Local jobs and foreign investment

Hundreds of employees staged walkouts across the UK over the use of foreign staff at a Lincolnshire refinery.

Should jobs go to local workers?

It’s laudable that local people should have local jobs. But there are jobs that the locals disdain to do like construction and farming. The Gulf States have to rely on foreign workers mainly from the Indian Subcontinent because they have relatively a small population compared to the needed development activities and the locals can accept only activities related to office work or trade, which has resulted in high unemployment among the young.

A protectionist approach isn’t the best solution as this means the world economy will shrink even further because of reduced economic exchanges. This will mainly have negative effect on poor countries whose economy depends on exports to rich countries and remittance from their immigrant populations. Countries should instead protect local jobs as long as there are those who can do them efficiently. Depriving the locals from them will lead just to social unrest.

However, there are jobs that only foreigners are renowned to be good at. In the UK, Polish worker , for example, are still highly needed for repair services. This leads to ask which category of foreign workers should be disposed of for the benefit of the locals.

Protectionism will mean the end of many economic agreements between different countries as it will mean the end of many economic blocs like the EU,G8 and ASIAN.
What is needed is economic restructuring that can allow national economies to grow and to expand beyond the borders. The biggest losers of protectionism will be the emerging economies, like those of India and China, whose success largely depend on exports.

It’s no good news for anyone that the world economy should shrink as it will put backward many poor and developing countries as it will lead a fall in the living standard of the citizens of developed country. There should be mechanism to revive the national economy without jeopardizing the existing international trade agreements.

In Morocco, there are many sectors that are managed by foreign companies although the workers are all Moroccans, except at the administrative level where there are some foreigners.

In Casablanca, the largest city in Morocco, water , electricity , sewage and litter collection are managed by French companies. In Marrakesh, all the buses are managed by a Spanish company because the municipality company went bankrupt because of mismanagement.

In the case of Morocco, there are locals who do most of the jobs. There are very few foreign workers. This means, it’s possible to create jobs for the locals, but there are still sectors that should be managed by foreign companies because of the lack of transparency and good managements when they are in the hands of the nationals.

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Is the BBC right not to air DEC Gaza appeal?

The BBC is under pressure to air a charity appeal for aid to Gaza after other channels agreed to broadcast it.

This has led to different responses from personalities as well as from the public
The BBC controversial position on whether it should show the DEC appeal is giving it more publicity than it needs as this has become one of top news reports on the BBC and other major news channels.

Those who support the BBC decision can argue that the BBC should keep its impartiality by reporting the situation in Gaza objectively. It will set a precedent if it shows the DEC appeal as there are other disastrous areas in the world needing major help because of politics like Zimbabwe -a completely run-down country on all levels.

The BBC has to keep its impartiality when it comes to political conflicts. The tragic events in Gaza were the results the political enmity between Hamas. The BBC doesn’t have to show the DEC appeal as it may amount to the incrimination of either Hamas or Israel or both.

It’s enough for the BBC to make objective reporting about the ongoing events in Gaza for the public to make their own judgement. The DEC can use other media outlets and emails to get the donations it needs.

However there must be exceptions when human lives are in danger. It’s not a question of being or not being impartial but being indifferent. As there are viewers who shrug at the sight of suffering and dying people, there are others who feel compassion. These people should be given a chance to help through the EDC appeal. The controversy could have gone unnoticed if the BBC wasn’t adamant that it’s out of question to show the appeal on air.

Tony Benn of DEC said to BBC “If you wont broadcast the Gaza appeal then I will myself”

Is Christianity still dominant in the USA?

President Obama swore his second oath without using a Bible. This leads to the question if Christianity is no longer of paramount importance.

The United States was founded on Christian values although its constitution stipulates freedom of worship.

With its current diverse population, there are more than six million Jews who have a strong lobby, followed with its six million Muslims who worship in more than 1,200 mosques across the US, not to mention other religious groups and the non-believers.

There are many aspects in the USA that doesn’t make it totally Christian when it comes to -among other things- sexual freedom and other modes of life. Christianity is bout thrift but the US is one of the most materialistic countries on Earth.

