• Books: Bury the Chains by Adam Hochschild, Endless War: Hidden Functions of the "war on terror" by David Keen, Capital Vol. 1, Tin Drum by Günter Grass, What is Islam? by Shahab Ahmed, Desiring Arabs by Joseph Massad, Spies, Soldiers and Statesmen by Hazem Kandil, La Condition Humaine by André Malraux, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, Imagined Community by Benedict Anderson, Culture and Imperialism by Edward Said, The Wretched of the Earth by Frantz Fanon, The Richness of Life by Stephen Jay Gould, Children of the Alley by Naguib Mahfouz, The Mass Psychology of Fascism by Wilhelm Reich, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, 1984 by George Orwell, Noli me Tangere by José Rizal, Age of Extremes by Eric Hobsbawm, ذهنية التحريم لصادق جلال العظم, Karl Marx by Francis Wheen, وليمة لأعشاب البحر لحيدر حيدر, Candide by Voltaire, النزعات المادية في الفلسفة العربية الإسلامية لحسين مروة, Listen Little Man by Wilhelm Reich ..
  • Films: Alexanderplatz by Rainer Fassbinder, Clockwork Orange, Apocalypse Now, The Battle of Algiers, films by P. P. Passolini, Persepolis, Midnight Express, 1984, Papillion, Gangs of New York, Sophie Scholl, Life of Brian, Ivan the Terrble, Battleship Potemkine ...

Monday, December 12, 2016

"Assad and his wife have a remarkably similar background to many elite figures in the West. Like Libya's Gaddafi dynasty, the House of Assad has strong connections to the United Kingdom. Bashar was studying ophthalmology in London when his brother Bassel dashed his chances of becoming president by smashing his Mercedes into a roundabout at 80mph.

His wife, Asma, is British-Syrian, went to a private school, studied at King’s College, London and spent time working as a banker before becoming First Lady. The regime has sought to capitalise on Asma and build up an image for her as a sort of Syrian Princess Diana, including through her involvement in charity work. Her philanthropy, alas, does not extend to asking her husband to stop gassing Syria's civilians.

Even the regime's poisonous propagandist, Bouthaina Shaaban, was educated at the University of Warwick, and the language she uses in interviews with western media outlets suggests the extent to which she understands western liberals and how to appeal to their values; Assad means stability, secularism, safety from the massed forces of jihad. For this, Syria must burn, but the ends justify the means."

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The political economy of a long depression