A World Not Ours: Fleifel Tells His Story

Posted by on September 17, 2014 in Blog

By Kristyn Acho Fall Intern, 2014

AAI is proud to sponsor the documentary A World Not Ours (2012) at the fourth annual DC Palestinian Film and Arts Festival. Directed by Mahdi Fleifel, the film is a compelling and intimate portrayal of three generations in exile in Lebanon’s Ein el-Helweh refugee camp. Fleifel uses his own video recordings, family archives, and historical footage to tell his story.

Ein el-Helweh, which was established in 1948 to house displaced populations, currently holds nearly 70,000 Palestinian refugees. When Fleifel was still a child, his parents uprooted...

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What You Might Have Missed from the ‘In Defense of Christians’ Summit

Posted by on September 16, 2014 in Blog

By now, anyone who has heard of the “In Defense of Christians” (IDC) summit that took place in Washington, DC last week undoubtedly knows of the infamous incident involving Senator Ted Cruz. Type “In Defense of Christians” into Google, and almost every search result will mention the senator.

It is unfortunate that the only headlines out of the summit were Senator Cruz’s remarks and the audience’s reaction, as well as a few hit-pieces on the religious leaders in attendance. After Cruz got booed off stage, IDC’s Executive Director Andrew Doran exclaimed to the audience: “For the...

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For Obama and ISIL, Twitter is the New C-Span

Posted by on September 15, 2014 in Blog

By Dina Salah-ElDinFall Intern, 2014

From Washington, D.C. to Cairo to Hong Kong to Kiev, posting updates from a city square where tens, hundreds, or even tens of thousands are marching for or against a cause or a government has almost become the driving force for much of the activity on social media.  Over the past month, Twitter became the center stage from which the militant group known as the Islamic State declared its territorial gains in Iraq and its executions of two American journalists.

Last week, as President Barack Obama delivered a prime-time speech...

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What Ted Cruz Doesn’t Want to Hear About Arab Christians

Posted by on September 13, 2014 in News Clips

My mother was fond of saying, “If you want someone to hear you, you must first listen to them.” You must know them, understand the questions they are asking and be sensitive to their concerns. If you do this, she would say, “you will be able to speak with people and not at them.”

What happens when you don’t follow this simple rule of communication was on display during the “In Defense of Christians” (IDC) conference—an event put on to highlight the very dire plight of Christians in the Middle East—that was held this week in Washington.

Addressing an audience of 900 mostly Arab...

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Remembering Their Roots: The Itoo Society Reaches One Hundred-Year Milestone

Posted by on September 11, 2014 in Blog

By Kristyn AchoFall Intern, 2014

In northern Lebanon, there lays an old village named Aytou that rests on the side of a mountain. Like so many other immigrant populations, a large number of Aytou people came to the United States in the early 1900s in search of opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Aytou men and women settled primarily in Mankato and St. Paul, Minnesota; Buffalo, New York; and, Peoria, Illinois. In a recent edition of InterBusiness Issues magazine, Randy Couri, a Lebanese-American whose grandparents immigrated to the United States from...

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Why Ted Cruz Was Booed Off Stage at a Christian Event

Posted by TIME on September 11, 2014 in News Clips

While the nation watched President Obama primetime address the threat of ISIS Wednesday night, something else was happening in Washington: Senator Ted Cruz was getting booed off the stage of a

Cruz is often considered a rising darling of the American Christian right. He speaks at evangelical gatherings in the country, talks to groups of conservative pastors and headlines events with the Family Research Council. But Wednesday night, his Christian audience was largely Eastern and Arab. The brand of conservative, American evangelicalism that Cruz often champions—one that often aligns itself with the state of Israel’s interests—did not sit well with...

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13 Years After 9/11, Anti-Muslim Bigotry Is Worse Than Ever

Posted by The Daily Beast on September 11, 2014 in News Clips

On 9/11, I didn’t watch the World Trade Center collapse on television like most people. I witnessed that tragedy a few blocks from where it occurred, standing motionless at 8th Street and 6th Avenue in lower Manhattan.

Images from that day are still seared in my mind. The South Tower buckling. A sobbing woman running by. An NYPD police car racing uptown covered in debris. A crystal blue sky.

Once we learned that al Qaeda was responsible for the attack, I knew there would be a backlash against Muslim and Middle Eastern Americans.  But what I could’ve never predicted was...

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Des Familles de victimes du 11 Septembre luttent contre l’Islamophobie

Posted by Radio VM on September 11, 2014 in News Clips

Des membres des familles de victimes des attentats du 11 septembre 2001 à New York ont lancé une campagne de promotion de la tolérance religieuse et de dénonciation de l'islamophobie.

La campagne d'affichage sur les bus new yorkais présente les slogans «L'islamophobie, c'est moche» et «Construisons des ponts, pas des murs. La haine tue, l'espoir guérit.» L'action, réalisée dans le cadre la commémoration de la tragédie qui a tué près de 3'000 personnes, est sponsorisée par l'association «September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows» (Les familles du 11 septembre pour des lendemains pacifiques). Le lancement de la campagne a coïncidé avec...

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Is The “Islamic State” Islamic?

Posted by The Dish on September 11, 2014 in News Clips

Last night, Obama made a point of stressing that ISIS is not Islamic. The usual suspects had a field day with that line, but Ramesh Ponnuru finds it sort of pointless:

I’m not sure what presidents think they are achieving when they make this assertion. (Bush did it too, all the time.) The alternative would be to say, “They claim to act in the name of Islam, something peace-loving Muslims say is a perversion of their faith,” or just to say nothing about the point. I can’t imagine that a non-Muslim-American president convinces anyone when he tells the world what...

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Ted Cruz booed off stage

Posted by Desert News on September 11, 2014 in News Clips

A Washington conference aimed at spotlighting persecution of Christians in the Middle East collapsed Wednesday evening when Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, was booed off the stage for his support of Israel, whose Jewish citizens he said were equal victims of Islamic extremist persecution.

Cruz was the keynote speaker at a dinner concluding theIn Defense of Christians conference held in the capital to bring attention to the plight of Christians in Iraq, Syria and other areas of the Middle East where Islamic extremist forces are demanding non-Muslims either pay a special tax, convert or face execution.

Before the 2003 invasion...

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