Gaza: The Line of Memory and Despair

I‘ve known of Kassim Kafarneh for many years. His thick, wild beard is now neatly trimmed and his once unruly black hair is combed in an orderly fashion. His spirit, however, is as free as the day I saw him filming in our refugee camp one Friday afternoon, 17 years ago. I know for sure … Continue reading “Gaza: The Line of Memory and Despair”

A Series of Unfortunate Events, The Iraq Edition

I visited Baghdad as a reporter a few years before the US invasion. There were posters and statues of the ousted President Saddam Hussein everywhere. But not one checkpoint. Those lucky enough, or maybe unfortunate enough to report from the occupied Iraqi capital after March 2003, must have noticed how things have changed. It seems … Continue reading “A Series of Unfortunate Events, The Iraq Edition”

Taysir Doesn’t Deserve This

Al-Jazeera’s correspondent Taysir Alouni is in a Madrid jail for no other reason than challenging the Western and distinctively the American narrative of the Third World. Alouni is not a terrorist, and Spanish High Court judge Baltasar Garzon knows this very well. In fact, it appears that Alouni was arrested – first in September 2003 … Continue reading “Taysir Doesn’t Deserve This”

Hariri’s Murder Only the Beginning

Indulging in speculation regarding the identity of Lebanese former prime minister Rafik al-Hariri’s real assassins is of little value now. What demands urgent scrutiny is how his murder will play a large part in the remolding of Lebanon’s role in the Arab-Israeli conflict and the balance of power in the region. So while the Feb. … Continue reading “Hariri’s Murder Only the Beginning”

How Israel Is Once Again Redefining the Terms of Peace

The recent and supposedly ‘successful’ Sharm el-Sheikh summit in Egypt on February 8 was anything but a triumph, as far as Palestinians, the occupied party, and genuine peace-seeking Israelis are concerned. Leave out the spectacular view of the Red Sea resort, the impressively meticulous Egyptian hospitality, the heart-rending speeches and the touting of the media … Continue reading “How Israel Is Once Again Redefining the Terms of Peace”

Gaza Through the Looking Glass

One can only imagine the utter outrage that would engulf world leaders and the media if a series of Palestinian bombings rocked an Israeli town and in less than four days killed 60 people and wounded hundreds, mostly innocent civilians. Not even the most open-minded of media pundits would dare justify the crime; not even … Continue reading “Gaza Through the Looking Glass”

Darfur’s War of Definitions

Finally, the conflict in Darfur in western Sudan is a focal point for diplomats and the media. This is the least one could expect after months of murder, rape and, dare I say, ethnic cleansing, starting as early as February 2003. Almost all parties who have recently discovered the existence of Darfur, an area comparable … Continue reading “Darfur’s War of Definitions”

Reform as a Euphemism for Stagnation

The Arab reform debacle is widening as Arab leaders fail to achieve either a unified or a comprehensible vision for their own countries. Under various guises and pretenses, the Arab Summit in Tunisia last May only deepened the impression that Arab leaders are incapable of devising their own reforms. My worst fear is now unfolding: … Continue reading “Reform as a Euphemism for Stagnation”

Celebrating Life in Rafah

Rafah, Jenin, Khan Yunis, Zeitun: Foreign-sounding names of so distanced and disturbing a reality. All that we know of them is what the media have selectively determined to impart, if we are interested to hear the story. The Rafah refugee camp, a small strip of land at the southern edge of Gaza was the target … Continue reading “Celebrating Life in Rafah”

Gazans Must Spurn Internal Strife and Egyptian Rule

Khalid al-Zabin, a 59-year-old Palestinian journalist was ambushed outside his office in Gaza, on Tuesday, March 2. His body was riddled with bullets. All that is known about his executioners is that they wore masks. No faction has claimed responsibility for his murder and the Palestinian Authority has no suspects. The disturbing episode is likely … Continue reading “Gazans Must Spurn Internal Strife and Egyptian Rule”