Fourth #ootd #fashionpost #style

ootd264Alexander Wang Prisma $760.00 +$24.00 shipping. No tax crossbody bag, Women’s, Red, Leather/Polyester from Farfetch, Lauren Ralph Lauren Sale $114.99 Was $134.10 Reg. $154.00 Sleeveless Printed Dress, Stuart Weitzman $455.00 Tasselmania Suede Wedge Sandal, Red

Need #ootd #fashionpost #style

ootd 261Givenchy $1,750.00 +$24.00 shipping. No tax mini Antigona tote, Women’s, Green, Goat Skin from Farfetch, DHGate US $50.26 – 59.43 Fashion Empire Dress 90s Boho High Waisted Short Sleeve White Green Floral Print Dress Zipper Party Chiffon Skirt Vintage Extra Medium xl, The Dessy Group Chelsea Satin Ballet Wedding Flats $28 Fabric: Tiffany Satin

Dîner en Blanc #fashionpost #ootd #style

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Picture this, you get invited to the most exclusive event, a super secret pop-up dinner party known as Dîner en Blanc. You only get one chance to dazzle and make an amazingly stylish first impression. Your plus one stands out in a sleek White Jacket Tuxedo from The Black Tux. Dressed to the nines and delivering this timeless and classy look he dares you to outdo him. Naturally, you’re going to give him a run for his money because you have the perfect pairing in mind.

Untitled design (2)

Who says white gowns are just for brides? This beach wedding dress with a sheer lace bodice is perfect for this exclusive event, but the only thing more important than a dress are the shoes. Everyone knows that shoes and a handbag can make or break an outfit. And what else to make an outfit than the ultimate Jimmy Choo ABEL Crystal Mix Pumps. Showing off your simply perfect french manicure against your Mariell pearl beaded clutch, you’re clearly the envy of the party at this point… So why not let the world know your Queen Bee status with this elegant and handmade flower crown.

Now that you’ve cemented yourselves as the fashion power couple of the party, it’s time to mingle, make friends and enjoy some great food. After all, a Queen can’t rule her queendom on an empty stomach now.

Bon Appetit, my sweets!

Peace and Pistachios,

Heba

xoxo

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    PhD Proposal Summary #cliffnotes #overview #nothappeninganytimesoon

    Below is a summary of one of the many PhD proposals I submitted to various universities internationally. While I was able to get into more than 15 very competitive unis, I couldn’t secure even the slightest amount of funding from any of them. It’s been three years now and I don’t seem to be any closer to getting that funding. I have contemplated switching my topic and applying again, but I may have to hold off on it since my topic being accepted hasn’t been of issue, rather funding has been my main issue. However, enough time has passed that parts of my research are irrelevant and other parts are no longer original since it has been encompassed in other researcher’s findings. The more time that goes by, the less my specific lens in regards to the topic is original or new. And therein lies the dilemma.

    Anyways, here is a snapshot of one of my proposals. My other proposals are variations of the same topic. As you may know, every university has different proposal requirements. Some want a 15 page proposal, some want a 5 page proposal. Others want a full literature review, while others look down on what they deem “name dropping.” Here is just one of the many variations of proposals I have saved.

    Enjoy…

    Project Overview

    Research Title: Transnational Contemporary Palestinian Music: Transnational Palestinian Identity Formation, Palestinian Experience and its Role in Israeli Affairs

    Palestinian contemporary music, particularly Palestinian hip-hop, which is very popular amongst Palestinian youth, acts as a medium for the Palestinian experience. Palestinian musicians voice their experiences and identity through their lyrics and this music acts as a medium to explore transnational Palestinian identity formation in the US and UK, seeing as this music is consumed globally by the Palestinian diaspora. [1] This research intends to study the role of Palestinian contemporary music in formulating a transnational Palestinian identity, how this transnational identity creates a new vision of Palestinian citizenship or activism and how this transnational identity and Palestinian citizenship influences Israel’s international relations.

    Project Scope

    The case study for this research is contemporary Palestinian music and its role in identity expression and formation, drawing a parallel between Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities concept that print capitalism brought the rise of the nationalism,[2] in turn globalisation’s role in transnational music distribution brought the rise of a transnational Palestinian identity. This research will assess in detail how this identity formed and what role this identity plays in their political activism concerning Israeli domestic and foreign relations. This will be achieved by researching the Palestinian community’s interactions with music and political opportunity structures in their home country’s, as well as Israel.

    The members of DAM, a prominent Arab hip-hop group, come from Al-Lid, Israel, although they very strongly identify themselves as Palestinian in their lyrics. DAMs closing lyrics to their song, Stranger in My Country, illustrate their multi-layered identity. And our Arabian roots are still strong. But still our Arabian brothers are calling us renegades. No. We never sold our country. The occupation has written our destiny. Which is, that the whole world till today is treating us as Israelis. And Israel till tomorrow will treat us as Palestinians. I’m a stranger in my own country.” [3]

    The lyrics of DAMs, Stranger in my Country, express feelings felt by Palestinian citizens of Israel. DAMs lyrics act as a form of communication to Palestinians living in other regions, serving as a form of news to these regions that otherwise may be unaware of what Palestinians in Israel experience. This leaves the Palestinian listeners with their own experiences that form their identity, in addition to the connection they have formed with other Palestinian experiences that influence their experience hereon in, and take part in shaping their identity. This hybrid identity then influences the state of Palestinian citizenship, affecting actions taken by Palestinians, political affiliations and civic duties, creating a transnational Palestinian citizenship.

