News and Analysis (12/19/12)

As the pro-torture camp in the US argues that “some utterance extracted by waterboarding in 2003 somehow contributed to the chain of events that led to Navy SEALs shooting an unarmed man in the face at point-blank range in 2011[,]” the European Court of Human Rights issues a unanimous decision on the CIA’s “secret detention and torture” of an innocent  German citizen of Lebanese origin …

… but Macedonia takes the fall an the CIA gets away scott free …

… and public health bears the cost of unintended consequences of CIA actions; “hostility to the campaign increased after it emerged that the CIA had used a fake vaccination campaign to try to gather information about Osama bin Laden, before he was found and killed in a Pakistani town last year”:

“An opposition appeal for mass protests … [yielded] a dismal turnout forcing leaders to acknowledge that they erred in calling their supporters to the street…. The opposition had alleged widespread fraud during the first round of voting, but provided little evidence. Egypt’s Justice Ministry said Tuesday it would investigate claims of voter irregularities”:

As with the US, pragmatic considerations may be forcing Russia to drop the illusion that the Muslim Brotherhood is involved in terrorism:

Engel, 39, said his captors were part of a government militia known as Shabiha, which is loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Engel described the kidnappers as Shiite Muslims trained by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps and allied with Hezbollah.

Denying young adults an option to marry, Western law pressures them into covert sex and its legacy of single motherhood;  does Malaysia have the solution?

“It is ironical that no maulvi (expert on Islamic studies) has raised any objection when a male person does not divorce his wife on the basis of Quranic laws”:

“Muslim leaders in Britain on Tuesday attacked proposed legislation to introduce gay marriage as “utterly discriminatory” because it explicitly bans the Church of England from blessing same-sex unions but puts no such interdict on Islam”:

“The previous judge’s order requiring Maj. Nidal Hasan to be clean-shaven or be forcibly shaved before his trial had tied up the case for more than three months, but an appeals court ousted that judge earlier this month”:

The coincidence of Talibani’s stroke with the Exxon oil deal with the Kurds jaopardizes Iraqi stability and US relations:

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