History

Napolitano wins historic second term as Italian president

 AP, AFP, DPA, Reuters, Deutsche Welle, 20 April 2013

Giorgio Napolitano has won a second term as president, the first time an Italian head of state has done so. His re-election comes after two other candidates had failed to win enough votes to succeed the incumbent.After five rounds of inconclusive voting and two aborted candidacies, the 87-year-old Napolitano stepped in to help end Italy's political impasse on Saturday, overwhelmingly winning a second term as president. His re-election could help pave the way toward brokering a coalition government or calling new elections.

Freedom of speech in Turkey - A secularist’s lament

Freedom of speech in Turkey - A secularist’s lament

The Economist, 20 April 2013

A blasphemy case raises new worries about freedom of speech in Turkey. “I AM not sure if you have noticed, but where there is a louse, a nonentity, a low life, thief or fool, they are all Islamists. Is this a paradox?”

Sultan Erdogan: Turkey's Rebranding Into the New, Old Ottoman Empire

 Sultan Erdogan: Turkey's Rebranding Into the New, Old Ottoman Empire

Cinan Kiper, The Atlantic, 5 April 2013

In the eyes of secularists, the Europe-facing, Western-dressing, cocktail-toasting modern nation-state is being replaced by a religiously conservative one, headscarf by headscarf.The cities might not seem similar today, but one thing Tripoli and Thessaloniki, Basra and Beirut, Sarajevo and Sana'a all once had in common is that just a little over a century ago they were all part of the Ottoman Empire. A second thing they all have in common is that until just a few years ago they harbored a certain disdain for Turkey ... due in large part to the aforementioned empire.

Hugo Chávez obituary

 Hugo Chávez obituary

Phil Gunson, The Guardian, 6 March 2013

NGO: Bulgaria Must Take Responsibility for Thracian, Macedonian Jews' Deportation

NGO: Bulgaria Must Take Responsibility for Thracian, Macedonian Jews' Deportation

Society | February 14, 2013, Thursday| 457 views

 

The Stakes In ‘The Syrian Civil War’

 

The Stakes In ‘The Syrian Civil War’

MONDAY, 12 NOVEMBER 2012 05:31 COL. TOM SNODGRASS (RET.)

 

Some of the past peoples controlling this geographic region over the centuries included Canaanites, Phoenicians, Sumerians, Assyrians, and Hittites. Later, this area, also known as the “Levant,” was conquered and ruled by Egyptians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, and Byzantines. In 634 A.D., the city of Damascus, which was a major urban center of the Christian Byzantine Empire, wascaptured by a Muslim army dispatched on an imperialistic, jihadist conquest from Arabia by the Rashidun Caliph Abu Bakr, Muhammad’s political and religious successor.

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