Links January 29th and February 3rd

Automatically posted links for January 29th through February 3rd:

0 thoughts on “Links January 29th and February 3rd”

  1. Can anyone explain why they would have seized Mohammad Choukri’s works when you can buy For Bread Alone in Egyptian bookstores anyway?

  2. Yes, definitely fishy, this string of cable outages. I wonder how the poor jihadis are getting on without their internet forums?

  3. Rami Khour’s thing on the Great Arab Cities of the Gulf, especially Dubai, is a bit silly. While I firmly believe in the great Middle Eastern urban tradition that he invokes, I don’t think that’s what’s going on in Dubai. Cosmopolitan is putting it politely. Dubai is 3% local population, a smattering of other Arabs, and the vast majority is a south Asian slave class, supporting a service class of East Asians, with European managers near the top, presided over by a thin later of Emirati aristocracy. That follows no Arab historical model and cannot result in an Arab cultural flowering. The “Arabs” aren’t putting up these fantastic buildings, foreign architects and workforces are. A city without sidewalks or any form of public transportation or any common public institutions is not something to be lauded. Rami, give me Beirut any day.

  4. While sharing your general opinion of Dubai, Paul, I’m compelled to point out that Dubai does have a public transportation system – buses, if you’re prepared to wait 45 mins in the heat for one, and they’re building a metro currently.

    But yes, it’s “cosmopolitan” only in the way that Vegas is cosmopolitan. A more global version of Julian Barnes’ ‘England England’ theme park.

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