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» Palestine Speaks: Al Jazeera English online Launches ‘Palestine in Motion’

Palestine Speaks: Al Jazeera English online Launches ‘Palestine in Motion’

AL Jazeera English online has launched ‘Palestine in Motion‘, a storytelling technique, centered on the story of Palestinian people.

‘Palestine in Motion’ allows the user to explore the personal narratives of Palestinians, which are linked through various themes and keywords in a new and unique way. It retells the story of Palestine by linking the past and the present, and reorienting the entire Palestinian discourse through conveying seemingly ‘ordinary stories of ordinary people’.

“The 19 stories featured in the project tell the Palestinian story through personal experiences of people who lived certain periods of Palestine’s history. In addition, it tells the story of what it’s like being Palestinian today,” said Imad Musa, manager of Al Jazeera English Online.

“The outcome is a series of long narratives and short essays written by Palestinians of different generations, reflecting on their past, present reality, aspirations and identity. It is an apolitical reading of a complex political reality,” he added.

“Nearly 70 years after the Nakba and 50 years after the Israeli occupation of what remained of historic Palestine, the media coverage of Palestine has grown redundant and often lacking in context,” said Ramzy Baroud, the acclaimed and award-winning journalist and writer who is the manager of the project.

“‘Palestine in Motion’ challenges the old paradigm, which sees the past and the present as disconnected parts, often relayed by politicians, academicians and reporters,” Baroud added.

Supplementing that narrative are a series of explainers, maps, videos and links that provide context that goes beyond the story itself.

Additionally, questions and answers, embedded in the form of chatbots, will help the user further explore the topic by posing questions about Palestine that range in terms of their nature and complexity.

The project aims to provide a new reading and understanding to the story of Palestine, thus liberating the Palestine discourse from its current political and media narratives.

(Al Jazeera)


» Gulf News Special: Baroud on How the 1967 War Changed Arab Discourse on Palestine

Gulf News Special: Baroud on How the 1967 War Changed Arab Discourse on Palestine

The 1967 war imposed a new reality, not only on the ground, but on the political and intellectual discourses pertaining to Palestine, Israel and the Arabs.

In fact, there was a particular point in history which one can define as the very juncture that ushered in that very change: The 1967 Arab League Summit in Khartoum. Then, the Arabs were forced to articulate a new language.

A few months before the summit, Arabs seemed sure of military victory against Israel. Fiery speeches by Arab leaders had assured the masses that the war would lead to the vanquishing of Israel, ending its aggression and taking Palestinians back to their towns and villages, from which they were uprooted in 1948.

But things did not go as planned, thanks to Arab unpreparedness and the full scale American-European military and intelligence support of Israel.

Within days, Israel had occupied more than three times more territory than it did in 1948.
So much had abruptly changed during those short, but painful days of war; old legends died and new myths were born.

–


» Gulf News Special: Baroud on How the 1967 War Unfolded

Gulf News Special: Baroud on How the 1967 War Unfolded

In the early months of 1967, Soviet intelligence confirmed Syria’s and Egypt’s own estimation that Israel was preparing for a major attack on Syria.

Under immense pressure, Egyptian President, Gamal Abdul Nasser, understood that his great oratory skills must translate into action, strong enough to send a message to Israel that the Arabs were prepared for war, too.

He ordered the United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF) to withdraw some of its units between Sinai and Israel (but not units stationed in Sharm Al Shaikh). The international force insisted that a withdrawal would have to include all of its forces stationed in Sinai. Nasser obliged. Egyptian forces quickly deployed in its place.

On May 25, Nasser declared his country’s intent to block the Strait of Tiran, leading to the Gulf of Aqaba. War was all but a matter of time.

– Read more .. 



» Al Jazeera Center for Studies: Baroud on Trump’s ‘No Roosevelt Moment’

Al Jazeera Center for Studies: Baroud on Trump’s ‘No Roosevelt Moment’


For nearly 25 years, several US presidents tried to redefine American relations with the Middle East, but they rarely managed to stave off the palpable decline of the US role in shaping that strategic region. Now, Donald Trump believes he has a chance. History, however, teaches us that he is wrong.


When it comes to the Middle East, every American president vied to have their Roosevelt moment, which had defined the US legacy in the region for over seven decades.

George Bush sought to revitalize his country’s dominance through a massive war coalition against Iraq in 1990-91; his son, W. Bush fought, after much urging by the neoconservatives to stave off dwindling US influence; Barack Obama had his moment in June 2009, when he offered reconciliatory language during his speech at Cairo University; and now, President Donald Trump is coveting his own movement in his first visit to the Middle East.

