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Twenty-five years later, many call Egypt politically paralyzed

Associated Press CAIRO: With the 25th anniversary of Anwar Sadat s assassination this past Friday, Egypt faces an uncertain political future with most democracy reform efforts stalled and the country obsessively focused on the possibility that the current president s son will succeed him. President Hosni Mubarak, now 78, was a general and vice president, …

Daily News Egypt

Putin's Russia: a Potemkin village where brutes rule

It is time to end the fiction that President Vladimir Putin’s “dictatorship of law has made post-communist Russia any less lawless. The murder of Anna Politkovskaya, one of Russia’s bravest and best journalists, a woman who dared to expose the brutal murders committed by Russian troops in Chechnya, is final proof that Putin has delivered …

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Expatriates face a changing reality in Gulf countries

The percentage of expatriates in the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries grew from 22.9 in 1975 to 37.1 in 2004, constituting about 70 percent of the workforce. However, a number of changes on the ground during the last few years have redefined the rules of behavior for about 13 million foreigners, yielding mixed results. …

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The Mall

It was during a one-day conference on over-seas reporting, held at the University of California’s Graduate School of Journalism, that I learned of yet another element of what purports to be my cultural identity. It was an excellent conference, held by an outstanding school of journalism, where I had the privilege and pleasure of teaching …

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From Princeton, a new power paradigm

A new and influential report just released by the Woodrow Wilson School, titled “Forging a World of Liberty Under Law, U.S. National Security in the 21st Century, underlines the one major flaw of the Bush administration’s policy since September 11, 2001: the absence of law and of a legal process in the projection of American …

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An evening to remember the greats

Musical band and poetry recitation group join to celebrate Haddad, Jahin and Darwish CAIRO: Last Friday the British Council in Agouza hosted an inspiring Ramadan evening. A few hundred people were thrilled by a poetry recital of the works of late great poets Fouad Haddad and Salah Jahin merged with Sayed Darwish s musical masterpieces …

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Danish PM, Iran president condemn Prophet cartoons

Reuters COPENHAGEN: Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen denounced members of the anti-immigrant Danish Peoples Party (DPP) youth wing on Sunday for drawing humiliating cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad. In Tehran, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said those who insulted the Prophet were low life devoid of human values, the student news agency ISNA reported. The …

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Muslim Brotherhood denounces what it calls "new Danish insults" to Islam

Associated Press CAIRO: Egypt s largest Islamic group, the Muslim Brotherhood, on Saturday denounced what it called new Danish insults to Islam and urged the world to boycott countries that allow offenses to all religions. The Brotherhood s condemnation came a day after word spread about a Web video showing young members of a populist …

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An Egyptian intellectual's unlikely quest for religious change

Agence France-Presse CAIRO: Gamal Al-Banna is a Muslim scholar and younger sibling of the Muslim Brotherhood s founder, but his controversial vision of Islamic reform puts him at odds with the religious establishment in Egypt. Banna, 75, does not believe that the donning of the headscarf is prescribed in the Quran, nor does he believe …

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African Nations Cup champions Egypt held in Botswana

Agence France-Presse CAIRO: Defending champions Egypt were held 0-0 away to Botswana Saturday as the second round of 2008 African Nations Cup qualifiers kicked off. The result lifted the Pharaohs above Group 2 surprise package Mauritania into first place on four points, one more than the minnows from the north-west of the continent. Coached by …

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Primetime hate mail

The stupor induced by Ramadan programming wraps its inescapable tentacles around viewers CAIRO: Ramadan primetime TV warrants hate mail, but I m too lethargic to write it. I take my prozac after iftar (for these are worrisome times) and, self-medicating, chase it down with a couple of Xanax to dull any residual road rage. I …

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Violence against children

A veil of silence covers violence against children, yet abuses are so pervasive that no country can ignore them, and no society can claim to be immune from them. Despite almost universal acceptance of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, governments’ concrete initiatives to counter such violence have been inadequate. Turning a blind …

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The Assyrians: ignored among fears of an Iraqi civil war

The world is consumed by fears that Iraq is degenerating into a civil war between Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds. But in this looming war of all against all, it is Iraq’s small community of Assyrian Christians that is at risk of annihilation. Iraq’s Christian communities are among the world’s most ancient, practicing their faith in …

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Ramadan restaurants

The VerandaConcorde El Salam Hotel, 65 Abdel Hamid Badawi Street, Heliopolis Tel: 622 6000Hours: 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. (lunch)Iftar: 7 p.m. to 12. a.m. (dinner) The environment at The Veranda is lovely, in the subtly lit courtyard of the beautiful Concorde El-Salam Hotel in Heliopolis. The evening entertainment is better than that at most …

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Keep it simple: Get back to basics with Ramadan recipes

CAIRO: The norm in Ramadan is that the more complicated the recipe, the better the meal; the stranger the ingredients and their combination together, the better the cook. Cooks all around the Muslim world are going crazy, trying to find new and unusual dishes for Ramadan, trying out dishes that they haven t prepared for …

