Archive for August, 2009

News and Analysis (8/18/09)

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

“This recent crackdown may play into a growing feeling that Hamas is no longer a resistance movement, but a government set on keeping both its power and keeping things fairly quiet with Israel”:

Reconciliation and peace remain the top priority of Afghani voters…

… Meanwhile, Karzai continues to seek reelection no matter what the cost:

The proposed law would severely restrict the development of civil society while awarding the Iraqi government extensive control over NGOs:

Mir Masoud Hosseinian compares the dissidence in Iran to two brothers arguing about the best driving route to the same destination:

As the Iraqi governments seeks to reconcile militant factions and consolidate its power, US interests take a backseat to Iraqi objectives:

News and Analysis (8/17/09)

Monday, August 17th, 2009

“[D]espite the belief of many in the West that such accusations are merely political rhetoric, Iran’s political hardliners do appear to believe that Western nations are actively seeking to start a ‘velvet revolution’ in Iran”:

“The reality of Fatah’s conference was a good deal different to how it was portrayed in many typical western media reports”:

Very likely to pass if put to a national vote, the referendum would move up the targeted withdrawal date of December 2011 by almost a year …

… Meanwhile, Al Qassemi challenges Arab leaders to initiate stronger diplomatic ties with Iraq, which is quickly rebuilding as a regional power:

As candidates lobby in hopes of challenging Karzai’s rule …

… Security concerns speak to the weakness of Afghanistan’s democracy:

Even as the end of Mubarak’s rule approaches, democracy is unlikely to return to Egypt:

News and Analysis (8/15-16/09)

Sunday, August 16th, 2009

Contradicting Hamas’ claim “that there were no non-Palestinian fighters in Gaza”:

As Ahmadinejad continues to enlist allies into his new government …

… Moussavi strives to legally challenge the legitimacy of Ahmadinejad’s rule:

Only a week after the frisking of a former Indian president:

“To break the 50% barrier on Thursday, Karzai has been horse-trading with tribal leaders, offering positions and influence in a new government”:

Providing cellphone service is the focus of the new U.S. propaganda campaign:

With the potential for admittance into the EU as a carrot,

News and Analysis (8/14/09)

Friday, August 14th, 2009

Ahmed Wali Karzai also revealed that a number of tribal militias will be used in the south to help guarantee security, “a move that has been denounced by democracy activists who fear it will make electoral fraud easier”

Reelection for President Karzai may not be as easy as initially predicted…

… Meanwhile, Human Rights Watch accuses President Karzai of making “an unthinkable deal to sell Afghan women out in the support of fundamentalists in the August 20 election:”

Despite the wave of violence, there seem to have been “no retaliatory strikes that could spark the cycle of sectarian violence that engulfed the country in civil war three years ago”:

Using a strategy that focuses on long-term objects, Gates reiterates that rebuilding Afghanistan is  “a decades-long enterprise”:

Deficits in funding and communications technologies will challenge the ability of Mali, Mauritania, Algeria, and Niger to coordinate an effective strategy against AQIM:

News and Analysis (8/13/09)

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

“‘These deaths stand out because the civilians were in groups waving a white cloth, T-shirt or scarf, and no Palestinian fighters were in the area at the time,’ the report said”:

As women organize to vocalize their political beliefs in the upcoming election…

… Hannah Wright points out the lack of gender diversity in Fatah’s new leadership, which does not include  a single woman:

Local authorities defended their position stating regulations dictate “that garments bigger than standard swimsuits, including men’s board-shorts, could not be worn in pools for hygiene reasons”:

By discouraging participation and threatening violence on those who seek to use democracy, the Taliban further damage the integrity of their rule:

At least 75,000 expatriate workers return to Egypt, a country which received $8.56 billion in remittances in the 2007-08 fiscal year:

Humor provides an outlet for frustrated Afghanis who push the limits of political criticism:

News and Analysis (8/12/09)

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Reflecting the growing concern and importance of water distribution among the regional powers:

“The report by the staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee” found that “there is no evidence that any significant amount of the drug proceeds go to Al Qaeda”:

The US promises of protection to the terrorist-listed group conflict with promises to respect Iraqi sovereignty:

Over 200 intellectuals, activists and defenders of rights appeal for UN action against “Ahmadinejad’s illegitimate government that has staged an electoral coup”:

“There has been no real domestic public debate or meaningful congressional oversight over targeted killings, even though their strategic and policy consequences are hotly contested” :

The $2.5 billion dollars requested still pales in comparison to the $68 billion requested by Obama for Defense Department spending in  Afghanistan:

One of the poorest Arab countries, Yemen is at war with Shias, al-Qaeda, and secessionists:

News and Analysis (8/11/09)

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

“This is a coup against a leadership that had monopolized the movement for a long time without even presenting a report about its work” – Jibril Rajoub

The program is widely praised by US and Saudi officials, but Human Rights Watch points out that detention of suspected terrorists without trial is illegal under international law:

Pre-election concerns challenge the legitimacy of Afghan democracy:

Illustrating the difficulty in establishing peace, over 50% of Israeli Jews polled support the transfer of Arabs out of Israel:

Critics  say, “Simply adding more troops won’t make a difference if there aren’t enough Afghan forces prepared to take the lead and be the ‘face’ of the security force”:

Opposition leaders continue to press Iranian officials to answer allegations of torture, rape and the death count in the aftermath of the elections:

News and Analysis (8/10/09)

Monday, August 10th, 2009

Even Khomeini chose to co-opt the shah’s clandestine services rather than build his intelligence ministry from scratch; by now replacing longtime officials with loyalists, “the purge does away decades of intelligence experience”,

“[F]or years [Washington] touted Dubai as a model of a modern, prosperous Muslim land that, though far from democratic, seemed anchored in the rule of law and committed to basic rights”:

The UN  report criticizes the sacrifice of freedom in the name of security:

The strategy challenges  traditional concepts  of military’s rules of engagement and international law:

Exacerbating the diplomatic standoff, Iran believes the three Americans were “definitely spies”:

Station shut-down takes censorship to the max:

News and Analysis (8/8-9/09

Sunday, August 9th, 2009

59% of respondents believe the US poses the largest threat to Pakistan with 41% supporting the offensive against the Taliban:

Allegations of torture undermine the legitimacy of the current regime …

… Meanwhile, Iran unfairly targets dual citizens in their attempts to uncover a Western link to the opposition:

“I renounce my belief in the Zionism which has failed, that I shall not be loyal to the Jewish fascist state and its mad visions” – Dov Yermiya

Gender equality should not trump an individual’s right to “freedom of expression”:

“Conservative rivals of Ahmadinejad have emerged as some of his harshest critics during the crisis”:

Illustrating a fundamental difference in the pursuit of justice from the Bush administration,

News and Analysis (8/7/09)

Friday, August 7th, 2009

Despite being cleared of any wrongdoing, former detainees face the social sigma of an ex-convict and the harsh reality of rebuilding their lives:

The death of Baitullah Mehsud may undermine Taliban objectives but will it damage the strength of Taliban ideology?

With an array of domestic issues at hand, Iraqis express frustration with the attention given  to the proposed smoking ban:

Exploring the motivation of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps and their ability to act within the Iranain government:

For those who accuse human right groups of an anti-Israeli bias:

As Saudis continue to struggle with the idea of ‘free speech’; they might consider a simple solution to the offensive programing would be to turn it off:

In the end, will the conference address the long standing need for a unified Palestinian leadership?