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Ramzy Baroud is the Managing Editor of Middle East Eye. He is an internationally-syndicated columnist, a media consultant, an author and the founder of PalestineChronicle.com. His latest book is My Father Was a Freedom Fighter: Gaza's Untold Story (Pluto Press, London). He is a Ph.D. scholar at the University of Exeter's European Centre for Palestine Studies (ECPS).
Tuesday, February 9, 2016 Next onslaught in Gaza: Why the status quo is a precursor for war
It is difficult to imagine that another war is not looming. Israel's strategic, political and military tactics, as it stands today, will not allow Gaza to live with a minimal degree of dignity. On the other hand, the history of Gaza's resistance makes it impossible to imagine a scenario in which the Strip raises a white flag and awaits its allotted punishment.
Tuesday, February 2, 2016 The Logic of Hunger Striking Palestinians: When Starvation Is a Weapon
The issue of hunger strikes should not be seen as a battle within Israeli jails, but as part and parcel of the Palestinian people's fight against military occupation. What all of these former hunger strikers seem to have in common is their insistence that their battles were never concerned with the freedom of individuals only, but of an entire group of desperate, oppressed and outraged people.
Wednesday, January 27, 2016 Why is Trauma Missing from Syria Refugee Debate?
Unlike common wisdom, exile for Palestinians is not specific in time or space, but a cyclical process that is experienced by every single Palestinian, even those who would declare that they have no intentions of returning to Palestine. Syrian refugees are now taking the first step towards their own journey of exile. Collective traumas do not magically end with the signing of political agreements.
Tuesday, January 19, 2016 Defined by Nakba and Exile: The Complex Reality of "Home" for Palestinians
The study of Palestinian exile, and the collective aspiration of the Palestinian people when it comes to their right of return is far more complex than a simple question that can be addressed based on a "Yes" or "No" answer. Nor is it a matter that is open for political negotiations.
Tuesday, January 5, 2016 Palestine after Abbas: The Future of a People at Stake
The PA was the outcome of the now practically defunct Oslo "peace process," which was negotiated by Abbas and a few others in secret with Israel, at the behest of the late Palestinian Fatah leader, Yasser Arafat. The whole initiative was founded on secrecy and deceit and was signed without taking the Palestinian people into account.
Tuesday, December 22, 2015 A Crushed Generation: Photography under Siege in Gaza
Old people, unlike the young, frustrated by their confinement and yet unable to channel their anger and energy, just sit outside their homes and gaze at the passerbys. They watch their misery unfold, as they have for decades. This time however, their hardship is not only the work of Israel, but that of their Arab "brothers" as well.
Friday, December 11, 2015 Open Rafah Now: Siege on Gaza is a Cruel and Political Failure
Although Gazans are still being referred to as "brothers," there is nothing brotherly in the way they are being treated -- 25,000 humanitarian cases are languishing in Gaza, waiting to be allowed access to treatment in Egypt or in other Arab and European countries. These ill Palestinians should not be used as political fodder in a turf war which is not of their making.
Wednesday, December 2, 2015 Reclaiming Palestine: How Israeli Media Misread the Intifada
The Israeli argument is, as has always been the case, narrow-minded in its view of history, or it conveniently applies history to fit whatever political argument Israeli officials or mouthpieces deem handy. Just a few weeks ago, Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, absolved the Nazis from the idea behind the Holocaust and pinned the blame on the Palestinian Mufti instead.
Tuesday, November 24, 2015(1 comments)
Forget Daesh: Humanity is at Stake
Those who orchestrated the war on Iraq and those feeding the war in Syria and arming Israel cannot be vindicated. The crux of the matter: we either live in dignity together or continue to perish alone, warring tribes and grief-stricken nations. This is not just about indiscriminate bombing -- our humanity, in fact, the future of the human race is at stake.
Thursday, November 5, 2015(2 comments)
Co-Existence With Apartheid?
For J.K. Rowling, even non-violent acts of encountering Israel's ongoing massacres in Gaza and the military occupation in the West Bank are excessive. "Cultural boycotts singling out Israel are divisive and discriminatory, and will not further peace," reads the letter she signed.
Saturday, October 31, 2015(1 comments)
Confronting the Obvious Truth: Palestinian Authority vs. the People
Established in 1994 as a transitional political body that would guide the process of Palestinian independence, the PA morphed to become a security arm that served as a first line of defense for the Israeli army, in addition to guarding its own interests. PA security forces have done a splendid job of cracking down on any dissent among Palestinians.
Monday, October 12, 2015(2 comments)
Of course, it is an intifada: This is what you must know
Palestinians are protesting because they experience daily humiliation and have to endure the unrelenting violence of occupation. Moreover, they feel a total sense of betrayal by their leadership, which is corrupt and co-opted. So they rebel, and attempt to mobilize and sustain their rebellion for as long as they can, because they have no horizon of hope outside their own action.
Friday, October 9, 2015(2 comments)
Listen to Syrians: The Media Jackals and the People's Narrative
The tragedy in Syria is that the war fought in the name of the Syrian people has little to do with the rights of the Syrian people; and the voices of Syrians are either entirely neglected or used and manipulated to achieve specific political ends. And when it is all said and done, the media jackals are likely to fan the flame of some other conflict in some other place.
Tuesday, September 22, 2015 Israel's High-Stake Game in Al-Aqsa and Why Netanyahu May Prevail
Over the years, the strategic settlement growth was complemented by the religiously-motivated expansion, championed by a vibrant movement, exemplified in the founding of Gush Emunim (Bloc of the Faithful) in 1974. Its mission was to settle legions of fundamentalists on the West Bank. Little has changed since then, save the fact that the current Israeli administration is a government of settlers.
Monday, September 14, 2015(1 comments)
How Yarmouk came about: Israel's role in the Syrian refugee crisis
Israel, whose economy is the strongest in the region, has been the most tight-fisted in terms of offering shelter to Syrian refugees. This is a double sin considering that even Syria's Palestinian refugees, who were expelled from their own homes in Palestine, were also left homeless.
Wednesday, September 2, 2015(2 comments)
Palestine's Crisis of Leadership: Did Abbas Destroy Palestinian Democracy?
The crisis of leadership throughout Palestinian history did not start with Mahmoud Abbas and will, regrettably, be unlikely to end with his departure. Although Abbas has, perhaps, done more damage to the credibility of the Palestinian leadership than any other leader in the past, he is also a by-product of a process of political fraud that started much earlier than his expired Presidency.
Wednesday, August 26, 2015(4 comments)
"Islamic State" Pretence and the Upcoming Wars in Libya
It is becoming clearer that Libya, once a sovereign and relatively wealthy nation, is becoming a mere playground for a massive geopolitical game and large economic interests and ambitions... with Arab and Western powers scheming to ensure a larger share of Libya's economic wealth and strategic value. The crisis in that country is likely to escalate, if not worsen, as history has amply shown.
Wednesday, August 12, 2015(1 comments)
Shifting Priorities: The Rise and Fall of Arab Revolutionary Discourse
Strange how intellectual discussion concerning the so-called "Arab Spring" has almost entirely shifted in recent years - from one concerning freedom, justice, democracy and rights in general, into a political wrangle between various antagonist camps.
The people, who revolted across various Arab countries are now marginalized in this discussion, and are only used as fodders -- killers and victims ...
Sunday, August 2, 2015 The Palestinian Bubble and the Burning of Toddler, Ali Dawabsha
Israel's impunity is encouraged by many factors, including US-Western backing and the lack of international will to hold Israel -- Government, army and settlers -- accountable for their crimes. But that impunity is also encouraged by the Palestinian leadership itself, which lives in a massive political and economic bubble in Ramallah, in the West Bank.
Wednesday, July 29, 2015 Darker Horizons Ahead: Rethinking the War on "IS"
It is the lack of political prospects, and the smothering of any attempt at freedom and fair economic opportunity, that lead to extremist violence in the first place. As long as this reality remains intact, "IS" will tragically find new recruits, latch on to local militant groups, and continue to expand into new borders -- and even darker horizons.
Thursday, June 11, 2015 Middle East Reporting: The Need for Honest Journalism
It is a sad era where many journalists are for sale at the moment, ready to lend their pens to the highest bidder. The story presented to the world has, at times, nothing at all to do with the reality on the ground, but it is simply a mosaic of stereotype, hearsay, and babblings from privileged officials who have no understanding of the plight of their people.
Thursday, June 4, 2015 The Good, Bad and Uncertain about Recognizing "Palestine"
There has been a seismic shift in international consensus regarding Palestine, where many countries in the southern and northern hemispheres seem to ultimately agree that it is time to liberate the fate of Palestine from American hegemony. In the long run, and considering the growing rebalancing of global powers, for Palestinians, this is a good start.
