Politics

Brexit: Britain leaving the EU could be a messy divorce

BRUSSELS (AP) — When Britons decide next week whether to leave the European Union the question will be simple: yes or no. Actually leaving would be far more complicated, rather like a drawn-out, painful and possibly bitter divorce. Opinion polls suggest it could go either way on June 23, when Britain chooses whether to leave the 28-nation bloc it joined in 1973, with undecided voters likely to make the difference. As luck would have it, a new and never before ... Read More »

Israel wants to sign US aid deal before Obama depar

Negotiations over military aid package ongoing in Washington over level, whether part can be spent in Israel.. Key voices inside the government are arguing it is in Israel’s interests to sign a Memorandum of Understanding to govern US military aid for the next decade while President Barack Obama is in office, as a way of locking in support for the deal from wider swaths of the American public… Source: Israel wants to sign US aid deal before Obama departs – ... Read More »

The new norm: When tragedy hits, Americans stand divided

Three of the most contentious questions in American culture and politics — gay rights, gun control and terrorism — collided in a horrific way in an Orlando nightclub early Sunday. It is not entirely clear what inspired Omar Mateen to commit the worst mass shooting in U.S. history, or what might have been done to stop it. But it happened in a gay club, just two weeks shy of the first anniversary… Source: The new norm: When tragedy hits, Americans ... Read More »

Italian newspaper draws criticism with ‘Mein Kampf’ giveaway

Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi calls the decision by Il Giornale ‘squalid’.. An Italian newspaper has been criticised for distributing free copies of an annotated version of Hitler’s Mein Kampf with a paid supplement to Saturday’s edition. Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said on Twitter that Il Giornale’s decision to give away the copies of the Nazi leader’s political treatise was “squalid” and expressed solidarity with Italy’s Jewish community… Source: Italian newspaper draws criticism with ‘Mein Kampf’ giveaway Read More »

Brexit: ‘Leave’ or ‘Out’ 10 points ahead in poll on Britain’s EU referendum

The “Leave” or “Out” camp was 10 points ahead of “Remain” with less than two weeks to go before Britain’s referendum on whether to stay in the European Union, according to a poll by ORB for The Independent newspaper published on Friday. It was the biggest lead enjoyed by those wanting Britain to quit the 28-member bloc since the poll series started a year ago, The Independent said. Britons will vote on June 23 on whether to leave the world’s ... Read More »

Backlash in Cuba

Obama’s historic visit was a smash hit in Havana. Fidel Castro wasn’t going to take that lying down.. By ANN LOUISE BARDACH HAVANA — These days Fidel Castro doesn’t often leave his comfortable home in Siboney, a leafy suburb west of this city. But on April 19, the 89-year-old Cuban leader emerged, aides at his side, wearing a royal blue Adidas sports jacket over a blue plaid shirt, and was driven two miles to the immense Palacio de Convenciones. Inside he ... Read More »

Sweden’s solidarity is needed on the UN Security Council

On November 4th Americans will elect a new President. José Ramos-Horta  As for me, from the little country of Timor-Leste I am already invoking God and all Christian Saints and Animist Spirits to deliver to us Hillary Rodham Clinton. Timor-Leste owes much to William Jefferson Clinton, who as President in 1999 played a central role in getting the UN to authorize an international peace force to be deployed to our island, quelling the violence in our countryside and paving the ... Read More »

The Chilling Effect of Fear at America’s Colleges

The coddling of students’ minds has resulted in grave restrictions of free speech on campus—but academic leaders are also to blame. Jonathan R. Cole The Atlantic No great universities exist in the world without a deep institutional commitment to academic freedom, free inquiry, and free expression. For the past 60 years, American research universities have been vigilant against external and internal attempts to limit or… The Chilling Effect… Read More »

Memo to the Coalition: don’t come to an arts policy debate without an arts policy

Cultural policy is an election issue for the first time in 20 years. To understand why, look no further than arts minister Mitch Fifield’s performance at an industry debate.. You have to feel for the arts minister, Mitch Fifield. It’s never easy turning up to a political debate where most of the audience is against you. That’s what Fifield had to endure at Wednesday’s national arts election debate, held at Melbourne’s Wheeler Centre. As they say in show business, it ... Read More »

The case for Hillary Clinton, by a Bernie voter

As a woman, I know that having a female nominee is a really big deal.. When my grandmother was born in Philadelphia in 1920, women couldn’t vote. Her opinion about her country and the people who governed it mattered less — or, frankly, not at all — than the men around her. Even after the ratification of the 19th Amendment on Aug. 20, 1920, my… Source: The case for Hillary Clinton, by a Bernie voter – The Washington Post Read More »

Israel suspends permits after deadly attack

The Israeli military revoked on June 9 permits for 83,000 Palestinians to visit Israel and said it would send hundreds more troops to the occupied West Bank after a Palestinian gun attack that killed four Israelis in Tel Aviv. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the assault by two gunmen on Wednesday in a trendy shopping and dining market near Israel’s Defense Ministry, but Hamas and other Palestinian militant groups were quick to praise it. The assailants came ... Read More »

Erdoğan lifts Turkish MPs’ immunity in bid to kick out pro-Kurdish parties

President signs bill that allows prosecution of lawmakers currently under investigation – most of whom are from pro-Kurdish or opposition parties.. The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has signed a bill lifting lawmakers’ immunity from prosecution – a constitutional change likely to remove a pro-Kurdish opposition party from parliament… Source: Erdoğan lifts Turkish MPs’ immunity in bid to kick out pro-Kurdish parties | World news | The Guardian Read More »

Britain reborn as Greek wild-child?

ATHENS // It is a surreal experience to write about a possible EU Brexit from the country that was the first to raise the spectre of bailing out of the bloc. Greece, was painted as Europe’s wild-child last summer when it went to the polls in a Yes or No referendum on a multibillion-euro bailout and its attached demands from creditors. It was interpreted by many as the country deciding whether or not to stay in the EU. The initial ... Read More »

Rodrigo Duterte ‘legalises’ murder of drug dealers in Philippines

EVEN before Philippines president-elect Rodrigo Duterte told citizens he would give a medal to anyone who shot dead a drug dealer in a national address at the weekend, the bodies were starting to pile up.. But since that speech, at least five people allegedly connected to the drug trade as well as an indeterminate number of low level pushers have been exterminated by street assassins. Unlike the hundreds of petty criminals and drug pushers who have “involuntarily… Source: Rodrigo Duterte ... Read More »

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Beijing’s artificial islands bring South China Sea crisis to the boil

A tribunal of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague is ready to give its verdict on a complaint by the Philippines, which has challenged China’s territorial rights in the South China Sea. The verdict is set to address the simmering crisis in the South China Sea which will come to the boil later this month. Assertion China has rightfully asserted that the tribunal cannot adjudicate maritime boundaries; these can only be determined through bilateral negotiations between the parties ... Read More »

Nigeria: The Challenge of Military Reform

Nigeria’s military is in distress. President Muhammadu Buhari’s over-due reforms aren’t yet enough to turn an under-resourced, over-stretched and corrupt army back into a professional force. A complete overhaul is needed, including accountability for human rights abuses, if Nigerians are not to be left at the mercy of Boko Haram and other armed groups… Source: Nigeria: The Challenge of Military Reform – International Crisis Group Read More »