How to read the ‘Arab street’ as America pushes rapprochement with Israel

by Rashmee

Posted on August 28, 2020


This week, Donald Trump’s official and unofficial secretaries of state – Mike Pompeo and Jared Kushner – fanned out across the Middle East and North Africa to push Arab-Israeli rapprochement in the aftermath of the August 13 Israel-UAE deal. The US-sponsored deal between Israel and the UAE was only the third such accord Israel has struck with … Continue reading “How to read the ‘Arab street’ as America pushes rapprochement with Israel”

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Sanders or not, the US Democratic Party is increasingly turned off by Netanyahu’s Israel

by Rashmee

Posted on March 6, 2020


Whatever happens with the two-man race that is now the Democratic presidential field, one thing is clear: the positions taken by Benjamin Netanyahu’s Israel are forcing a change in the strongly bipartisan nature of US-Israeli ties. Where once both the Republican and Democratic parties shared the exact same regard for Israel – so much so … Continue reading “Sanders or not, the US Democratic Party is increasingly turned off by Netanyahu’s Israel”

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How Suleimani’s death will affect India and Pakistan

by Rashmee

Posted on January 6, 2020 / The National


To properly consider the possible fallout of Friday’s targeted US strike on Qassem Suleimani, of Iran’s elite Quds Force, disregard the tub-thumping rhetoric from Washington and the ominous rumblings from Tehran. Listen instead for the sound of silences within disparate countries’ statements on the situation. Consider the responses offered by South Asia’s nuclear-armed neighbours, India … Continue reading “How Suleimani’s death will affect India and Pakistan”

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But, of course, the EU Must Recognize Palestine. The alternative is more drastic

by Rashmee

Posted on December 30, 2019


With the US steadily working with Israel to obliterate hopes for a two-state solution, Daoud Kuttab, an award-winning Palestinian journalist, has suggested we are at a fork in the road. Writing in Project Syndicate, Mr Kuttab said, “If European leaders – or, indeed, any others around the world – want to advance a vision of … Continue reading “But, of course, the EU Must Recognize Palestine. The alternative is more drastic”

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Saturday rearview: How the world made it harder to be good in 2019

by Rashmee

Posted on December 28, 2019


The week was rich in sights, sounds – and tastes – of Israel and the Palestinian Territories. And then there was a piece I wrote with Jason Karaian  in Quartz about how the world in 2019 made it harder to be a good person. Think about it: you can’t fly, buy fast fashion, anything plastic, … Continue reading “Saturday rearview: How the world made it harder to be good in 2019”

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Amid the dreary state of Arab-Israeli relations comes Christmas cheer and a message of hope

by Rashmee

Posted on December 26, 2019 / The National


It being Christmas, there is a certain obligation to bring glad tidings, or at least as glad as is possible in a year marked by deepening discontent and divisions in many parts of the world. This despite the Palestinian-Israeli issue ramping up a contentious notch earlier this week when Fatou Bensouda, chief prosecutor at the … Continue reading “Amid the dreary state of Arab-Israeli relations comes Christmas cheer and a message of hope”

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It’s going to be a year of ‘conscious uncoupling’

by Rashmee

Posted on December 22, 2019 / The Arab Weekly


All bets are off on what lies ahead in 2020 but it probably won’t be a sober and well-judged 3M strategy on the part of the West. As 2019 hastens to an end, its defining patterns are clear.  The year was marked by two rancorous relationships: between China and the United States and between Turkey … Continue reading “It’s going to be a year of ‘conscious uncoupling’”

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Jerusalem in food, in pictures

by Rashmee

Posted on December 20, 2019


Resign yourself to it: unless you eat a falafel pitta sandwich (very good from the shop at Damascus Gate, opposite the bakery) or a couple of kibeh or a 15-shekel arayes, food is expensive in Jerusalem. We were shocked. The baker opposite the falafel shop at Damascus Gate sells four pitta for 5 shekel, which … Continue reading “Jerusalem in food, in pictures”

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Like Mark Twain in ‘Innocents Abroad’, we went to the Holy Sepulchre

by Rashmee

Posted on December 18, 2019


  So, like Mark Twain in ‘Innocents Abroad’, we went to the Holy Sepulchre near Jerusalem’s western gate. Unlike Twain, we first stopped at The Garden Tomb, which is on Nablus Road, and no more than 15 minutes of uninterrupted walking time away from the Holy Sepulchre. There’s a reason Twain didn’t go to The … Continue reading “Like Mark Twain in ‘Innocents Abroad’, we went to the Holy Sepulchre”

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Behold the arayes – immensely popular and intensely contested in Israel

by Rashmee

Posted on December 17, 2019


This is no ordinary sandwich. To be made correctly, the arayes has to be crispy outside and juicy inside. The meat stuffing has to be perfectly cooked – not dry – and adhering to the inner wall of the pita with the fat that has dripped off the meat. At least that’s the way some … Continue reading “Behold the arayes – immensely popular and intensely contested in Israel”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK