09 Jan

News and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective


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Members of the French police special forces evacuate the hostages after launching the assault at a kosher grocery store in Porte de Vincennes, eastern Paris.

 Members of the French police special forces evacuate the hostages after launching the assault at a kosher grocery store in Porte de Vincennes, eastern Paris. Photograph: Thomas Samson/AFP/Getty Images

Charlie Hebdo suspects killed and several hostages freed in French police raids – live updates

LIVE Updated 


Cherif Kouachi and Said Kouachi

 Police pictures of suspects Cherif Kouachi (left) and his brother Said Kouachi, wanted in connection with Wednesday’s attack in Paris that killed at least 12 people. Photograph: French Police/AFP/Getty Images

Charlie Hebdo suspects on US terrorist watchlist ‘for years’

France under pressure to explain how Cherif and Said Kouachi were not stopped despite being known to security services

Pressure is mounting on the French authorities to explain how Islamic extremists were allegedly able to carry out the deadly attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, despite being well known to the intelligence services.American officials claimed that both of the suspects had been on a US terrorist watch list “for years” and one had travelled to Yemen, possibly for training with a group linked to al-Qaida, four years ago……………….

 Charlie Hebdo shooting: Friday’s developments


homeless man

 As cold temperatures maintain their grip on much of the US this week, finding places for the homeless to spend the night is becoming a critical issue. Photograph: Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

Delaware luxury hotel reverses course after denying homeless group a room

Hotel du Pont says it feared a lack of proper ID but man who booked room says staff told him ‘what if one of those people rapes or robs one of my guests?’

 Homeless confront a matter of life and death as frigid temperatures sweep US

A luxury Delaware hotel that canceled the reservation of a group of homeless people on Christmas night now says it will provide a weekend stay for six homeless people.

The Hotel du Pont’s reversal came Thursday after a story by WDEL-AM about the reservation cancellation. The story caused a social media backlash, including a number of users who dropped the hotel’s Facebook rating from four stars Thursday morning to just one and a half stars by later in the evening.

The hotel apologized in a statement and called the whole thing a misunderstanding, WDEL reported.

“Respect for people is a core value of the hotel,” the statement said. “That extends to everyone, including the homeless.”…….


Other News



nypd union pat lynch

 “We’ll follow our orders,” NYPD union boss Pat Lynch said this week. What if protesters try to follow his? Photograph: Carlo Allegri/Reuters

The NYPD found a more destructive way of protesting than shutting down traffic

Angry cops don’t like protesters who break the rules. But now they are using the opposite of civil disobedience to defy the law

Civil disobedience is a familiar protest tactic. From Mahatma Gandhi to Martin Luther King Jr, some of our most iconic reformers have engaged in nonviolent, unlawful social action.

But it isn’t always necessary to disobey the law to defy a legal regime. Critics can also press their point by adhering to directives in ways that are consistent with their literal language but inconsistent with common practice or common sense – a tactic we call “uncivil obedience.

In the ongoing struggle over police reform, civil disobedience is now being met with uncivil obedience. After protesters outraged by the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner shut down streets, bridges and shopping malls, the head of New York City’s largest police union urged officers to pay close attention to the regulations that guide officers’ conduct. Simply by sticking to the “stupid rules”, Patrick Lynch suggested, cops could fight back against their “enemies”.

The specifics of Lynch’s proposal remain hazy, as does its relationship to the unusual patterns of law enforcement that have since been reported. All he told NPR this week was, “If the policy is wrong, then change it. We’ll follow our orders.” But if Lynch’s precise plan is unclear, his underlying insight is well-founded: compliance with almost any rulebook can become a tool of resistance. Through uncivil obedience, the law can be turned against itself.


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