Recommended reading / viewing / listening

An appraisal of Joe Frazier … Corruption in Africa … Magic Johnson’s HIV announcement … Herman Cain’s insurgency … The Pentagon’s most powerful woman.

Most of these great items come from my Twitter feed or Facebook news feed. Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more fascinating videos, articles, essays and criticism. Read past recommendations from this series here.

1. A revolution for all seasons
Empire :: Al Jazeera English | Nov. 5
“The winds of change have swept the Arab world, with uneven results. Progress in places like Tunisia and Egypt, repression in Syria, bloody stalemate in Yemen, and unfinished business in Libya: the Arab Spring is at a crucial stage.”

2. Michele Flournoy, Pentagon’s highest-ranking woman, is making her mark on foreign policy
By Emily Wax | The Washington Post | Nov. 6
“Today, she holds the title of undersecretary of defense for policy. Like her father, she avoids boasting about her accomplishments, although she’s navigating some of the most vexing foreign policy challenges in the history of the Pentagon. And she’s something of a mystery to outsiders.”

3. Cat’s eye irises don’t need brain to adapt to the dark
New Scientist | Nov. 7
“Mammals were thought to rely on signalling between the eye and brain to resize the pupil and control the amount of light reaching the retina, but [researchers] discovered that eyeballs isolated from animals that are active at night or at dusk and dawn … continued to respond to light”

4. The Ironic Populist
By Michael Signer | The New Republic | Nov. 7
“How Herman Cain’s Insurgency Marks the Beginning of a New Political Era”

5. Magic Johnson looks back on HIV announcement 20 years later
By Matt Brooks | The Early Lead :: The Washington Post | Nov. 7
“On that difficult day in 1991, Johnson made a conscious decision to become the face of HIV — a choice that has helped raise awareness worldwide and continues to resonate with the work of the Magic Johnson Foundation.”

6. ‘Carlos the Jackal’ on trial for 1980s bombings in France
CNN.com | Nov. 7
“The 62-year-old, whose real name is Ilich Ramirez Sanchez, was once among the world’s most wanted fugitives. He is on trial for his alleged role in the attacks on two trains, a train station and a newspaper office in France in 1982 and 1983. The bombings killed 11 and injured more than 100.”

7. A Champion Who Won Inside the Ring and Out
By Dave Anderson | The New York Times | Nov. 7
“Some people mean more together than they do apart, whatever the stage. Churchill and Hitler. Bogart and Bacall. Ali and Frazier. And for all the deserved accolades for Muhammad Ali, I’ve always believed that each at his best, Joe Frazier, who died Monday night at age 67, was the better fighter. And the better man.”

8. 49th Anniversary of Eleanor Roosevelt’s Death
In Roosevelt History | Nov. 7
The famed and controversial first lady died in New York City in 1962.

9. It is four o’clock in the morning …
By Ron McCullagh | Al Jazeera English | Nov. 6
“Exposing the real hurdles stunting development in much of Africa: corruption, cronyism and the politics of fear.”

10. Attack at Lod Airport
Witness :: BBC News | May 31
“It is almost 40 years since an attack at the airport outside Tel Aviv – more than 20 people were killed.”

Author: Fernando Ortiz Jr.

Handsome gentleman scholar, Civil War historian, unpretentious intellectual, world traveler, successful writer.

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