Foreign Policy Blogs

Defense & Security

Offensives Continue in the Philippines

Offensives Continue in the Philippines

The violent situation in the Philippines continues. However, the most recent news is somewhat encouraging. Ruben Pestano Lavilla Jr., who was wanted for the Philippines' worst militant attack has been arrested in Bahrain and returned to Manila. He was allegedly involved in the 2004 bombing of a ferry that killed 116 people. He was also […]

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Religion and the 2008 Democrats

Religion and the 2008 Democrats

Democrats appear to be having the time of their lives at the 2008 National Convention. Obama's surprise appearance after Biden's speech brought even more enthusiasm to the crowd and television viewers. In the world of religion and politics, it has been fascinating to see that every speech references God and no politician can close a […]

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When the Supreme Religious Leader Supports the President

On Saturday, Iran's Supreme Leader (Ayatollah Khamenei) met with the President and his cabinet members. Khamenei spoke about Ahmadinejad's administration with great admiration and defended the actions and policies of the current government. In the face of economic uncertainty in Iran , particularly concerning inflation , Ahmadinejad has lost a significant amount of popularity. Regardless, […]

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Faith and Science in the Schools

Recommended Reading: I don't know how the New York Times does it, but it always makes the debate on evolution and creationism interesting. In case you missed this Sunday's paper, the article “A Teacher on the Front Line as Faith and Science Clash,” tells the story of a science teacher that faces the challenge of […]

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Rebuilding Religious Sites

Rebuilding Religious Sites

An excellent interview on TheWorld website looks at the reconstruction of mosques in Banja Luka , the capital of the Serb-run part of Bosnia. The backdrop of the rebuilding is the capture last month of Radovan Karadzic. The discussion is with Andras Reidlmayer, an expert of Islamic architecture at Harvard, Bedrudin Gusic, the president of […]

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Considering "Other" Solutions

Suzanne Sataline, with the Wall Street Journal, wrote an article today titled, "For Some Evangelicals, GOP Ties are No Longer Binding." In some ways, after several months of analyzing the Christian vote, this kind of article is old news. On the other hand, the interviews and facts, which Sataline includes, portray quite well the changing […]

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The Hazards of Caricatures

This past week SpiegelOnline published an interview with Kurt Westergaard, the cartoonist, who drew a caricature of the Prophet Muhammad in 2005 (the simplistic one with the bomb placed on his head). The interview was based around the new development in the saga that the prosecutor general in Jordan has issued a subpoena against Westergaard. […]

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The Approach to Religious Voters in 2008

The Approach to Religious Voters in 2008

On Saturday, Obama and McCain made their first joint appearance as presumptive nominees at a "Civil Forum". The candidates were speaking before the Saddleback Church in California. NPR has reported news of the event and said that the church has a membership of "22,000 evangelical voters." The pastor of the church and interviewer on Saturday […]

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THE NEW SPECTRE

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Allegations that Saudi Arabia's Schools Encourage Religious Discrimination

The Center for Religious Freedom of the Hudson Institute, with the Institute for Gulf Affairs, published this year an extended brief titled, "2008 Update: Saudi Arabia's Curriculum of Intolerance." The Introduction describes the Center for Religious Freedom as an institution that "promotes religious freedom as a component of U.S. foreign policy." It joined the Hudson […]

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Obama's Continuing Efforts to Reach Out

Last week, Mazen Asbahi, stepped down as Barack Obama's Muslim outreach adviser. He held the position from July 26 until August 6, at which point he resigned from the volunteer position. The Wall Street Journal reported that there were questions about Mr. Absahi's "involvement in an Islamic investment fund and various Islamic groups." A CNN […]

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Religious Sentiments versus Morality in the Public Space

Europride 2008 took place from July 25 to August 3 in Stockholm, Sweden. This past week, EUObserver.com published an article titled, "Anti-gay Bigotry Spans European Cultures," which looked at the contrast between gay-friendly societies and governments in Europe and the "frequent reports of violent, homophobic attacks" that nevertheless still take place. The article points out that […]

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Religious Extremists or Political Separatists?

According to an interview with a Chinese security official in Xinhua news, the East Turkestan Islamic Movement is "one of the main security worries to the Olympics." The fear of this organization was highlighted on Monday when two Uighur men in the city of Kashi (in Xinjiang) killed 16 policemen. The Uighur population in northwest […]

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Political Trends in Religious Liberty

Last week, the Economist published two articles about religious conversion and the right of people around the world to follow their own religious path. One article, The Moment of Truth, questions whether the liberal understanding of religion, which puts emphasis on the right to change one's belief, is actually widespread or perhaps an exception in […]

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Small victories in the "War on Terror"

Today, Al-Qaeda confirmed on an Islamic militant website that Abu Khabab al-Masri, was indeed killed in the missile strike of July 28th. Al-Masri was known as Al Qaeda's top bomb maker and he actively sought to gain a WMD capability for the group as well. There is still a question about the fate of Al Qaeda #2. […]

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