Ottawa Spotlight اضواء أوتاوا

Hitch your wagon to a star

Small business owners: Trials and joys by M.T.Al-Mansouri,Ph.D.


At the beginning I would like to introduce Paris-Jerusalem, the Electronic Newspaper (Afnan), which is the new magazine of Canada and France It was established to provide strong ties and build bridges among the nations to realize a true and complete peace in our world. For this purpose it possesses English, French, Spanish, German, Hebrew and Arabic sections. The magazine can be found online by accessing its URL http://www.afnanonline.net. It is also an international and independent electronic newspaper. It is linked through various online and offline international professional journalists, scientists, and writers.

Afnan was established by the famous professor of Sorbonne University Dr. Afnan El Qasem, who is currently its editor-in-chief and publisher with the cooperation of Dr. M.T. Al-Missouri, who occupied its executive editorial secretary, and was launched at the beginning of 2008, and issues from France.

Since its launching, it has not only been rising up quickly but also joining in fellowship with most literary links of the world. e.g. http://www.treereadingseries.ca, which has been an active part of Ottawa's literary community for over 26 years and has a place among others, such as Rob McLennan's website http://robmclennan.blogspot.com, ARC, Canada's National Poetry Magazine. http://www.arcpoetry.ca/, Bywords.ca and the Bywords Quarterly Journal http://www.bywords.ca/, http://www.poetics.ca, The Ottawa International Writers Festival http://www.writersfest.com, the Sasquatch Reading Series http://www.e-sasquatch.ca, The Dusty Owl Readings http://www.dustyowl.com and the he Ottawa Poetry Pod cast http://ottawapoetry.libsyn.com.

The Websiteoutlook.com evaluated Paris-Jerusalem daily page view at around 1557. In the last three weeks the daily page view increased by about 24.3%.

Moreover, have great and excellent writers. Afnan is also a unique and beloved electronic newspaper, and participates in the most of the international and local cultural and political events etc. The book lover and Citizen columnist John W. MacDonald wrote about it in his blog, in which he represents and writes about great literary happenings in the city, http://www.johnwmacdonald.com/blog/blog.html and also in his Flick http://www.flickr.com/.

In spite of the achievements and pros mentioned above, Afnan has faced certain obstacles, because editor-in-chief and publisher professor Afnan El Qasem Ph.D planned his newspaper to be supported by billionaires of the world and wealthy people. So, he announced in advance a short story competition with the slogan "Oh Wealthy People of the World Advertise for your International Companies in our Worldwide Website, Support our and your Missions and Sponsor the Short Story Competition".

This strategy is hard to realize because of social, cultural and economic difficulties of the world in these days. Afnan became inpatient and took an action toward closing our cultural and informational media and explained that because of financial problems the magazine is going to cease its publication and announced this formally in the head of the magazine and with the picture of the black raven. I know that it is hard to get a blood or water from a stone. However, a verdict like this is a catastrophe.

As the executive-editorial secretary and co-founder this decision made me sick and hopeless due to both decision and explanation that our magazine did not sponsor by wealthy people or should be sponsored by them. In my opinion the mere thought of closing the website is the first step toward the suicide and closing it is the suicide itself. Moreover, readers, writers and people entering into the short story competition, who were promised that the winner of it will be reached around one hundred and fifty thousands Euro ( 150,000). This is not the only slogan of the newspaper.

Afnan has also an attractive logo, and smart slogans such as "We Must Prove our Presence in the Battles of Ideas, if We Want it Proven in the Battles of Presence", "Toward a Cultural and an Informational Empire", "Transparency is Our Methods", and "Oh Arabs Jerusalem is not only your Honour, but also the Essence of Existence. Who abandons it, Abandons his Past, Present and Future". We give the world a good example of struggling solidarity; loyalty, transparence and other virtues, and we must practice what we preach in our logos, slogans, essays etc.

As we know that there are rights and there are responsibilities, Hence, I advised the editor-in-chief to not give up and to cancel his dangerous and bad decision and to be patient, as the proverb says that "For every evil under the sun there is a remedy or there is none. If there is one, try to find it; if there is none never mind it".

Thus, we should start small and by our effort, patient, and perfection of our output we can achieve our targets and destination. Professor Afnan should understand that sending letters could not get money to rich people. Hence, we should work hard to get it, and there are many alternative methods of obtaining money or having sponsors such as advertising, which I have already started working on opening a sections for this purpose, and getting a sponsorship from the competent authorities of the Ministries of both Governments of Canada and France and the international cultural institutions.

The editor also should understand that culture has never been established and produced by only affluent people, and our statement only explains our desire to work with them in order to involve rich people to social work. Moreover, to exchange our skills. However;. do not give me fish but teach me how to fish.

It is difficult to get a blood or water from a stone. For this reason we should to go step by step and by little drops of water and little grains of sand we can make our mighty ocean and our pleasant land.

Finally, I know the financial difficulties and their influences on decision-making. Yet we should trust ourselves, depend on ourselves, and we must hitch our wagon to a star to solve other and our troubles, problems and harms.

At the end, as we used to be surprised by Palestinian people and their ongoing, continuous and constant ideas toward their occupied home land, refuges at the Diaspora and creative revolutions such as the revolution of stones, so Mr. professor you have to throw a stone at the black raven in order to liberate himself from our media empire, and throw your grappling hook into the Lord's sea, which has great and enormous surprises.

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