    Project Empirical and Methodological Overview

    This project will assess why and how the Palestinian diaspora interacts with contemporary Palestinian music, embracing Palestinian identity or eschewing the community they live in as a form of political participation by using a postmodernist theory of methodology,[4] linking the use of music with political activism amongst Palestinians in the diaspora.[5] It will focus on organisational development of politically active groups on the macro, meso and micro levels, as well as diaspora Palestinian political inspirations found in Palestinian contemporary music. This project will garner empirical data through interviews with Palestinian music listeners and political activists, in order to build a comprehensive overview of how Palestinian lyrics and music can influence its listeners to form a transnational community that acts in benefit of a nation it does not live in. I also plan to translate and analyze Palestinian song lyrics and compare these lyrics to news reports that report socio-political circumstances of Palestinians. Attending conferences or concerts in which Palestinian musicians perform will give me better access to interview Palestinian contemporary music listeners. These interviews plan to get a better understanding of how Palestinians define their experiences, what constitutes a Palestinian identity, how connected they are to Palestinians in different regions, how they view Palestinian hip-hop and contemporary Palestinian music, as well as get a better idea of their political influences.

    From the data collected, I will then seek to build a wider theoretical framework to analyse the Palestinian diaspora’s formulation of identity, how this identity is measured and the influence this identity has on Israeli foreign and domestic decision making. This research will build on the work of Usama Kahf, who researched Palestinian hip-hop and identity in Israel and its relation to the Palestinian political struggle;[6] Andy Bennett’s research that explored youth consumption of music and how this music is used to define the self;[7] Amal Jamal, who researched media’s use in cultural resistance, as well as Israeli media policies towards Palestinians;[8] and Bakari Kitwana’s research on rap music’s role in cultural movement and political power.[9]

    A challenge arises as Palestinian hip-hop and other forms of contemporary Palestinian music is male dominatedHow does this dynamic play into identity formation amongst Palestinian women and does it have any impact on the political activism of Palestinian men or women?

    Timeline

    This research is expected to take up to three years as follows:

    • September 2015 January 2016Preliminary research, survey of literature and interpretive models.
    • February 2016 December 2016 Fieldwork, interviews and data collection.
    • January 2017 March 2017 Collate data and assess an interpretive model.
    • April 2017 September 2017 Development and presentation of preliminary findings and analysis.
    • October 2017 January 2018 First draft.
    • February 2018 October 2018 Final write up.

    Project Aims and Objectives

    This study will act as a vehicle case study for critiquing current research approaches to identity formation through music and its influence on international relations. It will be designed to challenge the paradigm that views transnational musical identity formation as insignificant in the face of international relations. This research is important because it fills existing empirical and theoretical gaps. Empirically, there is very little research on contemporary music’s role on the formulation of a transnational identity that leads to a politically active community that is capable of enacting change on an international level. There is also limited understanding of the Palestinian diaspora’s political aspirations and even less understanding of Israel’s interaction with Palestinian musical messages. This research looks to conduct thorough empirical research, particularly through interviews, observational data collection, quantitative monitoring of Palestinian music consumption amongst the diaspora. It will also involve an in depth analysis of contemporary Palestinian music’s lyrics, the messages intended in the music, as well as researching the connection between Israeli political relations and music.

    Theoretically, this research will explore the limitations set forth by not incorporating an interdisciplinary approach to the subject of transnational musical identity’s influence on international relations and political activism. This research will utilise data to create an extended postmodernist framework to assess motivations for political activism in the diaspora and how much of that political activism is due to their Palestinian identity that was formed in part by Palestinian contemporary music.

    Reasons for the Research

    Recent social-political movements, such as the divestment campaigns led by Palestinian activists in the diaspora, and these movements links to transnational Palestinian identity, demonstrates the needs to understand the influence of transnational Palestinian music on this community. This research serves the purpose of better defining the Palestinian identity and what is means to be Palestinian,[10] as well as how contemporary Palestinian music has influenced this process. Once a better understanding of Palestinian identity is established, a better understanding of their experiences, their needs, desires, hopes and political aspirations as a collective can be recognised. As Palestinian youth become more influential in their societies, their shared transnational experiences and identity will shed insight onto the socio-political future of Palestinians and Israelis.    

    Works Cited

    1. P. Katzenstein, The Culture of National Security: Norms and Identity in World Politics, (Columbia University Press, 1996 ).

    2. Bennett, Andy. Popular Music and Youth Culture: Music, Identity, and Place. Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave, 2000. Print.

    3. DAM. Stranger in My Own Country. 2007. MP3.

    4. Keri E. Iyall Smith and Patricia Leavy (eds.), Hybrid Identities,  (Haymarket Books 2009), 267.

    5. Jamal, Amaney and Nadine Naber, Race and Arab Americans Before and After 9/11: From Invisible Citizens to Visible Subjects , (Syracuse University Press, 2008).

    6. Kahf, Usama. “Arabic Hip-Hop: Claims of Authenticity and Identity of a New Genre.”That’s the Joint!: The Hip-hop Studies Reader. By Murray Forman and Mark Anthony. Neal. New York: Routledge, 2012. N. pag. Print.

    7. Bennett, Andy. Popular Music and Youth Culture: Music, Identity, and Place. Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave, 2000. Print.

    8. Jamal, Amal. The Arab Public Sphere in Israel: Media Space and Cultural Resistance. P. 23-24, Bloomington: Indiana UP, 2009. Print.

