• 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, April 10, 2017

Rather than bombing the Assad regime, Gourevitch says, let the Syrian refugees into the United States. What’s being advocated here is clear: no to empire, yes to refugees. Needless to say, I too subscribe to that notion and am against US imperial intervention.
But I fear that these two positions are just not enough. On their own, they constitute an impoverished politics.
In order to explain why, let’s briefly apply the same principles to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. When Israel brutally kills Palestinians, as it regularly does, do progressives in America only say “let those Palestinian refugees who manage to escape come to the US”? Absolutely not. Because they know that this would just aid Israel’s colonial designs and invite Israel to continue behaving with impunity in the region.
Progressives stand in solidarity with the Palestinians, call for an end to Israel’s bombings, and demand that Israel be prosecuted for crimes against humanity. They also push their own imperial state to stop all military aid for Israel, stop feeding Israel’s colonial appetite, and stop shielding it from international justice.
Why is the Syrian case so different? The reality is that the Syrian catastrophe is even more acute. With half a million dead and millions displaced, the scale of the Syrian carnage is vast. Assad’s dictatorship would rather kill, besiege, and starve the population than allow them dignity and democracy. Either live in humiliation and servitude, leave, or die. No people should have to accept these miserable options
Why being against Assad matters too

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This is a nice piece. The philosophical roots of rights-based liberal individualism lie in efforts to legitimate imperial expansion