Over Easy

(Picture courtesy of mhaithaca at flickr.com.)

The Thursday foreign media are pretty busy with news about the new Pope of the Catholic

Church announced yesterday, a South American very much at variance with emerging progressive promotion of women’s rights.

“In favour of Bergoglio is his pastoral attitude, as they say in the Church – his relationship with the people,” said Leandro Pastor, a friend of the new Pope for a quarter of a century who is philosophy professor at the University of Buenos Aires. “He’s a very simple man. He’s very austere. And also, I think he’s an intelligent man and someone who is very good at communicating.”

But he has also campaigned strongly against the progressive social agenda of the Argentine government.

Like John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, he regards the Roman Catholic Church’s core values as under attack from secular society.

Monsignor Osvaldo Musto, who was at seminary with him, said the archbishop would also be a good choice in terms of continuity.

“He’s as uncompromising as Pope John Paul II, in terms of the principles of the Church – everything it has defended regarding euthanasia, the death penalty, abortion, the right to life, human rights, celibacy of priests. All of this will continue if Bergoglio is made Pope.”

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species  secured protections that are meeting with continuing opposition in protections of sharks and ivory trade

“If you see ivory being sold at the airport terminals, all they need to do is shut it down. These are do-able actions, they are not ones that would require a great deal of new resources,” he added.

There is a chance that these proposals could be watered down. But Mr Zain said that there had been a significant change in Cites, as seen in relation to rhinos, elephants and sharks.

Governments, he said, were no longer seeing these species issues as being about biodiversity – they were seen as threats to national security.

“The criminals who are now poaching elephants and smuggling tiger parts are the same who are funding terrorism and funding militias,” he added. “This is mainstream.”

An international  rights organization, Save the Children, report detailed the plight of Syrian children caught up in conflict and the targeting of them in the fighting.

The report also said two-thirds of children surveyed said that they had been separated from members of their families due to the conflict and a third said they had experienced the death of a close friend or family member.

“All these children tell you these stories in a matter of fact way and then you realise that there are layers and layers of emotional trauma there,” said Forsyth.

Forsythe said he met a Syrian refugee boy, 12, who saw his best friend killed outside a bakery.

Forsythe also said that rape is being used to deliberately punish opponents of the government, adding that it is under-reported due to the sensitivity of the issue, especially among conservative communities.

Canadian opposition pointed out that the proposed XL pipeline promoted by Harper will be a damaging element in the country’s operation of it.

Pumping tar sands oil to America would cost 40,000 Canadian jobs, and would keep energy prices high inside Canada, Mulcair said.

Instead of lobbying hard for a pipeline south, to refineries on the Gulf coast, Mulcair said his government would have focused on getting tar sands crude to market through Canadian east coast ports. “We would make sure that we bring the product from west to east. We would take care of our energy security. We would create jobs in Canada, and we would get a better price for our producers,” he said.

Mulcair’s remarks – though he stopped short of explicitly opposing the pipeline – were in sharp contrast with the line promoted by the Conservative government of Stephen Harper, which has said the Keystone XL project is critical to Canada’s economy.

 

As always, we close with Southern Dragon’s insistence that we;  Never.Give.Up.