Hot off the Arab press 381703

What citizens of other countries are reading about the Middle East.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi speaks at a news conference during his visit to Najaf, south of Baghdad, (photo credit: REUTERS)
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi speaks at a news conference during his visit to Najaf, south of Baghdad,
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Al-Zamman, Iraq, November 3
In his Sunday meeting with Iraq’s Christian leaders, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi made an explicit commitment to safeguard Christian communities throughout the country, following their terrible persecution by jihadi extremists. Patriarch of Babylon Louis Sako, who attended the meeting, claimed the leaders presented the prime minister with their plan to turn the Nineveh Plain into a new Christian province. Abadi assured the leaders that his government would work to liberate the Christian towns surrounding Mosul, seized by Islamic State earlier this year, Sako added, and would also allow Christian refugees to return to their homes and be compensated.
Since assuming office in August, Abadi has been personally monitoring the issue of the Christian plight throughout Iraq, caused by Islamic State’s bloody military campaign. He was cited as saying he would personally defend Baghdad’s Christian communities and neighborhoods, and described the current Christian situation as “an immense grievance for the entire Iraqi nation.” – Al-Zamman staff
Al-Dostour, Jordan, November 7
The footage aired on different news channels this week, of IDF soldiers besieging the Dome of the Rock, is not just another provocation – it is the ultimate incitement against Muslims. Dressed in full military uniform, the soldiers are seen standing outside one of the most sacred sites for Islam, the place from which the Prophet Muhammad ascended to the skies. This is a shocking and unprecedented event, because all human beings – friends and foes alike – have traditionally respected the sanctity of holy places.
But what we are witnessing these days in Jerusalem and at Al-Aksa is not humane; it is the deliberate desecration of places of worship. Shooting and using firepower inside a mosque proves these soldiers are nothing more than animals who cannot distinguish between right and wrong. Such brutal attacks, particularly on women – who are subjected to humiliation and forced to remove their veils – is detrimental to each and every Arab and Muslim on the face of earth.
These heinous Zionistic violations of basic rights have reached an unprecedented level, sparking the flames of confrontation. We must all abandon the battle that is raging right now within the Arab world, between Arabs and Arabs, and look together at our external enemy: the one that is inciting violence and hate against us, and desecrating our holy sites. – Racheel Muhammad Ghazayba, head of the Muslim Brotherhood political office in Jordan
Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, London, November 8
This Saturday, the Palestinian Museum launched a new project titled “A Family Album,” which seeks to collect old photographs and documents from Palestinian individuals, describing their lives. Museum director Jack Persekian explained that the project’s goal is “to collect the largest possible number of images and convert them into digital files, which will be available to the public and to researchers.” The decision to launch the project from the Kalandiya refugee camp was a deliberate one, he added, as “it tells part of the Palestinian story and destiny.”
The museum is promoting the project to raise awareness among the Palestinian public as to the importance of old photographs depicting life in Palestine, as these documents are a part of the Palestinian collective memory. Persekian explained: “We all know that our lands, rights and resources were stolen.
However, it is important to remember that in addition to the theft of our homes, our images – which collectively constitute our heritage, our history and our identity – were also stolen.”
The project aims to promote individual storytelling not only for Palestinians, but also for the greater world. The museum has distributed pamphlets on how to submit photos to its collections. – Al-Sharq Al-Awsat staff
Al-Nahar, Lebanon, November 8
The crushing victory of the Republicans in the US congressional midterm elections is yet another vote of no-confidence in President Barack Obama’s policies.
This level of failure, which the Democratic party had not experienced since World War II, serves as a reminder that the greater American public does not believe in Obama’s policies – both on the domestic level, with the decline of the American economy; and on the international level, with a faltering American foreign policy.
Obama’s recent letter to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, revealed by The Wall Street Journal, confirms that the White House improvises harmful policies with one goal in mind: cooperating with Iran against Islamic State. This inevitably will not only undermine America’s alliance with the Gulf States, but also create a strong extremist Sunni camp fighting against the involvement of Shi’ite Iran in the international coalition.
Obama’s policies do not only impose risk on America’s allies, but also encourage terrorists. His policies seem to be serving Islamic State more than they serve America. – Rajiah al-Khouri
Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, London, November 8
Numerous intelligence agencies, including several in the Arab world, have been reporting that the oil revenues collected by Islamic State have fallen dramatically in recent weeks. Evidence collected by the agencies depicts difficulties exporting oil from territories within Iraq and Syria, as a result of raids carried out by coalition forces led by the US. Several analysts also pointed out that Islamic State is suffering from a shortage of specialists who can operate oil pumping facilities, thus decreasing productivity and production.
In October, American officials claimed the coalition’s bombing of oil refineries reduced Islamic State’s revenues by almost half. US Treasury Under Secretary David Cohen claimed Islamic State makes approximately $1 million a day from oil revenues, instead of $2m. prior to the attacks. Nevertheless, experts still consider Islamic State the richest terror organization in the world.