Iran's supreme leader Ali Khamenei, photo by Reuters
Headline: U.S. accuses Egypt of stifling freedom of expression
To Read: A Washington Post editorial urges the Obama administration to pressure Egypt to prevent new crippling restrictions on western NGOs:
The Obama administration and other Western governments are increasingly concerned that Egypt’s shaky Islamic government will exhaust the country’s foreign reserves rather than adopt the painful austerity measures necessary to win fresh funding from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). While the danger of an economic collapse is real, it is not the only threat the West should be focused on. Cairo is also on the verge of adopting laws that would cripple the country’s fragile new democratic order and drastically reduce the West’s ability to influence Egypt’s course.
Quote: "Despite the harsh rhetoric we're hearing from Pyongyang, we are not seeing changes to the North Korean military posture, such as large-scale mobilisations and positioning of forces", White House spokesman Jay Carni about the recent tensions with North Korea.
Number: 18, the percentage of Republicans who think the UN is doing a good job.
Headline: Palestinian prisoners riot over fellow inmate’s death
To Read: Nadav Eyal explains why Obama can present the Israeli left's positions while the Israeli left cannot:
The Israeli left has not succeeded in telling a positive narrative to the Israeli society that throws out the occupation. In other words, they have failed in creating a sustainable narrative that tells the Israelis a "good" story about themselves, and explains that the less-good parts are control over the West Bank and the settlements. The left did as much as it could to reach an agreement when it was in power, out of the understanding that such an arrangement is of strategic urgency. But it allowed the right to undermine the status of peace as an immanent, essential part of the Israeli experience and facilitated the transformation of the concept of peace to an amorphous entity; or, according to the right, “messianic.”
Quote: "We are moving from matza and maror to mufletta and honey", PM Netanyahu celebrates the Moroccan Mimuna tradition.
Number: 5, the reportedly insufficient number of currently operational Iron Dome batteries.
The Middle East
Headline: Iran Cools Nuclear Work as Vote Looms
To Read: Ralph Peters criticizes the failed western coverage of the ongoing persecution of Christians in the Middle East:
Islamist terrorists and fanatics are methodically exterminating the 2,000-year-old Christian civilization of the Middle East through oppression, threats, appropriations and deadly violence.
Our media ignore the intensifying savagery against Christians in Muslim Brotherhood-controlled Egypt. Unconfirmed reports assert that, last month, Muslim Brothers dragged Christian protesters to a mosque and tortured them — but our reporters won’t look into an Islamist Abu Ghraib.
Quote: "In Lebanon, we are facing the same problem with the Americans who are interfering in everything and trying to impose agendas and headlines", Sayyed Hashem Safieddine, the head of Hezbollah's executive council, accusing the US of meddling with Lebanon's affairs.
Number: 60, the percentage of the Palestinian vote jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti would receive if he would run against Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in the PA presidential elections.
The Jewish World
Headline: 2,000-Year-Old Jobar Syrian Synagogue in Damascus Burned and Looted
To Read: Rabbi Dan Orenstein writes about his disappointment after not getting on the various 'top rabbis' lists:
Newsweek’s most recent list of the top fifty rabbis in America was published on March 21, and I wasn’t on it….again! The Jewish Daily Forward published its list of the thirty-six most inspiring rabbis in America a little over a week ago, and my name didn’t float to the top of the fame pool. Every year the Forward also publishes its picks for the fifty most influential Jews in America – the Forward Fifty – and try as I may, I cannot ever get included among the regal rabbonim on that list either.
What am I doing wrong, or more to the point, what are my celebrity colleagues doing right? How can I, an attention starved, ego-driven, middle aged clergyperson, get the Hollywood-style celeb status I crave while simultaneously projecting an enduring image of the self-effacing humility I lack?
Quote: “In addition, we honor the memory of victims of the Holocaust, and we also respect our readers and only put in front of them what they need and want to see”, Avraham Dov Greenboim, editor of the Haredi publication 'Bakehillah', justifying the decision to blur out the faces of women in holocaust picture due to 'modesty'.
Number: 7,000, the number of Jewish refugees who were held- often together with Nazi criminals- in Canadian camps during WW2.