Category : Bahrain

(Gulfweekly) In Bahrain Christians face a Challenge over Burials and Space

The 623rd and final burial plot was filled following a funeral in the Christian Cemetery in Salmabad at the weekend as church and community leaders wait anxiously on a promised donation of new land to come to fruition.

There is little room left to squeeze in any more deceased believers and digging up the footpaths may be the only choice. Otherwise, expats may have no alternative but to pay thousands of dinars to have the bodies of their loved ones repatriated to their home countries in Europe, Asia, Africa or the Americas.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Asia, Bahrain, Death / Burial / Funerals, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

(New Yorker) Jon Lee Anderson–Massacre in Kandahar

All the signs are that the United States military and its NATO allies have not only outlived their welcome in Afghanistan but also passed the point at which their presence is anything other than toxic. While the exact details of the incident are still unclear, it’s known that early Sunday morning, an American solider in Kandahar province’s Panjwai district apparently murdered up to sixteen Afghan civilians in cold blood. Nine of the victims were reportedly children. This is merely the latest in a string of episodes in which American soldiers””in spite of the positive intentions of an overwhelming majority of the troops there””have shown scorn, disrespect, and, increasingly and tragically, hatred for the people of the country hosting them.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Asia, Bahrain, Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, Politics in General, Violence, War in Afghanistan

(BBC) Arab spring hope 'in the balance' says Amnesty International

A fightback by repressive governments is putting at risk a historic struggle for freedom and justice in the Arab world, Amnesty International says.

Publishing its annual report, the rights group highlights the fight for control over communications technology.

It criticises Libya, Syria, Bahrain and Yemen for targeting peaceful protesters to stay in power.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Asia, Bahrain, China, Iran, Law & Legal Issues, Libya, Middle East, Politics in General, Syria, Violence, Yemen

The Economist Leader–Islam and the Arab revolutions

Islam is bound to play a larger role in government in the Arab world than elsewhere. Most Muslims do not believe in the separation of religion and state, as America and France do, and have not lost their enthusiasm for religion, as many “Christian Democrats” in Europe have. Muslim democracies such as Turkey, Malaysia and Indonesia all have big Islamic parties.

But Islamic does not mean Islamist. Al-Qaeda in the past few years has lost ground in Arab hearts and minds. The jihadists are a small minority, widely hated by their milder co-religionists, not least for giving Islam a bad name across the world. Ideological battles between moderates and extremists within Islam are just as fierce as the animosity pitting Muslim, Christian and Jewish fundamentalists against each other. Younger Arabs, largely responsible for the upheavals, are better connected and attuned to the rest of the modern world than their conservative predecessors were.

Moreover, some Muslim countries are on the road to democracy, or already there.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Africa, Asia, Bahrain, Egypt, Islam, Jordan, Libya, Middle East, Other Faiths, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia

Kingdom, Greeting Gulf Soldiers, Is Seen as New Front on Sunni-Shiite Divide

The tiny Island of Bahrain could become a battleground for regional influence between two historical rivals””with Saudi Arabia backing Bahrain’s Sunni monarchy, and Iran supporting the Shiite opposition.

A coalition of about 2,000 soldiers deployed by Saudi Arabia and Persian Gulf states, part of the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council, rolled into Bahrain’s capital Monday to help restore order and save a government challenged by an opposition seeking an end to the monarchy. It was the first time Gulf countries deployed troops to an Arab nation to settle an internal dispute.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Asia, Bahrain, Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations, Iran, Middle East, Religion & Culture, Saudi Arabia

Thomas Friedman on Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Beyond–This Is Just the Start

Future historians will long puzzle over how the self-immolation of a Tunisian street vendor, Mohamed Bouazizi, in protest over the confiscation of his fruit stand, managed to trigger popular uprisings across the Arab/Muslim world. We know the big causes ”” tyranny, rising food prices, youth unemployment and social media. But since being in Egypt, I’ve been putting together my own back-of-the-envelope guess list of what I’d call the “not-so-obvious forces” that fed this mass revolt. Here it is….

THE BEIJING OLYMPICS China and Egypt were both great civilizations subjected to imperialism and were both dirt poor back in the 1950s, with China even poorer than Egypt, Edward Goldberg, who teaches business strategy, wrote in The Globalist. But, today, China has built the world’s second-largest economy, and Egypt is still living on foreign aid. What do you think young Egyptians thought when they watched the dazzling opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics? China’s Olympics were another wake-up call ”” “in a way that America or the West could never be” ”” telling young Egyptians that something was very wrong with their country, argued Goldberg….

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Social Networking, Africa, Asia, Bahrain, Blogging & the Internet, China, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Egypt, Foreign Relations, Israel, Libya, Middle East, Politics in General, Saudi Arabia, Science & Technology, Sports, Tunisia