Daoud Kuttab at PostGlobal

Daoud Kuttab

Jerusalem/Amman, Jordan

Daoud Kuttab is a Palestinian journalist. He was born in Jerusalem in 1955. He is a former Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University in the United States. Mr. Kuttab is the former director of the Institute of Modern Media at Al Quds University in Ramallah, Palestine and the founder of AmmanNet, the Arab world's first internet radio station. His personal web page is www.daoudkuttab.com. Close.

Daoud Kuttab

Jerusalem/Amman, Jordan

Daoud Kuttab is a Palestinian journalist. He was born in Jerusalem in 1955. He is a former Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University in the United States. more »

Main Page | Daoud Kuttab Archives | PostGlobal Archives

June 16, 2009 9:57 AM

Iran Demonstrations A Good Omen for World Change

The Current Discussion: Are we witnessing a pro-regime coup in Iran? What should the world do in response? How will the election aftermath affect Iran's projection of power into the Middle East?

The first cracks in the decades-old closure of Iran have finally appeared, thanks to a combination of energetic youth, unstoppable technology, and a failed attempt to rig the Iranian "election."

First Iran tried to block Facebook, only to have to allow access again a few days later. Then they tried to stop SMS text messaging. Then came the attempts to block or jam the BBC Persian programs, before election results were made public. The only thing that they have yet to do is turn off the internet (which would be ironic, since Ahmadinejad has his own blog and the Minister of the Interior said that they got the results so quickly.)

The results of this breakthrough is that the genie of free expression is out of the bottle, and will unlikely be returned no matter who is eventually accepted as the victor. This is a good omen for people around the world whose lives suffer from dictatorial power, and for those who are attempting to speak on their behalf.

May 12, 2009 4:55 PM

No Military Solution for Iran or Palestine

The Current Discussion: Are Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Obama on a collision course over Iran and the Palestinian problem? What would be the consequences of a breach between the United States and Israel?

If Netanyahu and Lieberman continue on their course of denying Palestinians their right to self-determination, and continue denying that they have nuclear weapons while threatening to bomb Iran's civilian nuclear facilities, yes - this will bring Israel and the U.S. onto a collision course.

President Obama is trying to find a peaceful, negotiated solution to the Iran nuclear program. This is the only sensible way forward. If we have learned anything in the last 60 years is that there is absolutely no military or violent solution for Palestine or for Iran.

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April 15, 2009 11:46 AM

A Pragmatic Solution - Extend It To Iran

The Current Discussion: The U.S. will lift travel restrictions on Cuba, but leave the larger trade embargo in place. Is that a smart move? Does it go far enough? Too far?

Lifting restrictions on Cuba can be seen as part of a more pragmatic foreign policy. One hopes it's an acknowledgment that long-term boycotts have limited success in producing their desired result. In this respect, it will be interesting to see how the new Cuban situation will affect American relations with Iran, which the U.S. has boycotted for decades with little to show for its actions.

If this indeed is the case we should expect a robust U.S. foreign attempt to reach a pragmatic solution with Iran and other problem areas. The moral of the story is that long-term boycotts simply don't work.

March 2, 2009 11:48 AM

No Business In Iraq, Now or Later

The Current Discussion: The Obama administration has finally set a date for withdrawing U.S. troops for Iraq. If ethnic strife returns there, raising again the specter of civil war, should the U.S. send troops back in?

The U.S. had no business being in Iraq in the first place, they have no business being in Iraq now, and they certainly have no business returning to Iraq once they leave as part on an agreement with an elected Iraqi government. Sure, the U.S. must make its withdrawal in an orderly manner - but as President Obama said, the U.S. respects the sovereignty of Iraq and in so doing must not use any justification to return.

Iraqis and their neighbors must take care of their own business. Mutual interest and mutual respect, the Obama slogan for dealing with the countries of the region, dictate that the mistake of invading Iraqi and violating its sovereignty should not be repeated.

February 20, 2009 3:01 PM

Equal Rights For All Israel's Citizens

The Current Discussion: Israel's real "existential question" is whether or not to disenfranchise its Arab minority, says Fareed Zakaria in his column this week. Is he right?

This particular issue - especially the description of Israel as a "Jewish state" - almost torpedoed the 2007 Annapolis conference. Palestinians adamantly refused to recognize the state established on Palestinian land as a Jewish state, because 20% of that state's citizens are non-Jewish Palestinian Arabs.

