Gaddafi declines to reveal a hidden imam
Time: Will the Mystery of Lebanon's Missing Imam Be Solved?
The National on democracy in Iraq and elsewhere in the Middle East
Last Updated: Feb 27, 2011
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Eight years after the end of autocracy, citizens and elected officials seem to have little or no understanding of democratic institutions. Friday's "day of rage" protests, when as many as 15 were killed, showed that Iraqis have been unable to differentiate between rallying for a cause, and simply expressing frustration mixed with violence. In one example, angry protesters in the governorate of Wasit burnt the mayor's offices, a key institution of local government.
Harbouring grievances against the elected mayor, who was elected in 2008, is legitimate. But setting fire to a public building, which actually is owned by the protesters as much as anybody else, shows the lack of a distinction between the mayor and public offices in general. And protesters shouldn't be resorting to arson anyway.
Young Palestinian activists have finally found a worthy cause to protest about - The Fatah Hamas split. As long as they are ready to waste time and revolutions on such nonsense, we are safe from another intifada here. On the other hand, Abbas and Fayyad may be not as unpopular in the West Bank after the Palileaks as we believe.
But many Palestinians in the West Bank seem generally satisfied with Mr. Abbas’s administration, which has restored law and order after years of chaos.
Mr. Abbas called for elections by September but Hamas immediately rejected the idea. Mr. Abbas now says that they can take place only if they can be held in the West Bank and Gaza at the same time.
Unlike some regional despots who have ruled for decades, Mr. Abbas is not an autocrat and has been the president only since 2005. He has said that he is not keen to run for another term, and he has on occasion threatened to quit.
“Abbas and Fayyad are very good for us,” said Muhammad Abu Ghazaleh, the owner of a jeans store in Ramallah. “They gave us security.”
Source The New York Times
A few days after Gaddafi has let journalists in, the Guardian says things are actually patchy and Gaddafi seems to still have many supporters in West Libya. The Guardian: Zawiyah
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