Nwes and Analysis (8/18/12)

“Pakistanis do this, not to avoid paying zakat, but to make sure the money doesn’t go to the government, which is viewed by most people as incompetent and corrupt”:

As Tunisia emerges from the near total repression of the secular fundamentalists, will it be able to avoid a mirror image repression from Muslim extremists? Laws against “insulting religion” are slippery slope

As charges fly over which side is more insensitive to civilian casualties in Afghanistan …

… a “new history curriculum … deletes nearly four decades of the country’s war-torn past” putatively to “bring unity,” but “critics accuse ministers of trying to appease the Taliban and other powerful groups by erasing history that portrays them in a bad light. They say the government is trying to win over the Taliban”:

“[E]xcept for one insult shouted by a passerby, he and his family have been treated respectfully…. The opinions of Muslim immigrants and students … shape how Muslims abroad see America, much more so than the mosques, media, and politicians in their countries, experts say”:

Although the new government has not yet filled the vacuum left by the driving out of al-Shabaab, instead of gunfire “you’re more likely to hear the clang of hammers and the drone of drills” in Mogadishu today:

A Roman Catholic says she learned much from reading the Qur’an during Ramadan, above all “to have faith, seek the truth, praise God, pray, forgive, be kind, be peaceful and take care of people who are most vulnerable — those who are oppressed and often forgotten”:

As a communal violence threatens to spread panic across India, simplification of the conflict into “Hindu vs. Muslim” masks the fact that in “Assam, the underlying frictions are over the control of land, immigration pressures and the fight for political power”:

Morsi’s visit to “the Non-Aligned Movement Summit” in Tehran may “mark a thaw in relations between Egypt and Iran after years of enmity, especially since Egypt signed its 1979 peace treaty with Israel and the Islamic revolution in Iran”:

As the UN observers leave the country and Syria denies Assad’s deputy tried to defect, Lakhdar Brahimi’s conviction “will be put to the test in his new job as the joint United Nations-Arab League special envoy charged with trying to succeed where his former boss Kofi Annan failed — bringing an end to the 18-month conflict in Syria:

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