    9. Kitwana, Bakari. That’s the Joint!: The Hip-hop Studies Reader. Ed. Mark Anthony. Neal and Murray Forman. New York: Routledge, 2012. N. pag. Print.

    10. Darcy Zabel, Arabs in the Americas: Interdisciplinary Essays on the Arab Diaspora, (Peter Lang Publishing, 2006), 35-39.

    The Key of Return

    Carl Knappett examines the way in which people think through material culture stating that the “meaning of an object arises in the articulation of the its pragmatic and significant dimensions.” He uses a methodology that utilizes physical affordance, cultural and conventional constraints, iconicity, as well as indexicality, to exemplify Bonnot’s case study that showed that significance and symbolism of material culture could shift through time and spatiality.

    This case study can be applied to that of Palestine, more specifically the right of return, Al ‘Awda, for Palestinian refugees. Within a Western context, old keys may be seen as just that, an old key. There are key museums that possibly seek to present older keys as art as opposed to anthropological artefact, as Gell would suggest. However, for Palestinian refugees, the symbolism of older keys not only represents, but also is synonymous with the right of return to their homeland, which they actively seek. Many Palestinians who fled Palestine during the Nakba held onto their house keys and land deeds, in hopes of a quick return. However, the current political situation has not lent itself to the repatriation of the Palestinian refugees, leading these keys to be passed down from generation to generation.

    This generational hand-down of keys is one of the reasons why the image of the key is referred to as mftaH al ‘Awda, or the ‘Key of Return.’ This tradition has brought together generations of Palestinians in the aspiration to return to a homeland some have never seen. The Key of Return acts as a uniting factor amongst Palestinians all over the world, unifying Palestinians under one goal. Palestinians have shifted their political representation, as well as shifted their political aspirations, however, the right of return has been one thing that most Palestinians can agree on, regardless of political affiliation or geographic location.

    While the Key of Return is largely a political statement, it can slink into the realm of the arts. Many Palestinian and Palestinian activists, who are artists, use this image in their work. The Key of Return has the ability to be both aesthetically appealing and meaningful, putting into issue Gell’s theory that people are “slaves” to art and aestheticism and that objects considered as “aesthetically superior” suggest symbolism beyond “mundane artefact.” The Key of Return’s beauty lay in the resistance movement, aspirations of return and Palestinian unity. It is only mundane when it is devoid of meaning and history, yet artists use the Key of Return as a socio-political statement in their art. Artists have the ability to evoke more emotion from an image of the key through various elements of their work; artwork of the key can therefore be considered meaningful and aesthetically appealing. However, had the Palestinian right of return not been associated with the image of the key, artists may fail to make the key aesthetically appealing, as it is a historical artefact, but it is the meaning behind the Key of Return that gives the key in artwork its aesthetic appeal.

    BACKGROUND BRIEFING: U.S. Official On Syria

    U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE

    Office of the Spokesperson

    For Immediate Release

     BACKGROUND BRIEFING

    May 9, 2016

    U.S. Official On Syria

    May 9, 2016

    Via Teleconference

    MODERATOR:  Good morning, everyone, and thanks for joining us on such short notice.  We don’t have a lot of time today, so I’m going to get straight to the point.  Today we will have a background briefing and an update on Syria by [U.S. Official].  He is also engaged on the ceasefire task force and various aspects of the cessation of hostilities.  From here on out he will be known as a U.S. official.  That’s a U.S. official.  I want to reiterate that this call is on background.

    With that, I’ll turn it over to our U.S. official.

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  Hi, everyone.  Nice talking to you.  You have the statement in front of you so I’m not going to speak for long, but I would just highlight some main points.  First is that the statement with Russia affirms our shared understanding of efforts to revitalize the nationwide cessation of hostilities in Syria, and that’s opposed to reverting to local ceasefires.  It also explains our commitment to making particularly intensive efforts in specific hot spot areas of Aleppo, Eastern Ghouta, and Latakia.  It has a clear demand which Russia joins on parties to cease any indiscriminate attacks on civilians, including civilian infrastructure and medical facilities.  It has a commitment for undertaking a joint assessment where such incidents are reported to have occurred with casualties, as well as to share that with the members of the task force and through the UN Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura to the UN Security Council. 

    There’s also a commitment by Russia to work with the Syrian authorities to minimize aviation operations over areas that are predominantly inhabited by civilians or parties to the cessation.  There’s also a clear call on the parties for ensuring continuous delivery of humanitarian access including to besieged areas that haven’t been reached yet, and those are specifically named, and for unconditional delivery without obstruction of medical personnel and equipment, having access to those areas as well.

    So those are some highlights, but I’ll stop there.  I’m happy to take questions.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you very much.  And ladies and gentlemen, if you do wish to queue up for a question you may press * followed by 1.  You will hear a tone indicating that you have been placed in queue, and you may remove yourself from the queue at any time by pressing the # key.  If you are using a speakerphone, please pick up the handset before pressing the number.  So again, for your questions you may place yourselves in queue by pressing * followed by 1, and please allow just a few moments as questioners do queue up.

    All right, I’ll take our first question in queue from Felicia Schwartz with The Wall Street Journal.  Please, go ahead.

    QUESTION:  Hi, thanks for doing this.  On the part about Nusrah and seeking an understanding about where they are, is that different than – is this a fresh or different effort than what you’ve been trying to do in the past?

