Stories of the Week:
Grexit. The Greek economy is about to asphyxiate and no one seems to have a clear solution. Following a resounding referendum against austerity and the initial Eurozone bailout plan, the Greek finance minister quit. Meanwhile the Eurozone chose to not provide crucial life support funding, which meant Greece had a number of days to come up with a plan or risk exiting the Eurozone. Prime Minister Tsipras presented a plan at the eleventh hour which makes concessions to austerity. Now it remains to be seen whether or not the country will be forced to exit the Eurozone.
The Confederacy Conflict. South Carolina has voted to remove its controversial Confederate flag from in front of the state house. This has been met with considerable resistance from various parties, namely Republican politicians who argue the flag is a part of the state’s cultural heritage. The flag came down Friday morning.
Iran talks. After a week of arguments and upheaval, US Secretary of State John Kerry seemed upbeat regarding nuclear talks between Iran and the P5+1 countries. However, many parties have still called for caution and congressional Republicans in particular have rejected any future deal out of hand. The clock is ticking on a solution, however, and any deal will likely come soon.
- The USA decisively won the FIFA Women’s World Cup against Japan in a 5-2 game that saw four goals in the first fourteen minutes.
- Upsetting facts: despite being the most-watched soccer game of all time, almost no one sponsored the USA v. Japan game. Moreover, the American women’s team were paid four times less than the American men’s team (who, unlike the World Cup winning women’s team, lost in the round of 16.)
- Children have been psychologically impacted by militancy in extreme ways.
- Reddit Revolt.
- Bill Cosby is basically everything you probably thought.
- UNESCO has added 27 new cultural heritage sites, with numerous others threatened.
- Police halted the lynching of Christians accused of blasphemy in Pakistan early on in the week.
- In a rare meeting of the minds, Pakistan and India have agreed to work together to halt terrorism.
- Pakistan has termed recent Afghan-Taliban talks as a “breakthrough.”
- A former Pakistani Taliban spokesman has been killed, according to reports.
- 23 people died in a stampede in Bangladesh during a clothes giveaway.
Southeast & East Asia:
- Women in Burma are still struggling for their rights.
- Burma is set to carry out its first historic election in 25 years. What it will do is unclear, however. The terrors facing the Rohingya fleeing persecution in Burma are numerous.
- The 16 year-old blogger arrested for criticizing Singapore‘s recently deceased leader has been released.
- China‘s stock market has crashed, epically.
- A volcanic eruption is causing airports to close in Indonesia.
Europe & Eurasia:
- In an historic referendum, Greece voted no to austerity. Greece’s finance minister promptly resigned.
- Chechens are aiding Ukrainians in the fight against Russia.
- A Ukrainian soldier will be tried in Russia without a jury.
- Russia has vetoed a UN move to label the Srebrenica genocide a genocide.
- The Tour de France saw a horrifying tangle of bikes and people this past weekend.
- Former Italian leader Silvio Berlusconi has been found guilty of bribery.
Middle East & North Africa:
- Iran began the week with a draft of a deal to curb sanctions and restore economic support following a reshuffling of its nuclear program. Despite some acrimony, optimism reigns.
- Syrian rebel groups are making advances in government-held territory.
- There are now more than four million Syrian refugees.
- An Iraqi fighter jet accidentally released a bomb over a Baghdad neighborhood, killing over a dozen people.
- Lebanon‘s presidential deadlock is now the longest in its history.
- A new TV show on Egyptian Jews is getting a lot of press but mixed reviews.
- Two Israeli citizens are reportedly being held by Hamas in Gaza.
- A key militant leader was killed in Algeria, according to French sources.
- Boko Haram has been stepping up its brutal attacks in Nigeria during the month of Ramadan.
- Forty years after independence, Mozambique is slowing transforming.
- The nations hardest hit by Ebola (Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone) will reportedly need $2 billion to rebuild their healthcare systems.
- Guinea’s former military ruler has been indicted for his actions during an infamous stadium massacre.
- Brazil is taking steps to reduce its high rate of Caesarean births.
- Both Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush think Puerto Rico should be allowed to file for bankruptcy.
- Pope Francis is touring Latin America and pushing for climate protection and anti-poverty measures.
- The New York Stock Exchange went down this week in an unprecedented computer crash for several hours.
- South Carolina voted to remove the Confederate flag from in front of its statehouse.
- Baltimore’s mayor has fired the city’s top cop.