The Top 10 Stories of April 2, 2012

By Duane Shank 4-02-2012

Quote of the day.
“France is a rich country. But the working poor are living in the same condition as in the 19th century. They can’t pay for heating, they can’t pay for their children’s clothes, they are sometimes living five people in a nine-square-meter apartment.” - Jean-Paul Fitoussi, an economics professor at L’Institut d’Études Politiques in Paris, on the effect of Europe’s economic crisis.
(New York Times)

1. Egyptian Copts abandon constitution talks.
Egypt's Coptic Orthodox Church has announced it is withdrawing from talks on a new constitution, saying Islamist domination of the drafting body made its participation 'pointless.'

2. The faith factor: Religion's new prominence in campaign 2012.
Whose beliefs matter? From birth control to taxes, religion is playing an unprecedented role in campaign 2012.
(Christian Science Monitor)

3. Senate tries bipartisanship.
The strangest thing has been happening in the hopelessly partisan Senate. They’re passing stuff on big bipartisan votes.

4. Occupy Movement looks for staying power.
Six months after the Occupy movement first used protests and encampments to turn the nation’s attention to economic inequality, the movement needs to find new ways to gain attention or it will most likely fade to the edges of the political discourse, according to supporters and critics.
(New York Times)

5. Baby Boomer couples are divorcing at record rate.
Divorce rates are higher for baby boomers than for any previous generation, while rates are declining, slightly, for society as a whole.
(McClatchy News)

6. Myanmar's Suu Kyi hopes victory is dawn of new era.
Myanmar election officials confirmed Monday that Aung San Suu Kyi's opposition party had won a landslide victory in historic by-elections, with the democracy icon saying she hopes the vote marks the beginning of a new era for the long-repressed country.
(Associated Press)

7. Aid pledged to Syrian opposition groups.
An international coalition including the United States, the United Kingdom and several Arab states, has pledged to send millions of dollars in aid and equipment to Syria's opposition groups, signalling a deeper international involvement in the conflict there.
(Al Jazeera)

8. In Yemen, lines blur as U.S. steps up airstrikes.
As the pace quickens and U.S. targets expand, the distinction may be less clear between Al Qaeda militants and those fighting only to overthrow Yemen's leaders.
(Chicago Tribune/Los Angeles Times)

9. Iraq casts pall over U.S. effort to fathom Iran.
Today, analysts and others at the C.I.A. who are struggling to understand the nuclear ambitions of Iran are keenly aware that the agency’s credibility is again on the line, amid threats of new military interventions.
(New York Times)

10. Israel puts Fatah's Marwan Barghouti in solitary confinement.
Israel has placed a high-profile Palestinian prisoner in solitary confinement for a week after he called for a new wave of civil resistance.

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