Society

The Revenge of Hard Power Politics

The liberal world order was never an inevitability. Only five years ago, the world still looked like a liberal internationalist’s dream. Andrew A. Michta The American Interest Although jihadist terror periodically tested the resilience of governments and societies across the globe, open borders and free trade were widely touted as the way forward. In the context of post-Cold War unipolarity, many in academia, think tanks, and the media wanted to believe that the “first universal nation” could shape world politics ... Read More »

U.S. Destroyer, Coast Guard Help Pacific Island Nations Patrol their Waters

As Arleigh Burke guided-missile destroyer USS Shoup (DDG-86) steams through the Oceana region on an independent deployment, the crew is assisting small Pacific island nations with protecting their… Ben Werner USNI News Shoup is engaged in an Oceania Maritime Security Initiative (OMSI) deployment, which has the ship working with several Pacific island nations to offer training on how to protect crops. A nation’s territorial waters extend 12 miles from shore, but countries can claim exclusive economic zones – controlling access ... Read More »

Russia’s grand strategy: how Putin is using Syria conflict to turn Turkey into Moscow’s proxy

Turkey, Russia and Iran have actively involved themselves in the Syrian conflict, each with their own divergent interests. Mustafa Demir The Conversation Moscow and Tehran have put their support behind the regime of the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, hoping it retains its influence over the strategic Syrian region. Meanwhile, since the very beginning of the crisis in 2011, Turkey has been obsessed with removing Assad. So far, the three countries have managed to accommodate their various aims. And the meetings ... Read More »

The Eastern Mediterranean ‘may face a serious crisis’

On 29 October, on the day of the Republic Day of of Turkey, Ankara will take a step towards its fully fledged participation in the energy game that is underway in the Eastern Mediterranean. Nefeli Tzanetakou This move, according to the former head of the National Intelligence Service of the Republic of Cyprus, Andreas Pentaras, will mark the beginning of a period of absolute diplomatic instability in the region in question. As Sputnik has reported, it has not yet been clarified the exact ... Read More »

Isis kidnaps dozens of women and children as it makes desperate last stand in Syria

Around 90 women and their children were among the hundreds of civilians captured from a camp for displaced people in the eastern Syrian province of Deir ez-Zor, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Richard Hall Independent Isis fighters have kidnapped dozens of women and children in the eastern Syrianprovince of Deir ez-Zor, where the group is making a desperate last stand. The captives were among some 250 civilians taken from the al-Bahra displacement camp, near the town of Hajin, after Isis fighters stormed the area on ... Read More »

Turkey’s Erdogan drops bombshell twist in the Khashoggi case as Trump appears to side with Saudis

While US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was meeting with Saudi Arabia’s leaders on Tuesday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan dropped a bombshell of a new twist in the investigation into the… Alex Lockie Insider According to Erdogan, Turkish investigators who searched the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul found surfaces there newly painted over. Previous news reports have cited anonymous Turkish officials suggesting that a hit team of 15 Saudis killed and dismembered Khashoggi, a… “My hope is that we can ... Read More »

Xinjiang top official defends Uighur ‘internment camps’

The top official in China’s Xinjiang region has given the most detailed description yet of the alleged use of internment camps for Uighur Muslims. BBC In an interview with state media, Shohrat Zakir said the “vocational education” centres were proving effective in staving off terrorism. He said “trainees” were grateful for the opportunity to change their ways and make their lives more “colourful”. China’s massive security crackdown in Xinjiang has sparked widespread alarm. Rights groups say Muslims are being detained ... Read More »

More than three million Australians living in poverty, Acoss report reveals

Peak welfare body calls for overhaul of employment services and at least two days a week of subsidised early childhood care Gareth Hutchens The Guardian Poverty has become a consistent feature of Australian life, with millions still living below the breadline despite 27 years of uninterrupted economic growth, the Australian Council of Social Service says. A vital circuit-breaker is needed, including a complete overhaul of Australia’s employment services, a commitment to “full employment” and a guarantee of at least two days ... Read More »

