Iran’s Kurds are growing restless, too

THE Kurds of Iran are calling for independence just as lustily as their cousins in Iraq, perhaps even more so. While the mood in the streets of Iraq’s Kurdish cities was generally subdued and nervous after their referendum on independence on September 25th, wilder celebrations erupted across the border in Iranian Kurdistan. In the Kurdish cities of Baneh, Sanandaj and Mahabad demonstrations lasted for two days, even as armoured cars drove through the streets heralding a wave of arrests

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The difficulty of drafting ultra-Orthodox Jews into Israel’s army

This one’s tired and needs a rest DURING the violent birth of Israel, David Ben-Gurion, its first prime minister, allowed 400 ultra-Orthodox Jews (also called Haredim) to avoid compulsory military service to pursue a life of Talmudic study. He may have thought they were too few to matter, or that their endangered traditions should be nurtured after the Holocaust. Seven decades on, however, the number of such yeshiva students has exploded to 60,000

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South Africa’s ruling party is at war with itself

DEEP in the southern hills of KwaZulu-Natal, mourners came to bury Sindiso Magaqa on September 16th. In July gunmen ambushed Mr Magaqa and two other councillors from the African National Congress (ANC), South Africa’s ruling party, as they sat in a car. (Mr Magaqa died in hospital on September 4th.) Three other ANC politicians from the same area were gunned down between April and May.

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