Jul 4, 2011

U.S. policy sidelines Gaza

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has made a series of stern and fiery statements recently, giving the impression that war is somehow upon us once again. Oddly, Clinton’s sudden reappearance into the Middle East diplomacy scene was triggered by the brave attempts of ...

Jun 16, 2011

Gaza border opening little more than rhetoric

CAIRO — For most Palestinians, leaving Gaza through Egypt is as exasperating a process as entering it. Governed by political and cultural sensitivities, most Palestinian officials and public figures refrain from criticizing the way Palestinians are treated at the Rafah border. There is really ...

Jun 6, 2011

A Gaza refugee camp revisited

“Do you remember Mahmoud?” asked Abu Nidal, my neighbor from nearly 20 years ago, when I lived in Gaza. “Yes, of course, I do.” I remembered him as yet another troublemaking child among the Nuseirat Refugee Camp’s numerous rabble-rousers. He was defined by a ...

Mar 27, 2011

Hamas must sell a new vision

SEATTLE — “Now it is time to naturalize the flow of history,” wrote Ahmet Davutoglu, Turkey’s minister of foreign affairs in the March 16 edition of The Guardian. The process of naturalization is now under way in the region that Davutoglu refused to describe ...

Mar 14, 2011

Neocon 'shock and awe': the rise of redefined Arabs

SEATTLE — A pervading sense of awe seems to be engulfing Arab societies. What is under way in the Arab world is greater than simply revolution in a political or economic sense. It is, in fact, shifting the very self-definition of what it means ...

Jan 29, 2011

The task awaiting Tunisia

SEATTLE — Hunger strikes. These were the last resort for Tunisian activists as they fought against a brutal and highly oppressive regime. Prior to the ousting of Zineal-Abidine Ben Ali by an unprecedented people’s uprising on Jan. 14, there seemed to be no end ...

Jan 23, 2011

Beyond the protests in another 'Arab regime'

SEATTLE — When faced with problems, most authoritarian regimes maintain a policy of rigidity when the appropriate response should be flexibility, political wisdom and concessions. In this way, authoritarian leaders can control their populations to serve the interests of a few individuals and political ...

Jan 16, 2011

Political biases trash lauded Ph.D. research

SEATTLE — Deepak Tripathi’s most recent book, “Breeding Ground: Afghanistan and the Origins of Islamist Terrorism” (Potomac Books) raises several issues, both within and outside of its content. It is based on research for a doctoral dissertation that did not qualify. Tripathi, a former ...

Jan 9, 2011

Palestinians revisit their hopes and failures

SEATTLE — When the late Palestinian President Yasser Arafat read the Declaration of the Palestinian Independence just over 22 years ago, Palestinians everywhere were enthralled. They hung on his every word during the Palestinian National Council session in Algeria on Nov. 15, 1988. The ...

Dec 5, 2010

How low will Obama go to appease Israel?

SEATTLE — The Middle East policies of U.S. President Barack Obama may well prove the most detrimental yet, surpassing even the rightwing policies of President George W. Bush. Even those who warned against the overt optimism that accompanied Obama’s arrival in the White House ...