Come on Jordan. Why Ban a Book on The Arab-Israeli Conflict!

Published November 21st, 2021 - 02:13 GMT
Dr Hassan Al Barari
Dr Hassan Al Barari (

ALBAWABA - Jordan has just banned another academic book written by Dr Hassan Al Barari who is an expert and a professor of politics and international relations at the University of Jordan. 

The book roughly titled because its in Arabic "Zionism, Israel and the Arabs: 100 Years of Struggle" has just been banned by the Jordan Media Commission. This means the book will neither be allowed to be put on sale in bookshops nor distributed to them, not in Jordan and maybe no where else in the world. 

The book has been printed by the local and well-known Al Ahlia publisher in downtown Amman. Dr Al  Barari tweeted earlier the book will be in the shops in just two weeks. Therefore its ban is baffling, muffling another voice, an Arab voice, on a very important topic from an academic intellectual perspective.

However, he has been told by the publisher of Al Ahlia Ahmad Abu Toq the JMC told him there is an embargo on the book, adding he will later receive an official later to register the concerns of the Media Commission. 

It seems however odd to ban a book just because of the title especially since quite a number of Arab governments have already signed peace agreements and accords with Israel, beginning with Egypt (1979), Palestinians (1994) Jordan (1994) and regional states like UAE, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco in the late 2020s.  The normalisation process between the Arab world and Israel appears to be full steam ahead.

And hence, what can Dr Barari possibly say that hasn't been splashed in printed ink across many papers, narratives, treatises and yes, books. Why bother? The Arab-Israeli conflict must have preoccupied the whole world at least since 1948 and created an intellectual school called "The Arab-Israel Conflict" not just in English but whole other languages.

Tons of books have been written on the subject, dissecting the Arab/Israeli/Palestinian conflict from top to bottom, left, right and centre, inside out with different dimensions, factual history, analysis and different point of views in politics, international relations, economics, history and antiquities.

The book by Dr Barari might be invaluable to the Arab reader, policy-maker and specialist however. So why ban it, particularly since Arabic scholarship is still lacking on the subject in this respect?


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