Wednesday, May 20, 2015 Nakba and the Question of "Palestinian Strategy"
The Nakba, or Catastrophe, was an earth-shattering experience for the entirety of the Palestinian collective. Rarely before was a society almost entirely displaced in a relatively short period of time with such brutality and violence, followed by every possible attempt at erasing every piece of evidence, every link, every claim, every memory that the refugees affiliated with their homeland.
Thursday, April 23, 2015(3 comments)
Stuck in Area A: How We Were Duped into Disowning the Palestinians
When Palestinians are starved, beheaded or blown to smithereens in Yarmouk, we stand puzzled. We offer sympathy, tears and little action. We cannot even articulate a coherent discourse, aside from pulling out UN Resolution 194 from some dusty archive to talk about the Right of Return, and how the suffering in Yarmouk is ultimately Israel's responsibility.
Sunday, April 12, 2015(1 comments)
My missing family in Syria: Naming and shaming in Yarmouk
It behoves us all to take a moment to hang our heads in silence, but also shame, over what has befallen Yarmouk, as we stood, watching, bickering and doing nothing. But we ought to remember that there are still 18,000 trapped in Yarmouk and organize on their behalf so that, even if it is untimely, we need do something. Anything.
Thursday, April 9, 2015(2 comments)
The Collapse of the Obama Doctrine: Yemen War as an Opportunity?
the US -- which is playing both parties against one another -- is only interested in the region for economic and strategic reasons. While the tragic situation in Yemen has been a ground for lamentation at the cross-the-board-failure, it might also present an opportunity at political compromise, starting in Yemen, but extending elsewhere.
Monday, March 30, 2015(3 comments)
Eight urgent "musts" needed for Palestinians to defeat Apartheid
Waiting on Israeli society to change from within is a colossal waste of time. But what are Palestinians and the supporters of a just peace in Palestine and Israel to do? They are left between two options: either a perpetual fight for justice or unending humiliation and servitude.
Saturday, March 21, 2015(2 comments)
Netanyahu the mythbuster: "Special relationship" no more
Netanyahu's antics are increasingly denying the US administration a prolonged, tired and failed discourse pertaining to the peace process, Israeli security, democracy and so on, leaving the White House with two stark choices: to follow the lead of a racist and obsessive Netanyahu (as many Republicans and Democrats have already done) or to part ways.
Thursday, March 19, 2015 Re-imagining the IS Debate -- "Islamic State" as a Western Phenomenon?
Not only is IS to a degree an alien movement in the larger body politic of the Middle East, it also seems to be a partly western phenomenon, a hideous offspring resulting from western neocolonial adventures in the region, coupled with alienation and demonization of Muslim communities in western societies.
Wednesday, March 4, 2015(1 comments)
The Arab intellectual is resting, not dead
The great cultures that have survived prolonged fights against brutal dictators and foreign dominance for generations, yet still gave birth to some of the most brilliant intellectuals, novelists and poets of all time are capable of redeeming themselves. It is only a matter of time, and perhaps, initiative.
Tuesday, February 24, 2015 Obama's Admission Not Enough: US Spin on Middle East Violence Must Change
America's mainstream intellectuals and journalists refuse to accept the most prevalent truth about the roots of the current crisis; that military intervention is not a virtue, that war begets chaos and violence, that military invasion is not a harbinger of a stable democracy, but invites desperately violent polices predicated on winning, regardless of the cost.
Monday, February 16, 2015(1 comments)
Parking space terrorism: Time for action after killing of three US Muslims
Hicks, we are told, killed the students "execution style" because of a dispute over parking spaces. The same way that Chris Kyle -- "The American Sniper" -- made 164 confirmed "kills," killing "savages" because that's what national heroes do. And US wars and sanctions on Iraq killed, starved and wounded millions to bring democracy to the Arabs.
Tuesday, February 10, 2015 Mending "axis of resistance": Hamas goes back to square one
The Islamic Resistance Movement is once again facing difficult choices, and it seems to be choosing a cautious return to its old camp of Iran and Hezbollah. The maneuver this time is particularly risky. For Hamas and Palestinian resistance in Gaza, it is a mere matter of survival.
Tuesday, January 27, 2015(1 comments)
Dear Syria: From One Refugee to Another
Political division may, at times, dominate Palestinian society, but we will always be united by the fact that we are refugees with a common cause: going home. While, for the Palestinians of Yarmouk near Damascus, being a refugee is a matter of life and death -- often by starvation -- for the larger Palestinian collective, the meaning of the word has become more involved: it has been etched onto our skin forever.
