Features

Nimetz: Term ‘Macedonia’ to be included in name proposal

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Ahead of Wednesday’s meeting between delegates from Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) in New York, United Nations mediator Matthew Nimetz said on Tuesday that his proposal to resolve the decades-old name dispute will include the term “Macedonia.” e kathimerini In an interview with ANT1 TV, Nimetz said the term “Macedonia” will be included in the name as more than 100 countries have already recognized it as such. “If we wait for another 25 years the problem will ... Read More »

The Iran Nuclear Deal at Two: A Status Report

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The 2015 Iran nuclear accord is working, but is at risk from longstanding U.S.-Iran rivalry, Trump administration policies and Tehran’s upsurge of activism in the Middle East. ICG The deal’s other signatories should encourage the U.S. not to withdraw and consider ways to sustain the deal, regardless of U.S. actions and as long as Iran remains committed to it. What’s the issue? The 2015 Iran nuclear accord is as successful as it remains fragile. President Trump has warned he will ... Read More »

Trump Administration’s Fuzzy Math on Terrorist Origins is More than Misleading – It’s Dishonest

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Just as the Senate Judiciary Committee was getting ready to conduct an oversight hearing today with newly appointed Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, her department, along with the Justice Department (DOJ) released a misleading report aimed at stoking anti-immigrant sentiment. Faiza Patel Just Security The headline of a press release trumpeting the report stated: “Three Out of Four Individuals Convicted of International Terrorism and Terrorism-Related Offenses were Foreign Born.” The obvious goal of the report, which was issued pursuant ... Read More »

Will Religious Instability Destroy Bangladesh?

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Bangladesh was born in 1971 after India intervened in Pakistan’s civil war, which resulted in the independence of what was known as East Pakistan. Doug Bandow The National Interest The new state’s politics were violent too, punctuated by military rule, which pushed to Islamicize the secular state. Bangladesh today is nominally democratic, but politics is bitterly fractious and violent. Moreover, Islamist tides are rising. Like a number of other majority Islamic states, such as Afghanistan and Pakistan, a once relaxed social ... Read More »

Centrelink gave companies accused of exploitation direct access to welfare payments

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Appliance retailers with histories of breaches and Asic enforcement action use Centrepay system to get guaranteed access to payments Christopher Knaus The Guardian Centrelink has given companies accused of exploitation and misconduct direct access to welfare recipients’ money through its automated debit system The companies were granted access to the Centrepay system, which allows Centrelink to deduct money from welfare payments to pay approved businesses early. The system is designed to ensure rent and… Centrelink gave companies… Read More »

Japan to step up patrol of N. Korean illegal fishing

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Japan’s fisheries ministry says it is going to step up a crackdown on illegal fishing by boats from North Korea and other countries. NHK World There have been an increasing number of cases of foreign boats including many from North Korea fishing illegally in Japan’s exclusive economic zone in the Yamatotai fishing grounds off the Noto Peninsula in the Sea of Japan. Ministry officials say they will set up a taskforce led by the Fisheries Agency chief to strengthen the ... Read More »

Martin Luther King’s Call to ‘Give Us the Ballot’ Is As Relevant Today as It Was in 1957

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And that’s a mark of how endangered voting rights are right now Martin Luther King Jr.’s first speech at the Lincoln Memorial was not his celebrated 1963 address at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. By Barbara Arnwine and John Nichols The Nation Six years earlier, when he was still a relative newcomer on the national scene, Dr. King addressed 25,000 civil-rights activists who had gathered at the memorial for the Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom on May 17, ... Read More »

Fifty years on, is life better for everyone?

