It has been a momentous twelve months in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and in relation to developments popularly dubbed the 'Arab Spring' or (perhaps more helpfully) the 'Arab Awakening'. Time, we think, to stop for a moment and take stock.
Edinburgh will be awash with military symbolism and celebration today (25 June 2011), as the city hosts the national event for Armed Forces Day - which David Cameron last year said should be “an explosion of red white and blue all over the country.” That thought may cause SNP First Minister Alex Salmond at least a moment's hiccup as he stands next to the PM on the podium!
In his speeches at the demonstrations of the citizens’ protest movement in the Kurdish Region of northeastern Iraq, Mullah Kamaran has called for a revolution without violence—a jihad. He has urged the armed militias to put down their guns. He appealed to the demonstrators to see the soldiers as their brothers and not throw rocks or hurt them, and has twice been arrested for his stand. Peggy Gish of Christian Peacemaker Teams reports.
A new song was playing on Iraqi Kurdistan radio just before Easter, which included the lines, "Don't kill this generation" and "don't kill the future." Michele Naar-Obed from Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) recounts part of the untold story of nonviolent action and brutal state violence in Suleimaniya and Kawler, the state capital.