Tuesday, January 20, 2015 Lessons that Hollande Failed to Learn from W. Bush
Like drugs, a warlord is dependent on war and can only be sustained and validated by it. Hollande is a warlord in the western sense, what Americans refer to as "a war president." But as Bush's notorious legacy has proven, while war-induced fear and vain patriotism may keep a leader in office long enough, the terrible consequences of unchecked violence shall be felt for many years to come.
Wednesday, December 24, 2014 5 Reasons Why 2014 was a Game Changer in Palestine
2014 was a very painful year for Palestine, but also a year in which the collective resistance of the Palestinian people, and their supporters, proved too strong to bend or break. And in that, there can be much solace. It has been a year of clarity for those keen to understand the reality of the "Palestinian-Israeli conflict" but were sincerely confused by the contrasting narratives.
Tuesday, December 16, 2014(2 comments)
Whitewashing CIA Torture: "We Are (not so) Awesome" after All
There can be no justification to what the US has done, not just against suspects in its global wars, but against entire nations, who were completely innocent of any involvement in any terror attacks on 11 September, prior or after that date.
Tuesday, December 9, 2014 "I Can't Breathe": Racism and War in America and Beyond
How does one quit being the color of their own skin? Black people didn't choose to be slaves; didn't devise the Jim Crow laws; didn't construct the insurmountable system of social and economic inequality and apartheid that has been set in place for too many generations to count; they didn't design the unfair tax system that keeps the poor poor forever; or the prison system that disproportionately incarcerates black men.
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 Talk of a Third Intifada: Where to from Here, Palestine?
For years, many journalists have busied themselves asking or trying to answer questions regarding the anticipated Third Intifada. Some did so in earnest, others misleadingly. But most of them, using a supercilious approach to understanding the Palestinian collective, failed to understand what an uprising is in the first place.
Wednesday, November 12, 2014 Arab media withers to mockery
When Al Jazeera was launched in 1996, and despite the fact that it was funded by a country that itself is not an icon of freedom of expression, a new type of competition rose between rival Arab countries. Other media soon sprang up that were also funded by rich Arabs and manned mostly by Arab intellectuals and journalists from poorer countries.
Thursday, November 6, 2014 Political Prophecies -- Sealing the Fate of al-Aqsa
The war on the mosque, which is central to the spirituality of hundreds of millions of Muslims around the world, is not simply the work of a few Jewish extremists. It is part and parcel of an Israeli government agenda which has been crystalizing in recent years and months. Next month, for example, the Israeli Knesset will vote on a motion calling for the partitioning of al-Aqsa.
Wednesday, October 29, 2014(1 comments)
Fighting for Survival in the Sinai: Egypt's Convenient War
The National Project for the Development of the Sinai was supposed to inject $20.5 billion into Sinai infrastructure between 1995 to 2017. That proved to be just hype; a mixture of unfinished projects and robust speeches. Sinai is only remembered in national celebrations to merely further highlight the might of the military that liberated it. And now, it's demonized as a terrorist hub for the same reason.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014(2 comments)
Britain's phantoms of the past in Palestine
Without a clear course of action to help Palestinians gain their freedom, the British vote will remain another symbolic gesture in a conflict in which military occupation, war, siege, death and destruction are very much real.
Thursday, October 16, 2014 The Missing Context: "Islamic State" Sectarianism is Not Coincidental
To destroy sectarian identities prevalent in the Middle East region today, the rules would have to be redesigned, not by Paul Bremer type figures, but through the creation of new political horizons. While the US-led coalition can indeed inflict much damage on IS and eventually claim some sort of victory, they will ultimately exasperate the sectarian tension that will spill over to other Middle Eastern nations.
Thursday, September 11, 2014 Netanyahu loses plot to new Gaza reality
For Netanyahu, protracted "peace talks" are a smokescreen for his illegal settlement construction project, which remains as ravenous as ever. He is confiscating occupied Palestinian land with impunity, while insisting that Israel's intentions have always been, and remain peaceful.
Tuesday, August 26, 2014(1 comments)
Fearing Political Islam: Why Arabs Betrayed Gaza
If the resistance wins -- as in holding the Israeli military at bay, and achieving some of its demands -- the political discourse of the Middle East is likely to change altogether, where the weak will, once again, dare challenge the strong by demanding reforms, democracy, and threatening resistance as a realistic way to achieve such objectives.
Wednesday, August 6, 2014 Gaza's resistance paradigm
As great as Gandhi was in the context of his country's struggle against colonialism, which remains a source of inspiration for many Palestinians, Palestine has its own heroes -- resisters, women and men who are engraving a legend of their own in Gaza and the rest of Palestine.
