Sunday, January 10, 2010

"#1 Party School," by Aaron Scott

(Photo and article: This American Life)

This year, The Princeton Review named Penn State the #1 Party School in America.
It's a rotating crown -- Last year it was University of Florida, before that it was West Virginia University. So we wondered, what's it like to be at the country's top party school?

Listen to episode HERE.

"Where wedding shots once meant something else entirely," Haley Sweetland Edwards

(Article and Photo: GlobalPost)

"SANAA, Yemen — It's wedding season in Yemen and traditionally, that's meant three things: music, dancing and joyously firing an array of pistols, assault rifles, rocket-launchers, anti-aircraft mortars and grenade launchers into the air to celebrate the occasion.

But in the past few years, that last part has been nixed from the program.

In 2007, the Yemeni government began implementing an ambitious disarmament and weapons-registration campaign in Sanaa, the nation's capital, and in many other cities around the country. The upshot is that Yemenis can no longer carry, brandish or fire weapons of any sort in urban and semi-urban districts — even on their sons' wedding nights."

Read remainder of article HERE.

"The golden mean in Pakistan," by Maha Atal

(Illustration: Jayachandran / Mint)

Political reformers in Pakistan have long argued that economic growth would bring about a decline in the militancy that today threatens to tear the country apart. While economic deprivation is undoubtedly a cause of political instability, recent history suggests that growth alone is not a solution.

That’s the lesson from a new book by Tufts University political economist Vali Nasr, Forces of Fortune: The Rise of the New Muslim Middle Class and What It Will Mean For Our World (2009). Capitalism is the best insurer of political stability, Nasr posits, but not all capitalisms are equal. To promote peace, growth must do more than simply reduce absolute poverty by expanding the proverbial economic pie. It must also curb inequality by expanding the middle class, and tie their success explicitly to the stability of the state.

Read remainder of article HERE.

"Yemen's Hidden War: Is Iran Causing Trouble?," by

(Photo and article: TIME)

"The Yemeni capital of Sana'a thunders at night with the sound of war planes taking off and heading north, toward a remote conflict on the Saudi border that the Yemenis and Saudis have stealthily managed to keep off-limits to journalists and aid workers. In the lawless frontier zone of Saada governorate, a fierce battle has raged for months between Yemeni troops and rebels belonging to the Houthis, a religious minority. Each side — Houthis on one, Yemenis and Saudis on the other — has offered conflicting reports on everything from air strikes to motives, and with Saada a no-go zone, it's difficult to separate fact from fiction."

Read remainder of article HERE.

"Yemen a Dead End for Somali Refugees," by Abigail Hauslohner

(Photo: TIME)