Politics

With no progress in sight, Turkish Cypriots await UN to declare talks dead

With no progress in sight, Turkish Cypriots await UN to declare talks dead

Todayszaman

12 August 2012

Almost exactly four years after Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders launched talks on reuniting the divided island under the UN auspices, a breakthrough is as unlikely as ever. Frustrated with the lack of settlement and persisting international isolation, the Turkish Cypriot leadership says it may be long overdue for the UN to tell the world the obvious truth that no solution is in sight, so that the Turkish Cypriots can move beyond a limbo they have been stuck in for years.

Egypt News — Revolution and Aftermath

Egypt News — Revolution and Aftermath

New York Times

12 August 2012

Egypt is the most populous country in the Arab world, and its revolution in February 2011 was the capstone event of the Arab Spring, inspiring demonstrators in Libya, Syria and elsewhere.

But in June 2012, a series of events threw the country’s troubled transition to democracy deeper into confusion as Egypt’s two most powerful forces — the military establishment and the Muslim Brotherhood, the Islamist group — moved toward a showdown. A swift series of steps by the military and its allies in the judiciary left many observers in Egypt and the West wondering if they were witnessing a subtle military coup, or even a counterrevolution.

Morsi retires defense minister, suspends interim constitution

Morsi retires defense minister, suspends interim constitution

Deutsche Welle

12 August 2012

Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi has sent Defense Minister and Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi into retirement. He also suspended changes made to the constitution by the military.

Tantawi was replaced by Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, while the head of the armed forces, Sami Anan, was also ordered to retire with immediate affect, according to a presidential spokesman.

Egyptian Leader Ousts Military Chief

Egyptian Leader Ousts Military Chief

By KAREEM FAHIM

Published: August 12, 2012

CAIRO — President Mohamed Morsi of Egypt forced the retirement on Sunday of his powerful defense minister, the army chief of staff and several senior generals, in a stunning purge that seemed for the moment to reclaim for civilian leaders much of the political power the Egyptian military had seized since the fall of Hosni Mubarak last year.

Mr. Morsi also nullified a constitutional declaration, issued by the military before he was elected, that eviscerated the powers of the presidency and arrogated to the military the right to pass laws. It was not immediately clear whether he had the constitutional authority to cancel that decree.

What really happened within Turkey’s military

What really happened within Turkey’s military

August 11 2012

One of Turkey’s key political phenomena in the past decade has been the gradual de-fanging of the military, a sinister institution that has toppled four elected governments since 1960. In fact, even until a few years ago, there was widespread expectation, or concern, that Turkey’s powerful generals would not break their tradition and take down a government that they did not like – this time that of the Justice and Development Party (AKP). That obviously did not happen, and the military has rather been reduced to what it should be in any democratic country. Officers, in other words, began obeying elected politicians rather than threatening them.

Which Country Has the Best Government?

Which Country Has the Best Government?

Bernhard Zand

Der Spiegel, 10 August 2012

Western democracies consider themselves to be efficient, farsighted and just -- in other words, prime examples of "good governance." But in recent years, the euro and debt crises, along with wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, have shattered faith in the reliability of western institutions. Disconcerted Europeans are casting a worried eye at newly industrialized nations like China and Brazil. Can the West learn something from countries that for so long sought its advice? In an introduction to a four-part series, SPIEGEL looks at how the world is governed today.

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