Seven years after ‘Arab Spring,’ Tunisians take to the streets

first_imgYouth lead the resistance to IMF austerity.Every night and on some days since Jan. 3, thousands of Tunisians in all parts of the country have risen in resistance. They’ve attacked police stations, supermarkets, authorities — tax centers, municipalities, governorates — blocked trains and clashed with police and the military, who attacked the youths with tear gas and arrested nearly 800 people.A new finance law pushed the people into the streets with one clear demand: We want a new budget! After a few days, protesters added a demand for jobs.The International Monetary Fund only gives loans with draconian conditions. The most common are cutbacks of social programs and raising taxes to cut budget deficits — in other words, harsh austerity. The Tunisian government, bowing to the terms of the IMF loan, introduced a 2018 budget on New Year’s Day that raised taxes, prices on food and other essentials in ways that hit workers and the middle class particularly hard.Workers and those just out of school were already suffering from high inflation and high unemployment — officially 30 percent for youth with a college degree.They rallied not only in Tunis, the capital, but in the seaside resort towns of Gabès and Nabeul and cities in the interior like Thala, Jelma, Kasserine, Sidi Bouzid (where the protest began that led to the Arab Spring) and Gafsa, a mining town on the edge of the Sahara. While the main protests have been peaceful but militant, there have been confrontations.The major Islamic party in Tunisia, Ennahda, is part of the governing coalition and has no presence in the protests. The major Tunisian labor federation – the Tunisian General Labor Union – has been very gingerly participating in the protests, avoiding any that challenge the police.The Party of the Left, which consists of mainly young organizers, either Marxist or Arab Nationalist, has played an important role in creating the group Fech Nestannew? (What Are We Waiting For?). This group has been coordinating protests throughout the country, according to Radio France International. (Jan. 9)The Arab Spring, which began in Tunisia in 2010-11, got rid of Tunisian dictator Ben Ali and left a legacy of political and social freedoms. But it did little to improve the economic well-being of Tunisia’s workers and marginalized youth, who are now in motion throughout the country.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

New operator schedule

first_imgEffective Monday, Oct. 4, the hours of operation for the Harvard Telephone Operators will change. The new weekday schedule will be 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. The office will continue to be closed on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays.Weekend callers will have the option of using the voice recognition/automated directory assistance to be connected to faculty, staff or students. There will also be an option to listen to all the major current events that will be occurring over the weekend.last_img

Minister laments Siasia’s mother kidnap

first_imgRelatedPosts UNGA President sets agenda for world leaders in next General Debate Woman disrupts wedding over COVID-19 rules + video South, Middle Belt, Northern Minorities meet in US, call for unity, restructuring The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, has assured embattled former Super Eagles coach, Samson Siasia, of his mother’s return from kidnappers’ den.The Minister, who joined President Muhammadu Buhari’s entourage to the United Nations General Assembly in the United States of America, stated this on Wednesday.Dare, via his Twitter handle, wrote: “I just arrived New York and noted conversations around Siasia (Samson). I recall he came to visit me but I was unavailable. I subsequently sent a sorry note to which he responded. The relevant agencies are at work. We hope they yield results as they have on many previous occasions.“Our prayers are with Siasia and his family over these developments. Siasia served the country well. A football veteran no doubt.”Ogere Siasia, 76, and two others have been held captive since they were seized in Bayelsa, southern Nigeria 10 weeks ago.A former international, Siasia won the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations with Nigeria and played in their maiden World Cup appearance later that same year.As a coach he led his country’s under-20 and under-23 sides to continental success in 2005 and 2015 respectively.He also guided the U20s to a runners-up finish at the 2005 World Youth Championships (as it was known at the time) in the Netherlands.Siasia is the most decorated African football coach at the Olympics, winning silver at the Beijing Games in 2008 and bronze at the 2016 Games in Rio.Tags: New Yorklast_img read more

