The polls had barely closed before friends of the henna-bearded Muhammad Abu Tir, 55, began talking him up to be the Palestinian Authority's next Interior minister. "I think I'd be good at it," he told NEWSWEEK at his East Jerusalem home. "I'm qualified." Abu Tir--the victorious Hamas's second-ranked candidate in last week's parliamentary elections and a onetime leader in the militant Islamist group's armed wing--has plenty of firsthand experience with law enforcement.
Firas Ammar isn't buying the campaign slogans. On this cold and cloudy Election Day in the West Bank--as Palestinians stream to the polls to cast their first ballots in 10 years for a Palestinian legislature--the 34-year-old barber stands outside a Ramallah polling station with his hands stuffed into his pockets.
There are few corners of Jerusalem more loyal to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon than Mahaneh Yehuda, the city's main outdoor produce market. Almost every wall is plastered with Sharon's colorful election posters, and its winding lanes are a can't-miss whistlestop for right-wing politicians during campaign season.So when news reached the market Thursday morning that Sharon had suffered what doctors were calling a "significant stroke"--almost certain to end Sharon's political career--the...
Samir Kassir slouched in his chair and glanced out the window of his office above Martyr's Square in Beirut. A month earlier, the vast plaza was choked with almost a million flag-waving demonstrators protesting the assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri.
When Gen. Michel Aoun returned to Lebanon from 15 years in exile last month, few expected he would make much of a political impact. But the 70-year-old Maronite Christian politician surprised his critics last week, winning a landslide victory in the third round of parliamentary elections.
During the first week of March, Lebanon's political opposition seemed to hold the world in its hand. Galvanized by the assassination of former prime minister Rafik Harari, the opposition's mix of Christian, Druse and Sunni Muslim supporters held several high-energy rallies in Beirut's Martyrs' Square, demanding that Syria pull its troops out of the country and stop meddling in Lebanese affairs.
But the excitement was short-lived. In the middle of Abu Mazen's speech, people started to turn around and leave. The initial burst of emotion had been impressive, especially for the straight-laced former schoolteacher whose own supporters concede is not the most charismatic of leaders.
Lt. Gen. David McKiernan, 52, is the American ground forces commander in Iraq. A Gulf War vet who has commanded the Army's First Cavalry Division, McKiernan now shuttles between his rear headquarters in Kuwait's Camp Doha, and Saddam's Abu Ghurayb North palace, near Baghdad's international airport.
After 14 days in the desert with no beds, toilets or showers, the troops of the Third Infantry Division were delighted to move into the sprawling Baghdad compound known as Presidential Palace North.Infantrymen from the division pushed their way in to the main building through a gaping hole in the back of the beige palace complex earlier this week.