How Obama Changed Perceptions of Black Americans Around the World

“If so-and-so wins, I’m leaving the country,” is often what you hear after an election. A hollowed refrain, rarely followed up on, and Canada is probably the better for it. But five months after January 20, 2009 — a day as frigid as an angry mother’s stare, when I stood on the Washington Mall amid the warmth of a million other people, questioning Ms. Aretha Franklin’s hat choice and watching our first black president put his hand on the Lincoln Bible, holding my breath when the Chief Justice made a…

Trump and Radical Islam

In the midst of the preparation to enter the White House as a President of the United States of America, the Islamists in general and in Tunis in particular as well as their allies were surprised of the position of Donald Trump of Political Islam after he had called these days to set a nominal list of the Muslim brotherhood who are on the American soil and classified as terrorists. In fact, this position is not new because Trump has expressed this on many occasions the most important of which…

What is Denglisch and why is it so catchy?

English has been quietly conquering the German language since the end of the Second World War, with sometimes baffling consequences No other language – apart from Latin maybe – has had such a profound effect on Germany’s people, business and culture, as English. It is omnipresent: in schools, homes, workplaces, government institutions and, for a couple of years, even in primary schools. Yes, that’s right, even four-year-old Germans speak English. If you address people in English anywhere in Germany they will, without a moment’s hesitation, reply in English. My mother…

Flashback: Tunisia’s revolution at 5

Tunisia continues to defy categorisation. This small North African country with perhaps Africa’s best-educated population (around 10m), has been the continent’s economic star for decades. It was also the byword for stability in a notoriously unstable continent. Zine El Abedine Ben Ali ruled with an iron fist but he delivered growth, education and a sophisticated, modern country that functioned. Many countries, not only in Africa but in the rest of the developing world, have authoritarian, dictatorial rule without anywhere near the level of development of Tunisia. Quite a few, pointing…

Master any skill with these 6 steps

Robert Greene explained in his book, Mastery, how one can achieve mastery in any skill while clearly indicating that mastery is earned not granted. In the past , there were no books , no internet , no documents that craftsman could learn from . Apprentices had to learn by observing and listening to masters . That is the power of mirror neurons  Today , However , we are very lucky since old teachers and masters have documented most of their knowledge . Although we still have to practice , it…

Germany welcomed far fewer immigrants in 2016

The immigration crush that created a crisis for the government of German Chancellor Angela Merkeleased markedly in 2016, authorities said Wednesday. Germany received 280,000 asylum-seekers in 2016, less than a third of the 890,000 total in 2015 at the height of the crisis, the Interior Ministry said. War-torn Syria remained the most common country of origin, with Afghanistan and Iraq also responsible for large numbers. “This shows that the measures taken by the government and the European Unionare effective,” Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said. “By means of resolute measures, we have…

Thinking smaller: Why Tunisian olives hold the key to the UK’s post-Brexit trading success

On reaching the Americas in 1519, Hernán Cortés burnt his ships. Pointing up the beach he told his astonished crew that, since retreating to Europe was no longer an option, the only way was forward to the possibilities he anticipated in the New World. Britain now stands on the brink of its Cortés moment. When Article 50 is triggered there will be no way back. Brexit Britain’s success will hinge not on the European union but on our ability to trade freely in markets worldwide, including small ones. They’re harvesting…

Watchful Waiting on European Security

The state of European security may dramatically worsen in 2017 if the worrying trends of 2016 continue. Observers should watch for four big and consistent problems. The first area in which Europe still flounders is its response to security threats. It is reasonable to assume that jihadist terrorism in Europe will continue to increase, as the self-proclaimed Islamic State has singled out the United Kingdom, France, and especially Germany as its preferred European targets. But governments’ current pattern of relying on intelligence services, police, and interior ministries to tackle the…

Return of Tunisians from hotbeds of tension: action plans and legal foundations

How has Tunisia prepared for the return of Tunisian terrorists from areas of tension? This is a controversial issue that has been widely echoed by the Tunisian and foreign media in recent weeks. Opinions are divided between those who oppose it arguing that this constitutes “a real danger to national and regional security” and those who defend the right of any Tunisian to return to his country, in accordance with the Constitution. For the latter, Tunisian terrorists returning to the country must be brought before the Tunisian justice. More than…

Refugee crisis, the vain search for solidarity

More people died crossing the Mediterranean to seek better lives in the EU in 2016 than ever before. Despite widespread search and rescue efforts, over 4,600 people perished after leaving from north Africa and Turkey. It is a figure that shames the EU and one that challenges a long-held narrative that Europe is a beacon for its treatment of refugees and respect for human rights. Instead, EU policies on migration, asylum, border control and security have exposed deep political rifts among member states, as the concept of solidarity becomes ever…