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The Middle East

↓ This Land Is Mine [from Nina Paley]

◊→ Israel_Birth Of A Nation

The 1948 Arab–Israeli War, known to Israelis as the War of Independence (Hebrew: מלחמת העצמאות or מלחמת הקוממיות‎, Milkhemet Ha’atzma’ut or Milkhemet Hakomemmiyut or Hebrew: מלחמת השחרור‎, Milkhemet Hashikhrur literally «war of liberation») — was fought between the State of Israel and a military coalition of Arab states and Palestinian Arab forces. It was the first in a series of wars in the continuing Arab–Israeli conflict.
The war was preceded by a period of civil war in the territory of the British Mandate of Palestine between Jewish Yishuv forces and Palestinian Arab forces in response to the UN Partition Plan. Upon the termination of the Mandate at midnight on 14 May 1948, the Yishuv declared the formation of the State of Israel on the basis of the plan and an alliance of Arab States intervened on the Palestinian side, turning the civil war into a war between sovereign states. The fighting took place mostly on the former territory of the British Mandate and for a short time also in the Sinai Peninsula and southern Lebanon. The war concluded with the 1949 Armistice Agreements, which established Armistice Demarcation Lines between Israeli and Arab military forces, commonly known as the Green Line.
Roughly half of the 1948 Palestinian exodus, often referred to as al-Nakba (Arabic: النكبة‎, literally «The Catastrophe»), occurred amidst this war. The war, in addition to the establishment of Israel itself, is also considered one of the main triggers for the Jewish exodus from Arab and Muslim countries.

♦  Palestine well before 1948 ↓

⇓  Palestinian Loss of Land

•  Read →A Synopsis of the Israel/Palestine Conflict ←   الجيش العربي السوري
♦ Amal Murkus  ↓  لا أحد يعلم    (‘La Ahada Yalam’ / ‘No One Knows’)

لا أحد يعلم         غناء : أمل مرقس         كلمات والحان : نزار زريق
ليس غريبا أن يختارها التلفزيون النمساوي ذات مساء بارد من عام 2001 لتتوج كأجمل أصوات القرن العشرين، أمل مرقس تلك التي أفرغت حقائب سفرها من كل شئ لتضع فيها فقط صوتها الجميل ومعه كل الإحساس بلواعج الذات الإنسانية وهموم الوطن، فامتطت بإبداعاتها كل الخطوط الجوية الممكنة عبر العالم من أجل ملاقاة جمهور لشدة تماهيه مع أغانيها بات يميز صوتها بين ألف صوت       . سناء ثاب

 La Ahada Yalam:

No-one knows whose turn it will be tomorrow.
The skies above the refugee camp are grey. Dreams hastily scrawled on the walls.
Beneath the slogans  the children from the city play their game.  Death.  No-one knows . . .

The heroes of today are announced – dead – on the evening news.
Ordinary people make the headlines for a few seconds, only to vanish without a trace in the current of another day’s events.
No-one knows . . . But I know that tomorrow’s victims will bring a new dawn closer. No-one knows.

♦  Ofra Haza  ↓  ‘Im Nin’Alu’  («If the doors are locked»)

Inspired by late Yemenite Rabbi Shalom Shabazi: «Even if the gates of the rich will be closed, the gates of heaven will never be closed» 

Im nin’alu daltei nedivim – Daltei marom lo nin’alu – Im nin’alu  – Im nin’alu
El chai  –  El chai  –  Im nin’alu  –  Im nin’alu  –  El chai
Chayot shehem ratzu vashavim  –  Miyom bri’ah nichlelu
You know I love you like no other in my prayer
Im nin’alu   –  Im nin’alu  –  El chai  –  Im nin’alu
Take me away I need your help – Somebody cries within the herd
Oh my God I need your help
Uveshesh k’nafaim s’vivim  –  Afim be’et yitgalgelu
El chai  –  El chai  –  Im nin’alu  –  Im nin’alu  –  El chai
Im nin’alu daltei nedivim – Daltei marom lo nin’alu – Im nin’alu – Im nin’alu
If there be no mercy left in the world,
The doors of heaven will never be barred.

◊  History of Religions  ↓

◊  Jerusalem ↓ 4000 Years in 5 Minutes

Jerusalem, a mosaic of different peoples, faiths, and nationalities. Nevertheless, despite this diversity, under the sovereignty of Israel, Jerusalem is a city that works. But has it always been this way?

¤  Holy War

At the latest since September 11th, 2001, the armed struggle in the name of Allah has become a serious threat to the West, where many people share the view that Islam glorifies violence. The time is ripe to tame irrational views and seek to understand the history of a concept, and of a conflict.

This is the very first documentary on the Holy War from the dual perspective of East and West. It traces the mobilization of religious sentiment for political purposes on both sides, and shows how false notions of East and West are entrenched in our collective consciousness. Compelling live-action dramatizations and CGI put the viewer in the midst of major historical confrontations, and leading international experts explain how the relations between cultures and religions evolved against the background of the Holy Wars.

