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The EU vs. Democracy

ROME: One of the ways in which the European Union effectively asserts the fundamental values of democracy and the rule of law is through its External Cooperation Programs, whereby, on the invitation of local authorities, it provides support in the form of electoral assistance projects and election observation missions. So, during the course of 2009, …

Daily News Egypt

A free people in our land

JERUSALEM: It was never really about the timing. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu s apology to US Vice President Joseph Biden enabled the Tel Aviv University speech to conclude the visit on an up note. The ice-cold water from Washington came only after the prime minister thought that he had successfully passed through the storm. The …

Daily News Egypt

Women healing Pakistan

LAHORE, Pakistan: Last week, six relief workers in Mansehra, a city in Pakistan s North West Frontier Province (NWFP), died after an attack on their office. In 2008, gunmen killed four staff members of another international aid agency. Charities and international aid organizations are under constant threat in Pakistan, particularly in the NWFP, yet a …

Daily News Egypt

Islam and Muslims on Judaism and Jews

JERUSALEM: Despite being in a protracted political conflict over the Holy Land that began around the advent of Zionism more than a century ago, Jews and Muslims have common historical roots, as well as theological commonalities. Our common roots go beyond the Abrahamic tribal constructs. Abraham himself is considered in the Quran as the archetypal …

Daily News Egypt

Funding a Global Health Fund

NEW YORK: World leaders will come together at the United Nations in September in order to accelerate progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Three of the eight MDGs involve bringing primary health services to the entire world’s population. A small amount of global funding, if well-directed, could save millions of lives each year. The …

Jeffrey D. Sachs

To Russia with social media

MOSCOW: I was recently part of a US State Department/White House delegation to Russia. Our mission was to foster US-Russian cooperation, in fulfillment of the US’s policies of “21st-century statecraft and citizen diplomacy. That sounds high-minded, for what the Russians were most interested in was how to build their own Silicon Valley. The Russians thought …

Daily News Egypt

High probability of failure

The PLO Executive Committee decided on March 7 to accept the US administration s proposal to commence proximity talks with American mediation. This followed the decision by a monitoring committee of the Arab League foreign ministers to support resumption of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations on a Permanent Status Agreement (PSA) in the form of proximity talks. Within …

Daily News Egypt

Preempting home-grown terrorists

BERLIN: Islamist terrorism has in recent years become central to security policy in Germany and many other Western countries. The terrorists’ intention is to sow mistrust and stoke fears; their aim is to weaken the democratic rule of law and to shatter citizens’ confidence in public institutions. Governments are determined to prevent this, but the …

Daily News Egypt

Editorial: On the line: The crisis at Islam Online

CAIRO: The eternal struggle between moderation and extremism is at the heart of the current impasse that has cast its shadow over the Sixth of October headquarters of Islam Online (IOL) over the past week. Bibi-Aisha Wadvalla who heads the internet radio station for IOL’s website, wrote in a commentary published on The Guardian’s website …

Rania Al Malky

Taxing the Israeli occupation

CAIRO: Arab intellectuals and policymakers have often accused Europe of using financial generosity to cover up its political impotence over the Arab-Israeli conflict. If Europe is to be taken seriously as a global player, they argue, it must also flex some muscle when it delivers the money. In Arab eyes, European officials implicitly plead guilty …

Daily News Egypt

Muslim, German, female – and a sports star

BONN, Germany: Fatmire Bajramaj is the carefree young face of women s football in Germany. A Muslim Kosovan, her eventful life story recalls the hit English film Bend it like Beckham, in which a girl footballer strikes out against ethnic prejudices and her family s reservations. Bajramaj, known commonly as Lira, fled from Kosovo with …

Daily News Egypt

Let it flow

The eighteenth annual World Water Day offers the same old problems and rejects the practical solutions. On March 22 one billion people will, as usual, spend the day without clean water and a third of humanity without adequate sanitation. As usual, some three and a half million men, women and children will die from related …

Daily News Egypt

Declare a Palestinian state

COLLEGE PARK, Maryland: France s foreign minister, Bernard Kouchner, has alarmed the Israeli government with his recent statement that one can envision the proclamation soon of a Palestinian state, and its immediate recognition by the international community, even before negotiating its borders . Israel fears that this will develop into a full blown European Union …

Daily News Egypt

A pillar of state-building

The program of the 13th Palestinian government, entitled Ending the Occupation and Establishing the State , might have been similar to the programs of previous governments were it not for its political context. The two-year program, which has become known as the Fayyad Plan, is meant to prepare the ground for statehood through the necessary …

Daily News Egypt

The Summit of Europe's Ineffectiveness

LONDON: The European Union likes summits. Just look at the way it reacts when the other side decides not to show up (for example, its response to President Barack Obama’s decision not to attend the May EU-US summit in Madrid). If the EU wants to be taken seriously and have a tangible impact, it needs …