    And then the second question is the Aleppo ceasefire is going to expire at 5:00 today Eastern Time, so is there a reason that there wasn’t a fresh commitment from U.S. and Russia to extend that ceasefire today?  Thanks.

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  Sure, thanks.  On the Nusrah piece there’s an emphasis on it because both Nusrah and ISIL are, of course, excluded from the cessation of hostilities, but Nusrah is present in areas where they are proximate to civilians or and/or parties to the cessation.  And over the last several weeks of the cessation the presence of Nusrah has been a complicating factor, and so we’re making a fresh commitment to look at that in relation to the cessation of hostilities and try to come to a clearer shared understanding of where they’re operating and what threat they pose to the cessation.

    On Aleppo on the ideas that the particular special measures that we had in place for these specific areas or hot spots is making sure that it’s understood they’re folded in within a commitment to a renewal of the cessation nationwide.  So the intention is for that very much to be extended.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you.  The next question will come from Bill Faries with Bloomberg News.  Please, go ahead.

    QUESTION:  Hi, thanks again for having this. Could you – can you give us – can you say anything more about – you said the intention is very much for this ceasefire to be extended in and around Aleppo.  Is there going to be another time period set on that or – and what has the status been, I guess, over the last 12 to 24 hours?  Thank you.

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  There has been a reduction in violence in various parts of Aleppo.  We’ve seen a decrease, although there are pockets where that has not been the case.  There has been fighting in the southwest, for example, fairly intensive, although that fighting is involving Nusrah and other groups that are not party to the cessation.  So fighting there shouldn’t be seen as indicative of the cessation not being in effect or being extended in Aleppo.  We are fully committed to its extension in Aleppo.  Each side has communicated with commanders, saying that the other side is called upon to honor the cessation and that they should reciprocate. 

    So the cessation of hostilities is in effect in Aleppo, but there are periods – pockets where there has been fighting, certainly in the last 12 to 24 hours.  One would like to see a decrease there, but in the areas I just mentioned where Nusrah is operating we may not see that right away.

    OPERATOR:  All right, thank you.  The next question will come from Curt Mills with U.S. News & World Report.  Please, go ahead.

    QUESTION:  Thank you, thank you.  So is it the U.S.’s current contention that there is currently a ceasefire in Aleppo, just to be clear?

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  Yes.

    QUESTION:  Thank you.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you very much.  And next in queue is Rosiland Jordan with Al Jazeera English.  Please, go ahead.

    QUESTION:  Hi, thanks for the call.  I want to go to the section of the statement that deals with the COH item number three:  “The Russians will work with the Syrians to minimize aviation operations over areas that are currently inhabited by civilians.”  Does this mean that Russia has committed, one, to compelling the Assad government to stop airstrikes over areas such as large parts of Aleppo, and does that mean that the Russians themselves will not be carrying out airstrikes, as has been alleged by some in the opposition?  Thanks.

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  So the language in that paragraph is “to work with the Syrian authorities to minimize aviation operations over areas that are predominantly inhabited by civilians or parties,” so I think the words are carefully chosen.  What we would like to see as a result of that work is a real reduction in Syrian authorities’ or Syrian air force overflights of those areas.  Even if they’re not dropping ordnance, just the mere hovering of a helicopter overhead has had a particularly worrying effect for understandable reasons for civilians who have witnessed that over the last years of the conflict.  So the commitment, however, is quite specifically related to the Syrian authorities. 

    As for Russia, they are a party to the cessation with respect to not striking parties to the cessation, and in the actual terms of the agreement it makes clear that neither Russian nor Syrian air forces should be striking either civilians targets or parties to the cessation.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you very much.  The next question will come from Margaret Warner with PBS NewsHour.  Please, go ahead.

    QUESTION:  Hi, thanks for doing this.  This is actually a follow-up to the question just asked.  Obviously, the Russian Federation had made some commitments to you all to try to restrain the Syrian authorities from bombing, and the same for themselves.  And so what is new about this?  Are the Russians now more committed?  Is this just kind of a shell game on their part?  I mean, what makes you think this will work any better than before?

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  Well, I think that what it is a – the commitment, as you say, has been there in effect since the cessation went into effect on the 27th of February as far as not striking parties to the cessation or civilians.  I think we’ve raised serious concerns about the strains and the very real strains the cessation underwent and violations that we’ve seen in recent weeks, and so we believe that it was quite important to renew the commitment with a particularly intensive focus on areas or hot spots where we’ve seen more violence, Aleppo being among them. 

    Now, there is no prohibition on overflight or general air operations, so an undertaking on their part to work with minimizing air operations over these areas is an additional measure that, if implemented, would strengthen the COH.  They are not restricted from striking Nusrah, but minimizing air operations even where Nusrah is present, if in an area that’s predominantly inhabited by civilians or the parties to the cessation would help with implementation of the cessation more generally.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you.  And next is Nike Chang with Voice of America.  Please, go ahead.

    QUESTION:  Hi.  It’s Pam Dockins, actually, with Voice of America.  But a question about section four of the joint U.S.-Russian statement.  Down in the bottom of that paragraph it says the U.S. is committed to intensifying its support and assistance to regional allies.  Can you elaborate on that and indicate whether or not that indicates some type of new commitment or any additional material support to allies, and if so, what is that?

    And then secondly, concerning the localized ceasefires such as the one in Aleppo and Latakia:  Is there concern that at some point it’s going to get overwhelming or too difficult to continue to try to maintain these 48, 72-hour ceasefires?  The overall goal, of course, is the nationwide ceasefire, but as you look at these localized attempts, at what point does it become too cumbersome to try to keep up this pace?

