(Euronews: 0549 PT, May 9, 2011) The Egyptian Army is demonstrating its promised "iron fist" in Cairo, after two days of deadly clashes between Coptic Christians and Muslims. At least 12 people were killed and more than 200 injured.
Clashes flared between Christians and Muslims in the capital on Saturday and Sunday. Stones were thrown and there were reports of gunfire and bullet wounds; 190 people were arrested. The army's aim now is to reassure the people.
(Al Jazeera English: 1610 PT, May 8, 2011) Christians marching against the military in the Egyptian capital and calling for more rights have come under attack. While some blamed hardline Muslims, others said the attack is symptomatic of rampant lawlessness in the country following the revolution that overthrew long-time leader, Hosni Mubarak. Al Jazeera's Rawya Rageh reports from Cairo.
(Democracy Now! 0752 PT, May 9, 2011) Democracy Now! correspondent Sharif Abdel Kouddous reports from Cairo, where 12 people died and more than 180 were wounded during clashes between Muslims and Christians in Cairo over the weekend.
"This was a major attack," says Kouddous. "What many people, many Coptic people in particular, do not understand is why the military, who was present at the scene while the violence was happening stood by while the worst of it took place and did not intervene."
(Al Jazeera English: 0633 PST, April 22, 2011) Rula Amin reports from Damascus, as anti-government protests rock the country.
(Associated Press: 0745 PST, April 22, 2011) Witnesses say at least 15 Syrian protesters have been killed during clashes with security forces who fired live bullets and tear gas at tens of thousands of people shouting for freedom and democracy.
(Euronews: 2334 PST, April 22, 2011) Good Friday has been rebaptised "Great Friday" by Syrian activists who, via social internet networks, are calling for a united front of protests by Muslims and Christians against the regime today.
Since March the government has been rocked by protests in many cities, all of which have been violently put down with blood spilled. Although President Assad yesterday abolished the 48-year old state of emergency in a bid to placate his opponents, critics say a raft of repressive laws still exist.
(Euronews: 0923 PST, March 9, 2011) People have once more taken to the streets of Cairo, this time to protest about sectarian violence which claimed the lives of several.
The clashes erupted on Tuesday night as an estimated two thousand Christians protested against the burning of a church in Cairo last week. As many as 13 were killed. The health ministry said around 140 were injured.
This is a continuation of a conversation I had with the lovely human being and great shaman Sandra Ingerman.
In this podcast we talk about:
How joy and love are our responsibility to the future.
How can an really listen to what the earth needs from us.
Sandra’s work with Fundamentalist Christians.
Shamanism and the the Bible.
What is the difference between Shamanism and Mysticism?
Integrating mystical experience.
Again, we would love to hear your comments here or on Facebook.
(Euronews: 0028 PST, March 7, 2011) Lebanese protesters have called for an end to the country's sectarian political system. Around 8,000 demonstrated outside the electricity ministry. They claimed it was a symbol of the corruption the long-established division of power among religious sects had produced.
Lebanon's constitution says the president must be a Maronite Christian, and the prime minister a Sunni Muslim. Critics say dividing power this way has fuelled self interested alliances.
(Democracy Now! 0930 PST, March 2, 2011) UN Reports have emerged of a dire situation on Libya's borders with Tunisia and Egypt, where tens of thousands have fled to evade the clashes. Democracy Now! speaks with Elizabeth Tan of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the agency working to provide shelter, sanitation, food and transportation at the border of Libya.
(Democracy Now! 0715 PST, March 2, 2011) Resistance in Libya as Gaddafi forces launch new assaults, and US silent on recent crackdown in Iraq.
This week gunmen overran a Christian church in the Karrada neighborhood of Baghdad during Sunday services, instantly murdering a priest and an acolyte. In the hostage siege that ensued, more than 50 people were killed and dozens were wounded when attackers sprayed bullets and set off suicide vests. The Al Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq took responsibility and released a statement warning of more attacks to come against Christians.
