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News and Analysis (1/27/15)

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Dismissing speculation that a retaking of Mosul is imminant, an unidentified U.S. official said the Islamic State “wants to draw security forces into a prolonged, urban, street-by-street combat. We’re not going to fall for that": Carson has been congratulated by "rabbis, pastors, of course imams and other leaders ..., because many of them know my law enforcement background... [W]hen folks have a true sense of what this country is about, I don’t think that they’re distracted easily by the few dissenters that are out there":

"The release likely signals the Houthi rebels' readiness for a de-escalation of the crisis that has gripped Yemen. Earlier, President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi had set his aide's freedom as a top demand in order to reconsider his resignation":

According the Philippine Secretary of Sate, the unit "strayed into territory controlled by the MILF ..., and a 'misencounter' ensued. The government had not been seeking to sabotage the peace agreement with the MILF by carrying out the operation without their knowledge":

"By decrying the sweep of eavesdropping on Palestinians, ...the move opened a window on clandestine practices" such 'as the gathering of Palestinians' private information - [e.g.], sexual preferences or health problems "that might be used to extort people into becoming informants': Among the unIslamic activities Zakariyah denounced were "distorted implementation of Shari’a law"; "absence of any consultation"; "numerous human rights violations"; and "a distorted form of the Holy Jihad, which resulted countless innocent Somali citizens being killed": "Last April, a Cairo appeals court upheld the sentence given to Ahmed Maher, Ahmed Douma and Mohamed Adel for taking part in an unauthorised protest. Tuesday's ruling by the Court of Cassation meant all legal avenues had now been exhausted": "By distorting Islamic teachings and history, Graham promotes intolerance, encourages extremism and chills speech" -- Charles C. Haynes, senior scholar at the First Amendment Center ... ... and, ironically, the bell tower of which the Muslim students were denied use "is a replica of the Islamic prayer-call minaret, brought to Latin-Europe by St. Francis of Assisi (1181-1226) from which the Muslims were denied use m his missionary travels to the Islamic lands" ... ... in any case, "the adhan can be good for everyone -- even for those who aren't Muslim, and for those who don't believe in God.... The adhan can help us recall what gives our lives meaning, and can help us cultivate an attitude of gratefulness":


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