French President Nicolas Sarkozy is in a quandry: the government ministers of France have been taking vacations in the sand and surf of the southern Mediterranean and presidential palaces on the Red Sea, with the Egyptian government and a Tunisian businessman picking up the tab. How high does this subsidized vacationing go in the French government? Prime Minister François Fillon, the head of government in the Fifth Republic, and Foreign Minister Michèle Alliot-Marie, second in precedence in the ministerial system, have both received gratis vacations at the expense of foreign governments or foreign nationals.
Egypt has been undergoing a revolution that ended the brutal 30-year dictatorship of Hosni Mubarak February 11. But all of America is wondering what the end result will be after the protests have ended. This reporter told an Egyptian Facebook friend in Cairo in an on-line chat recently that every American is wondering what will come of the revolution, and he simply replied: "All the Egyptians too."
Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak bowed to pressure from protesters and resigned his 30-year reign, handing power over to the Egyptian military February 11, a move met with joy in the streets of Egypt and eloquent praise by U.S. President Obama.
Would you like your college education to be free? Sure, who wouldn't? Better question: Would you like the results of free education? Well, the people of Tunisia and Egypt are learning that whenever the government supplies something, it is never really "free."
The move toward a North American Union received another big boost last week as President Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper met in Washington, D.C. to hammer out a deal on creating a common “perimeter” around the two countries while diminishing the role of the nations’ shared border and developing a biometric system to track North Americans.
The good news is that the United States has long-standing ties with Omar Suleiman, the man who has recently been made vice president of Egypt and is poised to take charge whenever Mubarak steps down as a concession to the hundreds of thousands of demonstrators crowding the public square in Cairo to demand the President's resignation.
Thousands of service workers at the Suez Canal recently threatened an indefinite strike and sit-in protest against the poor living conditions, low wages, and bad healthcare provided to them. So far the strike has not directly affected canal operations, although, in time, it almost certainly would.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy both believe in global "solutions" to problems. How well does this play in Lisbon, Athens, Dublin, or Madrid? Portugal, Greece, Ireland, and Spain have had more than enough external pressures on their peoples in the last century.
“We want blood for blood.” Those were the last words of Shumaila Faheem, who committed suicide after swallowing poison pills on Sunday, February 6 as a protest affirming her belief that she would never receive justice for her husband's killing from the present regime.
Physical torture, abuse, forced abductions, sexual harassment, forced marriages, and other brutal practices are everyday events in the Islamic republic of Pakistan. Women in Pakistan still face daunting hardships in the male-dominated society. Although seemingly every other day the government announces plans to secure the rights of women — it has been of no use. Torture incidents are still the highlight of the media on a regular basis.
When German Chancellor Angela Merkel commented that Islam was just as much a part of Germany as Christianity and Judaism, she was wrong, apparently. Until it got caught, the European Union planned to distribute more than 3 million school calendars that included dates for the celebration of Muslim and Jewish holidays, but omitted Christian feasts. So for the EU, Islam was more a part of Germany and Europe than Christianity.