July 24, 2020


arab newspapers

PDF version available here Recent data appear to demonstrate the weakening of the Arab newspapers versus strengthening of the digital media. However, this weakening is less extensive than the corresponding erosion of Western newspapers in their own markets. This study examines the question of how Arab newspapers see themselves. A content and discourse analysis of articles in seven newspapers of different characteristics and distribution zones indicates an ambivalent attitude towards the … [Read more...]

Taken – a novel by Michael Totten. Book Review.


Taken’ is the first novel by Michael Totten. Totten, an American blogger and foreign correspondent, is the author of ‘the Road to Fatima Gate’ and two other works of reportage.  In the Middle East, he has reported from Lebanon, Iraq and Israel. Totten has pioneered an approach to the work of the foreign correspondent’s trade appropriate to the digital age.  Travelling light, unencumbered by formal affiliation to bureau or newspaper, he has managed in his reportage to achieve an … [Read more...]

The Demise of the Anti-Israel Card


For decades in the Middle East the most reliable political tool often seemed to be the Israel card, the idea that by condemning Israel, blaming it for the Arab world’s problems, and claiming that those who were insufficiently militant on the issue were traitors. But the Israel card doesn’t work anymore, at least not in the way it used to do so. True, the rise of revolutionary Islamism has focused more hatred against Israel. Yet at the same time—and this analogy is imperfect—it is less … [Read more...]

When Terrorists Fall Out You Know Jihad is Doomed


One of the reasons why the Middle East situation is less fearsome than it might seem is that the radicals and terrorists are not united at all but battle among themselves for tactical, doctrinal, ethnic, and ambition-related reasons. Despite their daily, bloodthirsty howls for Israel’s destruction, for example, three groups are at odds: –The Muslim Brotherhood regime in Egypt wants to revolutionize the Middle East but is putting the priority on entrenching its power in Egypt itself, … [Read more...]

No, Boston Will Not Change Anything


The film “Casablanca” was an alarm bell for America back in 1941. I thought about an exchange from that script in regard to Boston: Major Strasser: Are you one of those people who cannot imagine the Germans in your beloved Paris? Rick: It’s not particularly my beloved Paris. Heinz: Can you imagine us in London? Rick: Ask me when you get there. Major Strasser: How about New York? Rick: Well there are certain sections of New York, Major, that I wouldn’t advise you to try … [Read more...]

As Obama Continues Israel Visit, His Themes Are Reinforced


As President Barack Obama continued his visit to Israel, the themes remained the same as the ones I covered with theprior post. The two main public events were a speech by Obama to Israeli university students, and a joint press conference with Palestinian Authority (PA) leader Mahmoud Abbas. In his speech, Obama spoke at great length about Israel’s history, concerns, and related matters to try to show that he “gets it” when it comes to Israel. The phrases were in many cases similar to … [Read more...]

Hassan Nasrallah Exposed


Despite its unrivaled ability to impose its will on the country, Hezbollah’s legitimacy in the eyes of non-Shi’ite Arabs in Lebanon and beyond has significantly diminished in recent years. The issuing of indictments against four Hezbollah members for the murder of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri will only serve to accelerate and compound this process. Once, Hezbollah presented itself and was seen as an Arab force concerned above all with making war against Israel. The … [Read more...]