FROM Daniel Kurtzer
Egyptians Vote in Historic Election For the first time in Egyptian history, voters are choosing a national leader, even though a constitution that spells out the powers of the office has yet to be enacted. We look at the candidates and the role of religion, the military -- and the prospects for real democracy.
Democracy in the Land of the Pharaohs For the first time in Egyptian history, voters are choosing a national leader, even though a constitution that spells out the powers of the office has yet to be enacted. The military says the election will be "free and fair," but will it cede power to the revolutionaries who overthrew Hosni Mubarak just 15 months ago? With conservative and moderate Muslims on the ballot, what will be the role of religion? Are most Egyptians concerned with who can put food on the table? As the voting continues today and tomorrow, we look at the candidates and what the first election in any Arab country could mean for the outcome of the so-called "Arab Spring."
Do the Middle East Peace Talks Have a Future? President Obama said renewing direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians might produce peace in a year. But just three months later, they aren't talking at all and it's back to shuttle diplomacy. Last Friday, Hillary Clinton said the US would continue peace efforts, even after Israel turned down a controversial American offer of billions in high-tech fighter planes in exchange for a three-month freeze on settlement-building in the West Bank.
Do the Middle East Peace Talks Have a Future? Just three months after President Obama took credit for renewing direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians, they're not talking at all. Palestinians demanded a freeze on Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem, but even America's offer of billions in fighter jets could not get Israel to agree. Hillary Clinton says it's time to talk about "core issues," and George Mitchell is back in the region, but US policy is not entirely clear. Was pushing for the settlement freeze a blunder? Has Israeli intransigence further isolated it from the rest of the world?
Will the march for science politicize objective research? Protesters are gathering all over the country for tomorrow's Earth Day March for Science. Since President Trump has proposed massive cuts in basic scientific research, will the movement be perceived as partisan politics — whether scientists themselves like it or not?
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.
Does 'hire American' mean fire a foreigner? US companies are allowed to hire employees from other countries with highly developed skills that can't be found here. President Trump says it's being abused as a way to find cheap foreign labor. We hear about the benefits—and the risks—of changing the H-1B program.