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  So I’ll take the last question first.  The use of these 24, 48-hour periods in places like Latakia, Eastern Ghouta, and Aleppo were because the exchanges of fire on both sides had become quite intense, particularly in Latakia and Aleppo.  And so it was a means by which to get local commanders to be assured of the other side’s readiness to renew the implementation of the cessation.  In Latakia I think we’ve seen the violence come down quite significantly through the result of those efforts, and therefore folding it into the normal order with the nationwide cessation makes eminent sense, and that’s what we’re doing with the other two areas as well.  Aleppo, there is still work to be done to bring the violence down in pockets of the city, so – in pockets of the – in the environment, and so that’s what we’re working on now.

    As concerns your first question, we’re not right now announcing or indicating any fresh or additional specific measures, just a willingness at this stage to intensify efforts in that direction as needed.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you.  Next question will come from Michele Kelemen with NPR.  Please go ahead.

    QUESTION:  All right, thanks.  I’m wondering about this question of Nusrah in the Aleppo area.  Can you explain how the U.S.-Russian task force works?  Are they actually looking at maps and deciding which group holds which block?

    And then, secondly, do you have a shared understanding with the Russians as to the consequences for violations of the ceasefire?

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  Yeah, so – I mean, we have had multiple conversations in various fora, both in Geneva and in the region and between our capitals, because we have multiple channels of communication to exchange information on our views on where Nusrah and the parties are located.  The challenge is, of course, where Nusrah and parties to the cessation may be located quite closely together.  And there our view is that while Nusrah is excluded from the cessation and therefore it is permissible to take action against them, you nonetheless are also required under the terms of the COH to ensure any action you take does not harm civilians or parties to the cessation, and that’s where we believe additional work is needed to reach a shared understanding on how you honor that fully.  And in some cases it’s not simply a matter of having a general understanding, but you have to get more granular, and so we’re making a commitment to try to deepen our understanding of that challenge.  And it’s different in different specific locations of the country, so there isn’t a – one approach that applies equally to all, because it depends on the disposition of forces on the ground in specific areas and also the extent to which areas are more densely populated versus more remote.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you very much.  And we do have time for one final question.  That will come from Lesley Wroughton with Reuters.  Please go ahead.

    QUESTION:  Yeah, hi.  It’s got to do with the political process.  How realistic is it that you can actually, as you say, redouble efforts to reach a political settlement when these sides are still in battle?  And if you think that you – do you think that you can realistically actually get the parties together this month, as suggested last week?

    U.S. OFFICIAL:  So our view is that the renewal of the cessation of hostilities coupled with humanitarian access – indeed being allowed in the besieged and hard-to-reach areas and for the assistance to be continuous – these things create a much better – a far more conducive environment towards the parties being able to tackle very difficult political issues. 

    The statement points to the mediator’s summary that was issued following the last round of talks between the 13th and the 27th of April, which in its annex listed many different issues that the parties need to tackle for the political transition to be viable.  And it’s important to note in there that among the things it covers are how is power to be exercised in practice by the transitional governance, including in relation to the presidency, executive powers, control over the government’s own security institutions. 

    And so by making clear that these things are very much the subject of discussion, it certainly clarifies for those who were wondering, well, is this a real discussion on political transition, to make clear that the co-chairs’ shared understanding as these things are front and center on the table for discussion.  So to the extent that there was any lack of clarity among some of the parties as to what are the items that are meant to be discussed, having a list of issues spelled out as to what will inform the agenda for the talks going forward can help.  But they’re very, very difficult issues, to be certain.  So the issues are difficult, and equally the cessation – it’s going to face – when it went into effect, we knew that it would face setbacks and that it would take strenuous efforts to get it back on track.  The same remains today.  But the commitment that we have from both co-chairs is to work through those challenges – indeed, to try to get it back on track.

    OPERATOR:  Thank you very much.  At this time we’ll turn the conference back over to our presenters for any closing comments.

    MODERATOR:  I just want to thank our U.S. official for taking time out today, and thank you all for calling in.  This will conclude today’s call.

    Symposium Report 2011- Immigration

    For the first time ever, more people live in cities than in rural areas and people are living a truly urban life. The European Union is the closest experiment to open borders and works because the levels of disparities amongst the EU nations are not as wide as the disparities between Europe and North Africa.

    Although exact figures are often thought to be unbelievable, it is estimated that there are approximately 214 million international migrants in the world today- this estimation does not include internal migrations. It should be noted that migrant numbers are not included in this statistic. Instead, migration scholars, such as Khalid Koser prefer to say that 3 percent of the total global population are international migrants, which is believed to be a more accurate statement. One in 35 people is an international migrant, constituting the population of the fourth biggest nation in the world, Indonesia. This may seem like an intimidating thought to think that an entire nation of migrants exists, but Koser asks the question, “Why is the forces of migration is so strong do the other 97 percent of the Earth’s population not migrant?”

    Statistics can often be misinterpreted due to the differing definitions of migration terminology. The above stated numbers do not take into consideration the estimated 740 million internal migrants, according to the International Displacement Monitoring Centre.

    Despite the current economic crisis, migration has not slowed down significantly. In fact, during the financial crisis unemployment amongst migrants was not as large as to be thought because average citizens were thought to rather accept welfare check than take jobs they thought were beneath them. However, the quality of the life of migrants decreased.  Also during the global financial crisis, flows of irregular migrations decreased, but stocks of migrants increased for fear that after unemployment if they left they would not be able to come back.

