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Syria Teach-In Nov. 17, 2013

November 8, 2013
Dear Friend of the Campaign for Peace and Democracy,

      We are writing to draw your attention to what promises to be a very informative teach-in, "Syria in the Context of the Arab Uprisings," on Sunday, November 17 in New York City. The event is sponsored by the Middle East North Africa Solidarity Network-US, and endorsed by NYU's Radical Film and Lecture Series. Details about speakers, location, time, etc. are below; you can visit the event's Facebook page to indicate if you plan to attend.

        The Campaign for Peace and Democracy's own September 2013 statement on Syria is on the CPD website, as is the August 2013 CPD Syria Roundtable featuring a range of viewpoints with contributions from Thomas Harrison, Joanne Landy, Molly Nolan, Michael Karadjis, David McReynolds, Assaf Kfoury, US Labor Against the War (with a comment by Michael Eisenscher), Salameh Kaileh, and Joseph Daher.

In peace and solidarity,
Joanne                Tom
Joanne Landy      Thomas Harrison
Co-Directors, Campaign for Peace and Democracy

Syria Teach-in

Syria in the Context of the Arab Uprisings

Sunday, Nov. 17, noon-6pm
NYU Silver Center, Room 405
Manhattan, New York

Join leading Syrian and other Middle East scholars and activists at an afternoon teach-in on the Syrian uprising. Hear from activists on the front lines in Syria and Palestine as well as from writers and scholars who've lived and studied there. Learn, discuss and debate what led to the uprising, who are the forces on the ground today and why Americans should defend Syrians' right to resist Assad's dictatorship and oppose Western intervention. We will explore the relationship between the armed and non-violent resistance, the counter-revolutionary role of jihadists like Al-Nusra, and prospects for a just and democratic peace in Syria.

Snacks and literature will be available.

Doors open at 11:30 am
($5 donation requested, nobody turned away for lack of funds)

Program starts at Noon

Session 1: Roots and Grassroots of the Syrian Uprising
with: Razan Ghazzawi (from Syria*), Leila Shrooms*, Ella Wind, Mohja Kahf*

Session 2: Myths and Realities of the Syrian Uprising
with: Sara Ajlyakin (from Brazil*), Nader Atassi, Budour Hassan (from Jerusalem/Al-Quds*)

Session 3: Syria in the Context of the Arab Uprisings
with: Yasser Munif and Gilbert Achcar

*Asterisk denotes video conference presentation.

-NYU Silver Center is located at 100 Washington Square East (main entrance at 31 Washington Place, which is between Washington Square East and Greene Street.
-Wheelchair accessible. Photo ID is required for entrance.-
1 Wash. Sq. North. Go to W. 4th St. stop (A, B, C, D, E, F, M) or 8th St. NYU stop (N, R, W) and Astor Pl. (6).

The teach-in is a project of the Middle East North Africa Solidarity Network-US, whose website includes the group's founding statement and news analysis on the region,
and Facebook,

Endorsed by the NYU Radical Film and Lecture Series.


Razan Ghazzawi
Razan Ghazzawi is a blogger from Syria who started blogging using an alias, Golaniya, when Israel launched a war against Lebanon in 2006. She blogged against racism towards Syrian workers in Lebanon, where she completed her masters degree. Razan started blogging under her real name two years later advocating along many Syrian bloggers for freedom of speech in her country. When the Syrian revolution broke out in March 2011, Razan was among those who disseminated updates on demonstrations taking place across Syria using her real name. She was detained twice during the revolution due to her work with the Syrian Center for Media Freedom.

Leila Shrooms
Leila Shrooms is of Syrian origin and worked for a number of years as a human rights activist inside Syria. She is the co-founder of Tahrir-ICN, a network to build connections between the anti-authoritarian movements in the Middle East, North Africa and Europe.

Ella Wind
Ella Wind is a co-editor of the Syria Page on Jadaliyya, and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Middle East Studies from New York University. She lived in Syria until April 2011, where she was conducting research on Syrian-Turkish economic relations, and has more recently lived in Lebanon. Her writing on Syria has appeared in outlets such as Jadaliyya, BBC Persian, and the Majalla.

Mohja Kahf
Born in Syria, U.S.-naturalized in the 1980s, Mohja Kahf is an associate professor of literature and Middle Eastern Studies in the Department of English at the University of Arkansas where she has taught for eighteen years (Ph.D. Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, 1994). Author of the novel, The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf; poetry book E-mails from Scheherazad, Kahf marched against the U.S. war on Iraq and was an early signatory of the U.S. Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel. She visited the Turkish border with Syria in 2011 and has written recent articles on Syria here and in openDemocracy. Kahf is a member of the Syrian Nonviolence Movement.

Nader Atassi
Nader Atassi is a Syrian political researcher and writer originally from Homs, currently living between the United States and Beirut. He runs the blog Darth Nader, reflecting on events within the Syrian revolution.

Budour Hassan
Budour Hassan, originally from Nazareth, is a Palestinian blogger and Law graduate based in Jerusalem/Al-Quds. She has written about Syrian political prisoners and the myth of Palestinian neutrality in Syria.

Yasser Munif
Yasser Munif is a professor of sociology at Emerson College where he teaches courses on nationalism, political economy, Middle Eastern politics, and social movements. He is a co-founder of the "Global Campaign of Solidarity with the Syrian Revolution" which aims to shed light on the minutiae of resistance and everyday struggle. He recently spent two months in Northern Syria where he is conducting research on local governance, post-Assad reconstruction, and internally displaced persons.

Gilbert Achcar

Gilbert Achcar grew up in Lebanon, researched and taught in Beirut, Paris and Berlin, and is currently Professor of Development Studies and International Relations at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) of the University of London. His many books include: The Clash of Barbarisms: The Making of the New World Disorder, published in 13 languages; Perilous Power: The Middle East and U.S. Foreign Policy, co-authored with Noam Chomsky; the critically acclaimed The Arabs and the Holocaust: The Arab-Israeli War of Narratives. He published most recently a collection of essays on Marxism, Orientalism, Cosmopolitanism, in addition to his latest book: The People Want: A Radical Exploration of the Arab Uprising. The NYC launch of The People Want will be Monday, Nov. 18, 7pm at NYU.