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Women for integration

COPENHAGEN: The past decade has proven again and again that empowering women worldwide holds the key to solving many seemingly intractable issues that have otherwise stymied policymakers. Poverty in the developing world seemed ineradicable until micro-lenders saw millions of low-income, destitute women as potential entrepreneurs. Involving African women in decision-making about crop production turns out …

Daily News Egypt

The game is not over in Iraq

Already, one can hardly find the posters, banners and other signs of campaigning that filled the streets prior to the March 7 elections. Yet election news is still making headlines. The Iraqi elections were viewed as a major achievement for the security forces, who secured the movement of over 18 million Iraqis to more than …

Daily News Egypt

Saudi and Abu Dhabi in naval skirmish, newspapers in denial

  Last week there was a minor naval altercation between Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi. In the incident it is reported that gunfire was exchanged, the crew of a Saudi patrol boat was taken into Emirati custody, two having been injured, but all were released within days. Whilst the specific precipitant is unknown, it appears …

Daily News Egypt

Why do Jews succeed?

WASHINGTON, DC: In recent decades, economists have been struggling to make use of the concept of human capital, often defined as the abilities, skills, knowledge, and dispositions that make for economic success. Yet those who use the term often assume that to conceptualize a phenomenon is a first step to manipulating it. And, indeed, “human-capital …

Daily News Egypt

Collective rights for the Arab citizens of Israel

JERUSALEM: According to a poll published at the beginning of the month, 56 percent of Jewish high school students in Israel believe Arabs cannot be elected to the Knesset (Israeli parliament) and 46 percent do not support civil equality for Arabs. This is yet another manifestation of how problematic it is to reconcile the internal …

Daily News Egypt

Israel as a Jewish State

WASHINGTON, DC: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is insisting the Palestinians recognize Israel as, in his words, the nation-state of the Jewish people, a new and problematic demand that raises serious questions about Israel s Jewish character . The Balfour Declaration of November 2, 1917, begins with the phrase His Majesty s government view with …

Daily News Egypt

Solving the Jerusalem problem

WASHINGTON, DC: Long after the humiliation of our vice president is forgotten, if not forgiven, and the president and secretary of State recommit themselves to the rock solid relationship with Israel, and the Israeli ambassador in Washington downgrades the hurricane to a tropical storm, there is still the issue of Jerusalem. O Jerusalem. If I …

Daily News Egypt

Turkey's Transatlantic Value

WASHINGTON, DC: The Turkey that German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits this week is a very different place from the Turkey that began European Union accession talks five years ago. For, with those talks seemingly going nowhere, Turkey has begun to broaden its international horizons. Indeed, Turkish foreign policy is now far more proactive and multi-dimensional …

Daily News Egypt

The Organ Crisis

LONDON: Organ transplantation is one of the most impressive achievements of modern medicine. It has brought hope to millions of patients suffering from previously fatal organ failure. For many, it has made life longer and better. It has benefited many professionals and industries, too, by becoming a new source of pride, funding, and profit. Struggling …

Daily News Egypt

Building a state on a sectarian, ethnic and quota basis

The Iraqi elections and Iraq s one-day-democracy are over. The positive aspect was the big turnout. According to official statistics, 63 percent of those who had the right to vote used that right. The negative aspects are more numerous. There was the violence that preceded and accompanied the elections, the liquidation of some candidates, the …

Daily News Egypt

The tragedy of monotheism

PHILADELPHIA: Everybody needs a tribe. One person alone faces a frighteningly big, sometimes brutal world. Even a family can be too small to deal with some challenges that come down the pike – while if family relationships are the only ones around, obsessive family closeness can suffocate us. No, tribes are the way to go, …

Daily News Egypt

Who should lead the IMF?

BERKELEY: The International Monetary Fund, many say, has had a good crisis. As recently as three years ago, many observers thought that the Fund had outlived its usefulness and should be closed down. Since then, it has intervened in Hungary, Latvia, Iceland, and Ukraine, among other crisis-stricken countries – and has received a massive infusion …

Daily News Egypt

India shines on

MUMBAI: Every day, a small Japanese jet brings another 60 businessmen from Tokyo to sniff out new commercial opportunities in Mumbai and the heart of the Indian economy. Naturally, there may be a touch of geopolitical calculation about this. As Japan grows increasingly nervous about China’s rise, the case for increasing investment in the other …

Chris Patten

Iraq elections: A victory for Iran?