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About this time every year, Australians are struck by an uncharacteristic bout of self-reflection. As we swan around on beaches, we pause to ask ourselves the big questions. Jessica Irvine The Canberra Times Questions like: why do I always forget to put sunscreen on the tops of my feet? Is John Farnham’s That’s Freedom or AC/DC’s Thunderstruck the most Australian anthem of all time? And, is it really ok to hold a national day of celebration to commemorate the day our forebears ... Read More »

Margaret Atwood faces feminist backlash on social media over #MeToo

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The Canadian author’s defence of due process for those accused of sexual misconduct sparked online ire Ashifa Kassam in Toronto The Guardian Canadian author Margaret Atwood is facing a social media backlash after voicing concerns about the #MeToo movement and calling for due process in the case of a former university professor accused of sexual misconduct. Writing in the Globe and Mail, Atwood described the #MeToo movement, which emerged in the wake of sexual assault allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, as a “massive ... Read More »

The Buzz Fades

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Under-resourced in an overworked agricultural system, honeybee colonies are gradually failing in most temperate regions. By Raúl Guillén The Nation Honeybees, or Apis mellifera, which are native to Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, have been domesticated around the world, but since the 1980s their mortality has increased rapidly in most temperate regions (Europe, Japan, North and South America). The naturalist Jean-Pierre Rogel writes, of Canada: “The current losses of around 25% are exceptional, and would be disastrous economically if ... Read More »

Turkey, Russia blast U.S.-backed Syria force as “terrorist army”

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BEIRUT – Russia, Turkey and the Syrian government on Monday denounced the U.S.-led coalition plans to form a Kurdish-led border force to secure the areas along Syria’s international border to the north with Turkey and to the east, with Iraq. CBS News AP The coalition told The Associated Press Monday that 230 new cadets have already been recruited to the force, which is anticipated to reach 30,000 troops in the next several years. According to the coalition, the core of ... Read More »

EU’s Western Balkan Dilemma – the Trickiest Task in 2018

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Last year (2017) was not the year of the Western Balkans, as analyses can be read. Adelina Marini euinside This was the year of the EU’s awakening to this volatile region in its immediate neighbourhood, and the realisation that it is of strategic importance to member states in time of a renewed geopolitical race. 2017 began with the surprising recognition of the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign and Security Policy Federica Mogherini (Italy, Socialists and Democrats) that she was ... Read More »

America is spiritually bankrupt

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We must fight back together The undeniable collapse of integrity, honesty and decency in our public and private life has fueled racial hatred and contempt Cornel West The Guardian We live in one of the darkest moments in American history – a bleak time of spiritual blackout and imperial meltdown. Exactly 25 years ago, in my book Race Matters, I tried to lay bare the realities and challenges to American democracy in light of the doings and sufferings of black ... Read More »

Chelsea Manning: Ex-army leaker to run for US senate

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Chelsea Manning, the former US intelligence analyst who was jailed for leaking classified documents, is seeking the Democratic Party nomination to run for the US senate in Maryland. BBC In 2013 Manning was sentenced to 35 years after being found guilty of 20 charges, including espionage. But former US President Barack Obama commuted her sentence. The 30-year-old, who was born Bradley Manning, will challenge Democratic Senator Ben Cardin for the nomination. The former US soldier moved to Maryland after being ... Read More »

‘Every day I am crushed’: the stateless man held without trial by Australia for eight years

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A UN body says Said Imasi should be released and compensated. But he still faces a potentially limitless detention Ben Doherty The Guardian Said Imasi is a man without a past: a man, it seems, without a future. He doesn’t know where he was born, or when. He has few documents to demonstrate who he is or where he comes from. He believes, but cannot prove, he was born in Spain’s Canary Islands, to a mother from Western Sahara – ... Read More »

None but the Lonely Heart

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fortyfivedownstairs recital blurb: Melbourne-born Greek-Cypriot Australian soprano, Christiana Aloneftis, is coming home to perform with one of Australia’s finest collaborative pianists, David Barnard, an eclectic and exciting program of Debussy, Donizetti, Verdi, Rimsky-korsakov, Dvořák, Rachmaninoff and much more. Currently based in Paris, the young soprano has been described by Joyce DiDonato (The Weill Music Institute at Carnegie Hall) as having ‘an exceptionally warm, expressive soprano voice…. She performs with poise and graceful, nuanced phrasing’. None but the Lonely Heart, is a ... Read More »