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19 Sep

Events of Interest and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective

News Bulletin

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101 East

A weekly discussion programme on Asia-Pacific current affairs…………………………

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Most UK Catholics support abortion and use of contraception

Pope offers apologies for the ‘unspeakable’ sins of paedophile priests, but major survey shows he is seriously out of step with his followers on several key issues. Andrew McCorkell and Colin Francome report

Sunday, 19 September 2010

The Pope greets the crowds outside Westminster Cathedral

AFP/Getty Images

The Pope greets the crowds outside Westminster Cathedral

Seven out of 10 British Catholics believe that a woman should have the right to choose whether to have an abortion, according to a remarkable new poll that shows how far out of step the Vatican is with its congregation as Pope Benedict XVI completes his first visit to the UK.

The poll conducted by YouGov, which also revealed that nine out of 10 Catholic worshippers support the wide availability of contraception, quizzed a sample of more than 1,600 practising Catholics about their views on the vexed issues of abortion and contraception.

The research, the biggest survey of its kind, which also sampled a control group of non-Catholics, reveals that just one in 10 of the church’s followers oppose an abortion when a woman has been raped. Just one in 14 opposes abortion if the health of a woman is in danger……………………

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 Rupert Cornwell: Has America gone mad?

Extreme right-wingers who, ordinarily, would not get elected to the PTA are winning as the country goes into one of its periodic fits of political insanity

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Delaware senatorial candidate Christine O'Donnell celebrates her win in the Republican primary last week

Reuters

Delaware senatorial candidate Christine O’Donnell celebrates her win in the Republican primary last week

What on earth is going on? These days, a grounding in clinical psychology is probably of more use than a PhD in political science in determining the mood of the US voters ahead of November’s mid-term elections. But whether or not the country is experiencing a collective nervous breakdown, last week’s batch of primary results have established one thing beyond doubt – that America’s electorate has never in modern times been angrier, more volatile and less predictable than now.

The most spectacular proof came in the normally inconsequential state of Delaware, where Christine O’Donnell – spectacularly unqualified but blessed by the Tea Party and Saint Sarah and making all the right ultra-conservative noises – defeated Mike Castle, the state’s highly popular former governor, in the Republican primary for the Senate seat long held by Vice-President Joe Biden. A month or two ago, such a result would have been unthinkable. But then came a Palin tweet on behalf of Ms O’Donnell, and the rest is history.

She is the seventh outsider, no less, backed by the insurgent Tea Party movement to topple a Senate candidate endorsed by the Republican establishment in this tumultuous primary season. Ms O’Donnell has had run-ins with the tax man, failed to meet her mortgage payments and equates masturbation with adultery, and may be a bridge too far for the good citizens of Delaware in November’s general election. But some of the Tea Party crowd will certainly win, in an election year shaping up as a rout for the Democrats…………………………………..

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Many killed in Baghdad blasts

Attacks near the national security ministry office and a restaurant in the Iraqi capital leave at least 29 people dead……………………

Last Modified: 19 Sep 2010 11:11 GMTMiddle East

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 Maintaining securityIraq comedy show under fire Iraq: The forgotten ‘nakba’Iraq in gridlockDoubts over the future of Iraq New wall to separate areas from East JerusalemRAMALLAH: Israeli authorities started the construction of concrete barriers at the entrance of the Ras Khamis neighborhood and Shu’fat refugee camp in East Jerusalem. Palestinian sources said that the Israeli authorities will erect a military crossing in the area to replace the existing one. The sources said that the new concrete barrier is 12 meters high and 600 meters in length.

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