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Family doctor Richard Scott, 50, was accused of harassing one of his patients – a reportedly suicidal young man - for bringing up the theme of Christianity at workplace. The regulator, Great Britain's  General Medical Council, issued an official warning to Scott who faces the risk of being dismissed from his position over the charges. The Cambridge-educated doctor intends to file a lawsuit in his defense and describes the regulator's approach as censorship. “He viewed his problem as purely medical issue and I said it might be more than that,” says Scott about the evidently consensual conversation with his former patient. Being open about his view that a spiritual component is indispensable to healing, Scott stresses that the discussion ended as soon as he realized that the patient did not favor it.

The parliamentary elections, held in Finland on April 17, were marked by an unprecedented success of the True Finns, which is regarded as a nationalist party. According to the preliminary results, the True Finns have received 19% of votes and increased their representation at the parliament to 39 from only 5 seats in comparison with 2007.

More than ever over the past decade, geopolitics watchers whose approach to international developments is - in line with the projections made by founders of the school of thought N.Ya. Danilevsky, O. Spengler, and A.J. Toynbee - premised in the assumption that distinct civilizations will overshadow countries and ethnic groups as the actual players in global politics can say that reality is generating ample evidence to confirm the concept.

A HUNDRED AND FIFTY YEARS AGO, America entered its bloodiest war that was to last four years. The Civil War between the North and the South cost the lives of 620,000 people, which is almost equal to total American losses in all other wars. Two out of every three Americans have ancestors that went through the crucible of this war - a figure that debunks the myth that the USA has become great thanks to subsequent fertile strata of immigrants.

In our imagination, America has always hastened to live. However, this myth about U.S. history is not universal, either. At one point, the Russian conservative K. Leontiev, seeing that Russia was about to step from the patriarchal world to the world of technological, financial and industrial revolution, exclaimed, "Freeze, Russia!" The southern U.S. states tried to do something similar - not as a motto but as a program -and issued a challenge to the time.

The BRICS summit will convene in China's Sanya beach resort on April 14. For the first time in the alliance's relatively short history, South Africa will participate in the forum as a  member along with Brazil, Russia, India, and China, while the disquieting political settings of the early 2011 reinforce the world's interest in the coming talks between the leaders of the emerging economic heavyweights.

IT'S ALWAYS RISKY to tell a story from hearsay. One inevitably errs in the details. Still, let me give it a try. During a Soviet celebration of Alexander Suvorov's jubilee year, a speaker mounted the podium and made a denunciatory speech about the great general. In it, he depicted Suvorov as a proponent of serfdom, the stifler of Polish freedom, and, most importantly, as the cruel suppressor of the Pugachev Rebellion. An awkward silence followed. Then a well-known biographer of Suvorov took the word and asked the "denouncer," "Do you think, comrade, that, had Pugachev won, he would have instituted Soviet rule in Russia?" The audience laughed.

Ideological surrogates rarely withstand the test of history. Something similar is taking place today.

"Democracy's Hard Spring" was the title of an article in a respectable international magazine that presented an easily predictable interpretation of the tumultuous events in the Middle East. Although "predictable" is not always the same thing as "trite," the two terms coincided in this case. This only goes to show once again that modern positivists are not daunt­ed by anything, including crises, revolutions, and natural disasters. Everything is going according to plan. Libyan rebels are already saying that they will establish a pluralistic parliamentary democracy with limits on executive government. For the time being, they're shooting into the air and destroying cities just like Qaddafi, yet, no matter, they'll calm down and create pluralism, parliament, and democracy. Moreover, it turns out that Islamists, including former members of groups linked to the Al Qaeda, are upholding the values of secular society.

On March 31, a group of developing countries — Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Cuba, Nicaragua, Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Mali, Equatorial Guinea, etc. - called the UN Security Council to impose a ceasefire on Libya and to take urgent steps to settle the conflict in and around the country. Talks between M. Gadhafi and the rebels are supposed to be the first phase of the peace process.

This year started with a wave of social uprising in Maghrib, which later spread to the most part of the Arab North Africa and the Middle East.

Though historical significance of these events will become clear only with time, now we still can make some conclusions and see what these outbreaks of protest had in common. If we have a look at how the western mass media cover the opposition protests in North Africa and the Middle East, we will unintentionally get suspicious about similarity of the way it was done.

The situation in Libya is evidently headed for a quagmire.  At the moment, the vision of the situation should not be limited to the viewpoint of the Western coalition's member countries (which remain divided over quite a few key issues and whose governments will yet endure fiery criticism over the campaign from their respective constituencies) but should encompass the wider context of the post-revolutionary Arab world.

The way the European Commission react on the nuclear disaster at Fukushima-1 nuclear power plant in Japan does not coincide with the common idea of clumsiness of the European bureaucracy machine. The decisions to carry out stress-tests of Europe’s nuclear power plants and to elaborate new nuclear security standards were made on a timely basis. A wide discussion is under way at the level of industry’s experts how the energy sector in Europe should develop further considering the Japanese experience.