Global Issues

DMZ guardians could become ‘happiest jobless’ on earth

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Swedish and Swiss soldiers are the most peaceful denizens of the Korean DMZ. If a Korean War peace treaty is signed they may expand their mandate – or pack up and go home Andrew Salmon Asia Times It is the most bizarre corner of one of the most bizarre places in East Asia: A tranquil little chunk of Western Europe sitting betwixt armies which, if they ever go to war, could very well ignite Armageddon across Asia. Welcome to the ... Read More »

Turkish elections: Erdogan to hold rally in Sarajevo

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Turkey’s president turns to Bosnia for votes, after EU countries banned Turkey from campaigning among its diaspora. Mersiha Gadzo AlJazeera After three EU countries banned Turkish politicians from campaigning on their soil, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is set to rally in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina on Sunday. Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) decided to hold a rally in Bosnia’s capital afterAustria, the Netherlands, and Germany – home to Turkey’s largest diaspora – announced that… Erdogan’s rally in… Turkish elections: Erdogan… Read More »

US criticizes China’s militarization of disputed South China Sea

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BEIJING — The Pentagon criticized what it called China’s “continued militarization” of island outposts in the disputed South China Sea, where the Chinese air force landed long-range bombers for the… The Associated Press NavyNews The China Daily newspaper reported Saturday that the People’s Liberation Army Air Force conducted takeoff and landing training with the H-6K bomber in the South China Sea. China is pitted against smaller neighbors in multiple disputes over islands, coral reefs and lagoons in waters crucial for global commerce and rich in ... Read More »

Nicola Sturgeon: Independence debate to restart this week

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The SNP will fire the starting gun on a renewed debate around independence this week with the publication of a long-awaited report on the economy of an independent Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has signaled. Paris Gourtsoyiannis The Scotsman The First Minister said the report, expected this week after 18 months of work, will ignite discussion around Scotland’s constitutional future based on “ambition and hope”. The Growth Commission led by former SNP adviser Andrew Wilson, whose report has been repeatedly delayed and is ... Read More »

‘Leave before the whole thing falls to pieces’ Nigel Farage urges UK to leave the EU NOW

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NIGEL Farage has urged the UK to stay committed to Brexit and leave the European Union before the “whole thing falls to pieces”, as Lord Adonis calls for the UK to have a less extreme exit from the bloc. Holly Pine Express Nigel Farage responded to Graham, who texted into his LBC show, and said: “All thanks go to Italy for this favour to us. “Let’s hope the whole bucket blows up in Brussels’ face and they’ll be no European Union for us ... Read More »

Maoist rebels detonate bomb in east India; 6 police killed

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At least six police officials were killed and another was critically injured on May 20 when Maoist rebels targeted their vehicle with a bomb in eastern India, police said. PATNA Hurriyet The rebels detonated a land mine as the police vehicle ran over it in Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh state, said D.M. Awasthi, the chief of counterinsurgency operations in the state. The explosion extensively damaged the vehicle. Awasthi said the police were escorting a truck carrying material to a road construction site in a forested area when the rebels triggered ... Read More »

Joint US/French carrier ops highlight common ground and interests

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The last time the United States and France combined for an operation off the coast of Virginia, the French Navy defeated the British and prevented resupply of Gen. Cornwallis’ troops, who was surrounded by French and… Mark D. Faram Navy Times The British surrendered and the United States won its independence. Now, 237-years later, the two long-time allies are at it again, this time experimenting with the idea of integrating aviaton squadrons of both navies into a single air wing ... Read More »

Varoufakis offers timely economic tidbits

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In his odd little book about capitalism and the global economy, former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis attempts to explain the origins and evolution of market economies, including the seemingly inescapable tendencies of these systems to generate inequality among and within nations. Reviewed by: Scott MacKay Winnipeg Free Press Some readers will recall Varoufakis’ brief and tumultuous showdown with the global financial community during the Greek economic crisis of 2015 and his resulting bestselling memoir about these negotiations, Adults in ... Read More »

