Yalla! Fight Back, book empowers American Arabs

Yalla! Fight Back, book empowers American Arabs
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Yalla! Fight Back, book empowers American Arabs

A new book that empowers Arabs and Muslims in America to effectively confront and change news media bias  was published this week by award-winning Palestinian American columnist and former Chicago City Hall journalist Ray Hanania.

Yalla! Fight Back offers a strategic plan for Arabs and Muslims in America to understand the system of media bias and how it corrupts the American political system.

The book is based on Hanania’s 45 years in professional journalism, communications and political consulting.

Book cover for Yalla! Fight Back



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The book spells out the 10 fundamentals of effective communications, and offers 10 specific strategies that Arabs, Muslims and other minorities victimized by media bias can use to overcome discrimination and bigotry.

“The mainstream American news media is the source and origin or discrimination that empowers government and politicians to undermine Arab and Muslim rights in America,” Hanania, who has won numerous journalism awards including four Lisagor awards for column writing.

“I wanted to give Arabs and Muslims a basic understanding of why we are demonized by the media and how the system starting with government and politicians use that bias to undermine our rights. We’re taxpayers. We’re patriotic. We deserve our share of the benefits that come with being proud Americans. These benefits are denied to us by being excluded from the U.S. Census, by being marginalized and demonized by the mainstream news media and by being targeted by discrimination and political oppression. The tragedy is that we can empower ourselves by understanding how this discriminatory system works, and easily use simple communications strategies to confront this discriminatory system.”

Click here to get more information on the new book which is available online for $24.95.

Yalla! Fight Back is for Arab Americans who have been demonized, excluded, maligned and marginalized by the mainstream American news media. It is for Arab Americans who have had enough and want to initiate positive change to restore their rights. It is a blueprint to help Arab Americans confront the racists who push us down, push us aside, and deny to us the benefits that we earned as hardworking, taxpaying, military-serving and law-abiding citizens of this country,” Hanania writes.

“This book is for Arab Americans who want to make a difference in our society by entering politics and running for public office. It is for political activists who want to effectively counter the onslaught of hate perpetrated not just by the print news media, but also by the TV media, the radio media and the entertainment media, which includes destructive Hollywood movies and films.”

In addition to understanding basic communications strategies, Yalla! Fight Back offers 10 principles the book helps readers to understand

1 – Don’t focus on the Consequences of problems alone. Address and correct the problem itself.

2 – Unite as a community and stop fighting internally over issues. The biggest hurdle Arabs in America face is that we are often our own worst enemies. We’re victims of Israeli atrocities, news media bias and societal racism from those facts. As victims we act like victims and focus on the easier target, bullying our own instead of standing up to injustice. Stop pretending that we are different from each other. Americans can’t tell the difference between Chaldeans and Arabs, Palestinians or Lebanese. We see the differences but the American public does not.

3 – Understand politics, it’s not about 100 percent. Politicians are measured by how much they support you and how much they don’t. If you agree with 80 percent of what a politician stand up and disagree with 20 percent, don’t focus on the 20 percent. Work to help that politician change that 20 percent, reduce it. But there will never be 100 percent.

4 – Tell our story and do it effectively. I will teach you the 10 fundamentals of strategic communications detailed in this book.

5 – “Fight back” is not about violence. It is about speaking out and speaking out effectively. Non-violence. Communications. Civil disobedience clearly explained to the public.

6 – Support the Arab American Media, which needs your support, and challenge the racism and bigotry in the mainstream American news media which excludes us and yet feeds off of our support.

7 – Emotion and anger are not strategies. Use effective strategic communications to make a difference.

8 – Recognize and acknowledge mistakes and failures and then correct those mistakes and failures. The first step in success is to recognize your failings, shortcomings, mistakes, and not repeat them. Change them.

9 – Speak to the real problems, not the consequences of the problems. Problems cause consequences and often we focus on those consequences rather than changing the underlying problem that caused the consequence.

10 – Don’t talk to yourself. Don’t talk to the choir. Identify your audience. Understand what that audience needs to better understand you, and give that audience what it needs wrapped around your message.

“These are simple and easy steps to follow and the Yalla! Fight Back helps readers implement effective action to neutralize media bias and turn it around tot heir benefit,” Hanania said.

“It’s simple. But we have to recognize it, understand it, and then do something about it.”

Yalla! Fight Back is a supplement to Ray Hanania’s monthly live radio show on Detroit Arab Radio and regular podcasts on iTunes offering support to Arab and Muslim Americans.

Yalla! Fight Back podcast

Yalla! Fight Back
356 pages
Published by Urban Strategies Group
ISBN:  978-1-387-63577-1
For more information visit www.YallaFightBack.com

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Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania is an award winning political and humor columnist who analyzes American and Middle East politics, and life in general. He is an author of several books.

"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."

Hanania covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).

Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com, and at www.TheArabDailyNews.com, www.TheDailyHookah.com and at SuburbanChicagoland.com. He has also published weekly columns in the Jerusalem Post newspaper, YNetNews.com, Newsday Newspaper in New York, the Orlando Sentinel Newspapers, and the Arlington Heights Daily Herald.

Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media. In 2009, Hanania received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. He was honored for his writing skills with two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild. In 1990, Hanania was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times editors for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

His writings have also been honored by two national Awards from ADC for his writing, and from the National Arab American Journalists Association.

The managing editor of Suburban Chicagoland Online News website www.SuburbanChicagoland.com, Hanania's columns also appear in the Southwest News Newspaper Group of 8 newspapers.

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