistan. Image from Central Asia Institute]

Facts aren’t the only thing that should be checked in Three Cups of Tea The recent uproar over Greg Mortenson’s immensely popular nonfiction book Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission To Promote Peace... One School at a Time has centered around the question of whether the account is factual, and whether Mortenson is siphoning money from his $20 million-a-year charity, the Central Asia Institute (CAI). Three Cups of Tea is the ostensibly nonfiction narrative of Mortenson’s efforts to build secular schools in Northern Pakistan and Afghanistan. Mortenson believes that in providing the region with secular education that competes with “extremist” terrorist-breeding ...

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[The Military Council Approves Egypt's Additional Emergency Law] المجلس الأعلى يقر قانون طوارئ إضافي

[الشرطة العسكرية وهي تطوق المعتصمين في ميدان التحرير إستعداد لفض إعتصامهم-منتشر على الإنترنت، المصدر غير معروف]

رزحت المجتمعات العربية لعقود عدة تحت وطأة القوانين الإستثنائية المقيدة للحريات السياسية. لذلك ما أن قامت الثورات والانتفاضات العربية الأخيرة حتى تعرضت هذه القوانين (وخاصة قوانين الطوارئ ومحاكمها التي تعرف في مصر بإسم محاكم أمن الدولة طوارئ) إلى هجوم عنيف في كافة أرجاء العالم العربي، ما أدى إلى إلغاء قوانين الطوارئ في عدة دول من بينها الجزائر وسوريا، وإلغاء عدد من الترتيبات المقيدة للحريات في كلا من تونس والمغرب. لكن بغض النظر عن جدية هذه الإصلاحات، ظلت مصر بعيدة كل البعد عن هذا المسار الإصلاحي؛ فلم يتجاهل نظام <<الثورة>> المصري المطلب الشعبي الكاسح بإلغاء قانون الطوارئ فحسب، وإنما قام بإقرار قانون طوارئ إضافي منذ يومين <<في ...

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Al-Jazeera's "Inside Story" Debate on International Intervention in Syria, with Jadaliyya Co-Editor

[From AJE] It has been an uprising that has so far claimed more than 450 lives. And with Friday billed another day of rage, violence in Syria does not seem to be abating. Western powers have now convened a special session of the UN's top human rights body on Friday to investigate possible abuses by Bashar al-Assad's forces against anti-government protesters. There are growing calls to establish a fact-finding mission. And US and European diplomats have asked the UN Human Rights Council to order a ...

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Tribes of Libya as the Third Front: Myths and Realities of Non-State Actors in the Long Battle for Misrata

Recent news reports originating from Libyan state media have Libyan tribes sending representatives to the rebels in Misrata, hoping to negotiate for peace and for control of the city. An April 24 article in The Guardian quoted Libya’s deputy foreign minister, Khaled Kaim, as threatening a “very bloody” assault against the rebels in Misrata if they fail to negotiate. “I hope to God we can avoid this,” Kaim lamented to The Guardian. Why do Qaddafi’s tales of “tribal” identities mobilizing against rebels ...

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Al-Maqaleh's Betrayal: Translation and Commentary

 The Betrayal My faith in poetry is betrayed, as blood, gushing from the heart of the square, now masks the face of words          My eyes can no longer make out the shape of things, the tone of things Blood, blood, and more blood It shrouds my soul, my tongue it envelopes the horizon and stains people’s bread, falling on plates, coffee cups, and the eyes of children. * * * What dark shadow casts its corpse across our homeland, in this ...

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Aesthetic Uprisings

Signs of the Times: The Popular Literature of Tahrir: Protest Signs, Graffiti & Street Art. Curated by Rayya El Zein and Alex Ortiz. Special Issue of Shahadat, April 2011. Full issue available here.   In the heady days that followed the January 25 demonstrations in Egypt, the air seemed to crackle with images from the myriad protests and demonstrations and strikes and uprisings all across the country. For those of us following events from outside, it became part of the daily routine: together ...

