Saudi Arabia: Is It Really That Hard to Learn Arabic?
“At first blush the Arabic language can sound harsh and appear intimidating” writes AMERICAN BEDU, “yet I can state from personal experience that once the alphabet is memorized, learning Arabic falls into place and is not as complicated as it might appear.”
American Bedu writes that unlike English there are no silent vowels, as in English, and that learning the language ‘is not only a sign of cultural respect’ but necessary for ‘safety and security’…. even on expat compounds.
In the 1980s Saddam Hussein’s regime cleared Kirkuk’s citadel of most of its inhabitants and destroyed their homes as part of a reclamation project. HEALING IRAQ writes of the efforts of the American military to spruce up the grounds – in an attempt to win hearts and minds – and how local and federal officials are beginning to see such revival as “a part of making the country whole again.”
The Emirates Economist focuses on an article in the Boston Globe, which asserts that Muslim women living in the States are often more educated than their American counterparts, and according to Gallup come closer to women of any other faith in earning the same as their husbands.
Not A Happy New Year For Egyptian Christians [Updated]
BEIRUTSPRING argues that blaming foreign elements for the bomb on the Coptic Church is a little too convenient, and instead suggests “a long term reconciliation plan that involves convincing the Muslim majority that the Christian minority is an equal partner in the nation”.
He also highlights a piece from Hani Shukrallah in Al-Ahram, which writes as follows:
“I accuse the millions of supposedly moderate Muslims among us; those who’ve been growing more and more bigoted, inclusive and narrow minded with every passing year. I accuse those among us who would rise up in fury over a decision to halt construction of a Muslim Center near ground zero in New York, but applaud the Egyptian police when they halt the construction of a staircase in a Coptic church in the Omranya district of Greater Cairo.”