ArtAppraiser asked for my thoughts on a New York Times article about the relationships Indonesia is forging with the United States and China. I have to admit I haven't been paying that much attention to politics and economics over here. There isn't much in-depth analysis in the English-language press and my friends are mostly fellow teachers, so we talk more about grammar and culture than geopolitical manuevering. But, for what's it's worth, I do have some thoughts.
DUBAI: A Saudi imam has sparked uproar by appearing on television along with his wife – whose face was uncovered in an open challenge to strict tradition in the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom.
Sheikh Ahmad al-Ghamedi, who has said covering the face is not a must for women under Islam, sat alongside his wife Jawaher bint Ali as she spoke to Dubai-based Saudi MBC television, in a program broadcast at the weekend [....]
By Elisabeth Rosenthal, New York Times, Dec. 15/16, 2014
....the numbers seemed backward: The community hospital had charged about $5,500, while the Harvard teaching hospital had billed $1,400 for the much more elaborate test. “Why would that be?” Mr. Charlap asked. “It really bothered me.”