Articles by Yvonne Ridley, Middle East Monitor

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Peace One Day… but probably without Trump

Famous film producer and Hollywood executive Richard A. Rowland coined the phrase about “lunatics taking over the asylum” when a group of rebel actors led by the legendary Charlie Chaplin formed United Artists to protect their own work. The saying has since been hijacked on many occasions. Surely, though, it has never been more appropriate than when the US President, the “leader of the free world”, used the occasion of his first ever speech at the United Nations to threaten to “totally destroy” North Korea. Donald Trump followed this up by declaring that the Supreme Leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-Un, is “rocket man on a suicide mission.” Perhaps Trump’s advisers forgot to tell him that the UN, set up […]


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Millions of Palestinians have good reason to remember Peres

Tel Aviv loves nothing more than a good excuse for a memorial or a ceremony of some sort to divert international attention from the injustices it metes out on a daily basis to the Palestinian people. Thursday provided such an occasion in honour of former President and Prime Minister Shimon Peres, who died on 28 September last year, aged 93. The anniversary is being used as an excuse to honour the Zionist State’s so-called man of peace and Israel is stretching the memorial celebrations throughout the month to make the most of the propaganda value of his death. The ancient Greek storyteller Aesop observed that “a man is known by the company he keeps” and so it came as no […]


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The education of Palestinian children is an act of resistance

In this year of significant anniversaries — the Balfour Declaration; Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip; the Israeli-led siege of Gaza — another is creeping up on us. The fifth anniversary of the day that the Taliban tried to kill schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai is fast approaching. The Pakistani child was shot in the head for promoting the rights of girls to be educated and her plight immediately won the hearts and admirations of millions when news of her horrific injuries emerged. Today, Nobel Peace Laureate Malala is preparing to go to Oxford University after winning a place at Lady Margaret Hall to study philosophy, politics and economics. The 20-year-old could not have given a better response to […]


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Censorship of photographic exhibition exposing Israeli brutality angers Scots

When Israeli soldier-medic Elor Azaria shot dead a badly injured Palestinian youth in a street in Hebron last year he had no idea that his war crime had been captured on camera. Once the shocking images were released they resulted in a trial and prison sentence which attracted international attention because of the cold-blooded nature of this very public execution. It proved to be a hugely embarrassing moment for Israel and its supporters who, until then, had always vigorously denied accusations that Zionist occupation forces carried out street executions of injured Palestinians. Such denials were hard to maintain in the light of video evidence, and now last year’s controversy has been revived by Zionists who’ve tried to get a photographic […]


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Palestine is no country for old men

Millions of us around the world have supported the Palestinian cause for decades. In our calls for justice for the people of Palestine we have stood alongside some political giants. I can’t think of any other piece of land — we are talking about a tiny scrap hardly the size of an African safari park — which has been at the centre of so much political angst, bloodshed and hardship for its people. The creation of the state of Israel in 1948 and its ongoing ethnic cleansing and colonisation of Palestine has seen to that. The finger of blame for the current Palestinian plight can be pointed in many directions, but the first to carry the can must be Britain. […]


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Does Britain have a secret travel ban against Arabs?

Britain stands accused of operating a secret travel ban against Arabs after it emerged that a large number of internationally renowned academics, religious leaders, musicians, artists and performers from the Middle East have been refused visas to enter the UK. All were booked to appear or perform at the world famous Edinburgh Festival in Scotland but were rejected on the grounds that they would not return to their home countries after the festival ends on 28 August. The move by the Home Office in London is said to have angered many in the Scottish government, which has long wanted to determine its own immigration, asylum and border controls instead of relying on the British government. Included in the Arab ban […]


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Disbelief is growing as Scotland’s First Minister backs Israel’s dark arts

Scotland has a proud record of standing up with persecuted minorities, including those who are targeted purely for their faith, ethnicity or culture. It is the only European country where there is no history of Jews being persecuted or threatened by state institutions. From the Middle Ages to the present day, anti-Semitism across Europe has too readily and frequently resulted in pogroms and exile, but not in Scotland. In the mid-20th century, of course, such persecution culminated in the horrors of the Nazi Holocaust and the systematic murder of six million Jews and numerous others deemed to be “undesirable” by Adolf Hitler and his murderous minions. The Scots may be relatively small numerically, but they are well-known for punching above […]


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The hemline that hit the headlines: it could only happen in Saudi Arabia

To say that the Middle East is in turmoil is a major understatement when you consider the suffering and hardship endured by millions of ordinary Arab men, women and children right now. From East to West, though, they appear to have been abandoned in terms of news coverage. The headline writers no longer care that Syria is still on fire, with the sky raining bombs from Assad’s forces, the Russians, Iranians, Americans, British and a host of other so-called interested parties, while all sorts of other troops and militias are committing unspeakable atrocities on the ground. In Yemen there’s a similar story unfolding, complicated further by a massive outbreak of cholera. Over in Iraq, the country has lurched from one […]


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The hemline that hit the headlines: it could only happen in Saudi Arabia

To say that the Middle East is in turmoil is a major understatement when you consider the suffering and hardship endured by millions of ordinary Arab men, women and children right now. From East to West, though, they appear to have been abandoned in terms of news coverage. The headline writers no longer care that Syria is still on fire, with the sky raining bombs from Assad’s forces, the Russians, Iranians, Americans, British and a host of other so-called interested parties, while all sorts of other troops and militias are committing unspeakable atrocities on the ground. In Yemen there’s a similar story unfolding, complicated further by a massive outbreak of cholera. Over in Iraq, the country has lurched from one […]


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Opposing Zionism is not racism, rules Scottish court

In yet another landmark legal victory, members of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign emerged from court victorious today after being accused of racism. Their “crime”? Standing up to Zionism. The trial ended three years of speculation and pressure for SPSC members whose robust defence of their actions won the day in Glasgow Sherriff’s Court when the verdict was announced on Friday. Four days of evidence and cross-examinations earlier this month focussed on the actions of two SPSC members who faced charges of racism and aggravated trespass for a protest against Israeli company Jericho cosmetics, which operates around the Dead Sea in the occupied West Bank. The protest was held in the wake of Israel’s 2014 military offensive against Palestinian civilians […]