It is more than a month that there was no new post on Free Haifa.
There are many reasons for that.
The main culprits are General Sisi, his likes and their lackeys.
As I stated while starting this blog, and in the later “About” page, the main goal of Free Haifa was to help bring the voice and thinking of the Arab Spring to the International Left. Now these hopeful days looks like belonging to a remote period.
The Arab Spring started as a wide democratic and social awakening of the masses. If its Islamic, Leftist and Liberal components could unite under one democratic umbrella, if they would find a way to work together for national independence, economic development and a more just society, no force could stop them. But much before the victory of the democratic revolution was guaranteed – internal divisions eroded the forces of this revolution.
Much of the blame for this lies with the weakness and disorientation of the local and international left. It started with Syria, where much of the left defended the “progressive” Assad tyranny. But it became a disaster with the support that many leftists and liberals in Egypt gave to the outwardly reactionary coup.
How can we speak about progressive principles or plan a strategy for the left to lead the revolution when we hardly hear any complaint about the most severe tightening of the Siege on Gaza?
But not all my excuses are for bad reasons.
In the Munich conference on June/July 2012 we started a renewed effort to build a movement for the return of the Palestinian Refugees and for One Democratic State in the whole of Palestine. Free Haifa naturally was used as a platform to publish some of first statements of the movement. Those statements had to be published also in Arabic and Hebrew – so soon Haifa Al-Hura حيفا الحرة and Haifa Ha-Hofshit חיפה החופשית started to compete for my time with Free Haifa.
As the ODS movement in Palestine started to take an organizational form, it was not appropriate for it any more to be a guest in Free Haifa. As a modest start it built its own blogging-tent – ODS Yaffa. ODS statements in all three languages went there and I was left with even less time and missing an important component of my three blogs.
As every institution of the left, Free Haifa could not avoid its internal arguments about principles, tactics and morality. On one side it tries to follow the scientific and serious tradition, concentrating on long and thoughtful articles. On the other side it aspires to respond to the needs of the masses for some good humor, mud throwing, intriguing and short posts.
In the end of the argument we decided to separate as friends and the lighter materials have found their own home in Free Haifa Extra.
What was Left?
This does not mean that we don’t need a serious discussion on the left about analysis and strategies.
For the coming period I intend to carry most of my part in this discussion with my immediate partners in struggle in Arabic through Haifa Al-Hura and other forums. This is some progress also, as my Arabic is getting better…
If your Arabic is not good enough yet, I promise to do my best to keep you posted in Free Haifa in English as well – but maybe not as frequently as I used to.
If you have any idea where the real discussions of the international left is taking place in these days – and how we can get more involved to share views over borders and oceans – please leave a note.