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First Tuesday current affairs discussion - Tuesday 7 March 7:00pm start

Tuesday 7th Mar: First Tuesday Current Affairs discussion

The two topics for discussion will be decided beginning of March

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First Tuesday Current Affairs Forum
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News Reviews from 2011

End of Gaddafi?

Developments in Libya (Mar 2011)

by Mark Iddon

 

As I write, Sunday 27th February, Colonel Muammer Gaddafi is clinging on to power in Tripoli as it has been reported that 80% of the country is now in the control of opposition forces. He has been in control of Libya with no opposition parties since he emerged as leader in 1969 following an Officer’s Coup in which the British backed King Idris was deposed.

 

The regime was to be a Socialist Peoples Arab Jamahiriha in accordance with his Third Universal Theory and his Little Green Book. Relations between Libya and the West have been uneasy throughout that period but over the last few years, trade relations have developed and Gaddafi’s autocratic regime is tolerated as a relatively stable country.

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News Reviews from 2011

Blaming the unemployed for lack of jobs?

Welfare state reforms (Mar 2011)

by Jane Turner


INTRODUCTION

Work and Pensions Secretary, Iain Duncan-Smith’s (IDS) welfare reforms were being discussed on a phone-in radio show recently and one caller said he would prefer to live off £65 per week unemployment benefit and spend time with his children than work in any of the jobs on offer where he lived. While this might shock some and bring out the “hang-em, flog-em, get-on-yer-bike or make them do national service” brigade I have some sympathy with his point of view. About to become an unemployment statistic myself due to the vicious council cuts and low economic horizons of successive governments I can confirm that the job vacancies on offer are mostly dire, and that signing on seems marginally preferable.

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News Reviews from 2011

Uprising in EgyptUprising in Egypt: a revolution is not being televised (Feb 2011)

by Simon Belt

I volunteered to write an article or two before the first of the Manchester Salon's current affairs discussions and put my neck on the line to have it picked apart. The idea is to develop and test the analytical and journalistic capabilities of all the attendees at these current affairs discussions every First Tuesday of the month, but little did I realise that one of the most exciting stories for a while would unfold in the week before that couldn't be ignored in favour of an easier topic.

 

Street protests in Egypt followed quickly after the flight of President Zine Ben Ali of Tunisia to Saudi Arabia in the Jasmine Revolution, and just as quickly escalated to an uprising with rather excited talk of revolution. Big events for sure but seems to have caught many by surprise and with little understanding of what caused such unexpected events. This article then is my comment to help with the First Tuesday discussion.

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News Reviews from 2011

US Reaction to WikileaksUS Reaction to Wikileaks: Assange really a terrorist? (Feb 2011)

by Professor Inderjeet Parmar

 

Sarah Palin, a likely Republican candidate for the presidency in 2012, has called for Wikileaks’ founder, Julian Assange, to be “hunted down in the way armed forces are targeting the Taliban and Al-Qaeda”.  Assange, according to the potential next leader of the free world, is “an anti-American with blood on his hands”.

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News Reviews from 2011

Red Card for Andy Gray and Richard Keys (Feb 2011)

by Simon Belt

Andy Gray and Richard KeysI volunteered to write an article or two before the first of the Manchester Salon's current affairs discussions and put my neck on the line to have it picked apart, and hopefully improved for it. Events in Egypt have somewhat overtaken the sacking of Andy Gray by Sky for 'unacceptable and offensive behaviour', and the subsequent resignation by Richard Keys, but here's my take on the issue.

 

The story takes place in context of BSkyB delivering some excellent financial results, and is preparing itself in response to takeover plans by Rupert Murdoch. Further adding complications in understanding the context is that Andy Gray is one of the celebrities who have begun legal proceedings against the News of the World, owned by Rupert Murdoch, over the phone tapping allegations.

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