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Gaza, dollar, obesity, grad school

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September 19, 2007
Crisis in Gaza
Doug McArthur of SFU's public policy program says today's news that Israel has declared Gaza an "enemy entity" is "regrettable and indicative of a worsening situation on the west central and southern border of Israel, [but] is a legitimate Israeli action that will help clarify the status of the conflict in the area. The Gaza Strip is now de facto ruled by a Hamas government dedicated to the destruction of Israel and to carrying out hostilities across the border into Israel. Israel has the right and the need to defend itself."

SFU historian Graham Fuller, former vice-chairman of the National Intelligence Council at the CIA, and author of The Future of Political Islam, has a differing viewpoint. He says "the declaration of Gaza as enemy territory represents the further tightening of US-Israeli screws on the Hamas government , limiting the goods and services that go into Gaza even further in the hope of starving it into submission [which] is not likely to happen.It is significant to remember that Hamas was legitimately and fairly elected last year in honest elections to be the government of all Palestinians. The movement has been declared terrorist by Israel [and] the U.S., because it has indeed in the past engaged in guerrilla and terrorist actions against a 40-year Israeli occupation. [However, Israel's]  refusal to talk to a valid political party and political movement will not lead to settlement of the Palestinian situation: it will only further radicalize Palestinians who will then look to al-Qa'ida for support where it never has done so in the past."

Doug McArthur, 778.782.5208, doug_mcarthur@sfu.ca
Graham Fuller, 604.898.5115, bozorgg@aol.com

Dollar keeps climbing
The Canadian dollar reached dizzying new highs today. SFU economists David Andolfatto and David Jacks are available to explain the implications for manufacturers, consumers, and governments.

David Andolfatto
, 778.782.5825, dandolfa@sfu.ca
David Jacks, dsjacks@gmail.com (will be checking e-mail frequently throughout the day)

Free healthy eating lecture

SFU kinesiology professor Diane Finegood says the provincial government's plan to reduce junk food and increase exercise in schools is a good start--but it's only part of the solution to the problem of increasing obesity. Finegood will give a free public talk, "Eating healthy is not rocket science - or is it?", at SFU's Surrey campus on Sept. 27 at 6:30 p.m. in the Westminster Savings Credit Union Lecture Theatre, Room 2600, next to the Surrey Centre SkyTrain station.

Diane Finegood, 778.782.3319, diane_finegood@sfu.ca

A degree more challenging
With an increasing number of grown-ups feeling a personal or professional nudge to go back to school, the question is: is there a graduate degree with your name on it? Learn more about Simon Fraser University’s challenging and diverse graduate programs on Tuesday, Sept. 25, at Harbour Centre from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. when SFU’s dean of graduate studies Jon Driver hosts an information session including representatives from graduate programs across the university. Pre-registration is recommended at www.sfu.ca/gsinfo but walk-ins also welcome.

Jon Driver, 778.782.4255, driver@sfu.ca