Professor files for defamation in lawsuit

first_imgAssociate professor Erick Guerrero filed a lawsuit against 72 professors from Dworak-Peck School of Social Work for libel on Oct. 26, following their public condemnation of Guerrero after he was accused of sexual harassment by a former student in October 2017. Nearly 70 faculty members actively supported Karissa Fenwick, an alumna who accused Guerrero of sexual misconduct, and signed a letter condemning USC’s actions after Fenwick’s allegations were made public. Guerrero’s lawsuit said that the statements in the letter were false and written with the intention of “malice, oppression and fraud.” Guerrero was placed on suspension by the school for the Fall 2018 semester, and is still listed on the faculty directory. “[Guerrero], who previously enjoyed a good reputation in the USC community and in the field of social work research, both personally and professionally, was defamed by [the professors’] assertions that [Guerrero] engaged in sexual misconduct and witness intimidation,” the lawsuit read.The lawsuit also stated that Guerrero has suffered damages worth over $1 million and that the misconduct allegations have damaged his reputation at USC.The University said it supports the faculty who are being sued by Guerrero and is providing them with legal counsel.“USC protects the academic freedom of all faculty, of every track, including the freedom to disagree with the administration,” the University said in a statement to the Daily Trojan. “Provost Quick has authorized providing the faculty members who were sued with outside legal counsel to defend them.” John Winer, Fenwick’s attorney, said he is not surprised by Guerrero’s decision to sue in response to the aftermath of the sexual misconduct allegations.“A favorite strategy of men in powerful positions who get sued or accused of sexual harassment … is to immediately make threats,” he said. “This case has been investigated maybe five times and her allegations have been sustained every time. The University had every right to be able to rely on the results of an unbiased investigation and if something’s true, it cannot be defamation, period.”The next hearing for the suit against the social work professors will be held at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse on Feb. 8. Along with the libel suit, Guerrero also filed a writ of mandamus against the University and various administrators, in an effort to have the California Superior Court review the actions USC took against him, which he claims were improper. A writ is an order from the court to an organization that orders it to fulfill its official duties or correct an abuse of discretion. In the writ of mandamus, Guerrero claimed that USC failed to complete a proper review of the allegations against him as required by the USC Faculty Handbook. “The entire case against Dr. Erick Guerrero is based on the personal opinion of OED investigator Donna Wagner regarding two USC female graduate students,” the writ alleged. “Over the past year, no one at USC has ever examined the merits or basis of Ms. Wagner’s opinion.”Guerrero did not respond to requests for comment. His attorney, Mark Hathaway, said he cannot comment on pending litigations.Alumna Robin Petering, who actively supported Fenwick when she initially filed a complaint against Guerrero, said she is frustrated by the recent lawsuit against the social work professors. In 2017, Petering co-founded Social Workers to End Rape Culture, which collectively penned a letter in support of Fenwick to the USC community, condemning University administrators for not committing to “a culture of safety, transparency and accountability” on campus. “It’s been a year since Karissa came forward publicly, and that was already 10 months after the original incident happened that she reported on,” Petering said. “So it’s frustrating to see how long this process is and that despite the fact that the University … during its own investigation, found him responsible multiple times through the appeals.” The writ of mandamus also claimed that disciplinary action against Guerrero was done with the intention of saving former President C. L. Max Nikias’ image after “a series of very public failures in leadership.”last_img read more

NBA Draft 2019: 76ers hoping to pick player at No. 24 who will ‘contribute right away’

first_img“There’s only so many players that are super stable in the NBA, let’s just be upfront with that,” Harris said about his approach to free agency, via NBC Sports Philadelphia. “For me honestly, style of play is a huge thing. Culture. A chance to be able to win.”The 2019 NBA Draft will take place Thursday, June 20. NBA free agency rumors: At least 5 teams expected to pursue Tobias Harris NBA Draft 2019 rumors: Suns willing to trade No. 6 pick for veteran guard “We’re looking for maybe older players,” Brand said, via NBC Sports Philadelphia. “For sure, defensive minded players and we always place a premium on shooting. But defensive-oriented players that can contribute now, we may look at, I don’t want to tip my hand too much, but that may be something we’re looking at.”The 76ers finished the season with a 51-31 record and advanced to the Eastern Conference semifinals, where they fell to the Raptors in seven games. They’re projected to select Washington forward Matisse Thybulle with the No. 24 in Sporting News’ latest 2019 mock draft.Meanwhile, Philadelphia wings Tobias Harris and Jimmy Butler are both set to enter free agency this summer. Multiple teams are expected to be interested in them. Jimmy Butler free agency rumors: NBA execs believe 76ers will give forward max contract offer “That’s hopefully somebody that can come in and contribute right away,” Rozman said, via the Philadelphia Inquirer. “(We want) a player with more of a mature game than a ‘project.’ But I don’t know if that’s necessarily driven by age.”Philadelphia also holds four second round selections in the upcoming draft and general manager Elton Brand told reporters last month the team is aiming to pick players it can “add to the team now.” Related News The 76ers are hoping to acquire at least one rotation piece in the 2019 NBA Draft.Vince Rozman, the 76ers senior director of scouting, told reporters Monday the team is looking to land someone who can complement stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons with the No. 24 overall pick.last_img read more

