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Only one god allowed in North Korea
Only one god allowed in North Korea
Dietrich Alexander

BERLIN - Asir’s life was preprogrammed. The North African Muslim was to be trained to be a jihadist in a Palestinian terrorist camp. There he would learn how to build bombs and kill non-believers. But just before he was due to leave, he started to have doubts.

"I realized that there were several versions of the Koran, and that some texts contradict each other," he says now, four years later. His imam was unable to explain these contradictions satisfactorily. Questioning the dogma underlying his Salafist affinities and the religious fanaticism environment around him, he ended up tearing up his passport – thus making the trip to the camp impossible.

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Geopolitics

The Days After: What Would Happen If Putin Opts For A Tactical Nuclear Strike

The risk of the Kremlin launching a tactical nuclear weapon on Ukraine is small but not impossible. The Western response would itself set off a counter-response, which might contain or spiral to the worst-case scenario.

An anti-nuclear activist impersonates Vladimir Putin at a rally in Berlin.

Yves Bourdillon

-Analysis-

PARISVladimir Putin could “go nuclear” in Ukraine. Yes, this expression, which metaphorically means “taking the extreme, drastic action,” is now literally considered a possibility as well. Cornered and humiliated by a now plausible military defeat, experts say the Kremlin could launch a tactical nuclear bomb on a Ukrainian site in a desperate attempt to turn the tables.

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In any case, this is what Putin — who put Russia's nuclear forces on alert just after the start of the invasion in late February — is aiming to achieve: to terrorize populations in Western countries to push their leaders to let go of Ukraine.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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