A leading hard-line Iranian newspaper close to President Mahmoud Ahmadinezhad summed up the elections in Iraq even before they were held on March 7 as “a proxy war between the United States and the Islamic regime in which the Great Satan has no chance to win . “Following their great Ulama and religious leaders, the …

Daily News Egypt

Two Israeli and Jordanian journalists tell the story no one else will

JERUSALEM/Amman: It was supposed to be an exercise in cross-cultural reporting: find a story that would highlight the common humanity shared by all nations and peoples. As a Jordanian and an Israeli we were a logical pairing. Our countries are neighbors supposedly at peace, yet both are part of a regional conflict that has raged …

Daily News Egypt

The Other Switzerland

BRUSSELS: As policymakers scratch their heads and wonder how best to absorb different cultures and religions into Europe’s very distinct national societies, they could do worse than consider some new ideas being developed in Switzerland. Switzerland, the country that recently voted to ban the construction of minarets on mosques? Absolutely. It is time for Europe …

Daily News Egypt

Editorial: Another Arab summit

CAIRO: As Arab leaders bask in the Mediterranean coastal city of Sirte in Libya today in yet another summit to “rescue Jerusalem , Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu returns victorious from a trip to Washington, basking in his own glory of reasserting Israel’s rights to continue occupying the Holy Land. Two weeks of (theatrical) crisis between …

Rania Al Malky

Home-grown Hybrid Records hopes to revive lost heritage

Egyptian culture is in a pitfall; but that’s old news. Whenever this reality is discussed in the media or among peers, many seem to agree that nothing is being done to lift it back up. As a journalist, you constantly meet new people, brains loaded with novel ideas to help Egypt rise once more. I …

Heba El-Sherif

Synagogue in Lebanon rises from the ashes

BEIRUT: The Magen Abraham synagogue, in the heart of downtown Beirut, is bustling with renovations. Workmen are busy returning this 80-year-old place of worship to its former splendor, although the local Jewish community has dwindled dramatically – from over 22,000 prior to 1958 to less than 300 by the end of the 1975-90 civil war. …

Daily News Egypt

Renminbi and reality

BEIJING: The exchange rate of the renminbi has once again become a target of the United States Congress. China-bashing, it seems, is back in fashion in America. But this round of China-bashing appears stranger than the last one. When Congress pressed China for a large currency revaluation in 2004-2005, China’s current-account surplus was rising at …

Daily News Egypt

Time to change the status quo

The last few weeks have looked like a crash course in Middle East diplomacy, replete with the grandeur of talks and lofty speechmaking, and the lows that shamed even those most committed to the peace process. As the media frenzy played out, the public watched as Israel and its closest ally celebrated proximity talks, clashed …

Daily News Egypt

The fourth cup of tea

BLOOMINGTON, Indiana: Greg Mortenson’s book Three Cups of Tea is the story of a former American mountain climber’s humanitarian project to build schools in the most underprivileged parts of Pakistan’s northern areas. The book now has a sequel, Stones into Schools, which narrates Mortenson’s ongoing efforts to build schools in the region. So successful has …

Daily News Egypt

Re-repairing Bosnia

Bosnia’s future is becoming increasingly uncertain. An ethnic veto has long made the central government ineffective, and, most recently, Milorad Dodik, the leader of the Serb-controlled entity, Republika Srpska, has responded to efforts at reform with a threat to hold a referendum on independence. Many consider secession unlikely, but Dodik’s threat does heighten fear that …

Daily News Egypt

Ms. Europe or Frau Germania?

BERLIN: Just what is the matter with Angela Merkel? Only a short while ago, she was celebrated as “Ms. Europe ; now, she increasingly gives the impression of being Frau Germania. Instead of providing resolute leadership in the global financial and economic crisis, the European Union’s largest economy is withdrawing into its shell. Germany has …

Joschka Fischer

Amplifying the voice of Muslim women

AMMAN: “Veiled Voices is a film filled with loud, bright stories that enlighten an audience in need of authenticity about Islam in general and the lives of Muslim women in particular. Brigid Maher, a director, cinematographer and editor who teaches in the Film and Media Arts Division at American University in Washington, DC, shows sensitivity …

Daily News Egypt

The significance of Jewish-Islamic heritage

HAR ADAR, Israel: The link between Judaism and Islam is profound and is at the root of both religious cultures. Islam sanctified and interpreted sacred Jewish texts and incorporated principles from Jewish law (Halakha) and Rabbinical sources into Islamic law (Sharia). Judaism owes Islam a huge debt for the emergence of the Jewish philosophical oeuvre …

Daily News Egypt

Endangering species: bans don't work

The UN Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species seeks to save endangered species by curtailing wildlife trade. But the mood is bleak at the current 15th Conference of Parties in Doha, Qatar: CITES Secretary-General Willem Wijnstekers says attempts to halt the decline of tigers have “failed miserably, while organized crime is playing an increasing …

Daily News Egypt

Invitation to an energy crisis

DALLAS: As rising consumption and nationalism in OPEC countries pushes down their crude-oil exports and forces international oil companies to invest in high-cost areas with small reserves as global demand continues to grow, oil prices might ultimately shatter the record set in 2008. In the short run, heightened volatility will be the rule, owing to …

Daily News Egypt

Indonesia's multicultural Islam in action

JAKARTA: The birthday of the prophet Muhammad, which fell on Feb. 26 this year, is celebrated by Muslim communities throughout Indonesia with religious services and other special events. In Java, the event has taken on a unique form in the Sekaten Festival. The week-long cultural festivals are hosted in some of the island s major …

Daily News Egypt

Japan's financial truant

TOKYO: When asked if he had ever read the classic economics textbook by Paul Samuelson, something almost all first-year students in the subject read, Japanese Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister Naoto Kan replied: “I read about 10 pages. Of course, no textbook can provide all the answers a finance minister needs in today’s …

Daily News Egypt