Obama’s retroactive request for war authority to combat Islamic State is ‘puzzling’

Posted by National Catholic Reporter on February 24, 2015

In 2013, the Islamic State group began an extermination campaign in the Levant, ripping through Syria and later Iraq in a brutal effort to establish a caliphate. In August, the U.S. began dropping bombs in response.

Now, six months later, President Barack Obama is asking Congress for war authority in that fight.

While the threat the Islamic State poses is clear, the president's retroactive request for Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) could be described as confusing.

On the one hand, it proposes to sunset military action after three years and ban "enduring offensive ground operations."...

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Should the US census count Arab Americans differently?

Posted by KPCC on February 06, 2015

The U.S. Census Bureau is weighing a new category to more accurately count Arab Americans. The proposed classification is referred to as “MENA,” for Middle Eastern-North African.   Arab American advocates say the idea is a long time coming.   “We’re an ethnic constituency, and the challenge is that sometimes the U.S. doesn’t do ethnicity very well because they’re fixated on race," said Maya Berry, executive director of the Arab American Institute in Washington, D.C.

Census bureau officials have been gathering input, public comments and opinions from experts and Arab American groups. They say they plan to test the category...

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UAE has ‘unique’ relationship with Iran, says poll author

Posted by The National on December 18, 2014

ABU DHABI // The author of a poll that surveyed more than 7,500 Arab-speaking adults said the UAE held a “unique” relationship with its neighbour Iran, which could help explain some of the surprising figures.

As hundreds of thousands of Iranians call the UAE home and Dubai is one of Iran’s top trading partners, it puts the UAE in a different basket to other surveyed countries.

“There are strong historic ties, especially in Dubai, with Iran,” said Dr James Zogby, managing director of US-based research centre Zogby Research and a contributor to The National’s opinion pages. “There is a very...

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Report: More data would make 2020 census more accurate

Posted by Philadelphia Inquirer on December 15, 2014

As the government looks ahead to the 2020 census, some civic leaders are seeking changes they say will paint a more vivid picture of an increasingly diverse United States.

"Race and Ethnicity in the 2020 Census: Improving Data to Capture a Multiethnic America," a report released last month by the Leadership Conference Education Fund, a coalition of 200 civil rights groups, promotes a series of changes in how the data on race and ethnicity are gathered by the census and its companion American Community Survey.

Among the recommendations: Add a new ethnicity category for people of Middle Eastern and...

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The U.S. Census Is Trying To Get A More Accurate Count Of Arab Americans

Posted by FiveThirtyEight on November 24, 2014

The first time Rashad Al-Dabbagh saw a census form, he didn’t know how to respond.

Sex? Male. Age? 20. But race? Al-Dabbagh, who moved to the United States from Saudi Arabia in 1998, scanned the 2000 census form looking for himself. He wasn’t white or black or Chinese or Samoan or any of the 10 other categories listed.

This is how the U.S. Census currently asks about race.

“I went through it and looked for Arab or Middle Eastern or Palestinian or anything I could identify...

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The U.S. Census Is Trying To Get A More Accurate Count Of Arab Americans

Posted by FiveThirtyEight on November 24, 2014

The first time Rashad Al-Dabbagh saw a census form, he didn’t know how to respond.

Sex? Male. Age? 20. But race? Al-Dabbagh, who moved to the United States from Saudi Arabia in 1998, scanned the 2000 census form looking for himself. He wasn’t white or black or Chinese or Samoan or any of the 10 other categories listed.

This is how the U.S. Census currently asks about race.

“I went through it and looked for Arab or Middle Eastern or Palestinian or anything I could identify...

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Ben Shapiro says a majority of Muslims are radicals

Posted by PunditFact on November 05, 2014

The rise of the Islamic State group and its strategic use of grisly beheadings has stirred a heated debate in this country about the nature of Islam. Some critics say core Muslim beliefs invite violence. Defenders of religious tolerance say extremists represent only a tiny minority of Muslims.

Conservative pundit Ben Shapiro jumped in to say the nature of Islam is irrelevant. More important, according to Shapiro, is what its followers believe, "because that’s what they act upon." Through this lens, Shapiro painted a disturbing picture of the religious wellspring for people who fly planes into towers and behead their...

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US elections: Indian-Americans and Arab-Americans in the fray

Posted by on October 29, 2014

Washington: Dozens of Americans of Arab and Indian descent are running for office in the midterm elections on November 4 driven by a motivation to serve the country that their forefathers embraced as their own.

The seats up for grabs include all 435 in the US House of Representatives; 36 in the US Senate; most of the state legislatures; and the job of governor in 36 states.

Of the more than two dozen Arab-American candidates, the most prominent are Charlie Crist (a Democrat running for Florida Governor), Darrell Eisa (a Republican running for re-election to the US House seat representing...

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