    Almost 50 percent of migrations now are woman migrants; this used to be due to reasons of marriage, whereas now women are seen as the breadwinners. The feminization of migration is due to many countries’ liberalization where women have a more important role in society, the need for services stereotypically taken on by women such as cooking and cleaning, as well as prostitution and human trafficking.

    Migrants are often placed into the categories of legal or illegal, by those who use migration as a political tool, especially for re-election, whereas humanitarian organizations refer to migrants as documented and undocumented or irregular migrants. The term irregular migrants can be used in circumstances where irregular circumstances occur that cause the migrants to leave their documentation behind. Refugees are not included in the estimation of migrants. Contrary to popular thought most migrants come in legally and then become considered ‘illegal’ because they have overstayed their visas.

    The term ‘voluntary migration’ has been highly contested. If a family’s home has been destroyed by a natural disaster, they are considered a forced migrant, but if a member of a family leaves the country to find work in another country because their country of origin is lacking openings, are they then considered to be ‘voluntary migrants.’ There is no simple solution to this question, typically governments see these individuals are voluntary migrants, whereas humanitarian organizations are more liberal in interpreting the events that led to migration.

    Remittances are the money made by the international migrants that is sent back to the migrants’ families. The top three nations to receive remittances are India, China and Mexico and 50 percent of Tajikistan’s GDP is dependent on remittances. The 2010 flow of remittances is estimated to be about $316 billion. Although some governments may state that the amount of remittances leaving the country in which the money was made, hinders the economy, only 10 percent of remittances are sent back to the migrants’ country of origin and the other 90 percent is sent in the country the migrants are living in to pay for food, rent and other immediate expenses. The danger of remittances stands in that a cultural dependence of this flow of money is established and migration looks more appealing.

    International migration law is not recognized as a sect of international law, although it is an emerging field. The UN convention of 1990 does not refer to admission of migrants, but only the legal status of migrants. One of the principles governing migration is that migration and expulsion of ‘aliens’ is a part of the sovereignty of a country. Domestic jurisdiction is an evolving concept and is thought to be better to use than sovereignty in legal terms. States no longer enjoy absolute discretion and must adhere to certain grounds of rejection of aliens, being: a threat to security, not meeting financial requirements, having a contagious disease, a lack of documentation, a prior violation of immigration laws, war criminal status or having a criminal record.

    Many fallacies exist about the state of migrants, such as they are unhealthy and bring disease into the country. According to the IOM, this is false, as the strongest and healthiest individuals are those that migrate for work purposes. In fact not only are most migrants healthy, but migrants often underutilize health services and do not take away from public health services, as thought by some. The World Health Organization has reported that Australia has the most access to health care for migrants, whereas Qatar has the least access to health care. Unfortunately the most cited reason for migrants being rejected from the health care system is the government thinks it is too costly.  Switzerland claims that migrants receive full health equality services in hospitals, but migrants are forced to use a different entrance to the hospital, as it is inappropriate for them to enter through the same entrance as a ‘regular’ citizen of the country. The IOM has launched a campaign to educate both migrants and doctors as to what their rights are, as both parties have been fed different stories by governments and are unaware of what their rights and obligations are.

    Governments spend billions of dollars a year on making policies concerning migration laws and then approximately three years  later these laws are scrapped and replaced with new ones. Koser believes these funds would be better spent on policy evaluation. When discussing migration, civil society is excluded from official migration dialogues and the legitimacy of representation when one representative represents a thousand organization flounders as a list of three of four concise priorities are difficult to comprise. Private sector is also not involved in migration dialogue, even though they are often a driving force of migration.

    Solutions for the models for global governance of migration should exhibit more formal cooperation between states, engage in more robust and regional global dialogues, consider cooperation between regional consultative processes, as well as institutional reform, which would include the creation of a new agency, designating a lead agency from the existing agencies bringing the IOM into the UN system, considering a leadership or WO model. The obstacles that lie within the global governance of migration is that this may impede on a nation’s sovereignty, cause institutional inertia, increase North vs South relations and exhibit a lack of consensus amongst advocates.

    The statistic of refugees does not include asylum seekers, internally displaced peoples or stateless persons. In order to be a refugee, the ‘refugee’ must be recognized by the host nation. There are two different ways to determine refugee status. There is the individual procedure and examination and the collective determination of a population. Legally speaking, ‘asylum seeker’ refers to a person who has not been officially recognized as a refugee and the definition of a refugee is based on the well-founded fear of persecution.

    The refugee problem was first addressed in May of 1945 in response to the Holocaust and World War II. Within this timeframe there were 40 million refugees and internally displaced people, 13 million expelled Jews, 11.3 million forced labourers and 100 million refugees beyond the parameters of Europe. UNHCR was created during 1949-1950, to replace the IRO that was founded in 1947, as of January 1951. UNHCR’s effectiveness is punted against its non-political mission, as helping those in need is seen by opposing sides as a political act. However, the UNHCR’s objective is not to ask how or why the refugee situation is caused, but rather how to provide basic services for refugees, such as food and shelter.

