While the shadow of a speculative assault looms over Portugal, similar to the economic crises that hit Greece and Ireland, this Iberian nation manages to hold up the beacon of renewable energy.
Helicopter gunships patrolling the skies, missile launcher ships in the Tagus estuary, police with heavy machineguns and armoured cars deployed on the main streets of the Portuguese capital have created a warlike ambience in the city hosting the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) Summit.
With the announcement that his country is ready to buy Portuguese debt, the president of East Timor, José Ramos-Horta, set a precedent in international economic relations that was universally praised in political and financial circles in this southern European country.
Over the centuries, racism in the Americas has targeted indigenous peoples, African slaves and their descendants, while in Europe, secular racism has long centred on its once-enslaved gypsies, as their recent persecution in France and Italy confirms.
A trial that dragged on for six years amidst public outrage ended Friday in Portugal with the unexpected sentencing of prominent personalities, found guilty in a child sex abuse scandal that shook the nation.
Environmentalists are alarmed: fires have destroyed close to 100,000 hectares of forest in Portugal this summer, releasing one million tonnes of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Worst of all, the forests are losing their ability to absorb carbon.
Football functions on so many levels. It can be big business, moving astronomical quantities of cash, with obscene salaries for owners, coaches and star players. And it can be a widely played sport, found in every park, street or vacant lot. And it can be the common ground for multicultural coexistence.
First Angola, and now Brazil, Portugal's two largest former colonial possessions, are extending a helping hand to the battered Portuguese economy.
Pope Benedict XVI began a four-day visit to Portugal Tuesday in an uncomfortable scenario for himself and his followers, amidst accusations that the Catholic Church leadership protected pedophile priests, and the free distribution of condoms by hundreds of protesters here.
Portugal is caught in the crossfire between credit rating agencies and international financial speculators who see this country as offering an excellent opportunity to turn a quick profit.
Worrying economic indicators and gloomy forecasts by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are rapidly making Portugal a magnet for international speculative capital.
Prominent Portuguese environmentalists blamed the Dantesque scene in the tourist island of Madeira Monday, in the wake of flash floods that claimed at least 42 lives over the weekend, on seriously flawed urban planning.
Just a decade ago, criticism rained down on sunny, windy Portugal for not making the most of nature's gifts to develop renewable energy sources. Now all signs indicate that it did not fall on deaf ears, as the country has become a leader in the field.
Nearly a decade after its inception, and in spite of some reverses, on balance the World Social Forum (WSF) has proved a resounding success as a platform for planet-wide debate, from the point of view of the people most affected by the world's problems.
The hard-line stance taken by Brazil, Argentina and most other Latin American countries has clashed with U.S. efforts to push for international recognition of the elections organised Sunday by the de facto regime in power in Honduras since the Jun. 28 coup.