FADE IN:, the Lebanese Cinema Studies Company

hummus for thought


FADE IN: is a Lebanese Cinema Studies Company whose mission is “to help artists express themselves through motion-picture and writing”.

How did it start?

“I’ve lived in the United States for most of my life and decided to move back 3 years ago because I wanted to make movies from my home country,” Nadia Tabbara, FADE IN:‘s founder, told me. “I wanted to share my knowledge of screen-writing and film-making (that had effectively changed my creative life) with aspiring artists in Lebanon; to share with others the joy of writing films and to cultivate an appreciation for the craft of movie-making”

Tabbara started giving workshops 3 years ago in her living room and then, 2 years later, started using AltCity, Hamra. And that’s how FADE IN: was born. “Fade In are the first two words of every screenplay” we’re told on their website, “the first two words of…

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Cuba, US are warily, slowly improving relations

Repeating Islands


Bryan Bender (The Boston Globe) comments on the gradually improving relations between the United States and Cuba. Although the article implies that much of the positive transformation the island is undergoing is due to positive action by the U.S., especially the “quiet work” done by the U.S. Interests Section in Havana (rather than systemic changes that Raúl Castro and the Cuban government have spearheaded in the last two decades) it does a good job of highlighting the conflicts, changes, and desires on both sides. See excerpts here with a link to the full article below:

The imposing, seven-story structure with darkened windows sits just across from the Malecon, or sea wall, central Havana’s communal hangout. It is unadorned, flying no flags, offering few signs that germinating inside are seeds of a better relationship between official enemies.  The United States cut off relations and imposed a trade embargo with communist Cuba more…

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Sabahy’s challenge



( a group of youth carry the required legal recommendations for Sabahy’s candidacy.

Via Twitter) 

Published in Daily News Egypt

Egypt’s leftist politician Hamdeen Sabahy has become the second candidate after ex-army chief Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi to formally join Egypt’s presidential race. The Sisi/Sabahy presidential race evokes memories of the farcical Mubarak/Ayman Nour election in 2005. Nevertheless, some perceive Sabahy’s challenge as a brave one. However, regardless of the intentions of the military-backed interim authority and how it will conduct the presidential race, Sabahy has no choice now but to make the most of his presidential bid. Sabahy’s real challenge is neither the conduct nor the outcome of the 2014 election, but whether he can provide a workable civil model for the governance of Egypt.

During this election campaign, Sabahy faces a tough test. He has two options: either he plays the underdog, the victim of Sisi dominance, and proceed with…

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Caroline Kennedy Says She Will Back Hillary Clinton in a Run for President – NYTimes.com

Ms. Kennedy’s comments on Thursday are another sign that the Democratic Party is coalescing around Mrs. Clinton. Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri, who also endorsed Mr. Obama in 2008, has declared her support for Ready for Hillary, a “super PAC” designed to foster grass-roots enthusiasm for a Clinton candidacy. David Geffen, a major Democratic donor and former Clinton supporter who had a break with the Clintons in 2008, has also said he would support Mrs. Clinton in 2016.

via Caroline Kennedy Says She Will Back Hillary Clinton in a Run for President – NYTimes.com.

Afghan Women’s Writing Project | Peace Shouts

peace, peace, peace shouts

what is this peace, I can’t see it

is it something to eat or drink

it sounds sweet whatever it is

how much it will cost to buy

who can sell peace, I want to buy

I know war, I see it every day

I see it in daylight and even in dreams

it’s a red color, it’s so cheap

it has a harsh voice

you can find it easily in my homeland

it takes lives

it kills children, young and old

yesterday it was close to taking my life

I escaped

it can be in a restaurant

it can be in your workplace or university

everywhere, everywhere in my land

peace, peace, peace shouts

and my throat is hurting

calling for peace, it never comes

please, if anyone has seen it, please

bring peace


we are tired of cleaning blood

By Hila G.

via Afghan Women’s Writing Project | Peace Shouts.

{Bigger Fail Than Thought!} A Defiant Rancher Savors the Audience That Rallied to His Side – NYTimes.com

“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch — they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.

Continue reading the main story

“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he asked. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”

via A Defiant Rancher Savors the Audience That Rallied to His Side – NYTimes.com.

Baseball’s Connie Marrero Dies at 102; Starred in Cuba and Majors

Repeating Islands


Associated Press reports that Connie Marrero, “a chunky right-hander from Cuba with a windmill delivery and a wicked curveball, was nearly 39 years old when he reached the major leagues with the 1950 Washington Senators.” He died today in Havana at age 102, two days short of his 103rd birthday; Marrero was the oldest former major leaguer. According to Richard Goldstein, his time with the Senators was only one chapter of a long career in which he became a cherished figure in Cuban baseball. Here are a few excerpts with a link to the full article below:

[. . .] Marrero was one of Cuba’s leading pitchers in both the amateur and professional ranks. After pitching for the Senators, he tutored many young players in Cuba, having remained there after Fidel Castro took power in 1959. In the late 1980s he was a part-time pitching coach for the Cuban League…

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