G20 in Hamburg


Berlin Bulletin No. 130, July 10, 2017

Victor Grossman, Berlin

The concert hall in Hamburg’s wonderful new Elbphilharmonie edifice resounded with Schiller’s thrilling Ode to Joy and world brotherhood in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. Nineteen heads of state were there for a G-20 conference; only Erdogan from Turkey was missing; he may not appreciate Beethoven or was too busy worrying about the huge peaceful march to Istanbul, a first major response to his repression. All other leaders and their spouses heard the music; even Donald Trump was seen for a TV moment with half-closed eyes, in euphoric enjoyment of Beethoven, we assume. Or why else?

Protecting Egypt and its Coptic Christians by James Zogby

Editor’s note: Tikkun presents this note from the Arab American Institute in part because it highlights the need of people of the world to stand up in defense of Christians in the Middle East who are often under attack from some (not all) Islamic forces in the region. The precarious situation of Christians, particularly in Egypt, but also in other Middle Eastern states, mirrors that of Jews in those same states in the 1900s until they fled to safety in Israel in 1948 and thereafter.  Sadly, these Christians have no place to which they can safely flee, and sadly the establishment of the State of Israel, providing sanctuary for Jewish refugees, came into existence under conditions which produced 800,000 Palestinian refugees, many of whom continue to live in refugee camps around the Middle East. by James J. Zogby  Chair, The Arab American Institute
In many ways, the future of Egypt will be shaped by how the government and the majority of Egyptians treat the country’s minority Christian community. Will Egypt be an open, tolerant, and creative society?

Is Trump Instigating Sectarian Violence Between Shia and Sunni Muslims?

Editor’s Note:  Shia and Sunni forces have engaged in sectarian violence long before there was a president Trump. But as the authors suggest, his attempt to put together a Sunni alliance against Iran will likely contribute to an escalation of the struggle between Sunni and Shia, with unpredictable consequences.  

MAY 31ST, 2017 6:18 AM
How Trump Instigates Sectarian Warfare

By Dr. Abdul Cader Asmal and Craig Considine

In recent years, President Donald Trump has questioned the legitimacy of Islam as a world religion. His body of work in this regard is impressive. He posed the deliberately ambiguous question, “Why does Islam hate us?”, proposed the creation of a registry for Muslims in the U.S., issued a travel ban on seven Muslim-majority countries for those returning  home, and framed the malignancy of “radical Islamic terrorism” as a hallmark of 1.5 billion Muslims worldwide.