What shaped the C.I.A., and how does the agency play a role in our foreign policy in the Middle East and North Africa? The Levantine Cultural Center presents a public forum and book signing with intelligence historian Hugh Wilford and former C.I.A. case officer Robert Baer, in conversation about the history of the agency's Arabists and the direction of U.S. Middle East foreign policy, particularly with respect to Israel, Iran and Syria. The discussion will be moderated by journalist and political commentator Robert Scheer. The program is made possible in part by Truthdig and LA Jews for Peace. KPFK Pacifica Radio 90.7 FM is a media sponsor.
Hugh Wilford's new book is America's Great Game, The CIA's Secret Arabists and the Shaping of the Modern Middle East. Robert Baer is a former CIA case officer who served everywhere from Iraq to the former Soviet Union. (The 2005 film Syriana, starring George Clooney, was an adaptation of several of his books about the intelligence world.) Baer is the author of See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War on Terrorism; Sleeping with the Devil: How Washington Sold Our Soul for Saudi Crude; and The Devil We Know: Dealing with the New Iranian Superpower. Robert Scheer is the editor-in-chief of the online news magazine Truthdig and a regular commentator on KCRW's Left, Right and Center.
Journalist and documentarian David Sheen has studiously documented the plight of the African asylum-seekers and Israel's draconian response. In his first Los Angeles appearance, he will screen footage he has shot on location and provide context for Israel's drive to deport Africans as but the most recent manifestation of the country's efforts to limit and reduce the proportion of non-white non-Jewish people in the country. This public forum is presented by Jewish Voice for Peace-Los Angeles and made by possible with underwriting provided by Anonymous (2). Read a recent article by Sheen at muftah.org. More info, visit David Sheen's web site.
Critics of Islam ask why Muslims themselves don't speak out often enough against extremism. The Levantine Cultural Center and Muslims for Progressive Values invite you to a public forum on Muslims like the young Malala Yousefzai and countless others around the world who oppose Islamic fundamentalism. Featured guest speaker is human rights lawyer and UC Davis law professor Karima Bennoune, whose book Your Fatwa Does Not Apply Here, Untold Stories from the Fight Against Muslim Fundamentalism, was named one of the top ten books of the year on religion and spirituality by Booklist, the magazine of the American Library Association. Read an excerpt on how Muslim artists battle fundamentalism. Cosponsored by Muslims for Progressive Values. Moderated by MPV cofounder Ani Zonneveld (bio follows).
"Your Fatwa Does Not Apply Here should be required reading, not only for those of us who are professionally involved with Muslim-majority societies, but also for anyone who mistakenly believes that Muslims are doing nothing to end fundamentalist violence." —Rachel Newcomb, The Washington Post
The Levantine Cultural Center is pleased to welcome to Los Angeles for its debut concert the New York Andalus Ensemble, a group that performs the illustrious musical traditions of the Iberian Peninsula and North Africa. This diverse group of singers and instrumentalists presents a varied repertoire of songs in Arabic, Hebrew, Spanish, and Ladino, conjuring the cosmopolitanism of the Cordoba of al-Andalus. Performances weave together song with moments about the philosophical, linguistic, and theological intersections between faiths. Tickets are only $20 when reserving in advance ($25 at the door). Space is limited, RSVPs strongly advised. 323.413.2001.
Limited seating for this long-running and inspired comedy show-come enjoy a healthy dose of comic relief, laugh about life and the Middle East with one of L.A's hottest comedy troupes, the Sultans
"Atzmon is...a larger than life figure with an almost overpowering musical personality." —Phil Jonson
Come participate in a dynamic Middle East rhythm and drum circle, facilitated by Rowan Storm, Saturday from 1:30 -3:30 pm, Feb. 8, 2014 (repeats on March 15, 2014). Beginners welcome. For all ages. Family friendly. Various hand drums and percussion provided, or bring your own. The Levantine Cultural Center is located at 5998 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles 90035 between La Cienega and Fairfax. Info/reservations 323.413.2001 or just show up. Grab a drum or bring your own and join the fun! Visit carpetconcert.com or rowanstorm.com.
Suggested contribution Part One ~ Basic Lesson: $10. Part Two ~ Rhythm Circle: $10. Suggested contribution for both parts: $15.
His aficionados in New York, Los Angeles and Dubai have alternatively compared him with Jean-Michel Basquiat and even Marc Chagall. But while Ramsey Chahine is young and prolific, he proclaims neither allegiance nor debt to a single inspiration. Playful yet often profound, Chahine's paintings express a love of life, as well as a passionate curiosity about the meaning of things. The Levantine Cultural Center's Inside/Outside Gallery is pleased to present THE POISON IS THE CURE, the first major California exhibition of the work of Ramsey Chahine, featuring more than 25 mixed media paintings and sculptures. A reception for the artist takes place on Saturday, February 1, 7-11 pm, and the show will be available daily for viewing, Feb. 1-March 15, 2014.
Ramsey Chahine, a Palestinian American, was born in Redondo Beach, California. He currently works in New York City.
Influenced by Jean-Michel Basquiat, Picasso and Marc Chagall among others, Ramsey Chahine is a young and prolific artist whose work is playful yet often profound. His paintings express a love of life, as well as a passionate curiosity about the meaning of things. The Levantine Cultural Center's Inside/Outside Gallery is pleased to present THE POISON IS THE CURE, the first major California exhibition of the work of Ramsey Chahine, featuring more than 25 mixed media paintings and sculptures. The exhibition is available daily for viewing, Feb. 1-March 15, 2014.
Ramsey Chahine, a Lebanese-Palestinian American, was born in Redondo Beach, California. He currently works in New York City.