For Obama, to be open to all believers and non-believers, this will surely enhance and preserve personal freedom at home and will have a positive effect on the image of the USA abroad; especially, in Muslim countries where many see the US war on terror as a war on Islam.

Are the Palestinians let down by their fellow Arabs?

There is little the Arab governments can do to stop Israel daily deadly attacks on Gaza as they have little influence both on Hamas and Israel. In the name of the Palestinian cause, the majority of Arab states have no, diplomatic relations with Israel.

As the majority of Arab countries have no official trade relations with Israel, it’s hard what economic sanctions they can impose on it.

For the man in the street, there should be military intervention through the borders with Egypt , Jordan and Lebanon to stop Israeli aggression. But this s unrealistic. The Arab countries don’t have an army like NATO with regular common training and a board of command to mount joint military operations. There are the political calculations which make many countries hesitant about this sort of venture.

The Arabs have shown solidarity with the Palestinians through protests, condemnations and the sending of humanitarian aids.

It remains up to the Palestinians to show unity among themselves before asking the rest of the Arab world to unite with them. Differences between them just reinforces division in attitude towards the way their cause should be supported.

As long as Hamas and Fatah are at odds, the Palestinians will remain the victims of their leadership, Israel policies of blockade and attacks as well as apparent cold practical responses from the Arab world gloved with apparent heated emotions and token humanitarian gestures.

Gaza and the international community

As long as Israel is ready to kill the civilian Palestinians which it sees as collateral damage and as long as Hamas sees the death of the Palestinians as martyrs for its cause, there will be no lull between the two sides.

Hatred between Hamas and Israel is so deep that no UN resolution can stop them fighting. Each side will find an excuse to kill and attack in the name of survival.

Hamas can keep its morale high through protests worldwide, which are likely to change nothing. Israel will continue its attacks knowing in advance that its fight will be limited within Gaza as no Arab country will step in to fight with it and the international forces can’t get in to establish peace without its agreement.

As such the UN resolutions whether soft or harsh will have no effect on Israel policies as countless events similar to those in Gaza have shown.

On the whole, the Israeli actions in Gaza are likely to deepen the hatred towards Israel and to make Jews around the world feel unsafe. They can be the source of growing of anti-Semitism.

However it’s not too late to close this Gaza bloody chapter if all the parties come to their senses and agree to a ceasefire which should be sustained by allowing people in Gaza the freedom of movement and to be guaranteed their basic needs. Mutual and sustained attacks are likely to prolong the damages on both sides and to make any peace agreement unachievable.

Israel on the defence against defenceless Palestinians

The Israeli politicians say that their war on Hamas will go on whatever it takes. This means they have given themselves the right to have a free hand. But as long as there are the laws of wars, going beyond them must be a crime against humanity.

However as long as it’s unlikely that Israel can face international sanctions from its allies, mainly the EU and the USA – its major economic and political partners, it will continue to bombard Gaza at will. The irony is that NATO was able to intervene militarily in ex-Yugoslavia to stop ethnic cleansing there and the international forces led by the USA invaded in Iraq. Now the international community is watching Israel pound its bombs in civilian areas and “calmly” asking for a ceasefire. As such Israel isn’t just defending itself but it’s being defended by its allies on behalf of which it is waging a war against Hamas.

In short, Israel in its history of bloody attacks is used to the pattern of diplomatic condemnations and angry wide public protests. It has a deaf ear to them because the drones of the engines of its weapons and the sounds of the explosion are louder than them. Israel doesn’t need justifications as it has no one to account for its actions. It’s the law of the strong against the weak, not the modern laws of war.

Israel has the right to defend itself, but not at the expense of the innocent civilians caught in the fire attacks. The Israelis exposed to Hamas rockets have only fear to deal with, considering the casualties when contrasting 14 Israeli killed by Hamas rockets versus 5,000 Palestinians killed by Israel sophisticated weapons in the past seven years.

Israel can reserve the right to respond to those who attack it, but not through indiscriminate killing which it euphemistically can call collateral damage.

The best way for Israel to defend itself is not to allow extremism grow around its borders and beyond, by being realistic about its approaches to its conflict with the Palestinians. One of the approaches can be for it to speed up the establishment of a Palestinian state and not to use Hamas and Iran as an excuse for further delays.

part one

part two

Part three

Part four