News Round-Up 5/1/2014: May Day!

It’s May Day!

reuters / families protest the likely boko haram-led kidnapping of over 200 girls in nigeria
reuters / families protest the likely boko haram-led kidnapping of over 200 girls in nigeria
reuters / an iraqi voter raises her finger
reuters / an iraqi voter raises her finger
reuters / a painting in south korea where a shell from north korea landed several years ago
reuters / a painting in south korea where a shell from north korea landed several years ago

Assorted Stand-Outs:

  • Press freedom 2013: The media has hit an all time low.
  • Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams has been arrested and brought in for questioning regarding the 1972 IRA-led murder of a widow in Northern Ireland. Jean McConville, a mother of 10, was shot in the back of the head after rumors surfaced that she was an informant. Adams is denying the charges and asserting his innocence. Regardless, the move is likely to cause a political earthquake in Belfast, Dublin, and potentially London. (WaPo disagrees with that, however.)
  • WaPo: The changed life of the poor — Better off, but far behind. Related: Poverty is not a spectacle. Somewhat related: The U.S. is the best place to be rich.
  • Oklahoma will review this week’s botched execution.  Related: For more states, execution means improvisation. (And Americans are gradually falling out of love with capital punishment.) Also, in America, punishment comes before crime.
  • In depressing Texas news, this vet should be put in prison. In better Texas news, a challenge is being made to the state’s gun laws.
  • A kind and wonderful veteran has offered his burial plot to a fellow veteran so she can be buried alongside her female partner. In less happy military news: When black hair is against the rules.
  • The U.S. spends way more on teenage pregnancy than it does on family planning. Also this probably won’t help that.
  • The FCC isn’t afraid to use the nuclear option on net neutrality.
  • Democrats go to war with Republicans over the minimum wage filibuster. Also in bipartisan politics: Voters favor Democrats are nearly every issue…but that doesn’t mean they’ll vote for them.
  • The Pepco Deal, Explained.
  • Poll: Americans have an extreme lack of faith in the global war on poverty.
  • Fed analysts are retaining their optimism regarding the economy despite faltering.
  • Culture: George Clooney and marriage. (Really, using Clooney as a means of opening up an interesting conversation re: the evolving nature of marriage today.)

South Asia:

  • The TTP may be prepared to accept the Pakistani Constitution.
  • Fighting in South Waziristan has the TTP and Pakistani forces at odds.
  • In a surprising response, an Afghan couple reportedly cut off the ears and nose of a cleric and family relative who (reportedly) raped their daughter while she was drugged.
  • A U.S. army nurse killed in Afghanistan is being remembered as a hero.
  • An explosion at an Afghan coal mine killed at least 17 people yesterday.
  • Abductees in Bangladesh have been found floating in a river near Dhaka, all dead.
  • NYT: An uneasy inheritance of India‘s political dynasty.
  • Two explosions in Chennai killed a woman and a child. The bombs were planted on a train running behind schedule, so it is unclear what the target actually may have been.
  • In one of the few low-turnout areas during the election, Kashmir saw more security forces than voters.

Southeast & East Asia:

  • Today in tragic news: Last words and video footage from the South Korean ferry.
  • An attack in a train station in China has killed three people.
  • WaPo: Obama’s trip to “Asia” (read: East and Southeast Asia) shows his comfort with, and personal ties to, the region.
  • The search for the missing Malaysian plane has gone entirely underwater.
  • Forces in the Philippines have clashed with Abu Sayyaf militants.
  • Thailand will try to hold an election in July.

Eurasia & Europe:

  • The Ukraine says that pro-Russian militants have “won” the eastern section of the country.
  • In Turkey, May Day protesters have been hit with tear gas near Taksim Square. (Related: The rising costs of Turkey’s Syrian quagmire.)

Middle East & North Africa:

  • The U.S. says Syria is using its remaining chemical weapons stockpile as “leverage.” An airstrike on a Syrian school has also left 47 people dead, the majority of whom were children.
  • Despite dangers galore, Iraqis are headed to the polls. Vote tallying has begun and Al-Maliki is in the lead, to the shock of few.
  • Don’t forget about Al Qaeda, says the State Department.
  • As Israel and Palestine again clash, many feel Netanyahu is more concerned with staying in power than with a peace deal. The Israeli leader is also prepared to make a push to classify Israel as a Jewish state, despite the nation’s large non-Jewish Arab population.
  • Migrants are dying by the hundreds after being left in the Libyan desert.
  • In Egypt, al-Sisi’s challenger is facing an uphill battle.
  • 20 people have died in southern Yemen as a ground assault begins.

Eastern, Central, & Western Africa:

  • Panic continues in Nigeria following what was likely a Boko Haram-led abduction.
  • U.S. Sec. of State John Kerry is optimistic over a “strengthened” fighting force in South Sudan, where violence and internal rifts have threatened to tear apart the young and struggling nation. Warring leaders recently drew rebuke from the UN regarding the atrocities that have occurred recently, specifically between ethnic and religious groups.

Americas:

  • Mexican cultural appropriation runs rampant.
  • In El Salvador, former president Francisco Flores is set to face corruption and embezzlement charges.
  • Toronto mayor Rob Ford continues to be one of the more embarrassing elements of Canadian politics: A new video has surfaced regarding his antics.
  • Life in Canada, home of the world’s most affluent middle class.
  • U.S. : An oil train has derailed in VA, causing a massive fire.
  • Boxer and Pistole still like each other. This article relevant solely because your blogger has unending amounts of unconditional love for the more lefty and feisty senator from California.
  • Hillary hates the press, no one is shocked.
  • Reports of sexual assault in the military have risen 50%.
  • Kristof op-ed: Job killing or life saving?
  • Health spending gains as Obamacare users flood the market.
  • Of all the regions in the United States, the Southeast is home to the most preventable deaths.

Daily Wow: I hope you’re as excited as I am that John Oliver is about to cover actual news on a weekly basis

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