RSS

Author Archives: manueldg82

The only person who loses out from America’s refusal to certify the Iran deal is Trump

As President Trump withdraws certification of the nuclear agreement with Iran, commentators across the world struggled for words to adequately convey their outrage and contempt. A favourite term to describe Trump is as “a wrecking ball”, but the phrase suggests a sense of direction and capacity to strike a target which Trump does not possess.

The instant that Trump decertifies the deal struck by President Obama in 2015, the US becomes a lesser power and Iran a greater one, because he will confirm the belief that America is led by an egoist motivated by ignorant prejudice. Accusations of mental derangement have always been part of common currency of political abuse, but there is a growing belief among international leaders that in Trump’s case there might be something to it, though they have few ideas about what they should do about this.

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/donald-trump-iran-deal-decertify-middle-east-destablisation-nuclear-weapons-a7999361.html

 

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 17, 2017 in Middle East, North America

 

Neither Hamas or Fatah want to give up authority meaning the new Palestinian unity deal may not change much

The unity agreement between Hamas and Fatah under which they will set up a joint administration that will, among other things, control Gaza is going to be regarded with scepticism in the region. The accord signed in the main intelligence headquarters in Cairo has come about because both the Palestinian sides are weak and have not discussed many divisive issues, but they do not want to be seen as blocking a deal.

The Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank have very little freedom of action these days, far less than 40 years ago when they were an insurgent movement based successively in Amman, Beirut and Tunis. Driven from capital to capital, they tried to avoid becoming the permanent proxy of any single power. But the war in Iraq since 2003, and conflicts in Arabs states which once backed different Palestinian factions since the so-called Arab Spring of 2011, have pushed the Palestinian issue well down the international agenda.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/palestinian-unity-deal-hamas-fatah-no-change-sign-agreement-cairo-gaza-west-bank-a7997801.html

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 17, 2017 in Middle East

 

Tags:

We will soon find out what ‘unity’ really means for the Palestinians

“Unity” is the most misused and misunderstood word in Arabic. “Ittihad”. Every dictatorship, every nation in the Middle East must believe in “ittihad”. And the Palestinans – the poor, divided Palestinians more than all others.

For years they have been torn apart between Hamas and Fatah, between Islamism (if you believe in such a thing) and the Palestinian Authority, between Islamic rule – again, if you believe in this – and secular authority. And when Mahmoud Abbas was called by the United States to be told of America’s “concern” that Hamas would be involved in such a government, you knew there would be a problem.

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/hamas-fatah-palestinians-deal-israel-netanyahu-plo-a7997666.html

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 17, 2017 in Middle East

 

Tags:

Can Christians stay in the Middle East now that they are being persecuted for their ancient religion?

So there I was this week, staring at a picture of the Virgin Mary, painted at Melitene (now Malatya in present-day Turkey), its real home in Damascus – since it belongs to the Syriac Patriarchate, but is currently kept in Lebanon because of the war – and stunned at Mary’s deeply embroidered cloak (black and blue) and the brassy shine of her golden halo. And I noticed the date. 1065. Harold had yet a year to live before his death at the Battle of Hastings. We survived the Normans. But will Christians survive the Middle East?

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/christians-middle-east-persecution-lebanon-syria-can-they-stay-a7996921.html

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 17, 2017 in Middle East

 

Tags: ,

A 50 años de su muerte: por qué aún perdura el legado del Che

El 9 de octubre de 1967, cuando los militares bolivianos y los agentes de la CIA decidieron ejecutar al Che Guevara en la aldea de La Higuera, presumieron que su muerte sería la prueba del fracaso de la gesta comunista en América Latina.

Pero no fue así. Al contrario de sus expectativas, la muerte del Che -después de una cruenta odisea de supervivencia de once largos meses- se convirtió en el mito fundacional para generaciones posteriores de revolucionarios que se inspiraron en su ejemplo y lo intentaron imitar.

https://www.clarin.com/suplementos/zona/50-anos-muerte-perdura-legado-che_0_BkbItvHnZ.html

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 17, 2017 in South America

 

Tags:

Once upon a time in 1989

I imagine a cosy dining room somewhere in eastern Europe, in Bucharest or perhaps Zagreb. But it could be Timișoara or Bratislava as well. It is Sunday, and a family has gathered for lunch around a big table, as they often do in my part of the world. Usually, first comes a beef or chicken soup with home-made dumplings, then a hearty meat dish and potatoes from the oven, garnished with vegetables, followed by cake and coffee. There are three generations around the table. Mother and father are about my age, born some time in the early 1950s. Their children were born in the 1980s – just in time to remember a little bit of life under communism, that is. And their grandchildren are too young to care.

