Middle East

Syria crisis: Ban Ki-moon set to announce new peace envoy

Syria crisis: Ban Ki-moon set to announce new peace envoy

Julian Borger, The Guardian,

8 August 2012

The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon has held talks with the Arab League in the hope of agreeing on a new Syrian peace envoy to replace Kofi Annan and keep open an alternative to the spiralling levels of violence.

US adds Saudi al Qaeda leader in Afghanistan to terror list

US adds Saudi al Qaeda leader in Afghanistan to terror list

By Bill Roggio August

7, 2012

The US State Department has added a wanted Saudi citizen who serves as a senior al Qaeda leader, trainer, and facilitator in Afghanistan to the list of Specially Designated Global terrorists.

Azzam Abdullah Zureik Al Maulid Al Subhi, a Saudi who is better known as Mansur al Harbi, was added to the list of designated terrorists today. Al Harbi is on Saudi Arabia's list of 85 most-wanted terrorists that was issued in 2009.

Afghan defense minister quits, hands Karzai a security headache

Afghan defense minister quits, hands Karzai a security headache

 

By Mirwais Harooni and Abdul Aziz Ibrahimi

 

KABUL

 

Tue Aug 7, 2012

(Reuters) - Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak resigned on Tuesday after losing a no-confidence vote in parliament, leaving President Hamid Karzai scrambling to find a replacement for one of his top security tsars as insurgent attacks mount.

A difference beyond question

A difference beyond question

Washington Post, Richard Cohen

7 August 2012

Before the Jews of Hungary were emancipated in the 19th century, they were not permitted to own land. By the end of the century, they were on their way to owning fully one-fifth of Hungary’s large estates and were hugely successful in business and the arts. The Jews of Germany had a similar history. In the early 20th century, they comprised many if not most of the country’s lawyers, doctors, composers, playwrights and scientists, and were so astonishingly successful in business that while they were just 1 percent of the population, they were 31 percent of the richest families. What did it? Was it nature (Jews were smarter) or nurture (Jews had a certain culture)? Here’s my answer: I don’t know.

Sinai Attack Tests New Egyptian President’s Relationship With Israel

Sinai Attack Tests New Egyptian President’s Relationship With Israel

International Herald Tribune

6 August 2012

Syrian Christians caught between two sides

Syrian Christians caught between two sides

Deutsche Welle

7 August 2012

Reports suggest that Syrian Christians are increasingly being targeted for attack by radical Islamists. They're suspected of loyalty to the Assad regime - yet many are actively involved in the uprising.

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