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  • Article

    Two historical narratives to the Egyptian crisis

    Last Saturday, an Egyptian government fact-finding committee met to discuss the events that took place during the June 30th coup. At the same time, a group of human rights activists held a conference on violence and injustice at the journalist's association. The committee decided to begin with files pertaining...
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    Is Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi the only choice for Egyptians?

    I will not argue the power of Colonel Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi's popularity, but I will allow myself to argue him being the "necessary" man and that there is no alternative to him ruling Egypt. This is due to the fact that this necessity compels us to expand our circle...
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    A flawed constitution of the ageing

    Weeks ago I said in a talk that the place of this constitution is underneath the shoes of the new generation. Yet, I did not expect this to happen so quickly. Successive news reports inform that old people were the majority of those who took part in voting over...
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    Muslim Brotherhood will not be part of the blockade of Gaza and will not prevent resistance

    A spokesman for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Mahmoud Ghozlan, has denied any intention to tighten the siege on the Gaza Strip. He made his statement in the context of discussions about the tunnels linking Gaza with Egypt, adding that the Brotherhood will neither be part of the blockade...
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    Mitchell's imminent visit to the region… what hope?

    By Senussi Bsaikri George Mitchell's last visit to the region ended without the announcement of any tangible development. This was the case with all his previous visits. On October 11th the American diplomat left the region without convincing the Israeli Prime Minister to halt the settlement building; a repeated...
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    Israel's fear of the Goldstone Report

    By Bilal Al-Hasan Al-Sharq Al-Awsat18 October 2009 The popular Palestinian and Arab campaign against the PA's decision to defer the Goldstone report and not refer it to the Security Council or The Hague International Court of Justice has led to conflicting results. First Negative result: the campaign has weakened...
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    Good Riddance, Abbas

    Foreign Policy (US). . Saree Makdisi 06/11/2009. Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian Authority, was no good for Palestine. And his exit will make a peaceful solution more likely. The announcement that Mahmoud Abbas has decided not to stand for re-election as head of the Palestinian Authority should come...
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    Middle East Deadlock: a consequence of U.S bias and Israeli intransigence

    By Zulaikha Abdullah This week marks twenty one years since the November 18, 1988 declaration of a Palestinian state. To coincide with commemorations of this event, and amid increasing frustration and disillusionment over the stalled and ineffective peace process, particularly with regard to the issue of settlements, come the...
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    Jerusalem & Babylon / The story that got away

    By Anshel Pfeffer I met this week a senior IDF general who had been intimately involved with the planning and execution of last year's Operation Cast Lead. I asked whether he was planning a trip to London any time soon. "I never went on vacation in Britain, even before...
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    Misconceptions about Palestinian refugee camps in Syria

    What do you think of when you hear the words, "Palestinian refugee camp"? Miles of open land covered in tents housing entire families crammed together, perhaps? Poverty stricken people standing for hours on end in long queues waiting for food handouts from UN units? Or maybe swarms of people...
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    The source of neo-anti-Semitism? Look no further than Israel's abuse of international law

    By Khaled Amayreh in occupied Jerusalem 18 December, 2009 Political Zionism arose out of the murderous pogroms against Jews in Eastern Europe and Russia in the 19th century. Such "anti-Semitism" was used by Theodore Herzl as the main argument when he tried to persuade European governments to establish a...
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    Palestine's "forgotten people"

    By Ibrahim Hewitt When concern about the after-effects of Israel's aggression against the civilian population in Gaza was still high, Time magazine described Palestinian refugees in Lebanon as "A Forgotten People" (25th February, 2009). It is an apt description, especially as the first anniversary of the start of Israel's...
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    The times they are a-changin'

    By Ibrahim Hewitt In his classic 1963 song The times they are a-changin', American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan wrote, "For the loser now will be later to win, for the times they are a-changin'". Having observed closely the situation in Palestine for more than twenty years, I can say in...
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    The "Arab Reality" Crisis

    By Dr. Abdul Wahhab Al-Effendi22/12/2009 The steel wall that Egypt intends to build on its borders with besieged Gaza illustrates the double bind that resulted from the Camp David and Oslo agreements (the so-called Middle East peace process in general). From the start, it was announced that these agreements...
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    Christmas en-route to Gaza

    Today was Christmas and a rather surreal one at that. Instead of tucking into the usual Turkey with stuffing and all of the trimmings, Viva Palestina convoy members tucked into Falafel sandwiches in the hot Jordanian sun and drank strong Arabic coffee. The convoy of humanitarian aid which we...
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    How the Turkish and Arabic press covered VIVA Palestina

    In a world where, we are told, the West has a free press and everyone else prints government-controlled propaganda, it is interesting to examine how the media has covered the Viva Palestina convoy story. As has been explained on the pages of Middle East Monitor in the last couple...
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    Sixty-two years, and counting

    By Ibrahim Hewitt This week saw the first anniversary of the Israeli assault on Gaza, but only one anniversary really matters in 2010: it is now almost 62 years since the creation of the Palestinian refugee crisis by the creation of the state of Israel. Hope for one people...
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    Egypt's lack of sovereignty