Source: Once upon a time in 1989 – Eurozine

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in Europe, European Union

 

Tags: , , ,

Que se ha proclamado ¿qué?

La cúpula del independentismo lo ha vuelto a hacer. Cada vez que se encuentra en un atolladero, recurre a la “astucia”. Esta vez en forma de enunciado alambicado y retorcido, un redactado pergeñado para contentar a muchos y que no va a gustar a casi nadie.La esperada frase de Carles Puigdemont no fue el “proclamo la independencia” solemne que esperaban los miles de seguidores que aguardaban frente al Parlament ni las decenas de periodistas de medio mundo. El president anunció que asumía el resultado del 1-O y, por tanto, “el mandato de que Catalunya se convierta en Estado independiente”. ¿Cuándo? No hay plazo. Depende de un diálogo sobre “los resultados” del referéndum que sabe con seguridad que no se va a abrir porque es imposible emprender una negociación con estas premisas. Han ganado los partidarios de una declaración unilateral de independencia (DUI), algo temerosa y en diferido, aunque la frase sea suficiente como para que el Gobierno del PP no pueda quedarse de brazos cruzados. Es una declaración que no se votó, que no será publicada en el Diari Oficial de la Generalitat y que no provocó un estallido de celebraciones en las calles como se supone que haría un pueblo que anhela ese instante desde hace tiempo, pero que puede activar el fatal artículo 155 de la Constitución.

Source: Que se ha proclamado ¿qué?

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in European Union

 

Tags:

The unexpected benefits of getting lost in translation

About 20 per cent of the United States population (60 million out of 300 million people) are non-native speakers of English. Speaking multiple languages has advantages – for example, you get to talk to people from different cultures. But being a non-native or second-language (L2) speaker also has its challenges. In addition to often feeling self-conscious about their accents, L2 speakers can be viewed by native speakers as less intelligent, and less trustworthy.Thus it might come as a surprise that, in 1980, Henry Kissinger (the former US secretary of state and a non-native English speaker, originally from Germany) told Arianna Huffington (the Greek immigrant and entrepreneur/writer who would eventually start The Huffington Post) not to worry about [her] accent, ‘because you can never, in American public life, underestimate the advantages of complete and total incomprehensibility’.

Source: The unexpected benefits of getting lost in translation | Aeon Ideas

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Tags:

Meet the doctors: Take a look at this country’s first crop of homegrown physicians

It took Simon Antindi three hours, two taxis and one jolting ride in the back of an old farm bakkie to reach the state hospital where his father had been admitted – and when he saw it, he was overwhelmed.The hospital, in the far northern Namibian town of Oshakati, was bigger than any the 11-year-old had ever seen before – a huddled mass of low-slung green and blue buildings that trailed off into the horizon in every direction. Every turn led him deeper into a maze of crowded wards and worried visitors. Doctors whispered to each other in languages he didn’t recognise and the whole place smelled vaguely sour, like sickness and cleaning fluid.And then there was his father. The local primary school principal, this was a man who easily filled a room with his authority and his warmth, a man whose generosity was a long-standing source of local pride.A few years earlier, when the struggle for independence against South African rule blurred into villages and towns all across this part of what was then South West Africa, his father used to slaughter a goat for each passing band of Swapo guerrillas who trekked through – and often got himself arrested for his trouble.

Source: Meet the doctors: Take a look at this country’s first crop of homegrown physicians -Bhekisisa

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in Africa

 

Tags:

Trapped in the mountains, Puerto Ricans don’t see help, or a way out

The day Hurricane Maria swiped through these mountains, the loose, wet dirt started to tumble and roll. It broke through the gate and through the door. It moved with ferocity and determination. It covered and filled everything.“It looked like chocolate,” said Ferdinand Ramos, a 63-year-old retired police officer whose home was directly in the path of massive landslides. The viscous mud crashed into his living room and kitchen, leaving a shin-high sludge.

Source: Trapped in the mountains, Puerto Ricans don’t see help, or a way out – The Washington Post

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 16, 2017 in North America

 

Tags: ,