A R A B I C A ارابيكا
* CNN Arabic reports Libyan state television declaring east Ajdabiya under control of Muammar Gaddafi's forces, and broadcasting a warning to residents in Benghazi that the armed forces are "coming to liberate them and cleanse the city of gangs."
*Gaddafi's forces appear to be encroaching on Misurata in the west, with resident Mohammed Ali telling CNN: "Gaddafi does not care if he kills all the inhabitants of Misurata."
*Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi tweets, "It is not manly to bomb your people and your cities and then claim victory afterwards and that you represent the people."
"Disperse the demonstration..." exclaims the man in this cartoon by Ali Ferzet labeled "Interior Ministry," who is seen waving at drowning protesters.
*In response to the authorities breaking up protests and arresting about two dozen demonstrators, a facebook page has been set up to invite the public to take to the streets on March 18th. The location? "Following the noon prayer in public squares in all Syrian towns and cities, pointing toward the holy city of Mecca." A total of 628 people have confirmed that they will attend. Comments include "Syria, we're waiting for you"… "good luck to the young heroes of Syria"… and one Syrian in Finland writes, "our hearts are with you."
*"No to the amendments," tweeted Egyptian opposition leader and possible presidential candidate Mohammed ElBaradei. He posted a link to a short video explaining why he thinks people should reject the proposed constitutional amendments during the national referendum on March 19th. "My honest opinion is that we should say ‘no"," ElBaradei says. By saying ‘yes', Egyptians will allow a second ruling party to emerge that resembles Mubarak's National Democratic Party and will not represent the people. "A new constitution is the place to start," he says, not with new amendments.
* Tweet from @fhilal on Egypt: "My new thought is that the negative attitude of many people was created by the hegemony of the regime and its monopoly on power… i.e., the lack of democracy."
March 17, 2011
photo credit: illustir