• Episode 1:  The Sword of the Prophet

When the merchant Mohammed began to preach Islam, the “submission to God,” in the early 7th century, he relied solely on the power of his words. But Islam soon developed into a religion which, just like Christianity, claimed a universal scope – and would uphold this claim through the sword as well. With Islam spreading rapidly, it was only a matter of time before the two monotheistic religions would clash. This episode reconstructs the rise of Islam and its first armed encounters with Christianity.

•  Episode 2:  Crusade to Jerusalem

Four hundred years after the Muslim expansion, Christian Europe launched its first crusade. The Church, however, was less concerned about helping endangered Christians in the Near East than about spreading its power. This crusade culminated in the bloody conquest of Jerusalem in 1099. Harking back to the “Jihad,” the Muslim rulers coalesced to win back Jerusalem and the lost Muslim territories. Hundreds of thousands of crusaders died, but also a great number of Christians, Jews and Muslims.

•  Episode 3:  The Turks at the Gates of Vienna

This episode depicts the long-simmering conflict between the Islamic Ottoman Empire and the Christian powers of Europe. The fear of being enslaved by the Ottomans was one of the great traumas of early-modern Europe. For a long time the Ottomans seemed invincible. The showdown outside of Vienna in September 1683 was to be the last armed conflict on European soil that was fought to the battle cries of the “Holy War.” After their defeat by the “Holy League,” the Ottomans were pushed back into the Balkans.

•  Episode 4:  The Kaiser’s Jihad

During the First World War, the despotism and arrogance of Europe’s colonial powers in the Islamic world was revealed once more. Particularly the British and Germans exploited the conflicts between Arabs and Ottomans for their own power interests. Max von Oppenheim, an envoy of Wilhelm II, the German Emperor, is supposed to have triggered a «jihad» against the British and French with the help of Turkish allies, in order to destabilise the colonies of the opponents of the German Empire. The Arab Muslims, however, did not follow Max von Oppenheim, but the charismatic «Lawrence of Arabia». Acting on behalf of Britain, he encouraged the Arabs to rebel against the Ottoman Empire, with money, weapons and the promise of independence.

• Episode 5:   Terror for the Faith

The attacks of September 11th, 2001 shook the world’s political foundations. A deep gap seemed to open up between the Western and Muslim hemispheres. This episode describes the roots of modern-day “Jihadism” and shows that its origins can be found in the political history of the Near and Middle East since 1945. It asks what led Osama Bin Laden to declare war against America. The episode ends with Bin Laden’s assassination in 2011 and the hope for change and democracy in the Arab world.

¤  «The Clash of Civilizations?»

THE NEXT PATTERN OF CONFLICT

World politics is entering a new phase, and intellectuals have not hesitated to proliferate visions of what it will be-the end of history, the return of traditional rivalries between nation states, and the decline of the nation state from the conflicting pulls of tribalism and globalism, among others. Each of these visions catches aspects of the emerging reality. Yet they all miss a crucial, indeed a central, aspect of what global politics is likely to be in the coming years.

It is my hypothesis that the fundamental source of conflict in this new world will not be primarily ideological or primarily economic. The great divisions among humankind and the dominating source of conflict will be cultural. Nation states will remain the most powerful actors in world affairs, but the principal conflicts of global politics will occur between nations and groups of different civilizations. The clash of civilizations will dominate global politics. The fault lines between civilizations will be the battle lines of the future.

Conflict between civilizations will be the latest phase in the evolution of conflict in the modern world. For a century and a half after the emergence of the modern international system with the Peace of Westphalia, the conflicts of the Western world were largely among princes-emperors, absolute monarchs and constitutional monarchs attempting to expand their bureaucracies, their armies, their mercantilist economic strength and, most important, the territory they ruled. In the process they created nation states, and beginning with the French Revolution the principal lines of conflict were between nations rather than princes. In 1793, as R. R. Palmer put it, «The wars of kings were over; the wars of peoples had begun.» This nineteenth-century pattern lasted until the end of World War I. Then, as a result of the Russian Revolution and the reaction against it, the conflict of nations yielded to the conflict of ideologies, first among communism, fascism-Nazism and liberal democracy, and then between communism and liberal democracy. During the Cold War, this latter conflict became embodied in the struggle between the two superpowers, neither of which was a nation state in the classical European sense and each of which defined its identity in terms of its ideology

Samuel P. Huntington

•  Click for  Samuel Huntington‘s «The Clash of Civilizations» ↓

culture-shock

 In 1993 Harvard Professor Samuel P. Huntington wrote an essay titled «The Clash of Civilizations?» and later he expanded into a book with the same title, but without the question mark. Edward Said, late Columbia professor rips Huntington’s thesis to shreds ↓

You can set the captions  ↑  for English subtitles.

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