News and Analysis (1/9/12)

“The opposition controls more than one-third of parliament’s seats and analysts say that Anwar, who has pledged to scale back Malaysia’s most draconian laws and reunify the racially divided nation if elected, could potentially knock out the incumbent government entirely”:

Essam el-Erian denies that the FJP’s accommodation of the military is naive, saying, “Of course, the military wants to delay or disturb the composition of the assembly,” but that with ratification of a  new constitution, “within three months [of the presidential election] we can have the military back in their camps safely”:

The official Iranian news agency welcomes the U.S. rescue of Iranian fishermen as “a humanitarian gesture,” but the FARS news agency scoffs at the publicity storm, saying “rescuing trading and fishing boats from the hands of pirates in the” region is “completely normal” and that “”Iran’s navy has rescued various foreign ships from the hands of pirates”:

Rachid Ghannouchi “condemned anti-Semitic slogans chanted by a handful of ultraconservative Muslims during the arrival of a top Hamas official” and “reiterated a policy of his Ennahda party, which heads the country’s new government, that Tunisia’s Jews are ‘full citizens with equal rights and duties’”:

It’s bad enough when Muslims can’t take  an innocent joke about Minnie Mouse (“identifiable by her large ears and trademark pink hair ribbon”) in a niqab, but when they refuses to accept a sincere apology, they have don’t deserve to be called Muslims:

“In this mission I was fooled by the CIA and although I had entered Iran with a mission to infiltrate in the Islamic Republic of Iran’s intelligence systems and to turn into a new source for the CIA, I didn’t want to hit a blow to Iran”:

“The sting culminated at a Tampa hotel Saturday night after Osmakac had the person from whom he was purchasing the explosives – unknown to him, an undercover agent – film him making a video explaining his reasoning for the planned attack”:

In Syria, the crackdown and the rebellion both continue:

“Even if Musharraf manages to avoid arrest, analysts are skeptical about his electoral chances. Cricket player-turned-politician Imran Khan is making considerable gains and has swept up many of the retired general’s former allies and supporters, particularly those voters for whom tackling corruption is a major priority”:






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