Pittsburgh embracing playoff-bound Pirates

first_imgRows of Pittsburgh Pirates hats indicating the teams participation in postseason play are ready for sale at the team’s store at PNC Park on Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013, in Pittsburgh. T (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)  by Will GravesAP Sports WriterPITTSBURGH (AP) — The image is seared into 12-year-old Chad Rowland’s mind forever.The slightly up the line throw up from Barry Bonds. The dive to the plate by catcher Mike LaValliere. The textbook slide by Sid Bream. The Pittsburgh Pirates walking off the field in stunned silence after collapsing in the ninth inning of Game 7 of the 1992 NLCS. The Atlanta Braves piling on top of each other in jubilation on their way to the World Series.Even now, 21 years later, it still stings.“You never love baseball more than when you were 12,” Rowland said. “I cried my eyes out that night.”The tears were welling again on Monday night, this time for an entirely different reason. This time, the throw from the superstar outfielder was wisely cut off by the veteran first baseman picked up at the waiver deadline. This time, the catcher was positioned right on top of the plate. This time, the runner was out.This time, finally, the Pittsburgh Pirates were on the right side of history.One of the sport’s most beleaguered  — to put it mildly — franchises is back in the postseason. Pittsburgh clinched a spot in the NL playoffs on Monday night when catcher Russell Martin tagged out Chicago’s Nate Schierholtz at home to end a thrilling 2-1 victory at Wrigley Field that reverberated in a bar 500 miles to the east, where Rowland let a generation of anguish and angst melt away.“I was freaking out,” Rowland said.He wasn’t alone.At a time of year when the Pirates are typically playing out the string and attention in the self-dubbed “City of Champions” turns to the Steelers and the Penguins, the Pirates — yes, the Pirates — are currently the hottest thing going.A steady stream of fans poured into the team’s store at PNC Park on Tuesday, many of them with cups of coffee in hand trying to fend off the effects of another late night in a season that has restored the faith of one of baseball’s most tormented — not to mention faithful — fan bases.Rick Hilinski ducked in to pick up a pair of hooded sweatshirts celebrating the playoff berth. One of the sweatshirts was for him. The other was for his son, R.K., born a few months before Bream’s now iconic slide sent the club spinning into a record-setting run of futility.Hilinski became a season-ticket holder in 2011, believing the hiring of manager Clint Hurdle and the emergence of talented center fielder Andrew McCutchen were harbingers of the clouds finally parting. Hilinski remembers the good old days, when Roberto Clemente tracked down fly balls in the outfield at Three Rivers Stadium and Willie Stargell tried to hit home runs into the Allegheny River.The Pirates used to be postseason regulars back then. Between 1960 and 1992, the Pirates won three World Series and made the playoffs 10 times. Hilinski spent countless nights during his childhood sitting with his father and uncle hanging on every pitch. Now he does it with his son, who grew up doing karate “because nobody really wanted to play baseball.” Together they’ve watched a renaissance decades in the making.As painful as it has been, the journey made the destination all the sweeter. For years when Hilinski would try to talk to his friends about the Pirates, the subject would quickly shift to the Steelers. Now? Not so much.“It’s nice to finally be able to say ‘Yeah, we’re doing a little better for a change,’” Hilinski said.And don’t think the neighbors haven’t noticed. Penguins coach Dan Bylsma, clad in a Clemente jersey, took in batting practice before last Friday’s game against the Reds and live-tweeted from the Pirates’ Twitter account from the stands. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin dropped Hurdle a line on Tuesday morning reminding Hurdle there’s still more work to do.“It’s big for them, it’s big for our community,” Tomlin said. “It’s just awesome. I look forward to watching him represent us in the playoffs and going to chase the big prize.”While not even a world championship would unseat the Steelers’ spot atop the pyramid in one of the most sports-rabid towns in the country, the Pirates are making inroads. Local TV ratings are up and more than 2.26 million people poured through the gates of a stadium considered by many to be the best in baseball.Hurdle isn’t joking when he says he received a standing ovation recently during his daily trip to the local coffee shop. When the unwaveringly confident manager dropped his children off at school on Friday a few hours before a pivotal three-game series with the Cincinnati Reds, one of the teachers told him it was “Pirate Day” as kids walked by in McCutchen T-shirts. Local businesses have caught pennant fever too. The Gulf Tower — easily visible from home plate at PNC Park — now flashes black and yellow when the Bucs score a run and practically hits tilt when they win.Though there is no guarantee of a home playoff game, there’s a sense the last six months have gone a long way toward erasing 20 summers of heartache.General manager Neal Huntington cautioned over the weekend that “the hardest part is still to come” as the club tries to prove it’s far from a one-year wonder.At the moment, the people who hang Jolly Roger flags from their front porches don’t care. At the moment, the Pirates are in, and that’s all that matters.“I’ve seen the Penguins win the (Stanley) Cup, I’ve seen the Steelers win the Super Bowl,” Rowland said. “This is the one thing on my list … I’ve been holding on to it forever.”At last, Rowland — like so many others — can finally let it go.___AP Sports Writer Andrew Seligman and freelance writer Brian Sandlow in Chicago contributed to this report.___Follow Will Graves at read more