An introduction

This is a semi-public place to dump text too flimsy to even become a blog post. I wouldn't recommend reading it unless you have a lot of time to waste. You'd be better off at my livejournal. I also have another blog, and write most of the French journal summaries at the Eurozine Review.

Why do I clutter up the internet with this stuff at all? Mainly because I'm trying to get into the habit of displaying as much as possible of what I'm doing in public. Also, Blogger is a decent interface for a notebook

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Arab nationalist causes have ceased mattering

Nir Rosen on, among other things, the international connections of rebels and demonstrators in Syria:

"Arabic satellite channels as well as Facebook allow exiled Syrian opposition figures to observe the slogans of demonstrators on the ground so that they can in effect be led by the opposition on the street and reflect their views to the rest of the world. As a result it is safe to say that of the opposition activists and organisers on the ground (those who demonstrate, fight or provide aid to activists), nearly all back the Syrian National Council (SNC) as their representative to the outside world.


Even Islamist leaders of the revolution look to Europe and the US more than they do to Arab or Muslim countries (with the exception of Turkey). Anti-imperialist and Arab nationalist causes have ceased mattering to the opposition on the ground. It is the death of ideology, in a way. It strikes me as the opposite of many Egyptian protesters who reacted to decades of a pro-American and pro-Israeli dictatorship by expressing anti-imperialist slogans. But the Syrian opposition associates notions of resistance and anti-imperialism with the Assad regime and therefore the causes themselves have been discredited and their enemy has been reduced to the regime and the daily struggle for survival.

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