Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Yes Men Fix the World

I just saw the most brilliant documentary. I won't ruin it for you. Just go see it. The Yes Men Fix the World. Their title is bit ambitious, but sometimes the Yes Men suspend disbelief long enough to actually do so.
Please let me know if anyone has a connection to them.
I would like to make a sequel in the Middle East.

The Halliburton Survivaball

Friday, February 19, 2010

Na'vis in the West Bank

I wrote an op ed in Haaretz about the subjectivity of the Avatar Na'vi narrative and how both Israelis and Palestinians have seen it as their own story.

For those interested in the surreal photos and video from the Avatar themed Bilin protest connected to the here they are. Photos courtesy of Hamde Abu Rahme. Video courtesy of Haitam al Katib.

Apparently even Na'vis are susceptible to tear gas

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Israel to Re-Route Barrier

Interesting timing...more than two years since the Supreme Court in Israel ruled the route of the security barrier/separation wall near Bil'in to be illegal, the construction of the new route is finally underway, according to Israeli officials and activists. Perhaps it is the recent media attention given to the protests, but is probably just a coincidence. The two-year lag is most likely connected to the lethargic and hyper-bureaucratic nature of non-wartime Israeli government decisions, especially when dealing with sub-contractors, especially when dealing with a so-called security issue, and especially when it involves giving land to the Palestinians. Despite being as slow as molasses, it's refreshing to see that there is some semblance of "rule of law" in the Wild West Bank.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Archaeology as a Political Weapon

Archaeology and the competing Middle East Narratives are both sort of like an onion. You peel away layer after layer, thinking you are going to find something tangible, a seed maybe, or a grain of truth. And at the end of the peeling, with empty hands and tears in your eyes, you realize that there is no such truth to be found.

Check out my latest piece on on the intersection of archaeology, land politics, and historical narratives in the most ancient part of Jerusalem, a place known as the City of David or, if you prefer, Silwan.