    After the WWII refugees, the next group of refugees came from Hungary in 1956, where the UNHCR helped resettled 200,000 refugees in thirty countries and repatriated 10 percent of the refugees. The next largest UNHCR operations to date occurred in Bangladesh (1970-1971) and then followed by the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. Afghanistan is the single biggest refugee population in the world, being affected by the invasion of the Soviets, the Taliban rule, the “War on Terror,” as well as other internal conflicts. Interestingly enough, the United States of America is the single biggest donor to the UNHCR. Afghan refugees account for 40 percent of all the refugees in the world, not including Palestinian refugees. Proportionally Somalia has the biggest percentage of refugees and Colombia has the most IDPs, approximately three million. These IDPs receive aid from UNHCR although their legal status is less clear than that of refugees. Another group of people of concern to the UNHCR are settled refugees, who still have access to assistance programs.

    The principle of non-refoulement is guaranteed by Article 33 of the Geneva Convention which states that a country cannot force people to go back to nation of persecution if they still feel a sense of persecution.

    The right of asylum is not acknowledged as an individual right and falls under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 40: the right to seek and enjoy asylum. This however is not an obligation for a state to provide asylum.

    In 1951 the UN convention relating to the status of refugees has contributed to providing durable solutions by the UNHCR to refugee situation including voluntary repatriation to the country of origin, local integration into the country of asylum and resettlement to a third country. However, the UNHCR has been shy about repatriation in the past and usually leaves it up to the IOM to handle repatriation as they are not a U.N. entity.

    UNRWA- The United Nations Relief and Work Agency is short for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. Special attention should be given to the word ‘Palestine,’ as there were refugees who lived in Palestine but were not of Palestinian descent, including Turks, Armenians and other minority groups. UNRWA is the only U.N. organization set up to face a specific refugee problem for a specific group of people, with more than 30,000 employees. UNRWA has a budget of $700 million, as well as a $250 million emergency fund. The United Nations brought in Gordon Clapp,  the former Director of the Tennessee Valley Authority in the USA to help shape UNRWA. UNRWA is not responsible for finding a solution to the Palestine refugee problem, but rather they are to provide schooling and humanitarian aid to Palestine refugees, the longest standing refugee issue in modern history.

    In concern with human security in world politics, the concept of a ‘traditional’ security of ‘national’ security erodes from the traditional concept of safeguarding the population and core values of a nation. The three main reasons why this concept erodes with time is due to a shift from interstate to intrastate wars, a fragmentation of global or common threats and fragile or failed states’ security threats that appear above and below the state level. 

    In a survey in South Sudan, citizens were asked if they felt a sense of human security for the months to come. A majority of the surveyed said yes, but their definition of human security was equated with food security. This in mind, an interdisciplinary method is needed for human security. Human security catalysts are often economic, food, health, environmental, personal, community and political security factors. Environmental security is needed in cases where the well-being or survival of the community is being threated due to human activity that threatens the environment or in cases of environmental change or degradation caused by conflict.

    Constructivism in a method for studying social phenomena that focuses on the role of ideas in shaping our identities and gives meaning to the world around us. Constructing security interests involves identifying the threats that weapons pose, the enemy and humanitarian intervention, keeping in mind that threats are a part of an ideological issue. Securitization on the other hand is when threats are socially constructed by powerful actors and accepted by a relevant audience and identification of an existential threat that takes an issue beyond the usual rules of policies and calls for urgent extreme or extra-legal measures to respond, for example: The war on terror or the war on drugs.

    While new forms of multilateralism to address human security have been established, such as the Human Security Network, regional responses to human security and the Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development have strengths such as their crossregional representation abilities, ministerial level initiatives and the taking on of cutting edge issues such as landmines and child soldiers, there are also weaknesses- they are too dependent on individual leadership, lack a consensus on issues of hierarchy and have bad timing and  weak follow through.

    The objective of the Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development is to raise global awareness of the negative impact of armed violence and support the reduction of armed violence. There are about 700,000 deaths annually due to armed violence with 40-50,000 as a result of direct conflict, homicides at 490,000 and 200,000 as a result of indirect conflict deaths. Excess mortality rates are used in these armed violence statistics. There are at least 875 billion weapons held worldwide with more than 2/3 in civilian hands, ¼ with armed forces, few with police and less than 1% with armed groups. New issues on the human security agenda tackle issues such as landmines, cluster munitions, small arms and light weapons, child soldiers, civilian protection and conflict goods.

    What is humanitarian action? According to the OECD/DAC in 2007 is to save lives, alleviate suffering, maintain and protect human dignity during and in the aftermath of emergencies and should be consistent with principles of human dignity, impartiality, neutrality and independence. Humanitarian action is so relevant because it is easier to send money in contemporary times, it is foreign policy by default, media attention and it is a way to contain refugee issues.

    To be a humanitarian is to have a transnational concern to help persons in exceptional distress while humanitarianisms propound loft goals and hide deep contradictions. Intervention on the other hand is the interference, forcible or supported by force, of one independent state in the internal affairs of the other.

    There are for categories in categorizing humanitarianism. The first being the Dunantsists, who are strictly impartial, neutral and independent. Then there are the Wilsonians who are broadly tuned with foreign policy of their home country and have a liberal democratic peace agenda. Thirdly there are Faith Based, such as Islamic relief and fourthly there are the Solidarists who seek justice, human rights or development in addition to the objective of humanitarian assistance. There  is also a difference between development aid and humanitarian aid, as development aid is transformative, long term and utilizes local leadership and humanitarian aid has a conservative agenda, is short term and requires external intervention. There are five different action modes, three of which fall under the guise of protection: denunciation, mobilization and persuasion and the other two being support and substitution.