Yemen on brink of ‘world’s worst famine in 100 years’ if war continues

UN warns that famine could overwhelm country in next three months, with 13 million people at risk of starvation. Hannah Summers The Guardian Yemen could be facing the worst famine in 100 years if airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition are not halted, the UN has warned. If war continues, famine could engulf the country in the next three months, with 12 to 13 million civilians at risk of starvation, according to Lise Grande, the agency’s humanitarian coordinator for Yemen. She told ... Read More »

Washington Think Tanks Still Divided On Whether To Return Saudi Donations Over Journalist’s Disappearance

The Middle East Institute, a prominent Washington think tank, said it would no longer seek donations from Saudi Arabia, but the Center for Strategic and International Studies said it was undecided. Emily Tamkin BuzzFeedNews The Center for Strategic and International Studies, one of Washington’s most prominent think tanks on international affairs, still has not decided whether to return funding from Saudi Arabia in the… But another influential research center, the Middle East Institute, said it would stop taking Saudi donations ... Read More »

We need a new human right – to protect our freedom to live without threat from the skies

In little more than 100 years, humans have radically transformed the sky: chemically, territorially and militarily. Authors: The Conversation In this increasingly contested space, technological developments are accelerating the transformation. New forms of military and commercial exploitation are increasing the disparity of power between those who dominate airspace and outer space, and the billions of people on the ground affected by the… People are increasingly vulnerable to being tracked, watched and targeted from above. The use of combat drones is ... Read More »

Stephen Hawking’s last warning from beyond the grave

Acclaimed physicist Stephen Hawking’s last message to the universe is a plea for unity in the “isolated and insular” age of Brexit and Trump, and his fear that a “global revolt against experts” might get in the… Nick Miller msn Hawking’s family gathered at London’s Science Museum on Monday to launch his last book, Brief Answers to the Big Questions, which he began but did not finish before his death in March, aged… With tears in her eyes, Lucy Hawking ... Read More »

Universities should tolerate ‘offensive’ ideas

It goes without saying – or at least it ought to – that freedom of speech should be a core value of universities. As a scholar of freedom of speech and a university academic, it has been gratifying to see so many vice-chancellors (and a… Adrienne Stone Brisbane Times This attention to freedom of speech is a response to recent controversies on campus. Bettina Arndt’s university tour met with rowdy and obstructive demonstrations. Students have accused each other of bullying ... Read More »

Viral letter to PM shows the people are united

The Prime Minister’s rejection of the Australian Medical Association’s call for the transfer of the asylum seeker and refugee children and their families off Nauru has been swift but it hasn’t deterred us. Dr Sara Townend Brisbane Times Now, just over two weeks later, more than 5600 doctors and medical students from around the country say they agree. They’ve signed an open letter to the Prime Minister Scott Morrison. A letter we felt compelled to write because the situation on ... Read More »

Enormous, rare Viking ship burial discovered by radar

Archaeologists in Norway using ground-penetrating radar have detected one of the largest Viking ship graves ever found. Andrew Curry National Geographic Archaeologists have found the outlines of a Viking ship buried not far from the Norwegian capital of Oslo. The 65-foot-long ship was covered over more than 1,000 years ago to serve as the final resting place of a prominent Viking king or queen. That makes it one of the largest Viking ship graves ever found. Experts say intact Viking ... Read More »

Biggest split in modern Orthodox history: Russian Orthodox Church breaks ties with Constantinople

In the biggest rift in modern Orthodox history, the Russian Orthodox Church has cut all ties with the Constantinople Patriarchate, effectively splitting from it after it granted independence to the… RT The Holy Synod, the governing body of the Russian Orthodox Church, has ruled that any further clerical relations with Constantinople are impossible, Metropolitan Hilarion, the head of the… “A decision about the full break of relations with the Constantinople Patriarchate has been taken at a Synod meeting” that is currently ... Read More »