Category Archives: World News

Sunday Sweep

Don’t have time to read in-depth reports on the major news stories of the moment? Don’t fear! Check the News Blog every Sunday afternoon for a run-down of the top stories that matter to you and where to find out more information. 

Saudi women earn the right to vote
Saudi Arabian women were granted the right to vote Sunday by King Abdullah in a move many say was prompted by the Arab Spring. Saudi women are not allowed to drive and do not have equal rights with men, but Abduallah’s decision also allows women to run for public office. It is unclear how many women will take advantage of their new freedoms, as they legally could be denied the opportunities by the men in their lives. The new law will take effect during the next nationwide local elections — in 2015.

Palestine applies for statehood
Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas applied for Palestinian statehood and United Nations membership earlier this week amid cheers from many established UN members, despite the United States’ past promises to veto. Abbas said he wants Israel and Palestine to go back to the 1967 borders, but the Israeli government has not accepted the proposal.

Bullfighting banned in Catalonia
Sunday marked the last bullfight ever in Spain’s Catalonia region. While it is not banned in every region of Spain, many have protested, saying it is an attack on liberty. Anti-bullfight activists celebrated at the final fight, and Spain’s leading broadcaster already declared several months ago it would no longer air live bullfights because of the violence it demonstrated to children.
Check back at elonpendulum.com this week to see a photo story about bullfighting in Madrid, Spain, by international correspondent Will Anderson.

American hikers released from Iranian prison
Two American hikers have finally returned to New York on Sunday after two years of detention in an Iranian prison. The two men, Joshua Fattal and Shane Bauer, were hiking in Iraq in July 2009 when they were detained by Iranian officials for illegally entering the country. Fellow hiker Sarah Shourd was also arrested, but was released last year. The two men were recently convicted of espionage on behalf of the American government, but they have claimed they were detained specifically because of their nationality and Iran’s poor relationship with the United States government. Both Fattal and Bauer have maintained claims of innocence, saying they never intended to cross the border, and did not do so, but will never know for sure whether they actually did.

Slavery footprint
Made in a Free World has just released an iPhone app for individuals to track the amount of slave labor they support through their daily purchases. The app works based on lifestyle survey that takes inventory of an individual’s belongings and breaks each item down by the materials needed to make it.

Photo courtesy Made in a Free Wold

A pair of sneakers, for example, involves not only labor to put the product together but also labor to produce the cloth, plastic, rubber, metal and other raw materials used in manufacturing. The app is free in the iTunes store and so many people have attempted to access the site and take the survey that the organization’s servers have crashed, and are currently being upgraded to fifty times their size.

Don’t forget to like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and look out for our next issue, hitting campus at a newsstand near you this Wednesday.

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The Pendulum Goes Abroad: Danish life

This semester, The Pendulum will be working with a select group of international correspondents in study abroad programs all around the world to bring you first-hand accounts of the stories you would otherwise only find in major newspapers. From stories investigating culture and hard-news articles to photo stories of life abroad and the correspondents’ thoughts about their experiences, we’ll have you covered. We’ll even bring you the best recipes and travel tips. Once a week until school starts, check back here at the News Blog to see the thoughts of a new correspondent as he or she gets ready to embark on a new adventure.

This week, read the story of Peter Gallagher, who left for Copenhagen, Denmark Aug. 20. Keep up with Peter and our other correspondent in Denmark, Kelly Huston, throughout the semester as they write about life in Copenhagen.

To my own dismay, my Danish experience so far has consisted of the occasional consumption of Entenmann’s Danishes and nothing else. My lack of an understanding for the culture in Denmark is the main drive and force behind my desire to learn and experience Danish culture and society this fall. Until reading the description of the program on Elon’s study abroad website, I had never considered a Scandinavian country as my destination for studying aboard. But after exploring the Danish Institute for Study Abroad website and researching the programs it offered, my mind was set.

As an Environmental Studies and Political Science double major, I feel that Copenhagen, Denmark, has the perfect combination of environmental awareness and governmental involvement for my academic interests. I have enrolled in the “Sustainability in Europe” program, with my core class revolving around sustainable development and exploring environmental, political and social issues. Taking classes relating to the processes and goals of sustainable development while studying in one of the most environmentally advanced cities in the world seems like a combination that can’t be beat. Being enrolled in two political science courses should also be very interesting, as Denmark has a very liberal and socially involved central government.

Along with my courses and academic learning experiences inside and outside the classroom, Copenhagen offers a wide variety of opportunities. I hope to be living with a host family for the semester, and this immersion into all aspects of Danish culture is both unsettling and exciting. Having the chance to truly be a part of a completely different family, thousands of miles away from my own, will hopefully allow me to look at different cultures and lifestyles in a new light. I am also excited to explore the history of Copenhagen.