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The fat factor of Ramadan

The trick to losing weight in Ramadan isn t just exercise, but smart exercising CAIRO: Too much food makes you fat. This is a fact that cannot be argued. But, what exactly is too much? Foremost on everybody’s mind during the month of Ramadan is, “Why do I gain weight, I barely eat anything. Well, …

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Diary: Qatar: torn between past and present

Saad Al-Jassem slips out of his dishdasha revealing a body in extraordinary shape for a man who turns 70 this year. On a traditional wooden dhow off Doha s corniche, Saad is getting ready to show me how to dive for pearls. My producer Schams Elwazer and our cameraman and I, joined by our diver …

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Aboutraika inspires Al-Ahli to African Champions League triumph

Agence France-Presse CAIRO: Mohamed Aboutraika sparkled as Al-Ahli of Egypt beat ASEC of Ivory Coast 2-0 in the first leg of an African Champions League semi-final at the weekend. The midfielder, who helped Egypt win the African Nations Cup a record fifth time last February, scored the first goal and created the second before a …

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Sudan open to dialogue with UN over Darfur, says official

Agence France-Presse KHARTOUM: Sudan continues to oppose deployment of a United Nations peacekeeping force to war-torn Darfur but is open to discussing UN support for an African Union force already there, an official said Tuesday. The Sudanese government is sticking to its position of rejecting UN Security Council Resolution 1706 but does not reject dialogue …

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American Fascism or Islamic Fascism?

Book Review: Conservatives without Conscience John W. Dean; Penguin Group; 186 pages; $25.95. Given the opportunity to correct President Bush’s political blunder wherein he stated that “this nation is at war with Islamic fascists, John Dean, author of best-selling Worse than Watergate, might suggest that the biggest threat facing the nation is American fascism, not …

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Rice arrives in Cairo for talks with "moderate" Arabs

Agence France-Presse CAIRO: U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in Cairo Tuesday for talks with moderate Arab counterparts after kicking off her regional tour in Saudi Arabia with an appeal for an end to Palestinian infighting. Rice flew in from Jeddah to join talks with foreign ministers from Egypt, Jordan and the six monarchies …

Daily News Egypt

The Zamalek Art Gallery

Promoting contemporary Egyptian art through nationality and history CAIRO: “Their technique is different. Their materials are different, says Noha Khouri, manager of the Zamalek Art Gallery. “But you can always feel an Egyptian, Pharaonic identity. It’s very harmonious. Harmonious is indeed the word to describe the latest show at the Zamalek Art Gallery. Materials range …

Daily News Egypt

EU immigration policy between confusion and politics

A European Union conference on immigration, like the one that took place last weekend in Madrid, would not normally be the chosen venue for political heavyweights to stage a slugfest. Yet, in the wake of Islamist extremist bombings on European soil and last year’s riots in French suburbs, these are not normal times to be …

Daily News Egypt

Egyptians abroad speak out against inheritance of power

Web site calls on Gamal Mubarak to abandon NDP posts and serve Egypt as an ordinary citizen CAIRO: A number of Egyptian activists living in the United States have recently launched the National Initiative against Power Inheritance on www.gamal-mubarak.com. On the Web site interface the word no is written in almost all international languages including …

Daily News Egypt

Post-conflict assessment of Lebanon gets underway

UN team begins countrywide study of potential environmental hot spots BEIRUT/NAIROBI: An international team of experts will begin an assessment of the environmental damage in Lebanon caused by the recent conflict this week. The team, led by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and working in close cooperation with the Lebanese authorities, will be visiting …

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Palestinian group threatens to kill Hamas leaders

Reuters GAZA: Fatah gunmen threatened on Tuesday to kill leaders of the governing Hamas group, escalating a power struggle marked by the worst internal violence in Gaza and the West Bank since the Palestinian Authority was created in 1994. On a visit to the Middle East, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice urged an end …

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The Middle East: It's all just too darned complicated

Memo: To Arabs and MuslimsRe: The Middle East It’s your own fault. That’s right, the Bush administration can’t be held responsible for the mess they have made of the Middle East. You Arabs and Muslims are to blame. How can anyone be expected to develop a policy for this place? It’s all just too darned …

Daily News Egypt

Egyptian professor in hot water for comparing Quran to supermarket

Agence France-Presse CAIRO: An Egyptian professor has stirred up a hornet s nest among his fellow Muslims by comparing the Quran with a supermarket where you can find whatever you are looking for. Hassan Hanafi s remarks, made at a seminar organized by the Alexandria Library, have sparked a fierce response, from demands that he …

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Kiss and kill

“What could America do to help push democratization forward in Egypt? an American friend connected to U.S. policy-making circles asked me recently. My usual answer to that particularly persistent question is: “democratize Israel. America’s foremost ally and strategic partner is the Middle East is a self-defined Jewish state, in which 20 percent of the population …

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