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ARABICA - A Daily Shot Of What the Arab World is Saying/Hearing/Sharing
Kristen Gillespie

A R A B I C A ارابيكا


ROAD RULES
*Saudi daily Okaz reports that an unidentified 35-year-old woman is facing trial for driving herself to the hospital following a seizure. The unmarried woman was indicted for illegally driving, and will go on trial in September. She was arrested while on her way to the hospital after experiencing intestinal bleeding, and explained to police that she drove herself because of a lack of public transport, and the fact that she does not have a male driver on staff. The woman said in her statement that she "respects Saudi rules and regulations, but the circumstances of her illness pushed her to drive a car." The woman was released from jail after her father, the male guardian that every Saudi female legally must have, took responsibility for her.

*Two Omani women were arrested last week for driving in Saudi Arabia. They were released after signing pledges that they would not do it again.

ROAD RULES II
The leader of one of Yemen's largest opposition parties, the Reform Party, survived an assassination attempt when gunmen fired into his car while he was driving in the capital, Sanaa. Mohammed al-Adoma stopped short of directly accusing President Ali Abdullah Saleh of the attempt, but sent out a warning that "what remains of the family is playing with fire."

REVOLUTIONARY RAP
A different view of the Gaza here, in this video called "The Mystery" by a pair of Arabic rappers calling themselves GazaYBO (Gaza Youth Breaks Out). At 1:25, one of the rappers breaks out in English, saying "Ain't no mystery – give me my rights, I'm going to have to fight." The duo then intersperses the new "revolutionary" Arabic, which calls for respect, freedom and dignity along with American slang. The video is the latest example of American culture blending in with the new identity people in the Arab world are creating for themselves.

TWEET OF THE DAY
@aameem74 tweets a punchy description of Egypt's ruling military leadership caught between the youth protesters and their own lingering links to Mubarak-era officials: "The military council is like a man married to two women: The first he's been with for 30 years, and doesn't want to upset her. The second, he's been with for six months, and doesn't know how to calm her."

July 20, 2011

photo credit: illustir

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Society

Jehovah's Witnesses Translate The Bible In Indigenous Language — Is This Colonialism?

The Jehovah's Witnesses in Chile have launched a Bible version translated into the native Mapudungun language, evidently indifferent to the concerns of a nation striving to save its identity from the Western cultural juggernaut.

A Mapuche family awaits for Chilean President Gabriel Boric to arrive at the traditional Te Deum in the Cathedral of Santiago, on Chile's Independence Day.

Claudia Andrade

NEUQUÉN — The Bible can now be read in Mapuzugun, the language of the Mapuche, an ancestral nation living across Chile and Argentina. It took the Chilean branch of the Jehovah's Witnesses, a latter-day Protestant church often associated with door-to-door proselytizing and cold calling, three years to translate it into "21st-century Mapuzugun".

The church's Mapuche members in Chile welcomed the book when it was launched in Santiago last June, but some of their brethren see it rather as a cultural imposition. The Mapuche were historically a fighting nation, and fiercely resisted both the Spanish conquerors and subsequent waves of European settlers. They are still fighting for land rights in Chile.

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