Stories from 17 July 2009
Belarus: Europe's only non-free country
Bielar.us directs attention to the 2009 Freedom in the World Index, by Freedom House, showing Belarus as the only non-free country in Europe.
Russia: Rocket science in reverse
Streetwise Professor discusses the problems that the new Russian sea launched ballistic missile (SLBM), the Bulava, is still experiencing after years of testing.
Balkans-EU: Schengen's leftouts and letins
Eberhard Rhein of BlogactivEU writes about the EU's plans for visa deregulation to Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia. Gray Falcon presents some critical views from the perspective of Serbia and Bosnia-Hercegovina, and Albanian Blogger gives his version on why also Albania is left out.
Estonia: Holes in the NATO-umbrella?
Itching for Eestimaa discusses whether Estonia's membership of NATO really is the security umbrella the country imagined when it sought entry into the organization.
Hungary: Economics opposition style
Hungarian Spectrum writes about what economic policies the country's opposition might have to offer for the upcoming 2010 parliamentary elections.
Lithuania: View from Vilnius on anti-gay law
Lituanica raises the heated issue of the new anti-gay legislation in Lithuania, and explains that it is still some way to go before it enters into force, not least as it confronts opposition from most educated and liberally inclined Lithuanians.
Russia: Birth of Pirate Party
LJ user savinkoff posts [RUS] the manifest of the recently founded Russian Pirate Party, following the pattern of protagonists for Internet freedom in the rest of Europe.
Russia: History of kommunalkas
English Russia presents an abridged history of soviet kommunlkas – communal apartments – with accompanying pictures.
Iran: “Death to Russia” at Friday Prayer
At a Friday prayer at Tehran University led by former president and cleric Hashemi Rafsanjani today, crowds of Mir Hossein Mousavi supporters defiantly chanted "Death to Russia" instead of "Death to America", referring to accusations that Russia has been involved in training regime forces of repression.
Egypt: What's good for the goose is NOT good for the gander
When Marwa El Sherbini was shot dead in a German court Facebook users and the Egyptian blogosphere mourned her as the victim of the veil, the victim of racism, and the victim of her beliefs. But when a heap of bones wrapped up in a blanket named Ibrahim El Sayed Ibrahim was shipped back to Egypt from Libya - no one lifted a finger in his defense.
Gabon: Gabon Election 2009 on Twitter
Gabon Election 2009 in English and French on Twitter. The page is maintained by a citizen journalist from Gabon: Young Gabonese, Citi. Journalist, DigitActivist,waiting 4 free elections, peace and prosperity in his homeland. Hoping that you'll help us to fight for this!!!
Africa: Blogging the trial of Charles Taylor
Former Liberian President Charles Taylor is facing 11 charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity at the Special Court for Sierra Leone, which is being held at the Hague, Netherlands. There are two blog specifically covering Charles Taylor trial: The Trial of Charles Taylor - International Criminal Justice in the Making, which is made up of a team of monitors from the global litigation practice of Clifford Chance LLP and the Trial of Charles Taylor, a project of Open Society Justice Initiative.
India: No shortcuts please, this is business!
The world is not Orkut, says Harini Calamur at POV, so people will do well to mind their language – especially when it comes to business communication.
Pakistan: The power of the Fatwa
The Karachi Electricity Supply Company (KESC) has reportedly obtained a fatwa [religious decree] from 12 senior Islamic scholars against the theft of electricity. Kalsoom at Changing Up Pakistan writes in this post how the idea of a major corporation using religious fatwas to give religious legitimacy to their cause is...
Out of Africa Emerges Digital Art and Animation
‘Digital' has become the latest buzz word not just in Kenya but in Africa where most things are still analogue. However, Digital Art is a rather new term to even the most seasoned art aficionados. Digital technology has transformed traditional activities such as painting, drawing and sculpture, while new forms, such as net art, digital installation art, and virtual reality, have been recognized artistic practices.
Turkey: Finding an Apartment as an Expat
Turkish Muse details her recent experience as an American trying to rent out an apartment in Izmir. “We were aghast. How could she ask for that much? That's ridiculous!, we thought. Then we were incensed. I immediately assumed she was asking for such a high amount — and in dollars,...
Light Up Nigeria: Enough Is Enough
Despite being a country rich in oil, Nigeria's electricity supply situation is insufficient. “In most parts of the country, darkness pervades and generators have taken over as the source of power”, says Adebayo's blog. Now Nigerians have started a massive online demonstration against this frustrating situation on social media sites, especially on Twitter with the hashtag #lightupnigeria.
Philippines: Error-Ridden Book
A Page Turner's Odyssey draws attention to the grave number of typographical errors found in a book by a prominent Filipino author.
Belarus: Arrests of opposition activists
LJ user ingannatore reports [RUS] on yesterday's arrests of some 50 opposition activists in Minsk and other cities in Belarus and goes on to comment the conduct of the authorities.
Philippines: An Internet-Savvy Grandmother
“Lola Techie” is very popular in the Philippines these days. “Lola” means grandmother in the Filipino language. “Lola Techie” is the central figure in a Philippine telecommunication company’s marketing campaign which plays on the concept of an internet-savvy grandmother.
Philippines: Protest of KFC workers
Filipino employees of KFC, a popular fastfood chain, staged a picket-rally to protest the “illegal” dismissal of many workers in the country.