Forthcoming

April 23 7:45 am (NY time) WBAI Radio 99.5fm  Aziz' commentary on the US mission creep into Syria, and more reviews of children's books about refugees. 

April 16  BN Aziz asks: why the Islamist rebels are being escorted out of the so called liberated areas, and where are they going? and a review of new Arab American memoirs 

April 9; Saudi Arabia's long and deep times with the US film industry. And we review the plethora of Arab women's memoirs

April 2 documenting war trauma. Do some war traumatized matter more than others? 

March 26 Iraq's neglected agricultural industry, and the persecution of Swiss-Arab Muslim scholar Tariq Ramadan

March 19, Iraq today. And the legal challenges facing Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against apartheid Israel.

March 12,Commentary on the fall of Myanmar's Ang Sang SuKyi; and recent observations for Iraq.

Jan 8, 7:45 am Film review of "Land of the Pomegranates", and an introduction to the American organization "Muslimish"

Nov 27, Russia and Syria: commentary on this longstanding relationship in the current international scene

Nov 20. A look at the new crisis created around Lebanon PM Hariri's resignation. Comments on a culture that's infused and spilling over with sexual predators.

Nov 13 Update on Kirkuk, Iraq. Veterans Day USA: Is celebration of war heros increasing?.

Nov 6, WBAI  News of Kirkuk, N. Iraq after the failed Kurdish referendum; Accusations towards male religious figures in ongoing sexual abuse exposes.

Sept 25: Syria update: the changing status quo and resulting change in US media coverage.. The Kurdish referendum

Sept 18: Myanmar's Ang San Su Kyi's eary history; beware of simplistic sectarian analyses

Sept 11: women as pawns in justifying American "wars to protect"

August 28, 7:45 am WBAI. Linda Sarsour, Arab American and US Muslim community leader: in her defence. Margo Shetterley author of "Hidden Figures"

Aug 21, WBAI Palestinian-American Rasmea Odeh, stripped of citizenship and deported this week.

Aug 14: BN Review of the anti-Israel boycott action in the US Congress. WBAI, 90.5 fm

July 10:  Nepal just completed its first election in 20 years for nationwide local admin posts.

July 3, WBAI Radio. "All politics is local":-- the hard work of using local news resources.

June 26: WBAI Radio We ask why is there no anti-war movement in the US? And: “Martyrdom”—an archaic phrase but a concept we need to think about today.

June 19  On the 50th anniversary of the 1967 war, and Israel's seemingly unstoppable political, diplomatic and territorial march, it’s remarkable that the Palestinian voice is heard at all.

June 12  The dilemma of 'moderate Amercian Muslims; following ReclaimNY , a child of Steve Bannon and Robert Mercer.

May 1, Workers Day, WBAI 99.5 fm. BN Aziz highlights the rise of the 'gig economy'

April 24, 7:45 WBAI 99.5 fm. A check on our progress as American Muslims; and, Lynne Stewart: the Peoples' Lawyer. 

See Ramzy Baroud's assessment on how our Muslim community misuses celebrity Muslims as surrogates for their own stuggle.

 

Monday April 17 WBAI Radio, NYC. Why is there essential no anti-war movement in the USA?

April 10;  A critical look at media coverage of the US assault on Syria; and an update on ReclaimNY.

B. Nimri Aziz weekly radio commentary on events around the globe and in the USA. Listen in at 99.5 fm, or online www.wbai.org where we are livestreamed.

"We are more alike than we are different"

  Maya Angelou

March 8, Women's Day Radio Specials  10-11 am on WJFF Radio, 90.5 fm, and 11:am on WBAI, 99.5 New York: B. Nimri Aziz interviews director Amber Fares about her new film "Speed Sisters" and exerpts from 2009-2010 interviews with professional women in Syria, Nadia Khost and Nidaa Al-Islam.