    Actors of humanitarian intervention are those who have political interest and won’t refer to situations, such as Libya, as civil war. If it were to be referred to as a civil wall, humanitarian intervention crisis argument then collapses.

    What is terrorism? Terrorism are a universal problem, social phenomenon, a strategy, a tactic, technique, crime, resorted to by the weak against the strong, psychological and physical weapons and are elusive in their goals. Terrorism has a long history starting with the Zealots in the year 60 AD with the Jews in Palestine against the Romans, then the Assassins in 1090-1270 in Persia and then the French Revolution in 1792-1794. However, modern terrorism is born in the 1860s by means of  an organic relationship between terrorism and technology, being triggered especially by World War I. And religious terrorism does not start until the1980s.

    The initial terrorist mode is the destruction of the most harmful persons in government and the punishment of official lawlessness., but there are difficulties in defining terrorism because it is a disputed and nebulous concept, the definition must stay away from the avowed reasons of the terrorist, yet take them into account, the direct targets of violence aren’t necessarily the main targets and the problem at the crossroads of ideology. Hence, the US Army, FBI and Department of State do not have a standard, agreed upon definition of terrorism, in fact the United Nations have been meeting for 20-30 years concerning devising a standard definition. Despite the inability to define terrorism there are main agreed upon features of terrorist attacks: they are organized, deliberate and systematic, politically motivated, the usage of force, indiscriminately targeting of civilians, meant to communicate a problem, aimed at a symbol, conducted by state or non-state actors, part of a campaign and to achieve strategic direct or indirect results. 

    The Mediterranean Chef – Merriam And Mona’s Lebanese Table

    The Mediterranean Chef Is A Complete Cookbook Created By Merriam And Mona With Over 20 Years Of Cooking Authentic Mediterranean Food. Cooking Mediterranean Food Is A Passion For These Authors And Their Dedication Shows In This 84 Page Complete Ebook!

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    Dear Fellow Cooks,There are so many different cooking guides on the market – some good and some bad.  I would like to introduce you to our cookbook – “Merriam & Mona’s Lebanese Table“. When I was growing up in Lebanon, I remember coming home to my mother’s kitchen – it was a true delight. As soon as I walked through the doors, I smelled yummy food. Every time I have a taste of Lebanon, it takes me right back to my mom’s kitchen.

    While I was living in the New York and the New Jersey area, I hosted many dinner parties. During those dinner parties, I received many compliments.

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    I Am Going To Share
    A Taste of Lebanon
    With You
    Many women do not like to share their recipes once they have mastered it. We, however, can’t wait to share “A Taste of Lebanon in Merriam & Mona’s Lebanese Table” with you. Even if you have never been to Lebanon before, we urge you to try at least one recipe out of our book – surely, you are going to enjoy it.
    ImageRecipes by Mona and MerriamEach of these recipes has been developed by either Mona or Merriam. Two women have collided in order to create the ultimate cookbook full of recipes just for you.These aren’t your average recipes.Nope, these are not your average, every day recipes. You could try to find them online, but you probably won’t, because they are Mona and Merriam’s very own recipes. They decided to share their recipes with you, because they want to bring a little piece of Lebanon to your table.
    There are many different types of recipes in this eBook!
    IconIn this eBook, you are going to have access to many different recipes including:

    • Soups
    • Salad Dressing
    • Salads
    • Lebanese Mezza
    • Main Courses
    The soups are delicious and perfect for those cold winter days (they’re also perfect for hot days).
    The salad dressing recipes are out of this world! The salads – well, they are not your average salads!
    Introducing You to the Food
    Don’t worry, you are not buying this book “blindly.” Let me introduce you to some of the recipes in the book:
    • Split Red Lentils Soup
    • Chicken Soup
    • Freekeh Soup
    • Veal Yogurt Soup
    • Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing
    • Pomegranate Salad Dressing
    • Red Wine Vinegar Dressing
    • Tabbouleh
    • Eggplant Salad
    • Yogurt and Cucumber Salad
    • Rocket Salad
    • Hummus
    • Vegetarian Grape Leaves
    • Bamia Bizit
    • Raw Kibeh
    • Baked Kibeh
    • AND MUCH MORE!!
    You think that food sounds delicious? You should see the other recipes that are in the cookbook!
    The Recipes are Easy to Follow
    Each one of the recipes are easy to follow. We give you step by step directions in order to make sure you get it right. As long as you follow the steps and take the proper measurements, your food should turn out as delicious as ours.
    Each Recipe Has a Picture
    Each one of the recipes in this cookbook is presented by a picture of the food once it is done. This way, you will see just how yummy it looks.
    Food is the Way to a Man’s Heart
    It’s true – if you are a woman trying to win a man over, cook him a good dinner. Men love it when a woman can cook. Don’t waste your time on those recipes on the Internet – they are not always accurate. Our recipes in our book are accurate – we know this, because we make them ourselves. Ladies, your man will be surprised with the stuff you can come up with out of this book! This book isn’t just for ladies though – many men purchase this cookbook in order to cook a good meal. Regardless of your gender, this cookbook deserves to be in your kitchen.
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    What are you waiting for?
    It’s time to purchase this eBook and start enjoying good food.
    “Merriam & Mona’s Lebanese Table” has a little bit of something for everyone.
    Ebook
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    $14.99   On Sale for $8.99

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    New Zealand Maori Hangi Guide

    Unique Traditional Maori Subterranean Cooking Technique. This Is A Very Technical Process Which Means The Need For Quality Info Is High!

     

    Click Here!