But history is rarely shaped by wishful thinking. The Roosevelt moment cannot be repeated.

The Roosevelt Moment

It is widely believed that an historic meeting between US President Franklin D. Roosevelt and founder of modern Saudi Arabia, King Abdulaziz Ibn Saud aboard the U.S.S Quincy in the Suez Canal in 1945(1) has determined the terms of US influence, if not hegemony in the Middle East.

Then, Saudi Arabia was emerging as an economic power hub in the region, while the United States was emerging as the future global power as it was set to inherit the remnants of the British Empire worldwide.

Roosevelt had two major agendas: one was the establishing of a Jewish State in Palestine and the second was controlling Middle East oil.

Ibn Saud wanted to secure his reign in Saudi Arabia and to assure his country’s regional influence. While he would not concede on Palestine, he agreed to a deal that remained in affect till this day: US military support for Saudi oil.

Roosevelt spoke from a power position, and reached a deal that would implant US interests as a staple of Middle East reality. One of the factors that gave the US President that much leverage was his previous stop in Yalta, Crimea where he had just met with Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin.(2)

The outcome of their meeting was no less significant than the Sykes-Picot Agreement signed between Britain and France, with the consent of Russia in 1916. The agreement divided the territories of the crumbling Ottoman Empire between the two main European powers. That agreement had shaped the very geography and borders of the Middle East to this day.(3)

The meeting of Yalta in February 1945 too produced a new reality. It demanded an unconditional German surrender, which was obtained in May of the same year. The meeting also set in motion plans that would shape the post-war world and rearrange global order.

The Roosevelt-Ibn Saud agreement atop U.S.S. Quincy was a major component in those plans. It designated the US as the caretaker of the Middle East, it relegated the rule of Britain, it elevated Saudi Arabia and made the oil a strategic weapon of immense geopolitical value.

The American Middle East

But Things didn’t necessarily go as planned ..

– Read more.


» NENA: Baroud: Addio Roosevelt: Trump dai sauditi e la fine della ‘amara’ era americana

NENA: Baroud: Addio Roosevelt: Trump dai sauditi e la fine della ‘amara’ era americana

di Ramzy Baroud

Ramallah, 25 maggio 2017, Nena News


Per quanto riguarda il Medio Oriente, tutti i Presidenti americani hanno sognato di agire nel segno di Roosevelt, che fu in grado di stabilire un ruolo preciso degli Stati Uniti nella regione per 70 anni.

George Bush ha tentato di rinsaldare il dominio del suo Paese con un’imponente coalizione multinazionale contro l’Iraq, tra il ’90 e il ’91; suo figlio, W. Bush, ha ricevuto enormi pressioni dai neo-con, che volevano evitare una diminuzione della sfera di influenza statunitense; Barack Obama ha avuto la sua occasione nel 2009, quando ha teso la mano con toni concilianti in occasione del suo discorso all’Università del Cairo; e ora, il Presidente Donald Trump vuole stabilire la sua narrazione durante la prima visita in Medio Oriente. Ma la storia non si scrive con le speranze dei singoli: e l’opportunità di Roosevelt non si ripresenterà.

Il momento di Roosevelt

È opinione comune che lo storico incontro tra il Presidente Franklin D. Roosevelt e il fondatore della moderna Arabia Saudita, Re Abdulaziz Ibn Saud, avvenuto a bordo della U.S.S Quincy nel Canale di Suez nel 1945,(1) abbia determinato l’influenza, se non addirittura l’egemonia, degli Stati Uniti sul Medio Oriente.

All’epoca, l’Arabia Saudita era una potenza economica emergente nella regione, mentre gli Stati Uniti si profilavano come la futura super-potenza globale, raccogliendo ciò che restava dell’Impero Britannico.

Roosevelt aveva due obiettivi primari: la costituzione di uno Stato Ebraico in Palestina e il controllo del petrolio mediorientale.

Ibn Saud, dal canto suo, voleva stabilizzare il potere sul piano interno e garantire al suo Paese una certa influenza nella regione. Non cedette sulla Palestina, ma stipulò un accordo che può dirsi valido ancora oggi: avrebbe ricevuto sostegno militare degli Stati Uniti in cambio del petrolio saudita.

Roosevelt agiva da una posizione di potere; con la sigla dell’accordo, gli interessi Statunitensi diventavano centrali nella realtà mediorientale. Uno dei fattori di forza per il Presidente degli Stati Uniti era il ruolo assunto a Yalta, nella conferenza con Winston Churchill e Joseph Stalin.

