News and Analysis (11/17/11)

The Arab League ultimatum has no impact on Assad and the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood welcomes Turkish, but not Western, intervention as the situation increasingly resembles a civil war:

As the would-be prime minster of Tunisia protests that his comment about a “Sixth Caliphate” was taken out of context, the center-left Ettakatol (Democratic Forum for Labor and Liberties) Party suspends talks for a role in the governing coalition declaring the suspension “is not a total break we just wanted to a deliver message, as soon as … Ennahdha … explain[s] the statement we will resume discussions”:

While Islam did not completely ban slavery (it could be a preferable altertnative to the fate of  “death by starvation or execution, the two common ancient consequences to losing a war”), the earliest Muslims “cared for and freed them, …learned from and included them” and “Muhammad’s immediate household personally freed almost 40,000 slaves alone”:

The controversy comes from allegations that Haqqani “had a hand in reaching out to the US to lean on the country’s generals to decrease their role in the country’s nominally civilian political life” and “conveyed a promise from President Zardari to reduce the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) agency’s support for the Taliban and other militant groups”:

“The Muslim Brotherhood held its first public conference on Libyan soil on Thursday after being banned for decades, and used the platform to set a moderate tone, calling for a broad national reconstruction effort”:

Israel eased the blockade of raw materials into Gaza slightly, but then failed to let the finished products out, so the factories have fallen silent again:

Organizers of the first of its kind cruise blame local officials for the cancellation, but Morocco’s Foreign Minister insists, “We don’t ban cruise ships here and we never ask our visitors about their sexual preferences” and the cruise can proceed “if the organisers want”:

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