Will the New Somali Constitution Deliver?

June 13, 2012 by

The peace and reconciliation process in Somalia has entered a critical juncture. A new Constitution, drafted with the help of the United Nations Development Programme, is scheduled to be adopted in the next few weeks. Will the new Constitution help deliver peace to a country ravaged by more than two decades of civil war? The optimism of the international community is not shared by Somalis themselves, who instead look with deep scepticism at a document that they perceive as externally-imposed, faulty and fundamentally undemocratic.

No Simple Thing: How Rice Will Reshape the World

June 13, 2012 by

“Have you eaten rice today?” In Asia this time honored greeting is synonymous with ‘how are you?’ and is heard from flooded paddies to corporate boardrooms. A passing reminder of how essential this crop is for the 3.5 billion people whose day begins and ends with rice. From India’s dusty plains to the metropolises of China to the Philippines’ emerald hills no common thread runs through Asia’s diverse cultures, mythologies, and languages like rice.

Germany’s Constitutional Conundrum

June 13, 2012 by

Hans-Werner Sinn, President of Germany’s Ifo Institute and the Director of the Center for Economic Studies at the University of Munich, has taken to the pages of the New York Times to explain why Berlin is balking on a further bailout for Europe. Amongst the points that Sinn makes against German sharing in the debt of the euro zone’s southern nations is a legal one.

Back to Square One in Egypt?

June 13, 2012 by

On Thursday June 14, the High Constitutional Court in Egypt will rule on two pending motions that may radically change the future course of Egypt and determine the fate of its remarkable – but unfinished- revolution. The two motions are the constitutionality of the political ban on the former regime senior officials, such as Gen. Ahmad Shafiq, the undeclared military’s candidate for president, and the constitutionality of last winter’s parliamentary elections.

Should Boko Haram be Designated a Foreign Terrorist Organization?

June 13, 2012 by

Boko Haram continued their killing on Sunday, 10 June 2012, when a suicide bomber blew up his car outside a church and gunmen opened fire on another service in Nigeria. At the same time, there is a fierce debate in Washington whether to designate the activities of the Islamic sect, Boko Haram as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). FTO or not, Boko Haram is extremely sophisticated and well equipped.