But former President George Bush would not budge, calling Israel a "Jewish state" as he spoke in favor of an independent Palestinian state (which he promised would be realized before his term was up.) While this was not the first time that a U.S. senior official has referred to Israel as a religious entity, Bush's insistence on the description despite Palestinian president Mahmood Abbas's demands that this term not be used reflected a total U.S. acceptance of the Israeli position. Calling Israel a Jewish state goes directly against the general U.S. principle of separating politics from religion and counters the democratic values that the U.S. is trying to export to the rest of the world, including the Arab region.

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January 23, 2009 10:22 AM

Don't Continue Israel's Status Quo

The Current Discussion:What's the biggest mistake Barack Obama could make in his first six months in foreign policy?

The one mistake that President Obama should be careful not to commit is to continue the status quo when it comes to the Arab-Israeli conflict. The Middle East has been in turmoil for years because one country and one country alone, the U.S., for purely domestic reasons, has chosen to go against the entire world in its blind and unhealthy support for Israel. The time has come for international law to prevail also on Israel, and for common sense and multilateralism replace the unjustified unilateralism when it comes to absolute support for Israel. A popular T-shirt in the old city of Jerusalem states the following: "Don't worry U.S., Israel is behind you."

It is this arrogance that allowed the disgraced and criminally-charged prime minister of Israel to boast that he forced President Bush to leave a speaking engagement in Philadelphia in order to take his call and accept his orders that the U.S. should not vote in favor of a security council resolution that the U.S. itself had helped draft. The only word for this is a Jewish word, chutzpa.

So Mr. President, please don't make the mistake of protecting the Israelis from their own arrogance. Please think of the innocent people dying, suffering and living under occupation for political reasons. Don't make that mistake.

January 6, 2009 1:35 PM

To Gaza's Victims, Politics Means Little

My colleague and long-time friend Ayman Bardawil got a call from his family in Rafah. The house he was born and raised in was totally destroyed last week. His brother and family, who live in that house, were miraculously saved because one of his daughters had a cold and they went over next door moments before the house was shelled. These are the kind of stories that you hear every day. Ayman's family support Fatah, but that didn't save them from the destructiveness of the Israeli onslaught.

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December 29, 2008 11:17 AM

Gaza Siege Will End in 2009

I predict that in 2009, the siege on Gaza will end. The 1.5 million Palestinians holed up in the tiny strip south of Israel will be allowed to travel freely. Goods and services will be able to move in and out of this embattled region. I also predict that Palestinians will hold presidential and parliamentary elections (closer to the end of the year) and a more sane parliament will be elected.

Continue »

November 5, 2008 3:27 PM

Syria-Israel Talks Prove an Ideological Common Ground

The most important aspect of any Israeli-Syrian talks (whether direct or indirect) is ideological. If the Syrians are talking to the Israelis then it is hard to defend Hamas and others from a position of opposing any recognition or legitimacy to the state of Israel. It is also a clear signal to the radical groups in Damascus which will undoubtedly affect their position as they fear to be totally ostracized if the talks bear fruit.

I agree with Professor Oren that it is difficult to compare Sinai with the Golan Heights because of the Syrian-Iranian connection. In recent months, however, one can
sense a certain cool between those two countries. There have been press reports and analysis that relations between Syria and Iran are not as high as they were in the past apparently due to the flirtation going on between Syria and the US on the one hand and the Syrians and the Israelis on the other hand.

Additionally, the Iraqi crisis has dramatically altered the political geography of the region and has actually helped both Iran and Syria whose borders with Iraq force the international community to take it into consideration when designing any post US invasion plan for Iraq.

November 5, 2008 7:49 AM

Close Guantanamo Prison

The Current Discussion: What's the first thing you hope Barack Obama does as President-Elect?

The first thing the new president should do is to close Guantanamo prison. This could easily be the most visible way to restore the United States' standing as a country that respects the rule of law, truly opposes torture, and is willing to abide by international treaties. This can be done quickly and will have clear and visible impact. Any persons still in that awfuljail should either be tried in the U.S. or sent to their home countries, on condition that they be treated in accordance with international law.

PostGlobal is an interactive conversation on global issues moderated by Newsweek International Editor Fareed Zakaria and David Ignatius of The Washington Post. It is produced jointly by Newsweek and washingtonpost.com, as is On Faith, a conversation on religion. Please send us your comments, questions and suggestions.