The human stories that are changing how we see the Middle East

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This week’s Upside looks at individuals reclaiming the narrative, and others saving our beaches

In the Middle East, a region benighted with seemingly permanent conflicts, increasing censorship and democratic rebellion, an Upside can seem unlikely. Yet, this week our reporters have been finding human stories that help change the perception of the region, giving a voice to its inhabitants and revealing their hopes and wishes.

Roger Hamilton-Martin wrote about the Israeli-Canadian Cory Gil-Shuster and his YouTube channel Ask an Israeli/Ask a Palestinian. Gil-Shuster poses digitally submitted questions to Israeli and Palestinian residents, exposing the nature of the conflict and some of their inherent similarities in the process. His unedited videos have racked up over 44m views since he began the project in 2012. “As a person involved in this conflict, I’m trying to figure out where perception meets reality,” he says.

This is a way to show that my homeland is producing beautiful handicrafts. Palestine is known only for conflict, but we also have a strong cultural tradition.” Shehada Shalalda

I think I might just send this to my AM and ask him to take it to the Welsh government – it’s the kind of initiative they should be interested in.” A reader inspired by the Isle of Man story

Every day I discover the complexity of Israeli civil society.” Alan Frommer, who lives in Israel, commenting on Roger Hamilton-Martin’s story via email

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Link : The human stories that are changing how we see the Middle East

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