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Eric writes for Al-Ahram Weekly and PressTV. He specializes in Russian and Eurasian affairs. His "Postmodern Imperialism: Geopolitics and the Great Games", "From Postmodernism to Postsecularism: Re-emerging Islamic Civilization" and "Canada Israel Nexus" are available at www.claritypress.com/
SHARE Friday, April 3, 2020 Love in time of covid-19
I'm struck by the fact that all our pandemics, in fact all pandemics are courtesy of 'civilization'. Time for a rethink.
Covid-19 inadvertently shows us the way
SHARE Monday, March 9, 2020 Leaving the EU was the right move for the wrong reasons
Let's be clear: the EU was not set up to promote a friendly big socialist community, a Soviet-lite. The European Coal and Steel Community was set up in 1950 with the intent of promoting European integration, approved by Truman as a Cold War anti-domino measure.
SHARE Friday, March 6, 2020 Review: Diana Johnstone, Circle in the Darkness: Memoir of a World Watcher (2020)
Circle in the Darkness is one of the great personal accounts of the anguished decline of our uncivilization, both a riveting eye-witness account of many of the horrors and perfidies, and a primer for students of history and all those struggling to not only dismantle the beast, but to prepare us for what follows it.
Read it and weep. And smile at the follies. And shout 'Yes!' as light bulbs flash in your mind.
SHARE Friday, January 31, 2020 Israel-Palestine: It's time for Russia to step up to the plate
Russia is playing a mediating, balancing role, as opposed to the US, Israel and Turkey, all pursuing their own warlike agendas. It looks now as if the Assad regime will survive and Syria will be able to rebuild (China is ready and willing), despite Turkey, Israel and the US. The next step is bringing some semblance of peace to Palestine. Why not a Putin- Netanyahu- Abbas 'deal of the century'?
SHARE Friday, January 17, 2020 Review: Tim Anderson, Axis of Resistance: Towards an Independent Middle East
Anderson's Axis of Resistance takes on the leftist position of 'a plague on all your houses'. Yassin Al-Haj Saleh, 'the intellectual voice of the Syrian revolution' (for westerners), presents a bleak portrait of "three monsters treading on Syria's corpse": (1) the Assad regime and its allies, (2) DAESH/ISIS and the other jihadists, and (3) the West. This is the general view from outside the Syrian cauldron, but leads nowhere.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, January 1, 2020 New Years 2020 fireworks: Iraq US embassy occupation
The US blames the Iraq police and army for not preventing the demonstrators from entering the Green Zone, as if it is US territory. The image of survivors of the bombings bearing coffins of some of the 25 martyrs with them shows a different story. US actions only unite the Iraqis in opposition to them.
(2 comments) SHARE Saturday, December 7, 2019 Timeline 2010-2019: Middle East
2010 *Hamas, elected the governing authority of the Gaza Strip in 2007, remains in power, the Palestinian Authority refusing to hold (and lose) elections. Gaza now an open-air prison, cut off with only Israel allowing legal contact with the outside world. Gazans produce arms from smuggled supplies and build homemade rockets.
*BDS campaign targeting Israel picks up steam as Israel panics...
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, November 28, 2019 Tab Hunter: American culture's hat trick
Tab survived the poison of Hollywood long enough to leave his mark and then have a real life afterwards, despite his 'secret'. And that's the way he wanted it.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, October 10, 2019 Review: Tamim Ansari, Destiny Disrupted: A History of the World Through Islamic Eyes (2009)
Those of us lucky/unlucky enough to live in the West see the rest of the world revolving around us, like Europe's 17th-century sun, which, of course, orbited around the earth.
Galileo tried a counterfactual: what if I were standing on that blazing sun? Well, the rest-is-history. Maybe we aren't the centre of the world. What if I were born and learned history as a Muslim?
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, September 16, 2019 Grossman's A Socialist Defector: Back in the GDR - you don't know how lucky you are
Grossman swam the Danube one night and after wandering for hours, finally found an Austrian guard and asked to see the Soviet commandant. He joked with the Russian guard about Pushkin and Doestoevsky, the only Russian words he knew. He was accepted and sent to Bautzen, a hill-top town in eastern Saxony on the river Spree, complete with castle and magnificent Lutheran-Catholic cathedral.
SHARE Tuesday, September 10, 2019 Lake Ontario by bike: Waterfront Trail
Okay, a bit of Lake Ontario -- the fabulous Waterfront Trail from Oshawa to Toronto, 60km, almost all in sight of the lake. The panorama, the air. Such a relief from Toronto. And no 'ribbons of death' to contend with. The deadly 401 a safe distance, buried behind lots of trees.
SHARE Sunday, September 1, 2019 Whittaker Chambers or Alger Hiss: Who's the real traitor?
Though #1 on the New York Times' bestseller list for 13 weeks in 1952, despite being hailed as "one of the dozen or so indispensable books of the century" (George Will), Witness quickly disappeared from our collective consciousness. We remember its most famous victim, Alger Hiss, as a nice guy who was mercilessly hounded, the prelude to the McCarthy purges of the 1950s, a gruesome stain on US history.
(7 comments) SHARE Wednesday, August 28, 2019 Putin and Russia, the world's 'heartland'
Today's standoff between the Russian bear and the American eagle is yet another epic struggle in Russia's history, at the heart of Eurasia--the world's "heartland". It had a narrow brush with complete collapse in 1985--98 under Gorbachev/ Yeltsin, a weak, indecisive leadership, a metaphorical reenactment of Boris Godunov seizing the throne in the 16th century. 1985--98 was a repetition of the legendary Time of Troubles
SHARE Monday, August 19, 2019 Orwell: Neocon icon
How do you explain the fact that the John Birch Society used 1984 as its main office telephone number in the 1960s? Or that both 'Animal Farm' and '1984' are force-fed to virtually the entire western world in people's formative years, even as Big Brother jacks up repression and surveillance, and pursues ever more cruel and senseless wars?
A look at Orwell's weaknesses reveals how Big Brother got the last laugh.
SHARE Thursday, August 1, 2019 Animal Farm, 1984, Darkness at Noon: Death Knells of Communism?
Orwell and Koestler's classics, Animal Farm (1945) and 1984 (1949) vs Darkness at Noon (1940), all of them written in the heat of WWII, couldn't be more different. Orwell's colourful, if gloomy, social parables, were both successfully adapted more than once for the screen. Darkness at Noon never attracted any film offers. However, it is the first notable work equating Hitler and Stalin as totalitarian dictators