 

 

As a Black writer, I was expected to accept the role of victim. That made it difficult in the beginning to be a writer.      James Baldwin

I often feel that there must have been something that I should’ve done that I didn’t do. But I can’t identify what it is that I didn’t do. That’s the first difficulty. And the second is, what makes you think you’re it?   

         Harry Belafonte, activist and singer at 89

 

It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble; It's what you know for sure that just ainst so.

Mark Twain

 

You can't be brave if you've only had wonderful things happen to you.

Mary Tyler Moore

 

 You can’t defend Christianity by being against refugees and other religions

Pope Francis:

 

"I don't have to be what you want me to be". Muhammad Ali

"The Secret of Living Well and Longer: eat half, walk double, laugh triple, and love without measure"  attributed to Tibetan sources

Recent audio posts include interviews with Rumi interpreter Shahram Shiva, London-based author Aamer Hussein, South African Muslim scholar, professor Farid Esack, and Iraqi journalist Nermeen Al-Mufti's brief account of Kirkuk City history. Your comments on our blogs are always welcome.

 

A Mosque Or A Shared Holiday?

2010-08-17

by Barbara Nimri Aziz

National media headline ongoing, and growing, controversy over the proposed Cordoba Islamic Center in downtown New York City. New York mayor Michael Bloomberg has given his wholehearted support to the leaders of the proposed religious center. He vows that it will be built. In his endorsement of the mosque, Bloomberg affirms the religious rights of all Americans and recognition of Muslims as an integral part of city life. Thank you Mr. Mayor.  

But are there not other perhaps less confrontational means of establishing these principles? I can suggest one: that’s the inclusion of Muslim Eid holy days in the city’s school curriculum. By removing your objection to the Eid holiday plan you may even achieve real integration and deeper respect for Islam. 

In general the acceptance in the US of its Islamic peoples is an uphill struggle. We recognize this. Strategies and priorities need to be carefully thought out.  

Opposition to any mosque project in lower Manhattan could have been anticipated. Resistance is so strong it demonstrates still widespread and shameful anti-Islamic sentiments across the country. The issue promises to remain a source of antagonism; opposition tactics will doubtless stir up even more anti-Islamic feelings. These must be laid bare for the world to examine. At the same time they must be forcefully and rationally confronted. Dispute—in the courts and in the streets—is the history of American justice, and injustice.  

Anti-Islam opponents vow to continue their challenge even after the New York City Council cleared one hurdle to the mosque’s construction, deciding the building under question was not a city landmark and was thereby available for commercial or other private use. Demonstrations are ongoing; OpEds commentaries are plentiful. (Although our Muslims themselves seem to be letting others speak on their behalf.)  

With Mayor Bloomberg’s endorsement of the mosque in question, the Muslim community has a good friend on its side.  

But Mr. Mayor: you could have chosen something more reasonable than this nationally debated and heavily polarized subject which could explode. You could allow the City Council vote on another issue-- adoption Muslim holidays in the New York City schools-- to move ahead. Several cities already recognize Muslim holy days.  

Last year, the same New York City Council voted overwhelmingly (50-1) to adopt the Muslim holiday proposal. It needed only your nod to make it law. You refused, Mr. Bloomberg. And that issue languishes. Meanwhile the question of a new city mosque introduces tension and controversy. Do we not already have abundant crises associated in the minds of the public with Islam? 

Do we not have sufficient mosques—almost 200—in the city today?  

A new downtown mosque will, we are told, be an educational center. Good. But surely the inclusion of Muslim schools holidays for New York City’s more than one million children can serve a wider educational role. All children as well as their parents would learn what these holidays mean and share the Muslims values represented therein. The Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha in our school calendar would incorporate Muslim values in the lives of many more than a single mosque will.

Mayor Bloomberg and our Muslim leadership need to get their priorities in order.

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“Scatter your good deeds all around,

not caring whether they fall on those near or far away,

Just as the rain never cares where the clouds pour it out,

whether on fertile ground or on rocks.”

 

 

Ibn Siraj (Cordoba, d. 1114 CE)

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