Features

Spy Attack Widens Turkey’s Split With NATO Allies Over Russia

Chez 2b

As U.S. and European allies form a diplomatic front against Russia, Turkey’s coziness with the Kremlin is testing its crucial defense ties with the U.S. and its military alliance with NATO. Selcan Hacaoglu Bloomberg The U.S., Canada and several European nations expelled more than 100 Russian diplomats on Monday to punish President Vladimir Putin’s government for the nerve-agent attack on a former Russian spy in the U.K. Turkey, which has grown closer to Russia in recent years, stayed out of ... Read More »

Restricting migration after Brexit likely to slow growth, says official UK report

Slo 3c

Restricting migration into Britain will very likely lead to lower output and employment growth, an interim report commissioned by the British government said on March 27, warning that firms were not prepared for a tightening labor market. LONDON – Reuters Hurriyet “Lower migration would very likely lead to lower growth in total employment, and lower output growth,” said the report by the Migration Advisory Committee, which focused on migration from the European Economic Area. The report was ordered by the ... Read More »

Cheating at cricket just one of the unthinkable things Aussies do now

Git 1a

I can’t see why people are so shocked to discover our cricketers have been cheating. Surely that’s only to be expected in a nation that’s drifted so far from our earlier commitment to decency, mateship and the fair go. Ross Gittins The Sydney Morning Herald Such behaviour is unAustralian? We do, or condone, many things that used to be thought of as unAustralian. There was a time when it would have been unthinkable for Australians to stand by while an ... Read More »

Give millennials a break – young people are worse off and it’s not their fault

UK x 2 1a

Young people are poorer than older people. And it’s not simply because the old have worked all their lives and are enjoying the fruits of their labours in their sunset years. Evangelos Kontopantelis The Conversation The wealth gap between the young and the old is on the rise in England. These were the stark findings of our research into deprivation levels between 2004 and 2015. We measured wealth (or lack thereof) using the the UK government’s English Index of Multiple ... Read More »

A New Cold War Is Not Inevitable

Chez 3c

Top NATO and Russian military commanders have agreed to meet. Here’s what they need to discuss. James Stavridis Bloomberg When I served as Supreme Allied Commander at NATO from 2009 to 2013, I developed a friendly relationship with the head of the Russian armed forces, General Nikolai Makarov. He was a short, barrel-chested man with a congenial personal style, and given my own somewhat compact physique, I could at least tell my boss, Secretary of Defense Bob Gates, that I ... Read More »

Cambridge Analytica: They ‘Got Trump Elected’, We Should Worry About What Else They’ve Done

F8 1a

The scandal that is wiping billions of dollars in value off the world’s richest company is about much more than just social media and data mining, writes Michael Brull. New Matilda British news program on Channel 4 has exposed Cambridge Analytica and Facebook for what has become an international scandal. However, due to the size and complexity of the issues raised, I don’t think their significance or implications have received the analysis they warrant. In this two part series, I’m ... Read More »

Matt Canavan to accuse Labor of talking down ‘beautiful’ coal industry

Kanav 1a

Resources minister to set up taskforce to aid exploration and will say environmental groups are abusing the law to delay major projects Paul Kurp The Guardian Matt Canavan has announced a resources taskforce to help the government increase exploration, improve the “social licence” for mining and increase coal exports to Asia. The resources and minister for northern Australia will unveil the Resources 2030 taskforce at the National Press Club on Wednesday and warn that environmental groups are abusing laws to ... Read More »

SMH editorial: Defamation laws long overdue for overhaul

Aru 4d

Australia’s defamation laws were built for a different age. The last comprehensive national review of defamation laws was in 1979, almost 30 years before Facebook was launched in February 2004 and the first tweet was sent in March 2006. The Sydney Morning Herald The laws are increasingly unworkable and in desperate need of overhaul as slurs on social media and other digital platforms take off as a growing source of defamation claims. A five-year review of Australian defamation cases covering ... Read More »

