when the revolution comes

How is it that after the Arab Spring, the regimes in place seem committed to the same repression that preceded it. In fact it may have opened the lid on a pandora’s box of thousands of wacko religious nuts going for their sandy shot at fame, their lucky break to the top of the charts. It does recall Roosevelt’s remark that nothing in politics is by coincidence and his candor not withstanding it also harkens to Arendt’s quote that, “The most radical revolutionary will become a conservative the day after the revolution.” Thus, perhaps these insurrections were conservative after all, some sort of weird counterreactionay events imbued with a sort of morbid romanticism. The best American scenario was to curb fanatic Islamic millenarian style flights of fancy and mass conflagration by feeding the beast of deprivation theory; a society of consumption being a pacified people, but there was no time lag to kick the proverbial can down the Damascus Road…

(see link at end)…Following the revolution in their country, four out of five Yemeni women who spoke to the international group Oxfam said their lives, beset by hunger and violence, had worsened in the past year.

“We wanted jobs, security, an end to corruption and an improvement in services,” one woman told the group. “Instead we can’t afford food, there’s no electricity and there are guns everywhere.”…

—Investigation of a sex scandal was suspended for fear the allegations could affect a U.N. bid for Palestinian statehood, a Palestinian journalist says.
Palestinian investigative journalist Said Ghazali revealed Wednesday claims that Palestine Authority President Mahmoud Abbas told investigators to stop looking into sexual harassment allegations against a government minister while Abbas was at the United Nations, The Jerusalem Post reported.
Abbas was to address the General Assembly Thursday and ask the United Naitons to declare the Gaza Strip a Palestinian state.
The scandal, allegedly involving Hussein Sheikh, a top Fatah official who serves as the PA civilian affairs minister, broke just as Abbas was preparing to fly to New York.
A woman who works in Sheikh’s office filed a complaint charging that Sheikh tried to force himself on her and then sent her text messages that continued the sexual harassment when she refused his advances, Ghazali wrote.
Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2012/09/27/Report-Abbas-stopped-sex-scandal-query/UPI-61811348752016/#ixzz27j90eCoe

Oxfam said the food crisis is so grave that it poses a major threat to positive change in Yemen, where a deal brokered late last year led President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down. The impoverished country was one of a string of nations in the region remade by the “Arab Spring” uprisings.

But it is still grappling with grave problems after the revolution, many of which hit women especially hard, Oxfam found in focus groups that included 136 women across Yemen in July and August. The organization focused specifically on the problems affecting Yemeni women, who have fallen at the bottom of annual World Economic Forum rankings for the gender gap in access to health, education and economic opportunity.

— Either way, this month’s unrest is only the latest sign of a much deeper crisis that threatens not only the PA but also the prospect of Israeli-Palestinian peace and a two-state solution. The resentment Palestinians feel toward their inept and dysfunctional government institutions cannot be separated from the now-moribund peace process that brought those institutions into existence.
On the surface, the Palestinian protests have borne a strong resemblance to those of the Arab Spring. As in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, and other countries in the region, citizens took to the streets to demand economic growth and accountability for the repeated failings of their leaders. Unlike any of these other countries, however, the PA exists as only part of the structure of a 45-year-old military occupation. It has neither an army nor sovereignty over its territory. Meanwhile, its institutions, which remain almost entirely dependent on foreign aid, lack legitimacy.—Read More:http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/138131/khaled-elgindy/why-palestinians-protest

The World Food Program estimates 10 million Yemenis — almost half of the country’s population — do not have enough food. One out of four Yemeni women between the ages of 15 and 49 is severely malnourished, one of the highest adult malnutrition rates in the world, according to Oxfam.

To survive, some women have pulled their children out of school to beg, Oxfam found in its interviews; in extreme cases, some have turned to prostitution. Men and boys in some areas, meanwhile, are turning to smuggling the narcotic khat leaf to try to provide for their families, women told Oxfam. Read More:http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/world_now/2012/09/yemen-women.htmla

—Human rights groups have urged Iran to lift restrictions on women attending university and enrolling in certain academic fields.
Thirty-six universities across Iran have banned women from 77 different majors, including accounting, counselling, and engineering, for the school year that begins on Saturday, Iran’s Mehr news agency reported in August.
There was no official reason given for the move, but Iranian officials have expressed alarm in recent months about the country’s declining birth and marriage rates, seen as partially caused by women’s rising educational attainment in the last two decades.
In a statement released on Saturday, Human Rights Watch, the New York-based watchdog, urged the Iranian government to immediately reverse the more restrictive policies, and said they were a violation of the international right to education for everyone without discrimination.—Read More:http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2012/09/201292211424417429.html

…There’s a woman by the river With some fine young handsome man He’s dressed up like a squire Bootlegged whiskey in his hand
There’s a chain gang on the highway I can hear them rebels yell And I know no one can sing the blues Like Blind Willie McTell
Well, God is in Heaven And we all want what’s His But power and greed and corruptible seed Seem to be all that there is
I’m gazing out the window Of the St. James Hotel And I know no one can sing the blues Like Blind Willie McTell

Over the course of our two-hour interaction, we were able to get Corey to describe the book’s central thesis–that conservatism is reactionary, counter-revolutionary politics, infused with romantic sentiment, responding vigorously to perceived threats –, clarify some theoretical points, and consider possible sharpenings and applications of his thesis. (One extension of great interest to me is to apply Corey’s central claims to conservatism beyond American and European shores.)

One of the most interesting clarifications of Robin’s thesis was the centrality of the romantic impulse in conservatism. Indeed, it seemed, after our discussions, that the romantic impulse is perhaps even more central than the reactionary, counter-revolutionary component of conservatism; it certainly explains conservative fascination with war, the attraction it presents to ‘outsiders,’ its glorification of strength and individual striving.Read More:http://samirchopra.com/tag/hannah-arendt/

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