The Dirty Secret of Taiwan’s Fishing Industry

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Taiwan’s systemic inertia has created the perfect environment for the continued exploitation of migrant fishermen. James X. Morris The Diplomat In recent years an increasing number of reports have come out about migrant fishing labor violations occurring on Taiwanese-flagged vessels. These reports are part of a larger body of journalism focusing on the symptoms of a global fishing industry that has been largely left outside of world regulation standards and exists within an… The reports are the same: garnished and ... Read More »

I teach refugees to map their world

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I first visited the Zaatari refugee camp in early 2015. Located in northern Jordan, the camp is home to more than 80,000 Syrian refugees. Brian Tomaszewski The Conversation I was there as part of a research study on refugee camp wireless and information infrastructure. It’s one thing to read about refugees in the news. It’s a whole different thing to actually go visit a camp. I saw people living in metal caravans, mixed with tents and other materials to create ... Read More »

Italy’s coalition agreement explained

Anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S) leader Luigi Di Maio speaks to the press after a meeting with Italian President Sergio Mattarella as part of consultations of political parties to form a government, on May 14, 2018 at the Quirinale palace in Rome. - The leaders of the anti-immigrant League party and anti-establishment Five Star Movement meet the Italian president today to share details of a coalition government programme three month after general elections in Italy. (Photo by ANDREAS SOLARO / AFP)        (Photo credit should read ANDREAS SOLARO/AFP/Getty Images)

In shaping policies, the far-right League seems to have come out ahead of the 5Stars. Giada Zampano Politico ROME — The populist parties seeking to form an Italian government unveiled what they say will be the final version of their coalition agreement Friday. The new “government contract” between the anti-establishment 5Star Movement and the far-right League backs away from some of the more explosive proposals contained in earlier drafts that have been leaked to the Italian press. But it still contains plenty ... Read More »

Cryptos rise as Hong Kong regulators apply the brakes

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Are HK regulators striking a delicate balance, between staying on good terms with Beijing while staying relevant in Asia’s booming FinTech markets? Pete Sabine Asia Times Alarm bells have been ringing in the cryptocurrency industry in Hong Kong, with the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) alerting investors to the risks of using cryptocurrency exchanges and… On these censures, law practice Charltons Quantum noted that: “Most of the Hong Kong ICO issuers and crypto exchanges contacted, however, confirmed that their activities ... Read More »

Will Patriotism Push America Into an Unconstitutional War?

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We cannot go to war on the whim of a single person and automatic obedience by well-meaning men and women who profess loyalty to a Constitution they don’t understand. Muckey Edwards The National Interst Last week I had the good fortune to hear one of America’s leading military officers deliver a thoughtful and inspiring address to a small group—there were about fifty of us—of people who have been concerned about the direction of the country. The meeting was private so ... Read More »

Could this be the new US Navy frigate design?

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NORFOLK, Va. — The Italian navy frigate Alpino visited Norfolk this week after participating in exercises with U.S. ships while at sea. Mark D. Faram Navy Times But its mission goes deeper than that, as the Italian Defense Ministry also says it’s here to hopefully interest U.S. officials in the ship’s design and capabilities as the U.S. Navy investigates future frigate designs. Commissioned in September 2016, the ship is an anti-submarine variant of the European multi-purpose frigate and is built ... Read More »

Ecuador removes Julian Assange’s extra security

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Ecuador has removed extra security at its London embassy following claims that $5m (£3.7m) was spent to protect WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. BBC The money was used to monitor Mr Assange’s visitors, embassy staff and UK police, media reports in the UK and Ecuador said. Mr Assange has been at the embassy since 2012 after being granted asylum. He fled there to avoid extradition to Sweden over sex crime allegations, which he denies. The Swedish authorities have since dropped their ... Read More »

‘Measuring success differently’: New Zealand budget’s shift in economic thinking

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The Ardern government in New Zealand is articulating a bigger role for government in society, talking up wellbeing over traditional economic measures — while still playing on the standard “fiscal… David Donaldson TheMandarin New Zealand’s Labour-led coalition government has handed down its first budget, highlighting health, education and housing as areas of focus. “Our priorities are different from the previous government. We are determined to turn the page on the ideology of individualism and a hands-off approach to our economy ... Read More »