Daily News Egypt

The Euro Zone's Default Position

WASHINGTON, DC: Kazakhstan may be far removed from the euro zone, but its recent economic experiences are highly relevant to the euro’s current travails. As the euro zone struggles with debt crises and austerity in its weaker members, Kazakhstan is emerging from a massive banking-system collapse with a strong economic recovery. For most of the …

Daily News Egypt

A fatwa against terrorism that might work

NEWARK, Delaware: Dr Tahir ul-Qadri, a Pakistani Islamic scholar visiting the United Kingdom, recently released a 600-page fatwa, or non-binding opinion in Islamic law, against terrorism. This fatwa might actually have an impact. It is comprehensive, direct and does not dodge any of the issues. It has come at a time when there is very …

Daily News Egypt

Letter to the Editor: Apartheid week not 'weakness'

This letter is in regards to an op-ed entitled “Apartheid week or ‘weakness’? , recently distributed by CGNews and republished on Monday, March 15 by Daily News Egypt. I have been a longtime follower of DNE, a newspaper I respect for its independent and balanced coverage. However, I was disappointed to see this article – …

Daily News Egypt

The Kremlin temptation

PARIS: What is the significance of France’s recent sale of four powerful Mistral-class warships to Russia? Was it business as usual or an irresponsible move contributing to a dangerous shift in the balance of power in the Baltic and Black Seas? It is sometimes said that Germany has become a “second France in its “selfish …

Dominique Moisi

Public memory and conflict in the Holy Land

JERUSALEM: The flare-up over the Israeli government s decision to put Rachel s Tomb along with what Jews call the Cave of the Patriarchs and Muslims call the Ibrahimi Mosque on a list of Israeli heritage sites again puts history and memory at the centre of this conflict. Again we are reminded that those who …

Daily News Egypt

Israeli Arabs ask Mubarak to help Shalit

TEL AVIV: Dozens of Kfar Kassem residents protested in front of the Egyptian Embassy in Tel Aviv Wednesday for the release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit. The protestors carried a letter addressed to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak asking him to aid the release of Shalit as well as the Palestinian prisoners demanded in return, and …

Daily News Egypt

The illusion of a Chinese bubble

BEIJING: On the eve of Chinese New Year, the People’s Bank of China (PBC) surprised the market by announcing – for the second consecutive time in a month – an increase in banks’ mandatory-reserve ratio by 50 basis points, bringing it to 16.5%. Shortly before that, China’s government acted to stop over-borrowing by local governments …

Daily News Egypt

The end of an era in Finance

CAMBRIDGE: In the world of economics and finance, revolutions occur rarely and are often detected only in hindsight. But what happened on February 19 can safely be called the end of an era in global finance. On that day, the International Monetary Fund published a policy note that reversed its long-held position on capital controls. …

Dani Rodrik

All that is needed at this time is public Arab support

For all the theatrics and histrionics within the Arab League s Cairo headquarters, Arab governments are unlikely to have any influence on Palestinian-Israeli negotiations. Like all regional organizations, the League of Arab States is inefficient as a collective body, and individual countries such as Saudi Arabia or Egypt wield more power than the 22-member league. …

Daily News Egypt

Catalyzing consumption and balancing growth

WASHINGTON, DC: China has weathered the Great Recession well. The world now waits to see if last year’s impressive domestic demand growth can be sustained, and if China can, in the words of Prime Minister Wen Jiabao, “give full play to the leading role of.consumer demand in driving economic growth. The Chinese consumer has been …

Daily News Egypt

Reverse engagement

The Obama administration is still an international novice compared to other governments around the world, but it can already claim to have achieved results with its approach to the Arab-Israel problem. Every time US officials have made a request or embarked on a trip aiming at resuscitating a process of some sort, they have been …

Daily News Egypt

Apartheid 'week' or 'weakness'

CHICAGO: There is one important fundamental about truth: Genuine truth gives one the power to tolerate even the most heinous criticism. Tolerance of criticism is a sign of confidence. Intolerance is a symptom that what you believe may not really be true. So throw the toughest, harshest argument against what I believe, because I have …

Daily News Egypt

Jewish respect and admiration for Muslim religiosity

JERUSALEM: Within Jewish tradition there are sources that express not just a tolerance towards aspects of Muslim religiosity, but a real admiration and positive intellectual and religious respect. It is important for both Jews and Muslims to become acquainted with these sources, and to consider their implications. Here I consider one such source, found in …

Daily News Egypt

Cars, bombs, and climate change

COPENHAGEN: For the better part of a decade, I have upset many climate activists by pointing out that there are far better ways to stop global warming than trying to persuade governments to force or bribe their citizens into slashing their reliance on fuels that emit carbon dioxide. What especially bugs my critics is the …

Daily News Egypt

An indirect route to a Palestinian state?

RAMALLAH: Palestinians and Israelis have different and possibly contradictory expectations from the indirect negotiations that the United States has pushed both sides into beginning. Israel was among the first parties to welcome the Arab League’s reluctant decision to back Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s call for Arabs to give their blessing to the talks. It is …

Daily News Egypt