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غنائم البارون ماكس فون آوبنهايم: الآلهة السورية إنبعثت من جديد في برلين [The Baron's Trophies: Syrian Gods Resurrected in Berlin]

تعود تماثيل الآلهة الأثرية لمملكة تل حلف السورية مرة أخرى إلى الحياة في متحف بيرغامون للحفريات التاريخية بعدما كانت قد تعرضت للقصف في برلين عام 1943 وتحطمت إلى 27 الف قطعة. سجل معرض «الآلهة الناجية من قصر تل حلف» في الأسابيع الثلاثة الأولى منذ إفتتاحه في شهر كانون الثاني ( يناير) حضوراً مميزاً تجاوز خمسين ألف زائراً، بالإضافة إلى اهتمام إعلامي ألماني واسع. عند الدخول إلى الصالة الأولى في جناح المعرض يفاجأ الزائر بألواح خشبية تتناثر فوقها حجارة من مادة البازلت. والهدف هو التذكير بحال هذه المعروضات الأثرية ...

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  مزمور ”إلى شهداء سوريا"   لا يذهب الشهداءُ إلى الجنّة فأبوابها مغلقة منذ قرون والتجّار الذين اشتروا أنهارها ينظرون من الشرفات العالية إلى الطوابير الطويلة وحشود المشرّدين في الخارج

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Special Bodies, Speculative Personhood: Bradley Manning and Mohamed Bouazizi

 He was very sincere. We are like soulless bodies since he left. –Basma Bouazizi, sister If Brad Manning, 22, is the Collateral Murder and Garani massacre whistleblower then, without doubt, he’s a national hero. –Wikileaks He may be a mutilated trunk dismembered all about, the spirit removed all around and separated from the limbs, yet he lives and breathes the vital air. –Lucretius, De Rerum Natura   Bradley Manning and Mohamed Bouazizi’s names have become known because they ...

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الشعب يريد عجلة إنتاج أخرى [The People Want Another Mode of Production]

هاهى عجلة الإنتاج تتصدر الصورة السياسية فى مصر مرة أخرى، بعد أن أخلت فزَّاعة إنهيار الاقتصاد مكانها مؤقتا لفزَّاعات السلفيين والإخوان وغياب وعى الجماهير. جميع النخب تحدثنا الآن عن هذه العجلة السحرية: الشيخ محمد حسان يدعو لفض الاعتصامات ودفع عجلة الإنتاج، سمية الخشاب: عجلة الإنتاج الفنى أصيبت بالشلل، نائب رئيس الوزراء يحيى الجمل: أطالب بعودة عجلة الإنتاج سريعاً، صفحة على الفيسبوك عنوانها: الشعب يريد إستمرار عجلة الإنتاج، حملات إعلانية مكثفة فى التليفزيون وفى الشوارع وفوق الكبارى تمولها شركات كبرى، ...

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Culture II

This is the second week of Jadaliyya's culture section. The first week included four pieces and can be viewed here. This week's bouquet includes: "A Damascene Diary" by Samar Yazbek "Memoir and Mythology" by Mimi Kirk "The Meaning of My Prayer" by Sargon Boulus We welcome your contributions, support, and feedback. For more information, read our Call for Posts, or contact us at 

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"The Meaning of My Prayer" by Sargon Boulus

“Ma`na Salati” (The Meaning of my Prayer) appeared in Sargon Boulus’ posthumous collection `Azma Ukhra li-Kalb al-Qabila (Baghdad and Beirut: Dar al-Jamal, 2008). The Meaning of My Prayer Perhaps this is what I prayed for at times This is what I saw in moments of despair my eyes half shut sleepless until dawn That garden (Its leaves, from childhood, still glisten at noon washed by a sun no longer visible) A handful of trees A time not stained by the hand of days Summer, swarming with ...

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What is Sharia?

This question has animated scholarly, religious, and political debates for centuries. These debates have been lively, at times contentious, and have been held (under different circumstances and leading to different results) in different parts of the Muslim majority world as well as in parts of the world with few, if any, Muslims. More recently, it seems that the question “What is sharia?” has become a pressing concern in Western countries with growing Muslim minorities who continue to be unevenly ...

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Who Killed Vik?

I never knew Vittorio “Vik” Arrigoni before his tragic death in Gaza City on 15 April 2011. I won’t pretend to piece together who Vik was or what lay behind his passions. But before he slips from the headlines to the footnotes, it is worth attempting to make an accounting of this terrible death that has shocked the Palestinian movement. His death cannot be allowed to pass without considering what it tells us about ourselves, our movement and our collective future. While it would be premature to draw ...

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