When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch
Saudi Arabia

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

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


*The fallout from the arrest of a Saudi woman, Manal al-Sharif, continues. Last week, al-Sharif posted a video of her driving in east Saudi Arabia on YouTube. She was arrested and remains in custody for violating the public order. The Facebook reaction was swift. The "I will drive my car" group has set June 17th as the day that women in Saudi Arabia will get into their cars and drive. The administrator notes his/her views as "very conservative," and maintains that a woman should be "wearing a full head/face covering with the eyes showing while driving or else face punishment" and that women should be allowed to drive "in cities only," among other conditions.

*Khalid Hajri writes, "We are all with Manal, and for women driving freely in Saudi Arabia."

*Esmahan Ghourabi adds, "This is your right and we are with you in Arab countries."

*The "We are all Manal al-Sharif" group has more than 16,000 members, hundreds of whom have already pledged to drive on Friday, June 17th at 9:00am.

*The "Campaign against ‘I will drive my car" group" was recently founded to counter the pro-driving movement. It includes a poster of Manal al-Sharif with her face crossed out. The administrator urges Saudi men to do "all they can to stop women from driving." That includes using the thick wire bound in cotton that is wrapped twice around the head to hold a male's checkered headdress in place. The administrator initially posted a picture of a man beating a woman using the igal headdress, but that has since been removed.

*This YouTube video features a young Saudi man in a mask mocking women as barely capable of functioning, much less driving. If allowed to drive, the unnamed speaker says, they would confuse the gender roles, threatening the masculine supremacy of society.

Despite rumors in the Egyptian media that former President Hosni Mubarak could receive a pardon, he was referred to the Attorney General today for prosecution in the deaths of protesters during the January 25th revolution. An estimated 846 people were killed during the uprising. Mubarak, his two sons Alaa and Gamal and others face criminal charges of conspiring to kill civilians. Moheet newspaper reported that "the Attorney General issued a decree forming a committee of medical experts to re-examine Mubarak's health and assess the possibility of his transfer to a prison hospital."

May 24, 2011

photo credit: illustir

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

FOCUS: Israel-Palestine War

What Are Iran's Real Intentions? Watch What The Houthis Do Next

Three commercial ships traveling through the Red Sea were attacked by missiles launched by Iran-backed Yemeni Houthi rebels, while the U.S. Navy shot down three drones. Tensions that are linked to the ongoing war in Gaza conflict and that may serve as an indication as to Iran's wider intentions.

photo of Raisi of iran speaking in parliament

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi at the Iranian parliament in Tehran.

Icana News Agency via ZUMA
Pierre Haski


PARIS — It’s a parallel war that has so far claimed fewer victims and attracted less public attention than the one in Gaza. Yet it increasingly poses a serious threat of escalating at any time.

This conflict playing out in the international waters of the Red Sea, a strategic maritime route, features the U.S. Navy pitted against Yemen's Houthi rebels. But the stakes go beyond the Yemeni militants — with the latter being supported by Iran, which has a hand in virtually every hotspot in the region.

For the latest news & views from every corner of the world, Worldcrunch Today is the only truly international newsletter. Sign up here.

Since the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel, the Houthis have been making headlines, despite Yemen’s distance from the Gaza front. Starting with missiles launched directed toward southern Israel, which were intercepted by U.S. forces. Then came attacks on ships belonging, or suspected of belonging, to Israeli interests.

On Sunday, no fewer than three commercial ships were targeted by ballistic missiles in the Red Sea. The missiles caused minor damage and no casualties. Meanwhile, three drones were intercepted and destroyed by the U.S. Navy, currently deployed in full force in the region.

The Houthis claimed responsibility for these attacks, stating their intention to block Israeli ships' passage for as long as there was war in Gaza. The ships targeted on Sunday were registered in Panama, but at least one of them was Israeli. In the days before, several other ships were attacked and an Israeli cargo ship carrying cars was seized, and is still being held in the Yemeni port of Hodeida.

Keep reading...Show less

The latest