Laurie King

The unique, pervasive, and one-sided nature of CNN's convoluted linguistic formulations about the Israeli military occupation compel any reasonable observer to conclude political bias

We first must note that CNN’s reporting of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not all bad. On several critical points, however, the network has adopted a unique, bizarre, and indefensible position on what is otherwise universally understood to be Israel’s status in the Occupied Territories as well as the legal status of Jewish settlements in these areas. 

Black is for mourning, to say "we're not conforming," to war crimes in the Middle East

“The deadly operation launched by Ariel Sharon this week in Rafah, the southernmost city of the crowded and occupied Gaza Strip, is picturesquely code-named ‘Operation Rainbow.’ Dressing up a murderous assault on unarmed civilians with an ancient symbol of glittering hope is obscene. One hue never present in any rainbow is black. But that’s the shade I’d like to focus on in this essay and call for action.” EI co-founder Laurie King-Irani suggests a simple symbolic protest to encourage thought, inspire discussion, and nurture solidarity in the face of escalating carnage in Gaza and Iraq. 

One Year Later: Whose back is that strong?

“Crushed into the earth, her face torn and her head fractured, Rachel spoke her last words to her devastated friends: ‘I think my back is broken.’ Within the hour, Rachel Corrie, US citizen, aged 23, was dead, the victim of a murder committed in broad day light. With her killing, ISM activsts and all who share their humanitarian goals grounded in universal principles of justice and equality, had been been put on notice by the Israeli Defence Forces that their collective backbone could be broken.” EI co-founder Laurie King-Irani asks what Rachel Corrie’s life and death can tell us about achieving human rights and justice in the Middle East. 

Warsaw Ghetto Abu Dis: Five haikus on the Apartheid Wall

An obscene monument to the belief that “too much is never enough,” Israel’s monstrous Apartheid Wall is a visible indictment of the racist folly of forcibly separating people from each other and the places they love. The visual and moral affront of the Apartheid Wall prompted these observations, expressed through a subtle Japanese poetic form, the haiku. An ancient Japanese literary form, the haiku embodies the principle that “less is more” and delights in mixing categories and crossing boundaries through the magic of metaphor. 

2003: A year of Israeli and US defiance of International Law (2/2)

“For all the revolutionary potential of Universal Jurisdiction in Belgium, very little changed for the better for the Sabra and Shatila plaintiffs. In fact, Belgium’s decision to annul its progressive anti-atrocity legislation rendered the massacre survivors victims a second time over. Their attempts to realize justice in a Belgian court revealed not only the implicit political dimensions of Universal Jurisdiction, but also highlighted the fact that abstract, universal principles do not exist a priori. EI’s Laurie King-Irani concludes her discussion of lessons learned during a difficult year for international law in the Middle East. (Part II of II

2003: A year of US and Israeli defiance of International Law (1/2)

“Benefiting from a growing international focus on Iraq and the folly of the US global ‘war on terror,’ Israel enjoyed enhanced impunity for its violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and a raft of UN resolutions throughout 2003. Even the supposedly ‘positive’ developments of 2003 — the US-backed ‘Road Map’ to peace and the Geneva Accords — are based on a tacit premise that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and several UN resolutions can be ignored or suspended so as to legitimate and excuse Israeli violations of Palestinian rights, lives, lands, and resources.” EI’s Laurie King-Irani reviews the prevailing legal trends of 2003 in Occupied Palestine. (Part I of II

Wanted: A US intifada against impunity at home and abroad

“What is desperately needed in the US, as a new presidential race heats up, is an intifada against impunity at home and abroad. Such a campaign could benefit progressives in the U.S. as they gear up for the elections. Progressives must seriously, critically, and courageously begin to engage with others in discussing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and its roots in a brutal and dehumanizing occupation that no democracy should be dirtying its hands supporting.” Electronic Intifada co-founder Laurie King-Irani looks at the mobilizing role of justice in global and local campaigns for political change. 

Edward Said: A lesson that will not die, a vision that cannot fail

“There is no excuse for us not to aspire to the courage and clarity that Dr. Edward Said embodied. There is no excuse for us not to envision a better future and to work together with diverse Others for its realization. There is no excuse for any of us to let despair, anger, jealousy or fear poison us or slow us down. And there is no time to waste in honoring and sustaining the legacy of Dr. Said. As an American poet, May Swenson, said about deep sorrow following a great loss: ‘Don’t mourn the beloved. Try to be like him’.” EI co-founder Laurie King-Irani reflects on the lessons to be learned from Dr. Edward Said’s life and vision. 

21 Septembers Ago

“A man in his sixties, with kind eyes and a ready smile, waits until I am comfortably situated before he approaches me, pulls up his shirt, and points to an area just to the left of his navel. ‘lammasini hon, sittnaa!’ he quietly requests, ‘Touch me here, Ma’am!’ His middle-aged daughters sit silently around me, their eyes focused on nothing in particular as I gingerly comply with their father’s request. Touching the damp flesh of his round white belly, I am shocked to feel the hard, spherical mass of a bullet trapped in his stomach muscles.” On the 21st anniversary of the Sabra and Shatila massacre, EI’s Laurie King-Irani reflects on the search for international justice on a journey from Beirut to Brussels. 

Needed: A new cognitive road map for peace

“Perusing the Middle East map today, we find a region strewn with populations traumatized by decades, if not centuries, of suffering. Unless they are helped in overcoming their traumas, all talk of peace that does not begin with a search for justice and an honest acknowledgement of past wrongs is a waste of time.” Political scientist George E. Irani and EI co-founder Laurie King-Irani emphasize the need for a moral and legal basis for peace-making in the Middle East in the pages of Beirut’s Daily Star