The Israeli and Indian prime ministers went out of their way to have a meeting in NY yesterday, reflecting an Indian shift from support for Palestinian aspirations to support for Israel. The third side of the triangle is the U.S., which forgives Narendra Modi his part in a Muslim massacre and never had a problem with Netanyahu’s recent massacre in Gaza
Category Archives: Middle East
There’s been a lot of attention to the rise of anti-Semitism in Europe. But what about the rise of Islamophobia, which is being fostered by ISIS’s violent actions, which Hassan Rouhani, Iran’s president and a cleric, says have nothing to do with Islam but are the fruit of western colonialism?
In early September, I accompanied an Iraqi friend to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees office in Amman, Jordan to help register him officially as a refugee. There was a G4S logo on the gate attendant’s shirt. And G4S all over the compound. Why is the British company that serves Israeli prisons a UN contractor?
The deaths of hundreds of Palestinians in the sea fleeing Gaza ought to be acknowledged around the world as evidence that Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands is not just “unsustainable” — Obama’s mantra — but “unconscionable.”
A “formidable machine” that works for Israel inside US politics keeps the U.S. from being an honest broker on the Palestinian issue; but that issue is a “very, very big” factor in the unrest in the Middle East, says Lakhdar Brahimi, lately the UN negotiator in the Syrian civil war.
President Obama called on Not-in-my-name Muslims to redeem their religion from radical extremists. Fair enough. But when Rev. Bruce Shipman at Yale said that Israel’s friends should urge the Jewish state not to commit atrocities because they are causing anti-Semitism, he lost his job.
Israel’s calculation of “Liberalism for us, oppression for our enemies” mirrors Western attitudes. The Israel lobby is not needed to sway western governments to support the Jewish state, Maggie Sager argues at Mondo
Explaining why Edward Snowden took his momentous step, James Bamford says, “Among his most shocking discoveries, he told me, was the fact that the N.S.A. was routinely passing along the private communications of Americans to a large and very secretive Israeli military organization.” The damage of the special relations
The AP reports: Some half million Gaza children made a delayed return to school on Sunday after a devastating 50-day war with Israel that killed more than 2,100 Palestinians and damaged hundreds of school buildings
The other day the New York Times ran a rave review by Larry Rohter about a new documentary on a Palestinian collaborator and his Israeli handler. The story began in stirring terms: On newspaper front pages around the world late last month, a photograph from Gaza showed masked Hamas gunmen about to execute bound, kneeling prisoners suspected of
As we mark another anniversary of the attacks in 2001, it seems as if little has changed. We appear to be caught in a time loop where history keeps repeating itself again and again. If it was al Qaeda in 2001 that represented the pinnacle of all things evil that animated the US invasion of Afghanistan and later Iraq, today its al Qaeda’s evil twin Islamic State that is prompting air strikes in Iraq and upcoming airstrikes on Syria as well. Virtually absent in the media circus around ISIS is an honest discussion of how the US War on Terror, rather than halting the growth of violent Islamist groups, actually fosters fundamentalism
Barack Obama is working on his strategy to combat the radical Islamist group ISIS. How about upholding a core principle of democracy, the separation of church and state? We would affirm that principle not by sending drones and special forces to Syria but by opposing the idea of a Jewish state in Israel and Palestine.
New York Times report on foreign countries influencing policymaking through donations to thinktanks spotlights Qatar and UAE and Egypt but leaves out Israel. Drawing a blank on Haim Saban!
The leader of the Democratic congressional campaign committee, Rep. Steve Israel of Long Island, has published a journal of his visit to Israel August 3-9. You’d think the congressman has more important things to do than write up his breathless meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu amid “a cauldron of pressure,” but the congressman is a major
As you are surely aware, the gruesome murders of American journalists by the Islamic state group in Iraq and Syria have been seized on by demagogues to argue that the US must go to war in the Middle East. Chris Matthews has championed a “nationalistic response” to the killings and faulted Barack Obama for not
Qasi Mustafa Abu Khalil and his family packed all of their belongings into one car and fled their home in the middle of the night. They were too nervous to look back as they left Mosul, the second largest city in Iraq—all eyes were glued on the road for Islamic State (IS) checkpoints, and the
Overnight three rockets struck Israel from southern Lebanon, marking the second instance of crossfire between the Mediterranean states since the beginning of the military offensive in the besieged Gaza Strip. The rockets landed in Nahariya, a beachside community ten kilometers from the Lebanese border. Lebanese officials and a United Nations monitoring group have combed the
To those of you who don’t know, we in Lebanon have lived three major wars with Israel, in 1993, 1996 and 2006 not to mention the daily brutalities that Israeli soldiers committed at check points and villages as they conquered various parts of Lebanon from 1982 till 2000. I know what it feels like to
On September 30, 2011, Anwar al-Aulaki, a radical Islamist cleric and an American citizen, was killed in a targeted drone strike in Yemen. Among the many legal questions raised by such an act, a most important and intriguing one relates to the legal status of certain CIA activities given the existence of 18 USC 119,
Enough is enough. Thomas Friedman has just published his first column since the catastrophe in Iraq, and it is marked by so much dishonest evasion, pedestrian analysis, and poor writing that his editors should put him out to pasture at a think tank somewhere in Colorado, where he can’t do much more damage. First and
In most circumstances, “We told you so” is a classless statement. But in this case, it’s justified. In 2003, in the largest global protest in human history, millions of us marched in the world’s streets, loudly proclaiming that invading Iraq would be an unmitigated disaster. Meanwhile, Israel’s neocon loyalists achieved exactly what they wanted: a
[Here is an alternative history of Iraq that we posted 4 years ago, revised in light of recent events.] Historians would later record how Secretary of State Colin Powell prevailed in a key Cabinet meeting in early 2003, when he refused to go before the United Nations because he lacked proof that Iraq had weapons
Before it was a refugee camp, Al-Yarmuk was long known as the battle that consolidated Syria under Arab rule after the landmark defeat of the Byzantine Empire in 636 C.E. From now on, however, it will symbolize a different event. Al-Yarmuk now stands between Tel Al-Za’tar – the Palestinian refugee camp in Beirut that was
Haitham Haddad is used to Israeli Jews asking whether he is “an Arab or a Christian.” The Haifa-born artist and t-shirt designer, who grew up in the Palestinian Christian community, has been hearing the query since he was young. “It’s in their daily vocabulary–and you’re like ‘what?’” Haddad, a 23-year-old whose art draws on religious