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Abdelkader Bouhabila

See more by Abdelkader Bouhabila

At the 2014 biodiversity conference in Valencia

The Lucrative Business Of Bogus Scientific Conferences

PARIS — The French capital was set to be the world capital of science. On May 17-18, no fewer than 50 conferences in the fields of aerospace, mechanics, energy, the environment, civil engineering, economics, computer science, social sciences and chemistry were to be held under the same Parisian roof.

On that day, in a hotel near the Montparnasse train station, the electricity was decidedly not in the air. In a 650-square feet room rented for 500 euros for a half-day, no more than 30 people showed up. Clearly, many had canceled their participation, judging by the remaining badges left on the front desk. Or never had planned to go.

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Only the dollar is getting stronger

The Dollar, The World's One Currency Is Trump's Best Weapon

Donald Trump's all-out trade war has a singular source of ammunition, even as China is pushing to make the RMB a global currency on par.

PARIS Making the American dollar the only global reserve currency, thus undermining the euro and Europe's monetary strategy, while preventing China's dream of financial power through the renminbi RMB ... Is this what President Donald Trump really meant by "Make America Great Again"?

It is understandable that the U.S. president wants more growth and employment at home, aiming to reinforce his nation's technological superiority and to widen the gap with his competitors, in particular China. He wants to amplify the benefits of having the dollar as the only global reserve currency: boosting GDP, extending the lead in the knowledge (and information) economy, as well as the power of language, law and military dominance, which is now expanded into space. This is how the Trumpian agenda is being built.

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Turkish Lira's decline bodes-ill for more than one country

Turkey, No Limit To How Far The Contagion Can Spread

The 'sudden stop' scenario has hit the Turkish economy, which threatens other countries around the world — and not just economically.

PARIS It may just be a matter of hours. If Turkey fails to stop the rapid decline of its currency, it may run out of air. Its economy would then be seriously damaged. Its population of 83 million would be condemned to suffer a painful drop in income.

Current balance deficit

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Vintage car (and road)

Why Old Europe Needs A New Approach To Infrastructure

It's time to overhaul the Old Continent's roads, bridges, airports and electrical systems. And like it or not, private investment has a role to play.


PARIS With its crumbling roads, deteriorating railroads and undersized telecommunication networks, the Old Continent has never been more aptly named.

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In front of Jerusalem's Damascus Gate in May 2018

Can Middle East Diplomacy Help UNESCO Preserve Itself?

The UN culture and patrimony organization's new chief, Audrey Azoulay, a former French culture minister, shares her vision for reviving UNESCO after the U.S. and Israel have announced their withdrawal.

PARIS After years of crisis and lethargy, UNESCO — the United Nations' agency in charge of education, culture and science — is showing small signs of revival. During a World Heritage Committee meeting last month in Manama, Bahrain, the texts regarding the historic preservation of the Old City and Walls of Jerusalem and of Hebron were unanimously ratified. And that included support from both the Israeli and Palestinian representatives.

This vote would have been unthinkable just a few weeks earlier. In July 2017, a first draft of the declaration which mentioned the heritage status of the Old City of Hebron had infuriated Israel. That same year, in October, Israel and the United States had announced their withdrawal from the UN agency — which will be effective at the end of 2018 — considered a symbol of the multilateralism abhorred by both Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu.

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