A sign on undeveloped land welcomes visitors to "New Toshka City." Toshka was to be a new settlement along the Upper Nile Valley, complete with enough jobs and infrastructure to support the relocation of 20 million Egyptians from polluted and over-crowded cities.
An empty water canal at Sheikh Zayed, near Toshka. Fifteen years after the project's inception, there are just 21,000 hectares of farmland, no schools or hospitals have been built, and the food produced is mainly for export to benefit private landholders.
A sign on undeveloped land welcomes visitors to "New Toshka City." Toshka was to be a new settlement along the Upper Nile Valley, complete with enough jobs and infrastructure to support the relocation of 20 million Egyptians from polluted and overcrowded cities.
Mohamed Abdul Fattah is secretary-general for the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party in Aswan, Egypt. The Muslim Brotherhood is adamantly opposed to Toshka and other projects that it links to the excesses of former President Hosni Mubarak.
Ibrahim Dahrouk, a crop manager at Saudi-owned Kingdom Agricultural Development Company in Toshka, says the farm provides hundreds of jobs to local residents, including women. The wages of $6 to $9 a day are considered good for the region.
In the middle of southern Egypt's windy desert, wheat fields stretch as far as the eye can see on a 24,000-acre farm. It's part of a grandiose project called Toshka that was dreamed up 15 years ago by the government of Hosni Mubarak, Egypt's authoritarian leader who ruled the country for three decades before being ousted last year.
As the opening date for the London Olympics nears, Beijing's acclaimed Olympic venues are saddled with high maintenance costs and are struggling to get by. And the most famous, the Bird's Nest stadium, has been repudiated by its own creator, dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei.
Even the state-run government mouthpiece, the China Daily, worries that Beijing's iconic structures risk becoming "white elephants."
Politicians have touted modern manufacturing as the solution for lifting the economy and providing good jobs.
But today's manufacturing work requires strong math skills — not just adding and subtracting, but a good grasp of fractions, decimals and basic trigonometry. And job applicants who want to go into manufacturing often don't have what it takes.
So colleges and nonprofits, especially throughout Illinois, are stepping in to bridge this skills gap by combining manufacturing training with basic reading and math.
In Senate races, Democrats are fighting to preserve their thin majority. Their party campaign committee wants the Federal Election Commission to crack down on some of the Republicans' wealthiest allies — outside money groups that are using anonymous contributions to finance a multimillion-dollar onslaught of attack ads.
Governor Jan Brewer said today she's opposed to the ballot measure to permanently extend the one-cent surcharge on the state sales tax.
It was Brewer who promoted the original voter-approved levy in 2010 to help balance the budget, with the idea it would disappear in three years. Now a group is pushing an initiative to make the extra tax permanent, with the proceeds specifically earmarked for K-12 education, university scholarships, health care and road construction. Brewer said this is a bad idea.
Comments under today's piece on a very well-travelled Volvo, reveal an abundance of affection for the make. "I'll be here all week" recalls with fondness all the "quirky features" of his white 1968 P1800S, including "rear view mirror ... mounted on the center of the dashboard, vertical temp gauges between the speedo and tach, the funky aircraft style levers for the vents and fan."
California's Silicon Valley remains by far the dominant arena for high-tech startups and venture capitalists looking to back innovative projects.
But Europe is starting to make its mark on the startup scene. London, Paris and Berlin are starting to hold their own as more and more European startups look to compete on the global stage and attract investors.