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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


In a video clip taken from Syrian state television that is circulating with the title, " Syrian girl terrorizes 1,000 men ," a woman named Zubaida calls in to a live broadcast. The banner below the presenter indicates that the next segment of the show will feature the live, televised confessions of members of "terrorist cells armed with weapons and money and taking orders from external forces to implement their experimental plans inside Syria." As Zubaida extends greetings to Daraa and Jisr al-Shughour, where she says she is from, she begins to denounce government corruption and the presenter briefly looks off camera for his own orders. "Ms. Zubaida, your voice is very weak and we can't hear you very well," he says, despite the fact that her voice is entirely too clear. She denounces the "official media's lies' as the presenter babbles incomprehensibly over her and the channel cuts to pre-recorded footage of a nighttime pro-Assad rally in Damascus.

The Syria Revolution Facebook group unveiled a new " I Love the Syrian Revolution " logo, under which is written "because it is the way to achieve our freedom." The group's administrator adds below: "because we want freedom and dignity… because it is our promise to the martyrs… because we are a people of dignity and pride… because we are free." One commenter from Homs, Syria writes: "This is the first time I feel able to say whatever I want, and that is the first step on the path to freedom."

Al Jazeera reports that former Tunisian President Zein el-Abedine Ben Ali and his wife, Leila Trabulsi, will be tried in absentia beginning on June 20 th . The Ben Alis have sought refuge in Saudi Arabia since the president resigned on January 14 th . Tunisian Prime Minister Baji al-Sibsi said that Tunisian authorities have asked Saudi Arabia to extradite the Ben Alis for trial. They face charges of "drug possession, weapons and racketeering," the network reported.

The Jordanian government is working hard to counter the narrative presented by multiple eyewitnesses that a group of young men attacked King Abdullah's motorcade and threw rocks and empty bottles at it during a visit to the impoverished, tribal southern town of Tafila, 200 kilometers south of Amman. "What happened is a stampede," said Tafila MP Yahya al-Saud. "What happened is the result of a stampede," echoed fellow Tafila MP Abdul Rahman al-Hinaqteh, stressing that the king received "the most beautiful welcome." A Jordanian security source, meanwhile, confirmed to AFP that bottles and stones were thrown at the king.

June 14, 2011

photo credit: illustir

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The Pope's Health Feeds Succession Rumors — And Deeper Questions About The Church

It is not only the health of the Pope that worries the Holy See. From the collapse of vocations to the conservative wind in the USA, there are many ills to face.

October 4, 2023 - Pope Francis concelebrates the Holy Mass with the new Cardinals at the Vatican

Evandro Inetti/ ZUMA
Gianluigi Nuzzi

Updated Dec. 4, 2023 at 6:05 p.m.

ROME — "How am I? I'm fine... I'm still alive, you know? See, I'm not dead!"

With a dose of irony and sarcasm, Pope Francis addressed those who'd paid him a visit this past week as he battled a new lung inflammation, and the antibiotic cycles and extra rest he still must stick with on strict doctors' orders.

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The Pope is dealing with a sensitive respiratory system; the distressed tracheo-bronchial tree can cause asthmatic reactions, with the breathlessness in his speech being the most obvious symptom. Tired eyes and dark circles mark his swollen face. A sense of unease and bewilderment pervades and only diminishes when the doctors restate their optimism about his general state of wellness.

"The pope's ailments? Nothing compared to the health of the Church ," quips a priest very close to the Holy Father. "The Church is much worse off, marked by chronic ailments and seasonal illnesses. "

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