February 2014



حصن التعكر في محافظة إب .. من اشهر القلاع الحربيه في التاريخ اليمني القديم

صحافة نت 26 نوفمبر 2013

استطلاع / محمد مزاحم / جبل التعكر من أشهر الحصون والقلاع الحربية في التاريخ اليمني القديم لا سيما في عهد الدولة الصليحية.. عندما تفكر بالذهاب إليه.. لمعرفة تلك الأسرار التي تحدث عنها المؤرخون، فإن ذلك يتطلب منك المرور على مدينة جبلة التي تقع شمال شرق التعكر، والتي ارتبط اسمها باسم الملكة أروى بنت أحمد الصليحي وقد جعلت من جبلة العاصمة السياسية لدولتها ومن جبل التعكر منتجعاً سياحياً لها خاصة في موسم الأمطار والإخضرار..

عندما تصل إلى حصن أو جبل التعكر “كما يحب تسميته المؤرخون” فأنك لن تنسى فيما بعد هذا المكان فالحصن لا تجد شبراً من الأرض التي حوله إلا يسيطر عليها الإخضرار..

إضافة إلى أن موقع الحصن الذي يرتفع حوالي “3000” متر فوق سطح البحر يجعلك تسبح في ملكوت الله حيث تستطيع وأنت في قمته أن تمد نظرك إلى أبعد ما يمكن أن يتصوره المرء حيث يطل الجبل من الناحية الجنوبية الغربية على مدينة ذي السفال وأجزاء من السياني ومن ناحية الشمال يمكن مشاهدة مدينة جبلة والوقش وسائلة جبلة ومفرق جبلة أما من الجهة الجنوبية الشرقية فيمكن مشاهدة مدينة السياني وعندما تطل من أعالي جبل “التعكر” فأنك حينها ستشعر وكأنك طائر يطير بجناحيه في السماء، وتزيد لديك أحاسيس الفرح والسعادة عندما تنقل نظرك من جهة إلى أخرى لتشاهد الفضاء الواسع الأفق الرحب، والمناطق الجميلة دائمة الاخضرار والتي يتجه المزارعون لزراعتها ورعايتها ومن ثم حصادها.

وأنت في أعلى قمة جبل التعكر وتحديداً في وسط الحصن المتهالك حالياً فإنك سترى جبل صبر الذي يأتي إليك بكل ما احتوى من عظمة وجمال وتعرجات ليقول لك ها أنا المنافس الحتمي لجبل التعكر، فتدرك عندها أنك بين عظيمين ولا مقارنة بينهما.
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Enver Pasha, 1881-1922

The BBC produced a fascinating documentary on the Ottoman Empire in World War I with rare footage. This is archived online on Youtube in several parts.

Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; Part 4; Part 5

The future belongs to the young, no matter how much older generations try to shape that future. Educations plays a key role, as does the whole family context, but in the past century it is the expansion of media that has establishing a seemingly hegemonic control over the curiosity of the young. Disney launched the careers of Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, not to mention the lily white Snow White or comfortably brown Bambi. In my day there was Woody Woodpecker, but my son’s generation was mesmerized by the Ninja Turtles. I have not kept up with cartoon evolution, but I had heard something about a cheesy character named Sponge Bob. It seems that there are many episodes of Sponge Bob available in Arabic on Youtube. The image above is from an adventure in a hibernating-bear-in-an-igloo winterland.

I have seen Arabic translations of Western and Japanese cartoon shows before, and anthropologist Mark Peterson has written a fascinating ethnography (Connected in Cairo: Growing Up Cosmopolitan in the Modern Middle East, Indiana University Press 2011) about the Pokemon phenomenon and other comic characters in Cairo. It is important to remember that the urban generation that has taken to the streets in the Arab Spring and lives and dies through the social media has also been brought up in a steady diet of cartoons, both comic books and videos. While academics have been arguing over the impact of erudite Orientalism, there is a far more potent source influencing the thought of the young: I call this “cartoonality,” the shaping of opinion through fictional non-human or ultra-human cartoon characters. (more…)

by Charles Kurzman, ISLAMiCommentary, February 13, 2014:

Islamic terrorism has proved to be a relatively small threat to public safety in America since 9/11. Isolated individuals have engaged in sporadic violence such as the Boston Marathon bombings, but radicalization has remained far more limited than security officials feared. A report issued this month by the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security shows that the number of Muslim-American terrorism suspects and perpetrators remained low in 2013.

Yet American attitudes toward Muslim-Americans have grown more negative in recent years. Eight surveys since 9/11, most of them conducted by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, have asked random samples of adult Americans whether they have a “favorable” or “unfavorable” view of Muslim-Americans. As shown in the top graph, the proportion answering “unfavorable” has increased over time: before 2006, all five surveys found “unfavorable” rates of 26 percent or lower; in the four surveys between 2006 and 2012, only one found “unfavorable” rates that low.

These numbers are still considerably less than positive responses, but they suggest that a growing segment of the American population is willing to express negative views about Muslim-Americans in recent years. (more…)

For anyone interested in the Washington DC area, I will be speaking at Georgetown University on Feb. 26 about Islamophobia. Details are here.


The central highland Yemeni town of Shamat; photograph by Daniel Martin Varisco, 1978


The central highland town of al-Tawila; photograph by Daniel Martin Varisco, 1978

A recently uploaded Youtube video speaks to the frustration from the violence that has enveloped Iraq, Syria, Egypt and elsewhere. Check it out here.

For more information on this upcoming conference at Columbia University, click here.

THURSDAY 27

8.30 – 9.30 am: Registration (Knox Lobby) and Light Breakfast (Knox 207 and 208)

9.30 – 10.30 am: Welcome Remarks (Matan Cohen) and Plenary Address (Sudipta Kaviraj) – Knox 208

SESSION 1: 10.45 am – 12.45 pm

Scanning the Shelves of the African Islamic Library – Knox 207

Wendell Marsh
Reading Sudanic Africa in the Margins: the Perils of Commentary

Kimberly Wortmann
Intellectual Cartographies in the Medieval Western Sahel (c. 1464-1627)

Ariela Marcus-Sells
Spells and Prayers: Discussing Muslim Practice in Saharan Society

Lori De Lucia
On the Edges of Mediterranean History: Finding Evidence for Sub-Saharan African Narratives in the 16th Century Kingdom of Naples

Discussant: Mamadou Diouf
Moderator: Tommaso Manfredini (more…)

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