    Dr Abdel Sattar QassemProfessor of Political studies, Al Najah National University Egyptian officials start talking about Egypt's sovereignty every time Gaza is in need of food even though the people of Gaza have no desires on Egyptian territory and have no army intending to invade. All they need –...
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    Telling the Truth

    By Yvonne Ridley in Cairo Telling the truth can be a complicated business. This was one of the first lessons I learned at a very tender age. Still unable to grasp the importance of the school timetable in my first week, I rolled up for class 20 minutes late...
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    Zionism: The Road to Self-destruction

    By Roger Higginson On 4 December 2009, the Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz reported that the United States had failed to persuade its partners in the so-called 'Quartet' to issue a declaration of support for Israel's temporary pause in settlement construction. The four members of the 'Quartet' are the EU, the...
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    Viva Palestina's bumpy road

    By Dr Hanan Chehata In an international effort to show solidarity with the Palestinian people, Viva Palestina (VP) volunteers from around the world have left their families and in some cases resigned from their jobs in order to take part in this humanitarian undertaking. They have done this for...
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    "They fired me from my job, and I don't know the reason"

    From Khalid Amayreh in the Israeli-Occupied West Bank5 January, 2010 Under the rubric of fighting Hamas's influence in the West Bank, the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority (PA) has flagrantly fired hundreds of school teachers and other civil servants from their jobs for unexplained "security reasons." The dismissals were ordered by...
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    EC has "limited resources" to pay for fuel for Gaza

    The European Commission's decision last month to stop buying diesel for Gaza's only power station means that the beleaguered territory will soon have no central power source for everyday activities. According to Rafeeq Maliha, director of the Gaza power station, without the intervention of the Palestinian Authority (PA), the...
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    Terror is the price of support for despots and dictators

    By Seumas MilneThe Guardian, Thursday 7 January 2010 Egypt's complicity in the Gaza's siege underlines the role of western support for such regimes in the spread of war If an 85-year-old Holocaust survivor had gone on hunger strike in support of a besieged people in another part of the...
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    Reviving the peace process: will it work?

    The source of the latest (but almost certainly not the last) attempt to revive the so-called "peace process" is shrouded in mystery. Egyptian officials claim that they kicked it off; an Israeli newspaper, Maariv, reports that it is a US initiative. The reality, of course, is that the source...
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    Loyalty to Sheikh Ra'ed Salah

    Dr Abdel Sattar QassemProfessor of Political studies, Al Najah National University An Israeli court has sentenced Sheikh Ra'ed Salah to nine months in prison for taking part in a "disturbance" at Al-Aqsa Mosque in February 2007. Sheikh Ra'ed, who is the head of the Islamic Movement in northern Israel,...
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    Egypt/Palestine: The Wall of Shame

    By Tariq Ramadan It is common knowledge that the Palestinians have long been direct victims of the directionless, spineless and hypocritical polices of the Arab leadership. It is equally common knowledge that the State of Israel need make no effort to impose its vision, its methods and its objectives....
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    The planned land swap: a legal, geographic and political transgression

    By Dr. Salman Abu Sitta Newspaper columns are currently busy with commentaries on Arab, Israeli and US diplomatic moves suggesting new initiatives in the peace process, which died some time ago (although nobody has signed the death certificate yet). These attempts to resuscitate the process will not bring it back...
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    Did Hamas carry out a coup in Gaza in 2007?

    By Khalid Amayreh Ellen Rosser, Professor of English and a veteran peace activist, maintained an office in downtown Gaza from September 2006 to June 2007. During that period she was an eyewitness to the events which eventually culminated in the violent clashes between Fatah and Hamas in the summer...
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    Haiti - Gaza

    By Dr Bothaina Shaaban Following the devastating earthquake in Haiti, a number of commentators have drawn attention to Israel's brazen efforts to use aid to the stricken country to "hide its ugly face in Gaza". That was how Akeiva Aldar described the obverse of "Israel's sympathy with Haiti" in...
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    Israel is stealing Palestinian water

    By Nabil Sahli Recent reports have highlighted the acute water shortage facing Palestinian towns and villages in the West Bank and Bethlehem in particular – and noted that the average Israeli settler consumes six times more water than the average Palestinian. This is despite the latter's rights to the sources...
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    Time stands still in Gaza

    EXCLUSIVE PICTURESIt is over a year since Israel ended its brutal attack on Gaza during Operation Cast Lead, yet it appears that time stands still. The scars left by 22 days of land, naval and aerial bombardment and invasion remain fresh. More than 15,000 homes were destroyed or severely...
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    Russia's relations with Hamas: a win-win situation

    The political leader of Hamas, Khalid Meshal, has visited Russia and held meetings with senior officials, led by Russia's Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov. This is the third visit of a senior leader of Hamas since the movement's victory in the 2006 elections and comes sandwiched between the visit to...
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    "Doha Forum" sidesteps maltreatment of Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt

    To many analysts President Obama's appointment of a special US envoy to the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) was only another item of window-dressing. On the burning issues that affect Muslim peoples worldwide the administration remains evasive at best and in denial at worst. While the just concluded "Doha...
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    'With friends like these ...'

