Today is peak day for cherry blossoms, so you might want to get on that, DMVers.
- Hijabi fashion in Egypt: More than just religion.
- One Texas school district is trying to deport 23 teachers.
- WaPo: What we know about how poor neighborhoods become wealthier.
- In Boston, saying ‘No’ to Islamophobe Pamela Gellar.
- Stephen Colbert will replace David Letterman. We will see where this goes.
- All the wounds you don’t see: Veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan return home damaged in more ways than one.
- Uniting two of my loves: From Houston to Karachi.
- Via FP, I have learned that Trip Advisor offers reviews of Bagram Air Base. Enjoy.
- Femme invisibility gets its day in the sun in Cosmo and we officially live on a different planet than the one I was born on.
- Today in Hillary Clinton news…
- U.S. explosives litter Afghanistan and will do so long after troops have left. The people who will pay the price? The Afghans. More specifically, Afghan children, as the UN has documented.
- More than half of the Afghan election’s ballots have reached the capital, with the rest expected to arrive by April 15th. Regardless of the outcome, Karzai will be secure.
- A probe has begun regarding the murder of AP journalist Anja Niedringhaus.
- In Islamabad, Pakistan, bombings fail to deter fruit vendors. A PML-N lawyer was shot and killed in Karachi, in an act of violence that continues the city’s current trend. In Peshawar a NATO truck group was attacked, killing one.
- An IHCBA proposal was turned down by the Supreme Court. It would have allowed for weapons training of judges and lawyers.
- New book out on the Pakistani military. In other fun national news, the 9-month old boy accused of murder has been released on bail.
- In India, an inked finger following voting will see more than just national pride — cheaper gas and food may follow as well. On the subject of elections, the country’s has wrapped up its third phase of the election and is moving on to the major leagues. India has over 150 million first-time voters, and voter turnout has been incredibly high. Two CRPF jawans were killed by Maoists in an attack in eastern Bihar, marking one of the darker notes of the election to date. Meanwhile the fight for Delhi remains, in what looks to be a three-way contest. In other news, BJP’s Modi apparently has a wife.
- An Indian politician has gotten himself into trouble for potentially #BackingRapists.
Southeast, Central, & East Asia:
- The Supreme Court of the Philippines has backed a law supporting birth control, defying the country’s deep-running culture of Catholicism.
- The latest in the Malaysian missing jet drama.
- Visiting Mongolia, Defense Sec. Chuck Hagel briefly enjoyed time with a horse.
- Mysterious suicides in China are sparking controversy.
- ‘Red Shirts’ in Thailand are vowing to stand by leader Yingluck, even as protests slowly overtake the country.
Eurasia & Europe:
- A French priest has been charged with rape and torture — after performing exorcisms.
- An Italian court has recognized same-sex marriage for the first time.
- Russia reportedly failed to disclose all that it knew about one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects, in a move that will likely add fuel to the fire re: American-Russian relations.
- Turkey is retaining its iron grip on a controversial YouTube ban, despite a court ruling that the ban is unconstitutional.
- A bomb exploded outside a Greek central bank today — thankfully, no one was killed.
Middle East & North Africa:
- What every day Iranians want for the new year, via Haaretz.
- In the U.S., Democrats are getting antsy on Syria. Meanwhile Hezbollah remains confident that Assad will remain in power after driving rebels into a stalemate. The country is set to miss its chemical weapons deadline in the interim, as a fresh round of accusations regarding recent chemical attacks emerge. In Homs, car bombings killed 25 in a dramatic escalation of violence. Elsewhere images show a moderate Syrian rebel group with American weapons….
- Iran nuclear talks are wrapping up with their preliminary rounds, with much work left to go. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Kamenei has sworn the country will not halt its nuclear program.
- Meanwhile in Cairo, Al Jazeera journalists are back in court as Egypt refuses to release them.
- On that note, Egypt’s infrastructure is failing.
- At the center of the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks: A spy and a terrorist.
Eastern, Central, & Western Africa:
- The UN has approved peacekeepers for the Central African Republic, as the country dissolves into chaos and ethnic violence, with Christians turning on Muslims.
- 3600 people have been raped in the Democratic Republic of the Congo over the course of the last four years, according to the UN.
- In Argentina, stiff sentences for 10 as a human trafficking case’s retrial concludes.
- Venezuela‘s opposition leaders are set to meet with President Maduro.
- The U.S. Hispanic Caucus has called on President Obama to use “all legal means available” to stop deportations. Meanwhile Former President Bill Clinton and former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young called for photos to be attached to ID cards as a means of countering the potential ramifications of harmful voter ID laws. Racial profiling also continues to the be law of the land.
- House Republicans have approved Rep. Paul Ryan’s conservative budget, which would make excessive cuts to President Obama’s newly-launched healthcare initiative.
- Obama visited Fort Hood, offered comfort.
- We’re designing an Iron Man suit?
- Disease is threatening the flood-hit Solomon Islands, with 21 deaths reported in the capital city of Honiara.