from John Lloyd:

Ukraine’s vote proves Putin wrong and puts anti-Semitic past behind

By John Lloyd
October 31, 2014

Local resident listens before receiving a ballot during a parliamentary election inside her house in the village of Havronshchyna near Kiev

One of the themes that Russian President Vladimir Putin tried out to besmirch the Ukrainian revolt against pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovich earlier this year was that fascists and anti-Semites were behind the uprising. The protesters, he proclaimed, were revolting in both senses of the word: They had chased out an elected president (true) and their actions had allowed “anti-Semitic forces [to go] on a rampage” (not true).

Pakistan province rewrites text books to satisfy Islamic conservatives

By Reuters Staff
October 30, 2014
(DATE IMPORTED:October 30, 2014A girl attends her daily class with others at a government school in Peshawar October 29, 2014. A Pakistani province is rewriting school books to make them more Islamic, inserting verses on jihad, removing pictures of unveiled women and changing material on recent history, officials said on Thursday. The public tussle over the changes mirrors a struggle for power at the heart of Pakistan's young democracy. Secular, liberal parties are vying with conservative, religious parties for influence in the nuclear-armed nation of 180 million people. Picture taken October 29, 2014. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz)

(A girl attends her daily class with others at a government school in Peshawar October 29, 2014. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz)

Tunisia’s Ennahda Islamists down but not out after election defeat

By Reuters Staff
October 30, 2014
(Beji Caid Essebsi (C), Nidaa Tounes party leader, gestures outside Nidaa Tounes headquarters in Tunis October 28, 2014. Official results from Sunday's elections - the second parliamentary vote since Tunisians set off uprisings across much of the Arab World by overthrowing autocrat Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali - were still to be announced. But a senior official at Ennahda, which ruled in a coalition until it was forced to make way for a caretaker government during a political crisis at the start of this year, acknowledged defeat by the secular Nidaa Tounes party. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi)

(Beji Caid Essebsi (C), Nidaa Tounes party leader, gestures outside Nidaa Tounes headquarters in Tunis October 28, 2014. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi)

In France, kebabs get wrapped up in identity politics and “Islamisation”

October 28, 2014
(A man cuts meat from a spit as he prepares kebab in a fast-food restaurant in Marseille October 9, 2014. In a country whose national identity is so closely connected to its cuisine, France's hard right has seized on a growing appetite for kebabs as proof of cultural "islamisation". Some 300 million kebabs at about 6 euros each are eaten in 10,200 outlets in France each year, putting the 1.5 billion euro ($1.9 billion) industry just behind burgers and pizza, according to Gira Conseil, a market research company. Picture taken October 9, 2014. To match Feature FRANCE-IMMIGRATION/KEBABS REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier)

(A man cuts meat from a spit as he prepares kebab in a fast-food restaurant in Marseille October 9, 2014. REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier)

Man says devil told him to topple Ten Commandments at Oklahoma capitol

By Reuters Staff
October 26, 2014
(The Ten Commandments )

(The Ten Commandments monument at the Mower County courthouse in Austin, Minnesota, 20 May 2006/Jonathunder)

Dalai Lama visits Alabama Baptist church at center of civil rights movement

By Reuters Staff
October 26, 2014
(The Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of Tibet, talks with Birmingham mayor William Bell during an interview at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama October 25, 2014. The Dalai Lama visited the historic church on an invitation by the mayor, the site where the late Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights leaders launched rallies for human rights and equality for African-Americans in the 1960's. REUTERS/Sherrel Wheeler Stewart)

(The Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of Tibet, talks with Birmingham mayor William Bell during an interview at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama October 25, 2014. REUTERS/Sherrel Wheeler Stewart)

Poland bids to reclaim forgotten past as haven for Jews

October 26, 2014

  (Visitors stand under the "Celestial Canopy", a reconstructed painted ceiling of a synagogue that once stood in Gwozdziec (present-day Ukraine), at the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw October 21, 2014, one week before the official opening of the core exhibition. Poland, the country on whose soil Nazi Germany carried out the darkest acts of the Holocaust, is starting to re-connect with its other role in Jewish history, as a home for 1,000 years to one of the world's biggest Jewish communities. The country will take a step in that direction next week with the opening of the main exhibition at Warsaw's newly built Museum of the History of Polish Jews, a project that sets out to remember not just how Jews in Poland died, but how they lived. To match story JEWS-EUROPE/POLAND Picture taken October 21, 2014. REUTERS/Kacper Pempel)

(Visitors stand under the “Celestial Canopy”, a reconstructed painted ceiling of a synagogue that once stood in Gwozdziec (present-day Ukraine), at the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw October 21, 2014. REUTERS/Kacper Pempel)

Political Islam tries to adapt to Tunisia’s election landscape

By Reuters Staff
October 26, 2014
(An official helps a man to mark his finger with ink before voting at a polling station during election in Tunis October 26, 2014. Tunisians voted on Sunday in parliamentary elections that bring full democracy finally within their reach, four years after their uprising cast out autocrat Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi)

(An official helps a man to mark his finger with ink before voting at a polling station during election in Tunis October 26, 2014. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi)

Saudi Arabia’s Shi’ites fear they are at mercy of region’s tumult

By Reuters Staff
October 24, 2014
(Shi'ite protesters carry posters of Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr during a demonstration outside the Saudi embassy in Sanaa October 18, 2014. The Shi'ite Muslim minority in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province have long felt marginalised by the Sunni ruling dynasty, and protests for greater rights as part of the 2011 Arab Spring brought a crackdown on both protesters and demands for reform. But now, death sentences for three Shi'ite Muslims, including prominent dissident cleric Nimr, suggest that the region's wider turmoil is further hardening attitudes toward the sect at home. The posters (L-R) read: "He who feels dignity is restless and no power can stop him." and "We are all Sheikh Nimr al Nimr" and "Freedom for the unjustly detained Sheikh Nimr al Nimr." Picture taken October 18, 2014. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah)

(Shi’ite protesters carry posters of Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr during a demonstration outside the Saudi embassy in Sanaa October 18, 2014.REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah)

Families of executed French monks say Algiers is obstructing justice

By Reuters Staff
October 24, 2014
(Tibhirine)

(Cemetery at the monastery in Tibehirine, Algeria where the slain monks are buried, 17 Sept 2010/Ps2613)