The vote was decisive and critical: parliament would not support military action in Syria. Forget the chemical weapons attacks, the barrel bombs, regime death squads and the threat of jihad, Britain had had enough of foreign entanglements. No more could we tolerate the stigma of RAF bombers hitting civilian targets, or British troops dying from roadside mines and snipers’ potshots. The Syria vote of August 2013 humiliated David Cameron and his foreign secretary, William Hague, but seemed popular around the country. There are few street protests in favour of war….MORE : THETIMES
Warning: this story is about death. You might want to click away now.That’s because, researchers say, our brains do their best to keep us from dwelling on our inevitable demise. A study found that the brain shields us from existential fear by categorising death as an unfortunate event that only befalls other people.
“The brain does not accept that death is related to us,” said Yair Dor-Ziderman, ”…more: theguardian
Just days after hundreds of people marched through Cairo and other cities calling for the Egyptian president to step down, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi settled into a chair alongside his US counterpart Donald Trump and addressed briefly the rare explosion of public anger against his rule.
“As long as we have political Islam movements that aspire to power, our region will remain in a state of instability,” Mr Sisi said on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York. “But I want to assure you, especially in Egypt, the public are refusing this kind of…more: FT
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When Pope Francis I visited Egypt in 2017 to stimulate inter-faith dialogue he walked into a religious and geopolitical minefield at the heart of which was Al-Azhar, one of the world’s oldest and foremost seats of Islamic learning. The pope’s visit took on added significance with Al-Azhar standing accused of promoting the kind of ultra-conservative Sunni Muslim Islam that potentially creates an environment conducive to breeding extremism….more: lobelog
With 10 candidates onstage, their answers limited to 60 seconds and most of the candidates unwilling to engage one another, the debate was less a debate than a series of one-minute speeches….more CNN
Arabs are increasingly saying they are no longer religious, according to the largest and most in-depth survey undertaken of the Middle East and North Africa. The finding is one of a number on how Arabs feel about a wide range of issues, from women’s rights and migration to security and sexuality…more: bbc
Mohamed Morsi was not supposed to be Egypt’s first civilian president. During a term in office that lasted just one year, Egyptians would jokingly refer to him as the “spare tire,” because he was a last-minute replacement for the preferred candidate of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt’s first presidential election after the Jan. 25, 2011, revolution. (The movement’s initial choice was a powerful millionaire and businessman who was disqualified on a technicality.) …more: nytimes