Tuesday, July 29, 2014(1 comments)
Recruiting to Kill -- It Is Not Just an Israeli War on Gaza
Western involvement in the war on the Palestinian people is indeed going beyond the usual and known support of funds, military technology and economic aid, to actual participation in the slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza. By preventing those who leave their countries to kill Palestinians in Gaza, less civilians are likely to be murdered.
Wednesday, July 23, 2014 Gaza's Resistance Will Not be Crushed
In Gaza, the past and the present are intertwined. Israel is united by the same purpose: crushing anyone who dares to resist. Palestinians in Gaza are also united with a common threat: their resistance, which, despite impossible odds seems likely to intensify.
Friday, July 11, 2014(1 comments)
Israel awakens the Palestine it tried to crush
Even if Hamas succeeded in establishing a new brand based on resistance/political model, Israel was determined to deactivate any potential for Palestinian unity. Destroying that unity became almost an obsession for Netanyahu. Because A true Palestinian unity, culminating in a massive popular Intifada is the kind of war Netanyahu cannot possibly win.
Tuesday, July 1, 2014(1 comments)
Ramadan, Socialism and the Neighbor's Beat-up Car
Ramadan always takes me back to the refugee camp in Gaza, no matter where I am in the world. And when a TV sheikh preaches about what Ramadan is or is not about, I often reflect on what Ramadan has meant to me and my peers in the refugee camp. It was not about feeling the brunt of the poor, for we all were poverty-stricken. It was about sharing the hardships of life, a communal struggle against one's own weaknesses.
Wednesday, June 18, 2014 Iraq pays price of US sectarian meddling
What the future holds is difficult to predict. The US administration is petrified by the notion of getting involved in Iraq once more. It was its original meddling, at the behest of the notorious neoconservatives who largely determined US foreign policy during George W. Bush's administration that ignited this ongoing strife in the first place.
Monday, June 16, 2014(2 comments)
Missing Settlers Become Weapons in a War on Unity
For Israel, all of this is creating the necessary distraction needed to ensure the downfall of the unity government, and the postponement of any discussion pertaining to the return to peace talks. For Netanyahu, it is a win-win situation. It is not easy to imagine the attainment of real unity. Meanwhile, Netanyahu will continue to push with all of his might to guarantee Palestinian failure.
Saturday, May 17, 2014 A tale of many Yemens
The US "war on terror" had in fact reached Yemen even before the war in Iraq was unleashed a few years later. Thousands of people were killed, tens of thousands were displaced. The people of the poor, divided, corruption-laden country were punished so severely for crimes they didn't commit.
Sunday, May 4, 2014(2 comments)
Palestinian Unity: Hope and Gloom in the Beach Refugee Camp
The Americans are in agreement with Israel, as has always been the case.
Scenes in Gaza tell of much hope and rejoicing, but it is a repeated scene of past agreements that have failed. Sometimes despair and hope go hand in hand. The impoverished place has served as a battlefield for several wars and a continued siege. It is aching for a glimmer of hope.
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 US hands Palestine a loaded deck
Netanyahu never ceases to talk about peace, as does his Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman. Even Minister of Economy Naftali Bennett is an ardent advocate of peace. But it is not peace that is predicated on justice or that envisaged by international and humanitarian laws. It is specifically tailored peace that would allow Israel to maintain an unmistakably racist agenda and a colonial policy of land grabbing.
Friday, April 18, 2014 The "Stable" West Bank Dilemma -- Why Israeli Officials are Chuckling
Palestinians should be leading their own revolution until they achieve their full rights and freedom. This is not a call for violence, but a natural human course. And as long as the West Bank is "stable," Palestinians will never achieve their freedom, for submission achieves no rights; only resistance does.
Thursday, April 3, 2014(2 comments)
Kerry's Looming Deadline and the Peace Process Industry
As the US-imposed April 29 deadline for a "framework" agreement between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority looms, time is also running out for the American administration itself. The Obama administration must now conjure up an escape route to avoid a political crisis if the talks are to fail, as they surely will.
Wednesday, February 26, 2014(1 comments)
Omar and the Checkpoint: Everyday a Nightmare
Jewish settlers are rarely aware of how their presence in occupied land constitutes a violation of international law and the Fourth Geneva Convention. They live in government subsidized housing, connected through a very costly road system--preserved for "Jews only" back to Israel--enjoy numerous perks, ones that even those living in Israel cannot access.