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children-of-jihadDefying foreign government orders and interviewing terrorists face to face, a young American tours hostile lands to learn about Middle Eastern youth? and uncovers a subculture that defies every stereotype.

In 2004, Jared Cohen embarked on the first of a series of incredible journeys to the Middle East in an effort to understand the spread of radical Islamist violence among Muslim youth. The result is Children of Jihad, a portrait of paradox that probes much deeper than any journalist or pundit ever could.

Chosen as one of Kirkus Review's Best Books of 2007, Cohen?s account begins in Lebanon, where he interviews Hezbollah members at, of all places, a McDonald's. In Iran, he defies government threats and sneaks into underground parties, where bootleg liquor, Western music, and the Internet are all easy to access. His risky itinerary also takes him to a Palestinian refugee camp in southern Lebanon, borderlands in Syria, the insurgency hotbed of Mosul, and other front-line locales. At each turn, he observes a culture at an uncanny crossroads. Gripping and daring, Children of Jihad shows us the future through the eyes of those who are shaping it.




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from (Sofia)..March 30, 2015 Bulgaria remained the EU Member State with the lowest hourly labor costs in 2014, according to Eurostat data. Bulgaria’s hourly labor costs increased by 2.7% to EUR 3.8 per hour in 2014, against an annual increase of 1.1% registered in the euro area and an annual increase of 1.4% recorded in the EU-28. In 2014, average hourly labor costs in the whole economy (excluding agriculture and public administration) were estimated to be EUR 24.6 in the EU-28 and EUR 29.2
from (Sofia)..March 30, 2015 Bulgaria and China have decided to sign an agreement aimed at increasing the flow of Chinese tourists to the southeast European country, the Tourism Ministry in Sofia said on Monday. Setting up a Bulgarian-Chinese Tourism Chamber and offering joint package tours with neighbouring Romania, Serbia, Greece and Turkey to Chinese visitors also were on the agenda of talks between Tourism Minister Nikolina Angelkova and a delegation led by the Chairman of  The China National Tourism Administration (CNTA) Li Jinzao. Sending tourists to Bulgaria under various Chinese social programmes was
Wi-Fi hubs established by Developments in Literacy are helping teachers access teaching aids.
from Frontlines USAID Newsletter..March/April 2015 Edition Smartphone videos make it possible to bring lectures to teachers. In rural Pakistan, most teachers cannot attend continuing education training due to their class schedules, household responsibilities, and cultural and financial constraints. In response, the nonprofit Developments in Literacy (DIL) recently introduced mobile learning, or mLearning, as a way to give teachers easier access to the training and professional development courses they need to better meet the needs of their students.
from The Daily Star (Lebanon)..By Fareed ZakariaMarch 30, 2015 COMMENTARY Yemen’s descent into chaos – with jihadi groups jumping in to fill the vacuum of authority – has startled many observers. Just months ago, the White House was touting the country as a model for its anti-terrorism campaign. But Yemen’s trajectory should not surprise anyone. It follows a familiar pattern in the Arab world, one that we are likely to see again – possibly in larger and more
from Frontlines USAID Newsletter..By Kimberley Anne WellerMarch/April 2015 Eiditon How volunteers from the Jamaican diaspora community are tackling unemployment and helping youth in Jamaica become entrepreneurs. “Life was the same old same old and not full of opportunities. Since leaving secondary school, I have been struggling to get a job,” said 20-year-old Jovan Ottey. Unfortunately, Ottey’s situation is common, as so many other young people his age struggle every day to find work in Jamaica. According to
from Frontlines USAID Newsletter..By John Harris and Nils BergesonMarch/April 2015 Edition With common economic interests, the two countries are making deals, forging connections and realizing profits from a wide swath of business ventures. Kazakhstani food processing entrepreneurs visited Kansas State University to improve bakery techniques.VEGA Did you know that North Dakota has climate similar to that of Kazakhstan? And that, as a result, with U.S. assistance, the state’s cattle have served as “mother herds” for Kazakhstani beef farmers striving

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from Frontlines USAID Newsletter..By Robert SauersMarch/April 2015 Edition A worker at the Banko Gotiti Cooperative in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People's Region of Ethiopia holds a handful of ripe red Yirgacheffe coffee berries.Marcelo Pereira, USAID Agribus Market Develop With more than 500 billion cups consumed annually, coffee is the most popular beverage in the world. In the United States alone, an estimated 150 million people drink an average of 3.1 cups of coffee per day. Even though
from International Business Times..By  Michelle FlorCruzMarch 30, 2015   Across continental Africa, China’s presence can't be ignored. While China has made multibillion-dollar investments in various countries and industries throughout the continent, a shift toward a military presence -- in the form of a proposed naval base along Namibia's Atlantic coast -- implies a totally different kind of investment for China.   A report by the Heritage Foundation says that in the first half of 2014, China invested nearly $21 billion in
from Transparency International..Source:  the Financial Times..By John Paul RathboneMarch 29, 2015 It will take time but Latin America is working to combat corruption, says John Paul Rathbone Five years ago, Petrobras raised $70bn in the biggest ever equity offering; rich pickings given the easy credit and soaring commodity prices then enjoyed by Brazil and its fellow Bric nations. Now the state-controlled oil company is at the centre of the country’s biggest ever corruption scandal. Latin America, it seems, is engulfed in news
from The Wall Street Journal..By HAKIM ALMASMARI in San’a, Yemen and MARIA ABI-HABIB in BeirutMarch 29, 2015 Former president calls for political dialogue, fresh elections A burnt petrol station in Yemen's second city of Aden on Sunday, as the Houthis’ offensive in the country continued. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES Saudi warplanes struck military bases that had been seized by Houthi rebels in Yemen, crippling the air force in a U.S.-backed campaign that has led to fears of a proxy war among the