Palestinian World Cup

Sweeping Arab nationalist feelings and their enthusiastic support for every Arab team was noticed when any of them made any achievement at the football turf, as happened in the case of Green Falcons of Saudi Arabia when they defeated Argentine’s team of the legendary player Lionel Messi, and when Moroccan national team beat Belgium. The explosion of the reservoir of pent-up feelings of Arabs from all countries of the world at this event revealed the fact that we are one nation from the Gulf to the ocean. The countries separated by geographic barriers and the actions of their rulers appeared overwhelmed with the cause of Palestine and the rights of its people. Palestine was absent from the Qatar World Cup as a football team, but it was present everywhere.

There was unfurling of the Palestinian flags in an unprecedented abundance, wearing of the Palestinian koofiyyeh (chequered black and white scarf) by all, and the adornment of wrists and arms with slogans in support of Palestine. All in the presence of the Israeli media. It surprised all those who did not expect it. They faced the resolute Arab popular rejection of any actual, symbolic, or behavioural normalisation with the settlers of the Israeli occupation entity.  The “normalisation” is a direct extension of Israel. The new resistance, with amazing valour, brought its stars to their original orbits to win the future for Palestine. It has already won in the form of overflowing emotions at the World Cup matches in Qatar.

[by Abdul Haleem Kandel in Al-Arab, London]

Turkey in Russian Backyards

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu expects that the volume of freight passing through the “Middle Corridor” in 2022 will be six times more than which was in 2021. He made this announcement in a speech which he delivered at the opening of the tripartite meeting of the Ministers of Transportation and Foreign Affairs of Turkey, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan, on Friday. Then, what is Ankara planning in Moscow’s backyards?

The war in Ukraine showed how alarmed the countries surrounding Russia were from Moscow’s ambitions to restore Soviet and Tsarist glories and dream of a Eurasian empire. On the eve of his military campaign against Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin questioned the legitimacy of Ukraine’s existence as an independent country, while Russian deputies questioned Kazakhstan’s borders.

The countries of the Caucasus did not show the hoped-for solidarity with the elder brother Russia. Even the position of Kazakhstan in particular is almost resentful of Russia’s war in Ukraine.

This region has sought for decades to protect itself from the winds of Russian nostalgia blown by Moscow’s nationalist beliefs confirmed by positions emanating from Putin himself. It found in what happened to Ukraine confirmation of its concerns about the threats of Russia which for them are not illusions.

Those countries spared no effort to develop their relations with the US, but its space is limited as it could provoke Russia on the one hand and China on the other. These countries manoeuvre carefully between Russia and China at multiple levels, and weaving relations with the authentic historical “Turkish house”.

[by Mohamad Kawas in Sky News Arabia]

Compiled and translated by Faizul Haque

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