Sweet farewell — of sorts. The Blues & the News will momentarily be moving to weekends while the blog undergoes some life shifts and growing pains. We will see how this goes. Kickoff scheduled for next weekend as opposed to this upcoming one. Failure or success? We will seeeee!
- Which countries still outlaw blasphemy and apostasy?
- A shortage of doctors is being cited in the VA delays. | Shinseki has formally apologized and is promising changes.
- A formal congratulations to the two talented souls who are now the co-champions of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, Sriram Hathwar of NY and Ansun Sujoe from this blog’s home state of TX! Unfortunately, their victory has been accompanied by a disappointing amount of racism and vitriol. Both boys are Indian-American, a trend reflected by the past eight winners. One has to wonder which is more un-American: two citizens winning a difficult competition, or a hoard of individuals on the Internet who enjoy spewing racism at teenagers.
- What fueled the rise of the Euroright?
- The National Park Service is set to add LGBT sites to its national map.
- Piketty defendeth himself. Full response from the French wonk king.
- Hillary and Barack try to just do lunch. | Also, the Hillary book is coming and this blog is excited.
- Need a drink? Apparently Wisconsin is your best bet.
- In Lahore, the CJ has finally taken notice of the honor killing of a woman right outside of the high court. A report is reportedly being commissioned. Four people have also been arrested in connection with the case, which has resonated more abroad than it has in Pakistan.
- Pakistan continues to leave its mark on the World Cup (TWO WEEKS AWAY).
- Al Qaeda is growing in Afghanistan as US troops prepare to depart and the nation’s power transition approaches.
- 8 insurgents have been killed and 18 more injured in a NATO operation.
- AfPak dialogue of the day: Cross-border shelling.
- The horrifying state of gang rapes in India.
- Both Modi and RBI Governor Rajan agree that India’s inflation needs taming. Also in Modi news: His magnificence feels curricula should avoid teaching his life story for the time being.
Southeast & East Asia:
- “She Spots” are attempting to make South Korea more female-friendly.
- China is VERY into US computers. i.e. The data on them.
Europe & Eurasia:
- Russia has withdrawn most of its troops from the Ukraine border, says Hagel.
- Putin’s Muslim family ties.
- The Gezi anniversary has arrived in Turkey.
- Despite shifting seas, Turkey’s relationship with Middle Eastern neighbor Israel remains.
Middle East & North Africa:
- In Syria, foreign jihadis are posing an increasing threat to the West.
- The UN is mulling aid to Syria citing Chapter 7. | Syria’s chemical weapons deal is crumbling. | Jordan and Syria are struggling to maintain ties.
- The art of debate is firing up public discourse in Jordan.
- Fatah and Hamas are looking to agree upon a prime minister as Palestinian unity talks move forward.
- Observers say Egypt‘s election “fell short” of democratic standards.
- The struggle for information in Bahrain remains a real hazard.
- Kuwait has a plan to buy foreign citizenship for Bedoon.
- An epidemic is plaguing Iraq: Mental illness.
- Lacking a president, it may be a new electoral law that Lebanon truly needs.
- In Iran, an official has remarked that exploring the full extent of the corruption under Ahmadinejad could cause “social shock.”
- West African leaders are meeting in Ghana to hold an emergency security summit following violent outbursts in Nigeria and Mali.
- Protesters in the Central African Republic are demanding the resignation of the country’s leaders.
- Christian and Muslim violence has continued to rage in the CAR.
- Nigeria’s leader has vowed “total war” on Boko Haram.
- Making its way through Puerto Rico, cocaine is gaining a foothold in the US.
- In Colombia, the June 15th presidential run-off election will likely determine the country’s peace prospects.
- Haiti’s “Picasso” is finding art in tragedy.
- Snowden and the US are continuing their back and forth.
- Congress really is getting worse.
- Neighborhood violence hurts the scores of African-American student test-takers.
- An Australian mother is rightfully horrified after her daughter’s armpits were shaved in class by a teacher and in front of other classmates.