Asia

Decoding the Korean Peninsula Missile Rhetoric

Unn 3c

Fiery rhetoric between North Korea and the U.S. adds risks to Korean peninsula tensions, but should not cause panic. Outside players should maximise the potential benefit of an established pattern of de-escalation in the fall. Christopher Green ICG They – and Pyongyang – should also back South Korea’s offers of dialogue. North Korea once again captured the world’s attention when it boldly warned that it is ready to fire missiles over Japan toward the U.S. territory of Guam. The unusually specific ... Read More »

5 important facts about China’s alleged incursion in Pag-Asa Island

GMA news 1a logo

Not long after the Philippines hosted the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) ministerial meetings, reports emerged that Chinese vessels have been gathering near Pag-Asa (Thitu) island in the West Philippine… RICHARD JAVAD HEYDARIAN GMA News The source of the information is reportedly the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), which has been monitoring Chinese activities close to our land features in the area. Magdalo Party-List Rep. Gary Alejano, a former decorated soldier with extensive contacts to former AFP colleagues, ... Read More »

North Korea, US playing dangerous game of chicken

Paurt 1a

So far the war of words between Kim and Trump is just that – an exchange of fiery rhetoric. But the risk of ‘jaw-jaw’ turning into ‘war-war’ is deepening. Yoon Young-kwan Asia Times So far, the war between US President Donald Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un over the latter’s nuclear program has been fought only in words. But each turn of the rhetorical screw deepens the risk that, to paraphrase Winston Churchill, “jaw-jaw” could turn into “war… Last ... Read More »

UNAMA Human Rights Report on Mass Killings in Mirza Olang

UN logo 5e LLLL

KABUL – The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) released today the initial findings of its human rights fact-finding into the 3 to 5 August attack on Mirza Olang village in Sayyad district of Sari Pul… UNAMA verified allegations that Taliban and local self-proclaimed Islamic State / Daesh fighters killed at least 36 persons, including civilians and person hors de combat, during the attack on Mirza… At least half of the killings took place on Saturday 5 August when Anti-Government Elements ... Read More »

When voters mistake stupidity for authenticity, we are all in danger

Udv 3c

Are we at war yet? Newspaper deadlines being what they are, you may, at the time of reading, be in a better position to answer that question than this column. Janet Daley Telegraph, London The Sydney Morning Herald With startling suddenness, the world has reached one of those moments when catastrophic news seems imminent: in which, indeed, the chief actors actually appear to be willing events to take the most devastating, unthinkable course. Or is it all just noise? Belligerent, ... Read More »

Turkey and Russia’s tomato crisis explained

Taum 3c

Nearly two years after Turkey downed a Russian fighter jet, relations between Ankara and Moscow are largely restored. The two countries last month signed an arms deal, but tomatoes are still a thorny issue. Zeynep Şahin TRTworld Turkish and Russian delegations will meet in Turkey’s coastal city of Izmir on Friday to discuss trade and economic relations. The humble tomato is also expected to be on the table — and it’s playing an outsized role in the talks. The two ... Read More »

IMF’s China debt warnings are eerily familiar

Christine Lagarde 6f Reuters Jacky Naegelen LLLL

The IMF has seen this horror film before in neighboring Japan and the odds of a happier ending for China are negligible. William Pesek Asia Times The International Monetary Fund shouldn’t expect much warmth from Beijing these days. Its latest annual health check on Asia’s biggest economy is blunt, sweeping and sure to ruin Xi Jinping’s month as the Chinese president tries to maintain a veneer of omnipotence and stability. The IMF’s worry, of course, is debt. It’s seen this ... Read More »

Did Russia supply Ukrainian rocket engine to North Korea?

