Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Articles from Vol. 25, No. 5, July

58 Years of Nakba: Keeping a Foothold on the Land
Another year has passed, and the Fahmawi family is still waiting to return home. And despite the 58 years gone by, they are still not very far away.For their part, Israelis were out in force for Independence Day, filling picnic sites and forest glades...
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A Conservative Estimate of Total Direct U.S. Aid to Israel: $108 Billion
Because of the uncertainties and ambiguities associated with U.S. aid to Israel, arriving at a precise figure for total direct U.S. aid to Israel probably is not possible. Parts of it are buried in the budgets of other government agencies-mostly the...
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A Letter to AIPAC
The letter below was sent by Rep. Betty McCollum, a Democrat from Minnesota, to the executive director of AIPAC. The bill mentioned, H.R. 4681, the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006, would place so many restraints on aid to the Palestinian people,...
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Al Jazeera International's Asian Coverage to Be Based in Kuala Lumpur
Al Jazeera, the Arabic-language, Qatar-based television news station, has launched an English-language counterpart, known as Al Jazeera International (AJI). While the new station is intended to offer alternative perspectives to those of the existing...
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Annexation Wall Ensures Bleak Future for Aboud's Christian and Muslim Residents
The new Israeli government of Ehud Olmert is the beneficiary of the many helpful distractions deflecting world attention from its occupation of Palestine. International diplomacy focuses on Hamas' alleged "intransigence" and "rejectionism," and the subsequent...
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Arab-American Activism
AAI Presents Annual Gibran AwardsThe Arab American Institute Foundation held its 8th annual Kahlil Gibran Spirit of Humanity Awards dinner on May 3 at the J.W. Marriott Hotel in Washington, DC. The gala, attended by more than 800 diplomats, dignitaries...
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As Iraq Moves toward Theocracy, U.S. Squelches Democracy in Palestine
Once we had one Saddam and we knew who to be afraid of. Now we have at least 25 to fear.-Iraqi playwright complaining of intimidation by religious factions, quoted in San Francisco Chronicle, April 30, 2006.It is like a war, but even worse, because people...
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Cairo's Response to Dahab Attacks Raises Fears That Reform Efforts May Suffer
April 24's triple suicide attack in the Sinai resort town of Dahab highlighted the multifaceted struggle facing Egyptians.The explosions came at 7:15 p.m. local time, while tourists were heading to restaurants for their evening meal, making it a busy...
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Coffins on Our Shoulders: The Experience of the Palestinian Citizens of Israel
Coffins on Our Shoulders: The Experience of the Palestinian Citizens of Israel By Dan Rabinowitz and Khawla Abu-Baker, University of California Press, 2005, 221 pp. List: $19.95; AET: $15.Although there is an abundance of books about the political plight...
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Dalai Lama Defends Islam at San Francisco Summit to Counter Religious Intolerance
Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, defended Islam and the often-maligned religion's traditions in a San Francisco interfaith conference April 15. Sponsored by the Zaytuna Institute and the Islamic Society of California, among other groups, the "Gathering...
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Deir Yassin Day 2006: With but a Wave of His Hand.How Palestine Became Israel
Deir Yassin Day 2006: With But a Wave of His Hand...How Palestine Became Israel"How Palestine Became Israel," part of the Deir Yassin Day (DYD) 2006 commemorations, was performed at the Bloomsbury Theater in London's West End on April 9 and 10, and directed...
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Dr. Salah Al Bardawil: Hamas' Voice to Europe
One of the first things 47-year-old Dr. Salah Al Bardawil, professor of Arabic language and literature and newly elected Hamas member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, is eager to show a new acquaintance are documents from the British Ministry...
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European Papers Welcome Zacharias Moussaoui Verdict
The decision by an Alexandria, Virginia court on May 4 not to execute al-Qaeda plotter Zacharias Moussaoui for his role in the 9/11 attacks was widely welcomed by the European press."Moussaoui is a horrible piece of work," wrote Sam Leith in Britain's...
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Human Rights
Qana: The Struggle for Justice 10 Years LaterAt an April 25 press briefing on "Commemorating Qana and Still Seeking Justice 10 years later," Judith Brown Chomsky, a cooperating attorney with the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), discussed the class...
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Indictments, Israel Lobby Critique Place Much-Needed Spotlight on AIPAC
The role of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and other components of the pro-Israel lobby in shaping U.S. Middle East policy is being debated as never before, focusing a muchneeded spotlight on the often taboo topic.The two developments...
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In Memoriam: Damu Smith (1951-2006)
I remember Damu coming into the Washington Report office several years ago, when he was in the process of co-founding Black Voices for Peace (BVFP) in response to U.S. military reaction to 9/11, to pick up background reading for further research on the...
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Israeli Checkpoints Shame Oppressed and Oppressor Alike
The late, great Israel Shahak, who translated Israel's Hebrew-language press and wrote unflinching books and articles exposing Israeli racism, would be shocked by the behavior of Israeli soldiers at 605 checkpoints in the West Bank today. In a 1983 article,...
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Legal Status of Aid Organizations in Palestine a Victim of the "Hamas Effect"
His white beard closely cut, and sporting a black shirt and grey blazer, Omar Abdul Razeq walks with his hands in his pockets. Four loyal security guards surround him as he pushes his way to a tan Citroen. He has just been released from an Israeli prison...
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Letters to the Editor
A Courageous DecisionThank you very much for your courage to reproduce "The Israel Lobby." I am one of the lucky Americans who have a subscription to The London Review of Books, so I received the article when it first came out. Of course I was delighted...
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Lilly Rivlin's Documentary "Can You Hear Me?" Focuses on Women as Peacemakers
Lilly Rivlin's Documentary "Can You Hear Me?" Focuses on Women as PeacemakersAt an Israeli checkpoint on the West Bank, Yehudit Oppenheimer of Machson Watch (the group that mediates with Israeli soldiers to mitigate the abuses of Palestinians at checkpoints)...
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Mix Travel and Activism in Summertime Travel to Palestine
In addition to being fun and educational, travel can positively influence international affairs both at home and abroad. Many peace and justice activist organizations offer summer programs in Palestine. These opportunities enable participants to meet...
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Muslim-American Activism
Muslims Stand For JusticeThis year the Muslim American Society's "Standing for Justice Banquet" was held May 6 at the Sheraton Premiere at Tysons Corner, VA. The banquet honored the memory of Shareefa Alkhateeb, who spent her life "Standing for Justice"...
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New York Times Editor Abe Rosenthal Had A "Passionate Attachment" to Israel
In his farewell address to his countrymen, George Washington cautioned against passionate attachments to foreign countries. If ever such a warning applied, it was to A.M. Rosenthal, the long-time chief editor of The New York Times, who died May 10 at...
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Obituaries: Thomas James Abercrombie
Thomas James Abercrombie, 75, died April 3 at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore from complications of open-heart surgery. Born in Stillwater, MN, he graduated from Macalester College, where he developed a passion for photography. He was a photographer...
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On President Chirac's Proposal and Palestinian Expectations of Europe
On the agenda of the Middle East Quartet's May 9 meeting at U.N. headquarters in New York was the suggestion by Jacques Chirac to channel aid to Palestinians via an international mechanism such as the World Bank.While the Quartet rejected his proposal...
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Other People's Mail
Some letters by or to other people are as informative for our readers as anything we might write ourselves.In the Nation's InterestTo The Washington Post, April 15, 2006John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt ["Academic Paper Stirs Debate; Report on Effect...
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"Paradise Now" Captures MPAC's 2006 Media Award
For months, the Muslim Public Affairs Council Foundation advertised that Hany Abu-Assad, director of "Paradise Now," winner of the 2005 Golden Globe award for best film, would be on hand April 29 to receive the 15th annual MPAC Media Award. Then, two...
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Pressure Mounts on Pakistan's Musharraf to Hold Fair Elections on Schedule
In its May/June 2006 issue, the American journal Foreign Policy presented its second annual "Failed States Index," compiled in conjunction with the Fund for Peace. This year's FSI ranks 146 states "in order of their vulnerability to violent internal...
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Publishers' Page
AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL TRUSTHow Low Can We Go?The U.S. image in the Middle East took a nosedive on May 23, when the U.S. House of Representatives put the demands of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) ahead of the wishes of its president...
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Sami Al-Arian's Plea "Bargain"
The Sentencing of Dr. Sami Al-ArianBy Melva UnderbakkeSince Sept. 11, 2001, the United States has been waging a war-a war against some of its own people. This war receives less attention than the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, but it is no less real....
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Sara Roy Discusses "The Crisis Within: The Struggle for Palestinian Society"
At an April 11 lecture sponsored by the Transregional Institute of Princeton University, Sara Roy spoke about "The Crisis Within: The Struggle for Palestinian Society." According to Dr. Roy, a senior research scholar at Harvard University's Center for...
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Should Iraq Be Partitioned?
History vs. Statusquocracy: A Negotiated Partition in Iraq?By Russell Warren HoweBush administration spokesmen continually stress the need to preserve the unity of Iraq. Why? The country is geographically and ethno-religiously divided into three: Sunni...
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"Then It Was Hell.": Israel's Bombardment of Settler-Less Gaza
Love conquers all, the classical poet assures us, but if that were true, Mohammed Ghabeen, his pregnant wife Safiah, and their eight children would still be living in their modest cinderblock work-in-progress of a house in the agricultural outskirts...
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Troubles for the Israel Lobby
In 2005, the online magazine FrontPageMag.com, house organ of David Horowitz's Center for the Study of Popular Culture, ran an article containing unsettling news for the Israel lobby. Entitled "How the Next Generation Views Israel," it reported on the...
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Turkish-Kurdish Clashes Continue, in an Increasingly Uncertain Regional Context
Turkey's southern border has frequently been cited as a key reason why there should be definite limits to European Union expansion. Ranged along the sometimes mountainous, sometimes pancake-flat plains of the southeast lie first Syria, then Iraq, then...
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Upcoming Events
The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) will hold its annual convention from June 15 to 18 at the Wardman Park Marriott Hotel, Washington, DC. For more information, visit the ADC Web site, <www.adc.org/conv06>, or call (202) 244-2990.The...
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U.S. War Resister Cases Work Their Way through Canadian Courts
"Our children did not enlist to commit war crimes and crimes against humanity," said Cindy Sheehan, the prominent American anti-war activist who toured Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa during the first week of May. Sheehan, who lost her own son, Specialist...
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Waging Peace
Al Raja Troupe to Tour U.S.During the months of June and July, Al Raja Folkloric Dance Troupe from Palestine will tour the United States, coast to coast. The dance group comprises Palestinian Christian and Muslim students from the Lutheran School of...
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What's Meant by "Reform" of the U.N. Depends on Who's Calling for It
"Reform" is a word that congressmen frequently bandy about when it comes to the United Nations, and usually it has the same significance as Humpty Dumpty gave the words he chose to use. It means whatever they choose it to mean, neither more nor less.In...
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