From VOICE OF AMERICA:
At least 10 people were killed in clashes between Muslims and Christians in the capital, Cairo, Tuesday. 110 people were wounded in the violence. The clashes erupted after at least 1,000 Christians gathered to protest the burning of a church in a Cairo suburb last week.
If the people of Egypt really want to live in a true democracy, the majority are going to have to accept their responsibility for the safety of any minorities in their land. Otherwise their nation will become an uncivilised, unenlightened and undemocratic killing ground. We pray this does not happen and that the people of Egypt take the opportunity of their newly won freedom to give freedom to all in their land.
A strong earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.2 hit off the coast of northeastern Japan on Wednesday, but there are so far no reports of damage from the quake. A tsunami advisory of up to 50 cm (about 20 inches) was issued for northeastern Japan after the quake hit around 11:45 a.m.
From THE NEW YORK TIMES:
A suicide bomber detonated his explosives at a funeral procession in northwestern Pakistan on Wednesday, killing at least 34 people. At least 45 people were reported wounded, several in a critical condition. The attack took place in the Matni Adezai area near the provincial capital of Peshawar in the restive northwestern province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. At the time of the attack more than 150 people had gathered in an open ground to offer prayers for the wife of Hakeem Khan, a local figure who has resisted the Taliban.
Posted by LKT at THE INFUSION:
Quick update on Cote d'Ivoire
"At least four demonstrators, including a 19-year-old woman, were shot dead by riot police officers on Tuesday as they protested the shooting deaths of women who marched last week, witnesses said."
The neighborhood where the women were killed last week is now autonomous, according to the article, "thanks to the shadowy young men with stolen Kalashnikov rifles who have waged an armed campaign against Mr. Gbagbo — the Invisible Commando, as the group is known in the neighborhood."
Laurent Gbagbo, most of you reading this blog will know, is the president of Cote d'Ivoire who is generally believed to have lost the election there last November to Alassane Ouattara. He, however, has refused to concede the election despite economic and other pressures applied to get him to go.
When Mr. Gbagbo’s security forces penetrate here [in the neighborhood where the women were killed], they do so only in armored vehicles, often spraying bullets on either side as they go through, residents said. Many civilians have been killed in this rough Ouattara-supporting neighborhood of Muslim immigrants from northern Ivory Coast, but so have some of Mr. Gbagbo’s security forces. It is the one neighborhood that has taken up arms against him.
This is not pretty.
No one (in my circle) has heard from my friend Cath (suffering from Stage 4 Lung Cancer) for 2+ weeks, and no one can reach her (unanswered emails, voicemail). PLEASE pray for her---and for those of us who love her.
Posted by David G. at THE HEARSE RIDE:
This fucking depressive state I've been in lately (1-1-2011) is doing me in!! I think of suicide 24/7, and in a way I can't do, since I don't own a handgun. I own an antique shotgun that hasn't been cleaned in at least 20 years, ..not something to load live rounds into!! A car with a screwed up exhaust system, no garage, no pills .... I do own several super sharp chef knives that would do the job, but one has to plunge them in themselves, ...Not gonna happen here!!
I've been asking myself the same question for most of my life, ..WHY THE FUCK AM I HERE?!?
Posted by Jan at YEARNING FOR GOD:
Due to continued pain, I went back to my doctor today, who told me I have "non-specific arthritis." Okay, that almost sounds like I have made it up. I asked about being referred to a rheumatologist, and Dr. S. said he would be laughed at when he told them that I had such a low sed rate and so would not do that.
So I am again trying a low-dose of prednisone (1/2 a pill), this time for five days, then off, and possibly on again. Dr. S. said to try this to see if it would help me during my trip to Spain to see MJ (March 30-April 13). I hope I won't contract the side effects of taking a steroid. . . .
I appreciate your thoughts and prayers during this season of discomfort.
From THE SYDNEY MORNING HERALD:
Serbia and Kosovo have launched their first direct talks since Kosovo's declaration of independence three years ago, voicing high hopes amid European Union and United States encouragement.
A first round of talks, lasting about two hours on Tuesday and to be followed up last night, were ''constructive, friendly and frank'', an EU source said.
Kosovo's deputy prime minister, Edita Tahiri, said: ''We come with a positive spirit and constructive approach. With creativity we think we may overcome the differences and it may improve the lives of people but also advance the European agenda for both states.''
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