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Boycott, Kasparov and Karpov,

Wednesday, 23 September 2009 | No Comment
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US Campaign’s longstanding endorsement of the boycott call -In Letters to EI – Thanks to Nada Elia for her article “A Turning Point in the US Solidarity Movement” (16 September 2009) and for her important role in cogently laying out the rationale for engaging in cultural and academic boycotts of Israeli institutions during the 8th Annual National Organizers’ Conference of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation. We broke new ground at this conference by voting to expand the scope of our boycott, divestment and sanctions work to encompass both cultural and academic boycotts of Israeli institutions and campaigns against Israeli corporations profiting from occupation and apartheid.

Kasparov and Karpov resume epic chess rivalry – Garry Kasparov takes on Anatoly Karpov in a match in Spain, resuming one of the greatest rivalries in the history of chess.

Former French president hints at romance with Princess Diana By Angelique Chrisafis – Steamy new novel by Valéry Giscard d’Estaing charts secret affair between fictional French president and British royal. He’s an 83-year-old former French president, famous for his accordion playing and royal tastes. She was Britain’s people’s princess, more than 30 years his junior. But a racy new novel by Valéry Giscard d’Estaing has left the French media pondering whether the suave retired president known as “Monsieur Ex” was closer to Diana, Princess of Wales, than previously thought. Giscard’s latest literary offering, The Princess and the President, published next week, is a highly detailed romance between a fictional French president and a thinly veiled British royal – Patricia, Princess of Cardiff, or “Lady Pat”. The tome has attracted the mirth and curiosity of the French media, who wonder if it’s simply the literary imaginings of an old man with a glint in his eye or hints at a kernel of truth.

The lost art of handwriting -The days when children were taught to write properly are long gone. Does it matter? Yes, says Umberto Eco. Recently, two Italian journalists wrote a three-page newspaper article (in print, alas) about the decline of handwriting. By now it’s well-known: most kids – what with computers (when they use them) and text messages – can no longer write by hand, except in laboured capital letters. In an interview, a teacher said that students also make lots of spelling mistakes, which strikes me as a separate problem: doctors know how to spell and yet they write poorly; and you can be an expert calligrapher and still write “guage” or “gage” instead of “gauge”.

Photostory: Struggling to worship in Jerusalem – Each year during the month of Ramadan, thousands of Palestinian Muslim worshipers struggle to reach Jerusalem on Fridays to pray at the Haram al-Sharif, home of the al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site in Islam. The Israeli army imposes additional barriers with concrete slabs at both the Qalandiya and Bethlehem checkpoints. Photographer Anne Paq documents the struggle that Palestinians face when trying to reach Jerusalem during Ramadan.

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