    By Ibrahim Hewitt, for Al Jazeera EnglishSenior Editor of the Middle East Monitor Allegations that the Israeli secret service, Mossad, was behind the killing of Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai are gaining strength. The accusation originated with Hamas after the 49-year-old was found dead in a hotel in...
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    "War council" in Damascus

    By Abdel Bari Atwan The tripartite meeting held in Damascus last week included Syrian President Bashar al-Asad and his Iranian guest Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, as well as Hassan Nasrallah, leader of Hizbullah in Lebanon. The three came together as a "war council" to discuss plans, roles and functions in the...
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    The Egyptian Paradox: Gas at subsidised prices for Israel; a steel wall for Gaza

    Reports from Egypt claim that shortages of gas canisters led to riots in the country in January and February. The complaints of the people were exacerbated by the controversial sale of natural gas by Egypt to Israel, increasing dissatisfaction with the Egyptian government. Oil expert Ibrahim Zahran told the...
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    Forty cities around the world observe "Israeli Apartheid Week"

    By Omar Radwan This week is the sixth annual "Israeli Apartheid Week", a series of events including lectures, film screenings, workshops, rallies and other activities highlighting Israel's ongoing oppression of the Palestinian people. The focus is mainly on Israel's denial of the right of return for Palestinian refugees, its...
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    Dispatches: The Children of Gaza

    Putting a human face to the tragedy – Re-igniting the call for accountability On Monday 15th March Channel 4 aired an episode of Dispatches entitled "The Children of Gaza". It focused on the lives of a few of the children living in that small strip of Palestinian land whose...
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    On the absurdity of a "Palestinian incitement index"

    A common blueprint of Israeli hasbara, or official propaganda, is to deflect criticism of its actions in the Occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip by stressing that within the 1948 boundaries, it is a model of democracy incomparable to other societies in the Middle East. The reality however is...
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    UN's Richard Falk under attack again – from the Palestinian Authority

    By Omar Radwan The United Nations Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Richard Falk, has come under renewed attack in recent days. Professor Falk's remit is to monitor Israeli violations of human rights in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip for the UN Human...
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    Fahmi Shabana and evidence of corruption in the PA

    Dr. Abdel Sattar Qassem As soon as Fahmi Shabana appeared on Israeli television to offer details of the evidence he has about corruption among officials of the Palestinian Authority, a campaign rolled into action accusing him of being a Zionist collaborator bent on distorting the image of those who...
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    Fayyad 'courage' and Abbas 'excuses'

    By Abdel Bari Atwan The Palestinian scene is full of paradoxes and strange situations which are difficult to understand, but the past few days have witnessed two major issues that cannot be ignored: the first is Palestinian Prime Minister Dr. Salam Fayyad's speech at the Herzliya Conference in Israel;...
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    Why is the PA so reticent about Shabaneh's revelations?

    By Khalid Amayreh in RamallahSexual and financial corruption is "rampant" throughout the Palestinian Authority (PA), according to Fahmi Shabaneh. The former PA intelligence official has made these grave allegations in an interview in the Jerusalem Post, and again on Israeli TV Channel 10. The leadership, claims Shabaneh, knows about...
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    Silencing Palestinian voices in Jerusalem

    By Omar RadwanLast week, the Israeli Ministry of Interior issued Palestinian geographer Khalil al-Tafakji with a six-month travel ban. Tafakji's activities are largely confined to surveying and cartography, he is not a politician. However, his work has created major obstacles for Israel's plans to Judaize the city of Jerusalem and...
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    Sewage collapse threatens health of Palestinians in Gaza

    Palestinians in Gaza have a lot to contend with, especially since the war launched by the Israeli Occupiers just over a year ago. With the loss of more than 1,400 Palestinian lives, most of whom were women and children, the near total destruction of whatever little infrastructure that remained...
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    The custodian of Al-Aqsa imprisoned yet again; but who is Sheikh Raed Salah?

    By Yassir ZaatraOn Wednesday 13 January, an Israeli court sentenced Sheikh Raed Salah to nine months in jail with an additional six months suspended for inciting protests and "assaulting a police officer", to whom Sheikh Salah was ordered to pay 7,500 Shekels in compensation. It is well-known that he...
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    Post-Mabhouh, are we seeing the first signs of world opinion turning against Israel?

    By Nasha'at Halabi Despite last year's Israeli invasion of Gaza and the strong evidence that war crimes and crimes against humanity had been committed by the Israeli armed forces, to-date the world has not gone so far as to condemn the Israelis outright. The Zionist political and media machines...
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    The goodwill of a truly international convoy

    By Dr Hanan Chehata The Viva Palestina (VP) Convoy 2009/10 brought together an extremely diverse group of people with at least seventeen countries represented. Citizens of Australia, Poland, Belgium, Dominica, Iran, Ireland and a whole host of other countries and from all walks of life took part in what...
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    MEMO Exclusive - Gaza is still standing with dignity

    By Ismail Haniyeh That the elected government in Gaza still enjoys the popular support of its people is a mark of the failure of Israel's criminal blockade and war launched one year ago. Today, our people enjoy the support of millions throughout the world; thousands of them are knocking...