As a correspondent, my hope is for Elon students to stay up-to-date on international news and to be able to draw parallels with American culture and their own lives in the United States. As Denmark is one of the most peaceful countries in the world, and its people are considered some of the happiest, my time abroad gives me a terrific educational opportunity which I hope to share with others. By the end of the semester, I hope to be knowledgeable and understanding of Danish culture, and I hope that when Elon students hear the word “Danish,” their immediate thoughts are not of stale Entenmann’s but of a remarkable Scandinavian country.

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The Pendulum Goes Abroad: Culture in Buenos Aires

This semester, The Pendulum will be working with a select group of international correspondents in study abroad programs all around the world to bring you first-hand accounts of the stories you would otherwise only find in major newspapers. From stories investigating culture and hard-news articles to photo stories of life abroad and the correspondents’ thoughts about their experiences, we’ll have you covered. We’ll even bring you the best recipes. Once a week until school starts, check back here at the News Blog to see the thoughts of a new correspondent as he or she gets ready to embark on a new adventure.

This week, read the story of Genevieve D’Cruz, double-majoring in Spanish and Religious Studies, who arrived in Buenos Aires in late July. Genevieve has been keeping an almost daily blog, so be sure to check it out to follow up on her adventures: http://gendcruz.wordpress.com/

Argentine Congress in Buenos Aires. Photo by Genevieve D'Cruz.

I knew since age 15 that Buenos Aires, Argentina was going to be the place I would study abroad in college. Applying to universities without a Buenos Aires program was not even an option on college visits. I was, and still am, intrigued by the political, social, and cultural history of the country. The Dirty War is one of my favorite subjects to learn about to date. Now that I am finally here, I am more than ready to dive into what this country has to offer. As I chronicle my journey throughout my stay in Buenos Aires, I plan to go to as many museums as I can, and talk to as many locals as possible.

Through my correspondence with the Pendulum, Elon students will be able to learn a little more about the issues and events going on in Argentina today. I hope to write about the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo (Las Madres de la Plaza de Mayo), a group of mothers and grandmothers who march in the Plaza de Mayo every Thursday in protest to government officials kidnapping their children and grandchildren (Los Desaparecidos) in the 1970s.

Argentina’s presidential elections will be taking place in October 2011 and I hope to capture different views and opinions on the various Argentine presidential candidates by conversing with locals and photographing grafitti and ad campaigns around Buenos Aires. The social and cultural background of the country are perhaps the most influential in terms of shaping the societal norms of Argentina and as culture and society are what most significantly affect people, I intend to explore the numerous social and cultural customs and define this beautiful country.

Keep an eye out early this semester for a photo story Genevieve is currently compiling about the election campaigns in Argentina.

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The Pendulum Goes Abroad: Ecuador – Fact or fiction?

This semester, The Pendulum will be working with a select group of international correspondents in study abroad programs all around the world to bring you first-hand accounts of the stories you would otherwise only find in major newspapers. From stories investigating culture and hard-news articles to photo stories of life abroad and the correspondents’ thoughts about their experiences, we’ll have you covered. We’ll even bring you the best recipes. Once a week until school starts, check back here at the News Blog to see the thoughts of a new correspondent as he or she gets ready to embark on a new adventure.

This week, read the story of Katie Moran, a music theatre major headed to Quito, Ecuador Aug. 16.

Katie Moran. Photo courtesy of Moran.

Ecuador is not your average travel destination among college students and those wishing to study abroad. In fact, more often than not, people give me puzzled looks or ask me to repeat myself when I tell them I’m spending my next semester in Quito.

So why did I choose Ecuador of all places?

To be honest, I don’t know. Before applying to the program, I had no previous knowledge of the country aside from the fact that they speak Spanish. But that’s the beauty of studying abroad in my opinion. I wanted to go someplace that I could have no preconceived notions about, and Ecuador is full of mysteries to me.

Having the summer to plan and prepare for the upcoming semester has proved both exciting and detrimental to my sanity. With all the free time at home, my imagination and curiosity has run wild at the thought of my new host family, the university, taking all my classes in Spanish and the culture shock that comes with living abroad. To say that I am nervous is an understatement. But I fully believe that we must do things that scare us. For me, it’s studying abroad and trying to communicate in a foreign language. For others, it may be sky-diving or eating alligator. I think it’s so important to have as many adventures and experiences as possible in order to be the best version of ourselves that we can be, which is why I welcome this next semester as an exciting change of scenery and point of view.

Luckily, I am no stranger to travel, as my family moved to England when I was twelve. But the idea of going to the equator alone is definitely scary. Thankfully, one other Elon student is also venturing there as well, but since the program is small, I feel confident we will get an authentic experience far different from my days in jolly old England.

I’m so intrigued by the differences and similarities in culture and relationships. While I’m in Quito, I want to write about the relevance and importance of family, the experience of holidays, celebrations and traditions and how Ecuador views the United States in terms of our politics and reputation–they are the only country in South America that uses the U.S. dollar, and I’m interested in learning more about the relationship between the two countries.

