Every June, ceremonies are held to commemorate the passing away of Imam Khomeini in 1989. This year, these ceremonies gain added significance in view of the uprisings underway in the Muslim East. Zafar Bangash, Director of the Institute of Contemporary Islamic Thought, compares the Imam’s leadership with the near-leaderless movements in the Muslim East.
For his May 18 speech on the Muslim East, US President Barack Obama gave his latest performance in the production titled (Steadily Weakening) Empire Strikes Back. His flowery words have long since lost their perfume and his grammatically complex sentences, such a heady delight after the linguistically-challenged Bush, now seem to fall as flat as an out-of-tune piano.
In the early nineteenth century, an African Muslim was living out the rest of his adult life in chattel slavery on a plantation in Antebellum America. Before dying on the eve of the Civil War, he left a handwritten Arabic manuscript with an acquaintance of his slave master.
By all accounts Tunisia’s president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali managed to keep a straight face when officials of an Italian University conferred on him an honorary doctorate at a Rome ceremony on December 4.