Redefining ‘Religion’

Michael Schulson in the Washington Post, ‘ . . . The idea has adherents at the highest levels of power. “Islam is a political ideology” that “hides behind the notion of it being a religion,” national security adviser Michael Flynn … read more

Protest at No.10

Damien Gayle and Nicola Slawson in the Guardian, ‘ Tens of thousands of protesters have taken part in marches across the country [Saturday 4 February] condemning Theresa May’s state visit invitation to Donald Trump. Demonstrators urged the prime minister to withdraw … read more

Quebec atrocity – Far right sympathiser charged

Kevin Dougherty in the Independent, ‘ The French-Canadian student charged in connection with a shooting spree that killed six people at a Quebec City mosque was a supporter Donald Trump and far-right French politician Marine Le Pen . . . The 27-year-old … read more

France’s Presidential hopeful under scrutiny

Richard Balmforth & Ingrid Melander report in the Independent, ‘. . . the allegation that Mr Fillon’s British-born wife, Penelope, was paid for fake jobs – a charge to which he did not reply directly on Wednesday – could undermine his … read more

Obama’s farewell

AP reports, ‘ . . . Officials say the Obama administration in its waning hours defied Republican opposition and quietly released $221 million to the Palestinian Authority that GOP members of Congress had been blocking. A State Department official and … read more

Trident weaponry misfire

Rob Merrick in the Independent, ‘. . . According to the Sunday Times, the missile was intended to be fired 5,600 miles (9,012 km) from the coast of Florida to a sea target off the west coast of Africa – … read more

An ignominious tradition . . .

Cory Crider in the Guardian, ‘. . .  Here in the UK, there used to be agreement on this story: fair play. The rule of law. Open justice. The abhorrence of torture. It is all there, in Magna Carta. Britons … read more

‘Special’ Relationship

Jonathan Freedland in the Guardian, ‘. . . London’s default setting since 1945 has been to be as close to Washington as humanly possible. That’s what the manual, handed to every diplomat and every new occupant of No 10, demands. … read more

Civil Rights questions in Pakistan

Reuters report, ‘A fifth Pakistani social activist has gone missing from the capital Islamabad, a colleague said on Wednesday, days after four other campaigners disappeared in a way that has alarmed supporters of free speech. Samar Abbas, president of the … read more

Turkish PM in Baghdad

Al Jazeera reports, ‘Turkey’s Prime Minister has arrived in Erbil on the second leg of a trip to Iraq aimed at bolstering Ankara’s role in the fight against ISIL. Binali Yildirim’s meeting on Sunday with the head of Iraq’s Kurdish … read more