– Per leggere tutto l’articolo.


» Radio: Baroud on Palestinian Resistance to 70 Years of Israeli Occupation

Radio: Baroud on Palestinian Resistance to 70 Years of Israeli Occupation

Ramzy Baroud joined the Scott Horton show earlier this month. Listen to his conversation on Palestinian resistance, the one state and the current situation in Palestine.

“Ramzy Baroud, a journalist, author, and editor of Palestine Chronicle, discusses why Palestinians in Israeli jails are on a hunger strike; Israel’s Orwellian attempt to rewrite history by prohibiting the 1948 Nakba’s commemoration and attempting to change the occupied West Bank to its biblical name; and how Jewish and non-Jewish critics alike are challenging Israel’s founding myths.”

– Listen here


» Gulf News: Baroud on Israel’s ‘Culture of Fear’

Gulf News: Baroud on Israel’s ‘Culture of Fear’

Recently, a new bill was hurriedly passed in the Israeli Knesset. The Basic Law: Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People is the latest concoction of Israel’s right-wing Zionist Jewish parties that have dominated Israeli politics for years. With the Israeli ‘Left’ rendered irrelevant, or having itself moved to the Right, the right-wing elements of Israel now reign supreme.

However, since Israel has defined itself by its Jewish identity since its very inception, why is there a need then for a new ‘basic law’?

In fact, how can one, explain the torrent of new bills and newly-passed laws that essentially reiterate Jewish supremacy and dominance and restrict the rights, movement and free speech of Arabs and anti-occupation Jews?

Producing laws through nominally democratic institutions to ensure Jewish majority and the suppression of Arabs and political dissent in general, is nothing new in Israel. However, the constant emphasis on the Jewishness of Israel and the masking of the Palestinian identity are hardly practical tools to guarantee one’s racial and ethnic supremacy.

Such power is already secured through military occupation and a carefully-moulded political system that treats Israeli Jews as first-class citizens and Arabs as an inferior minority.

Indeed, there is another dimension to this story.

– Read more.


» Ramzy Baroud: Nakba Forever Internalized among Exiled Palestinians

Ramzy Baroud: Nakba Forever Internalized among Exiled Palestinians

By Ramzy Baroud – Al Jazeera

At 76, Tamam lives in the same refugee camp to which her family fled after their exile from Palestine during the Nakba in 1948. At least 750,000 Palestinians were ethnically cleansed between 1947 and 1948, as more than 500 Palestinian villages and towns were demolished to make room for Jewish settlers.

Tamam still talks about what befell her family, reliving the dramatic and bloody events.

Only a few years of her life were peaceful. Despite her failing memory, every recollection she manages to conjure up from her childhood – before the establishment of Israel upon the ruins of villages such as her own – is repeated with joy.

She can still taste her first chocolate bar, one that her brother, Salim, had tried to confiscate, foiled only by the timely intervention of her older brother, Ismail.

Salim disappeared during the joint French-British-Israeli war on Egypt in 1956, the aim of which was to reclaim the nationalised Suez Canal, to tame Egyptian President Gamal Abdul Nasser, and to occupy parts of the Sinai desert.

During that time, Israel briefly occupied the Gaza Strip. Salim ran away with a group of teenagers, hoping to cross the Gaza border through southern Israel into the Naqab desert and eventually go into Jordan. Their calculation tragically misfired, and they all disappeared.

Tamam and Ismail spent years looking for Salim, to no avail. An elderly woman who claimed to communicate with the spirit world finally told Tamam that her brother was trapped in an earthy prison, deep underground; they assumed he was dead and buried.

Tamam’s grief never dissipated over the loss of Salim. Still, she noted: “God was generous, as He always is with poor people.” He blessed her with three boys and three girls ..

– Read more: Nakba Forever Internalized among Exiled Palestinians – Ramzy Baroud, Al Jazeera


» Árabes y judíos deben desafiar juntos al pasado oficial de Israel

Árabes y judíos deben desafiar juntos al pasado oficial de Israel

Ramzy Baroud 

Israel ha recurrido principalmente a tres estrategias para reprimir las demandas de Palestina de justicia y derechos humanos, incluido el derecho al retorno de los refugiados. Una de ellas es reescribir la historia; otra intentar distraer la atención de las realidades presentes; y la tercera intenta reclamar la historia palestina como una versión israelí.

