A pinch and a punch for the first of the month:
✪ Arabic and the Roman alphabet | Brian Whitaker chimes on the Arabic transliteration debate.
✪ Sunday Afternoon Thoughts: Arabic transliteration « The Moor Next Door | Bottom line, let's not get too anal about it, but be consistent. I agree.
✪ Coptic orgs call for voting against Mubarak in next election | Bikya Masr | Free Copts and American Coptic Assembly goes against the Pope!
✪ Dubai police say Mossad may have killed Hamas chief - Yahoo! News | So let's not hear complaints when there's retribution.
✪ Egypt could face sanctions over sectarianism | Al-Masry Al-Youm: Today's News from Egypt | Chairman of US Commission on Int. Religious Freedom said Egypt's could be cut over discrimination.
✪ Al-Ahram Weekly | Opinion | When the alternative is not so different after all | al-Anani on the MB's murky politics.
✪ Mahmoud Abbas: Israel's West Bank occupation leading to one-state solution | World news | The Guardian | Interview with Abu Mazen, still trying to scare the Israelis with talk of one-state solution they perfectly know he's not serious about.
✪ Le jour où l’Egypte a frôlé la catastrophe : foot, télévision et conflits asymétriques | Culture et politique arabes | A very nice post on the politics of Al-Jazeera's purchase of the Orbit sports channel.
✪ Michael Totten: Muslim Arabs hate everybody « the human province | Why do Totten and Smith hate us?
✪ gulfnews : UAE editors back emiratisation of media | Goodbye expat journos? Not likely soon...
✪ Panetta traveled to Israel - Laura Rozen - POLITICO.com | And also to Egypt to meet with Omar Suleiman last week.
✪ In Egypt, Religious Clashes Are Off the Record - NYTimes.com | Slackman reports from Naga Hammadi.
✪ Repopulating an antique land: Egypt’s forbidding Western Desert - The National Newspaper | A look at the New Valley project by Jack Shenker.