Aes 2b

Ukraine space agency says engine identical to their own, points finger at Russia Asia Unhedged Asia Times The mystery over how North Korea obtained powerful rocket engines for its last ICBM test deepened Wednesday after Ukraine’s state space agency said the rocket engine used is the same as the type of engine used by Ukraine-made space vehicles, according to UPI. UPI was picking up on a report from US government-funded Radio Free Asia which said Ukraine denied supplying the engines ... Read More »

Joshua Wong, the young face of Hong Kong’s democracy movement, jailed in ‘politically motivated’ case

Fela 2b

Hong Kong’s most prominent democracy activist Joshua Wong has been sentenced to six months in jail over a 2014 protest. 20-year-old Wong, who rose to prominence as the 17-year-old co-leader of the 2014 ‘umbrella’ mass protests in the city, was jailed alongside two other young activists — one a former member of Hong Kong’s legislative council. Bill Birtles ABC The trio had previously been given community service sentences for an unlawful assembly conviction relating to a protest at Hong Kong’s ... Read More »

Turkey Uncensored: Will Turkey Succeed in Turning the Hagia Sophia Into a Mosque?

Agia Sophia 2b LLLL

The Islamist Felicity Party (Turkish: Saadet Partisi) organized the “Great Jerusalem demonstration” on July 30 in Istanbul. This event attended by thousands of people who condemned Israel following the recent incidents on the Temple Mount. Uzay Bulut Philos Project The demo quickly turned into an anti-Israel and anti-Jew hate fest in which several Islamic activists delivered harsh speeches against the Jewish State. Mustafa Koylu, the head of the Cansuyu Association, said, “You have to do one thing so that those who do not see ... Read More »

1974: The second Turkish invasion and the betrayal of Cyprus

Cyy 3c

14 August marked the passage of 43 years since Turkey launched the second of its two invasions of the Republic of Cyprus. In contrast to the position when Turkey launched its first invasion on 20 July 1974, five days after an unlawful coup in Nicosia, Turkey had no pretext to justify its second invasion and the forcible transfers, deportations and other acts of ethnic cleansing which followed; both the junta in Athens and its short-lived puppet regime in Nicosia had ... Read More »

Turks celebrate 1964 napalm bombing of Cyprus

Thenk 1a

Cyprus is Turkish, after all. Turks can do whatever they want there. They can even celebrate dropping napalm on Greeks and slaughtering them. Uzay Bulut Arutz Sheva On August 8, Muslim Turkish Cypriots and illegal settlers from Turkey celebrated the 53rd anniversary of Turkey’s napalm bombing of Greek Cypriot civilians in the Turkish-occupied enclave of Kokkina in Cyprus. Mustafa Akıncı, the president of the..In August 1964, Turkish warplanes dropped napalm bombs on Kokkina in the Tillyria peninsula, hitting residential areas ... Read More »

Modi says India will fight foreign threats

Its 1a

India can defend itself from anyone who seeks “to act against our country,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in an Independence Day speech Aug. 15 amid a tense standoff with Beijing over a Himalayan plateau. NEW DELHI – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet “Security is our top priority,” Modi said in a speech before thousands at the landmark Red Fort in New Delhi as the country marked the 70th anniversary of the end of British colonial rule. “Be it the sea or ... Read More »

Tough talk has lifted cost of insuring South Korean debt

Ekt 1a

Five big themes likely to dominate thinking of investors and traders in the coming week Reuters Asia Times 1. Jaw-jaw, sell-sell An unnerving war of words between Washington and Pyongyang has pushed the cost of insuring South Korean debt against default to its highest in 1-1/2 years and the expected volatility of the Korean won is creeping higher. Gauges of market risk have been rising but are far off their peaks as the expectation still is that diplomacy would prevail ... Read More »

Warming Turkish-Russian ties, growing rift with West creates troubling scenario for NATO

Auz 5e

The U.S. and NATO alliance are getting mixed signals from Turkey at a time when Russia is increasingly warming to Ankara. Jeff Daniels CNBC Turkey’s relationship with the U.S. is considered the worst it’s been in more than a decade. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin both share a general suspicion and mistrust of the U.S., and the two leaders have discussed Moscow selling its S-400 air defense system to… Yet another concern is whether Turkey ... Read More »

Elephant and tiger attacks highlight India’s wildlife conflict

Whae 1a

Members of the Paharia tribe living in the upper hill regions of India’s Jharkhand state have been spending sleepless nights. A marauding elephant has trampled at least 15 local people to death in the past few months. Anbarasan Ethirajan BBC Further north, villagers living around the Pilibhit Tiger reserve in Uttar Pradesh are up in arms after three people were killed by a tiger within a week. At least 16 people have been killed in tiger attacks near the reserve ... Read More »