Esta reescritura de la historia sucedió mucho antes de lo que supondrían muchos historiadores. La máquina israelí de hasbara (propaganda) entró en acción casi a la vez que el Plan Dalet (Plan D), que presenció la conquista militar de Palestina y la limpieza étnica de sus habitantes.

Sin embargo, el discurso actual oficial sobre la “Nabka” – la “Catástrofe” – que vivió el pueblo palestino en 1947-48 se constituyó en los 50 y 60. En un artículo de 2013 titulado “Pensamiento catastrófico: ¿intentó Ben-Gurion reescribir la historia?” Shay Hazkani reveló el fascinante proceso de cómo el primer ministro israelí, David Ben-Gurion, trabajó junto a un grupo de eruditos judíos israelíes para desarrollar una versión de los hechos de lo ocurrido en 1947-48 con la fundación de Israel y la destrucción de Palestina.

Ben-Gurion quería propagar una versión de la historia coherente con la posición política de Israel. Necesitaba “pruebas” que apoyaran esa posición. Con el tiempo, las “pruebas” se convirtieron en “historia”, y no se permitía que ninguna otra versión desafiara al punto de vista de Israel sobre la Nakba. “Probablemente, Ben-Gurion nunca había escuchado la palabra ‘Nabka’; pero a principios de los años 50, el primer ministro israelí comprendió la importancia de la narrativa histórica”, escribió Hazkani. El líder israelí asignó a varios eruditos del servicio civil la tarea de crear una historia alternativa que sigue impregnada en el pensamiento israelí hasta el día de hoy.

La distracción respecto a la historia – o la realidad actual de la terrible ocupación de Palestina –  lleva produciéndose casi 70 años. Desde el temprano mito de que Palestina era “una tierra sin un pueblo para un pueblo sin tierra” hasta la afirmación de hoy en día de que Israel es un icono para la civilización, la tecnología y democracia; las distorsiones oficiales de Israel han sido implacables.

Así que, mientras los palestinos se preparan para conmemorar la guerra del 5 de junio de 1967, que desembocó en la ocupación militar de 50 años (aún vigente); Israel prepara una inmensa “celebración” de su ocupación militar sobre los palestinos y sus tierras. Por supuesto, no todos los israelíes pasan por alto lo absurdo de esto.

“Un Estado que celebra 50 años de ocupación es un Estado que ha perdido la dirección, su habilidad de distinguir entre el bien y el mal”, escribía el comentarista israelí Gideon Levy en Haaretz. “¿Qué celebráis exactamente, israelíes? ¿Cincuenta años de derramamiento de sangre, abusos, deshonra y sadismo? Sólo las sociedades sin conciencia celebran esta clase de aniversario”. Levy sostiene que puede que Israel ganara la guerra de 1967, pero “ha perdido casi todo lo demás”.

– Árabes y judíos deben desafiar juntos al pasado oficial de Israel – Ramzy Baroud, Monitor de Oriente. 


» Cuando el Daesh sea por fin derrotado: ¿quién llenará el vacío intelectual en el mundo árabe?

Cuando el Daesh sea por fin derrotado: ¿quién llenará el vacío intelectual en el mundo árabe?

Ramzy Baroud

La región de Michel Aflaq, George Habash, Rashid Al-Ghannouchi, Edward Said y muchos otros ha marginado a sus intelectuales.

Los visionarios árabes han sido cooptados por los exuberantes fondos asignados a la propaganda sectaria, silenciados por temor al castigo, o simplemente son incapaces de articular una visión colectiva que trascienda sus sectas, religiones o cualquier sector político al que pertenezcan.

Este vacío creado por la ausencia de intelectuales árabes (reducidos a cabezas parlantes con pocas ideas originales y comprometidos en ‘debates’ inútiles de televisión) se ha llenado con voces extremistas que abogan sin descanso por un futuro genocida para todo el mundo.

No es ningún secreto que los árabes y musulmanes son, de lejos, las mayores víctimas del extremismo.

Por extraño que parezca, los sabios religiosos parecen haberse unido a la hora de contrarrestar las voces que han secuestrado la religión para promover sus oscuras agendas políticas.

Sin embargo, a pesar de repetidas iniciativas, las súplicas de los estudiosos musulmanes que representan a la mayoría de los musulmanes del mundo han obtenido poca atención de los medios.

– Cuando el Daesh sea por fin derrotado: ¿quién llenará el vacío intelectual en el mundo árabe? – Ramzy Baroud, Monitor de Oriente.

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