News in Brief: Rahm Emanuel Thrown Off Ballot in Appellate Court Decision, and More

Rahm Emanuel Thrown Off Ballot in Appellate Court Decision

“Rahm Emanuel was thrown off the ballot for mayor of Chicago today by an appellate court panel,” the Chicago Sun-Times reports. In a 2-1 decision, the court ruled that Emanuel did not meet the residency qualifications to run for mayor. “Opponents have argued Emanuel is not a resident of Chicago because he rented out his North Side home while serving as chief of staff to Obama,” the Sun-Times explains. Emanuel is expected to appeal the decision to the Illinois Supreme Court.

At Air Force Academy’s National Prayer Breakfast, Controversy

Controversy has once again surrounded the US Air Force Academy in Colorado after Truthout reported last week on the academy’s decision to feature an evangelical Christian speaker and self-proclaimed member of the “Lords Army” at its National Prayer Luncheon in February. The academy tapped motivational speaker and wounded Vietnam War Veteran Lt. Clebe McClary to speak at the luncheon, angering activists and cadets who have spent years challenging what they view as pervasive evangelical influence at the academy. Interfaith groups, anonymous cadets and veterans say they are concerned that McClary sends the wrong message by claiming that a good soldier is also a born-again Christian. Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation is leading the charge, and now The Washington Post has reported that Weinstein is once again calling for academy superintendent Lt. Gen. Michael Gould to be fired.

Israeli Foreign Minister Confirms Interim Palestinian State Plan
Israel’s Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman confirmed that “he has drawn up a plan for the creation of an interim Palestinian state with temporary borders in the absence of a full peace agreement,” the AP reports. The plan, one government official said confidentially, “would turn over up to 50 percent of the West Bank to the Palestinians,” despite the Palestinians asking for the entire West Bank. The confirmation comes a day after the Arab TV network Al-Jazeera “released some of what it said were 1,600 classified documents on Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.”

Protests Across World Inspired by Tunisian Uprising
Activists expressing “explicit support for the Tunisian people” took their causes to the street “in Yemen, Jordan, Algeria and even Albania took to the streets this weekend,” the Los Angeles Times reports.

Recent protests in Tunisia forced former President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali to flee the country. While Global Voices suggests, “some might consider Tunisia as the first tile in the domino effect,” still ” a lot depends on the outcome of the Tunisian protest movement,” as the LA Times adds.

Report Calls for Battling Global Hunger
“A UK government-commissioned study into food security has called for urgent action to avert global hunger,” the BBC reports. The Foresight Report on Food and Farming Futures says the current global system cannot be sustained and will fail to resolve hunger “unless radically redesigned. The report suggests that “the food production system will need to be radically changed, not just to produce more food but to produce it sustainably.”

“We know in the next 20 years the world population will increase to something like 8.3 billion people,” the government’s chief scientific adviser, Professor Sir John Beddington told BBC News.