During the rule of Saddam Hussein, there were an estimated 1.4 million Christians living in Iraq -- many of them Chaldean-Assyrians and Armenians, but also a smaller number of Roman Catholics.
Two-thirds of Iraq's Christians have left the country since 2003, according to some estimates -- leaving fewer than 450,000 Iraqi Christians there today. Tragically, more Iraqi Christians may now join the exodus as a result of Sunday’s massacre. They know that without a government to enforce law and order and with the Americans on the way out, there will probably be more attacks.
Al Qaeda militants want the exodus to continue. Al Qaeda in Iraq has declared war on half a million Iraqi Christians because two Egyptian women, who supposedly converted from Coptic Christianity to Islam, are rumored to be held prisoner by Coptic monks somewhere in Egypt. Al Qaeda in Iraq posted an internet statement saying "the killing sword will not be lifted" from the necks of Christians, in Iraq and across the region.
The speaker said his group will go after "your children" in Syria, Lebanon and Egypt, adding there are hundreds of thousands of Christians and hundreds of churches on Islamic soil. He said they will be targeted if Christians do not submit to his group's demands.
Leaders of the Coptic Church deny the women are being held anywhere, calling the assertion "an illusion in the minds of sick people.” Even if this story about the Coptic monks is true, it is utterly mind boggling why Iraqi Christians are held responsible for something done in Egypt? However, there has not been any logic behind all the death and destruction that have become a part of Iraqi daily lives.
Two days after the Sunday massacre, more than 70 people were killed and 250 wounded as sixteen car bombs and roadside bombs detonated across the city on Tuesday. The coordinated bombings seemed designed to demonstrate that Al Qaeda in Iraq and other insurgent groups still have a significant presence in the capital.
"For the last four months we have seen attacks around Baghdad, but now they are inside (the city)," Mohamed al-Rubeiy, a Baghdad provincial council member for Karrada was quoted saying by the Associated Press. "Karrada is the center of Baghdad and Baghdad is the center of the government. That means the terrorists are sending a message to the world: 'We are back and we are here'."
Religious leaders from around the world condemned the attacks, including Iraq’s Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Husayni al-Sistani.
Condemnation, however, is not enough. Iraqi leaders and security forces must do more to protect a Christian population whose roots in the country reach back in history. Moreover Iraq's current security and political dysfunction could prove a liability to the entire region, becoming a deadly breeding ground for terrorist groups with global aspirations.
Special Encore Presentation this Monday at 5pm PST/8pm EST!
This past May at the 2010 Mountainfilm Festival in Telluride, our partners at explore.org received a very special honor, the Moving Mountains Prize, for their film "Fish Out of Water." The Moving Mountains Prize is awarded when a film depicts a unique mission or extraordinary impact of a non-profit organization. Featured in "Fish Out of Water," Sun Valley Adaptive Sports helps war veterans cope with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) through fly fishing and other therapeutic outdoor activities. And as you will see when you watch the film, this organization is truly moving mountains.
"Fish Out of Water" began airing on Link TV in March (also available to watch online), but we are airing a special encore presentation because in addition to celebrating explore's success at MountainFilm, we were also introduced to a touching story that unfolded during the festival awards ceremony.
Christian Ellis, a vet whom Director Charlie Annenberg Weingarten became close with during the making of his film, experienced terrible traumas in Iraq. Losing many of his friends and fellow soldiers in combat, surviving a broken back, and suffering from severe PTSD, Christian returned home to a new reality.
Struggling to move forward, Christian returned to his music studies for the first time since he was 15. It had been a long-time dream of his to sing opera, and with a little encouragement from his new friend Charlie and two years of singing lessons, on Memorial Day Christian realized his dream. Closing the awards ceremony at the Mountainfilm Festival in Telluride, after the screening of "Fish Out of Water," Christian sang a moving aria about his experiences in Iraq.
Fast forward to minute 10 to hear Christian's aria. It's a true testament to the resilience and strength so many men and women of service embody: