Alain Gresh was raised in Cairo. His biological father Henri Curiel, was born to an Italian-Jewish family and later became an Egyptian citizen. He was exiled from Egypt in 1950 because of his communist and national liberation activities. He continued these in Paris, where he settled. He was assassinated in Paris in 1978, and the case was never solved, although two right-wing groups claimed responsibility. Gresh moved to Paris in his teens to study Mathematics and Arabic. He continued studying the Near East in college, and wrote his PhD dissertation on the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO). He has written extensively on Islam and the Arab world.
He was editor of Le Monde Diplomatique, and retired at end of 2015. By a collaborative arrangement, The Nation, a magazine published in the United States, and Le Monde Diplomatique jointly publish some articles monthly, in print and online.
He is a co-founder and publications director of Orient XXI, an online publication based in Paris, and regularly contributes articles to it. This independent media was founded by a group of journalists, academics, former diplomats and activists interested in the Levant.
According to journalist Robert Fisk of the UK' The Independent, Gresh is "the best commentator on the Middle East [...], whose work in Le Monde diplomatique is – or should be – essential reading for all politicians, generals, 'intelligence officers', torturers, and every Arab in the entire region."
- De quoi la Palestine est-elle le nom ? Les Liens qui libèrent, 2010
- Un chant d’amour. Israël-Palestine, une histoire française, with Hélène Aldeguer, éditions La Découverte, 2017.
- "Shadow of the army over Egypt's revolution", Le Monde Diplomatique (August 2013)
- "The Middle East: How the Peace was Lost", Le Monde Diplomatique (September 2001)
- The PLO: The Struggle Within: Towards an Independent Palestinian State (1988).
- The Middle East: War Without End? (1988). With Dominique Vidal.
- An A to Z of the Middle East (1990). With Dominique Vidal.
- Ordinary Days in Dheisheh: Is the World Watching? (2000). With Munā Hamzeh.
- The New AZ of the Middle East (2004). With Dominique Vidal.
- Israel, Palestine: Truths of a Conflict (2007).
- Palestine 47, un partage avorté (1994).
- Les 100 portes du Proche-Orient, Éditions de l'Atelier (1996/2006). With Dominique Vidal.
- L'islam en questions (2000). With Tariq Ramadan.
- Palestine: Vérités sur un conflit (2001/2010).
- L'Islam, la République et le Monde (2004).
- 1905-2005: les enjeux de la laïcité (2005).
- De quoi la Palestine est-elle le nom? (2010).
- "Alain Gresh: 'Rien ne sera plus comme avant'", L'Humanité, 24 February 2011.
- "Alain Gresh", Le Monde Diplomatique'.
- Sidebar to article describes collaboration, The Nation, 31 August 2018; accessed 30 September 2018
- Robert Fisk, "Millions take to the streets of Egypt in an ever-growing media fantasy", The Independent (London), Sunday, 4 August 2013.
- "Shadow of the army over Egypt's revolution". Le Monde diplomatique. 2013-08-01. Retrieved 2018-03-17.
- "The Middle East: how the peace was lost". Le Monde diplomatique. 2001-09-01. Retrieved 2018-03-17.