Overall, I plan to relay the essence of Ecuadorian life through my articles during the next few months, and I could not be more excited. I hope my accounts inspire others to seek that which they are intrigued and afraid of. I hope there are fascinating parallels between Ecuadorian students and ourselves and I hope Quito is as wildly enticing to you as it is to me.

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A Prince finds his Princess: One reporter’s inside scoop on the royal wedding

Former Pendulum staff photographer Julia Murphy spent the spring semester studying abroad in London and had the opportunity to attend the royal wedding last Friday. While millions of people worldwide tuned into the event, Julia had a front row seat to all that was taking place. Check out her inside scoop on one of England’s most sacred and festive events. 

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, following their wedding vows. Photo by Julia Miller.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, following their wedding vows. Photo by Julia Murphy.

A wedding is a joyous occasion, when family and friends come together to celebrate. The planning is tedious and there are endless decisions to be made but once the bride is walking down the aisle it all seems insignificant. That is, unless the groom is Prince William, future king of England, the bride is Kate Middleton and the guests are foreign dignitaries and the British royal family.

On Friday April 29, I was part of the thousands waiting to catch the first glance of the new couple on their way to and from Westminster Abbey. The Royal Wedding had been in the back of my mind since February when I arrived in London but little did I know that I would spend a night sleeping under London’s skies in preparation for the procession nineteen hours later.

There were screens set up in Hyde Park and Trafalgar Square if I wanted to watch the days’ events from beginning to end but I knew that if I watched it on a screen I would ask myself, “Why am I not there?” In order for us to claim front row seats we had to camp out among the thousands of people already there. We packed bags, carried blankets and some even bought chairs to try to make our stay more comfortable, but despite our efforts we still slept on the street.

We were all settled by 5pm and bored by 6pm but the evening was just about to get interesting. Our camp was in front of Clarence House, where the princes live and acted as the wedding headquarters. First, Kate Middleton left Clarence House on her way to the Goring Hotel for her last night as a single girl. Later in the evening Prince Harry and William returned to Clarence House, got out of their car and greeted wedding enthusiasts.  I was able to catch a glimpse of the ginger before he and his brother walked inside!

The streets were closed so people were able to walk, run and frolic in the streets without worrying about cars. However whenever we heard a siren everyone perked up to see who was coming, since important people (aka royals) always traveled with a police motorcycle. Trying to sleep in silence was not an option. There were campers with stereos blasting music until sunrise. To keep warm a few of us walked down to Westminster Abbey and back, the same route Kate would take just a few hours later.

Queen Elizabeth II, accompanied by her husband, Prince Philip. Photo by Julia Murphy.

The procession started with dignitaries rolling by in Jaguars with matching Land Rovers.  The groom was the first to leave followed by the Queen and finally the bride, our first look at the dress. We all screamed, “She looks beautiful!” The car was completely made of glass so we could see details of the dress, her veil and tiara; it was as if she was illuminated! After she left it was a matter of waiting for her to return with her husband. Luckily, the ceremony was broadcast across the streets of London so we were able to hear their “I will.” Although we weren’t inside I think it was just as great to hear it standing outside Buckingham Palace with the Brits.

Finally, at 12:15pm, our standing for six hours, sleeping in the London streets, freezing was all worth it! The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge left Westminster Abbey, passed 10 Downing Street, disappeared from view while under Somerset House and rounded St. James Park corner to see their final destination, Buckingham Palace. On their last stretch up The Mall, where we were, they waved to everyone, including us! Prince Harry followed the best man in a separate carriage who caused just as many girls to scream, including my flat mate Leslie Hart who said, “Kate looked gorgeous but Harry stole the show.”

To finally see them married and in person was an amazing feeling. For months I saw their faces splashed across newspapers, magazines, posters, t-shirts and coffee mugs. Every day I read or heard about wedding details and I counted down the days in my head. The day had finally come! It was a fairytale, a prince found his princess.

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Confused about Cairo? Top five ways to know what you’re talking about.

The current uprisings in Egypt have been making major national news lately. Have you been keeping up? Here are some of the best ways to get informed and stay updated.

1. Read this article from The New York Times about the turn from peaceful protests to violent clashes and take a look at the interactive satellite timeline-map of Cairo with photo and video.

Anti-government protestors are calling for President Mubarak to leave office immediately. Image courtesy of The New York Times.

2. Sign up for the Cheat Sheet from The Daily Beast. Get email updates every day with summaries of and links to the best coverage of the uprisings in Egypt.

3. Explore the Middle East section of Al Jazeera English, which is no longer streaming live footage of the protests in Egypt but continues to stream live coverage of the situation.

4. Listen to this recording by a reporter from The Guardian who spoke to Egyptians amid the protests about the violence inflicted upon them. Listen all the way through; it gets intense near the end.  This is real.

5. Make Google News your homepage so you see updates on your way to check your email and surf the web.

Also be sure to follow The Pendulum on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and watch out for next week’s in-depth coverage of the clashes in Cairo, hitting the stands early Wednesday morning.

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