Europe fakes Turkish delight

Aru 3c

Prospect of breathing new life into Turkey’s bid for EU membership remains as remote as ever. Matthew Karnitschnig Politico Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast offers everything Europe’s political elite expect from a good summit: an exotic location, breathtaking views and (most important) casks of fine wine. If only Recep Tayyip Erdoğan hadn’t shown up. For the EU’s top brass, the irascible Turkish leader was the proverbial fly in the summit soup at Monday’s dinner meeting with Council President Donald Tusk, Commission ... Read More »

Cuts on 1 April will leave asylum seekers homeless, advocates warn

Aru 5e

Ninety-five groups send joint statement warning government risks creating destitution Australian Associated Press The Guardian Federal government cuts could mean homelessness and destitution for vulnerable asylum seekers in Australia on temporary visas, refugee advocates are warning. Ninety-five advocate groups spoke out on Monday to oppose cuts to a program that provides an allowance, casework support, housing assistance and counselling to potential refugees. “Many still have years before a… Cuts on 1… Read More »

Australian gun control advocates call for federal intervention to save firearms pact

Aru 6f

Report finds the national firearms agreement is ‘haemorrhaging’, with more than 50 breaches of the code by states and territories Ben Smee The Guardian Gun control advocates have called for federal intervention – and even a referendum – after commissioning a damning report that shows states and territories have trashed the historic 1996 national firearms agreement. The agreement, which led to the surrender and destruction of more than 1.1m firearms, was signed by all states and territories after the Port ... Read More »

ISIS Returnees Bring Both Hope and Fear to Chechnya

Aru 1a

The return of ISIS fighters to Chechnya could pose a security challenge for the war-torn Russian republic. The authorities may respond true to form, with repression, but efforts to repatriate women and children stranded in Syria and, in some cases, to reintegrate foreign fighters should not be discounted. Anna Arutunyan ICG The victories over ISIS in Mosul and Raqqa pose a dilemma for states whose citizens travelled to join the Islamic State’s (ISIS) ranks and who may now seek to return ... Read More »

Palestinian refugees lament as Trump funding cuts create job insecurity and a pension crisis

Mura 3c

The livelihoods and long-term futures of thousands of Palestinian refugee families across Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Gaza and the West Bank are at risk due to Donald Trump’s catastrophic decision to cut the American donation to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA). Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh The Conversation The US president’s decision to contribute only US$60m to UNRWA in 2018 – instead of US$125m – has been widely denounced as a brutal form of collective punishment for the Palestinian ... Read More »

Truth, Power, and the Academy: A Response to Hal Brands

Waro 2b

Academic expertise should guide U.S. foreign policy. Unfortunately, it does not really work that way. John Glaser War On The Rocks On a host of issues, there is an enormous gap between scholarship on international relations and the policy consensus in Washington. The United States persistently pursues foreign strategies that run contrary to the policy implications of the academic consensus. And on questions that are hotly debated in academia, Washington displays inviolable bipartisan unity. Hal Brands addressed the gap in ... Read More »

14 EU states announce mass co-ordinated expulsion of Russian diplomats over Skripal case

Cord 1a

Fourteen members of the EU have decided to expel Russian diplomats over the Sergei Skripal case, European Council president Donald Tusk has confirmed. RT It comes despite zero evidence proving that Moscow was responsible. Donald Tusk stated that further action could be taken. Germany, France and Poland have expelled four diplomats each, respective foreign ministries confirmed on Monday. The Netherlands and Denmark will expel two diplomats each, their foreign ministries said. Italy is expelling two Russian diplomats, while Lithuania has ... Read More »

Australia’s real leadership failures are in politics, not cricket

Van 2b

Where’s the national outrage over a terrified boy being abandoned to violent despair by our political leaders? Van Badham The Guardian Australian cricketer Cameron Bancroft has been caught on video shoving some yellow sticky tape into his underpants. Fortunately – or unfortunately – there was a cricket match in play at the time. The image of him shoving sticky tape into his underpants was broadcast live to the crowd at the Newlands ground in South Africa, and they booed. “I ... Read More »