Stories of the Week
EU at any cost. Desperate refugees, the bulk of them from Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan, have been pouring into Europe for weeks. But countries like Hungary do not want them, and have put in place a number of measures (including razor wire and police squads) to deter them. Of course, there’s no stopping desperate people, so the refugees are merely re-routing themselves through Croatia and even eyeing Schengen member Slovenia as they head to their ultimate destination, generally Germany or Scandinavia.
Worst PR move ever in Egypt. The Egyptian government screwed up epically when it fired on (and killed) numerous Mexican tourists. AND THEN they tried to say it was all the tourists’ fault for being where they weren’t supposed to be without permits. AND THEN information came to light indicating they did have permits, and also had a guide. AND THEN the casualty rate was higher than first reported. Mexican officials and grieving family members have gone to Egypt to sort the mess out.
Republicans debate, all ten thousand of them. The GOP’s potential contenders all warred it out this Wednesday to see who would become the part nominee. Carly Fiorina by all accounts won the night (albeit while delivering some extreme misinformation on Planned Parenthood.) Frontrunners Donald Trump and Ben Carson fared more poorly, while Marco Rubio saw a bit of a rise. The main takeaway? It is very unclear who will be the Republican nominee.
- The California legislature has approved assisted suicide.
- #IStandWithAhmed: A 14 year-old boy was arrested for bringing a homemade clock to school in Texas, where it was presumed to be a bomb. As the boy was Muslim, this has raised understandable concerns about Islamophobia.
- Facebook is about to be so much more dislikable.
- Your weekend read: The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration.
- We’re all sad about Serena Williams, but she’s still great.
- Around 9 million more Americans have health insurance than this time last year.
- Gas explosions killed around 100 people in India at the beginning of the week.
- Delhi is seeing its worst outbreak of dengue in five years.
- Air India grounded 125 crew members for reportedly being overweight.
- A Taliban jailbreak in Ghazni, Afghanistan freed scores of people.
- Kabul is holding its first food festival, touting Afghan-grown products.
- The Taliban is theoretically kissing and making up.
- Solar water heaters are helping a Pakistani town move away from wood.
- Sri Lanka has said it will form a commission to investigate crimes committed during its civil war. The UN has also begun to apply pressure.
- Nepal has finally approved a new constitution.
Southeast & East Asia:
- Massive forest fires are spreading smog across Indonesia.
- North Korea is back to threatening everyone with nukes.
- Japan has a controversial vote coming up that could (and probably will) undo the country’s preventative measures blocking Japanese military assistance in external wars. Many Japanese citizens are very opposed to the bill, but Prime Minister Abe is pushing it through regardless.
Europe & Eurasia:
- Jeremy Corbyn, the heavily leftist British politician, has beat all odds to lead the Labour Party.
- Following an unprecedented wave of refugees, Germany canceled the Schengen agreement and closed its borders again over the weekend, seemingly forcing the rest of the EU to take action.
- Croatia’s leader says that refugees (who have been turned away from Hungary and are now moving towards Croatia) will be allowed to pass through on their way to western countries.
- Greece goes to the polls on September 20, and Prime Minister Tsipras has a lot to be concerned about. He has also rejected a coalition option.
- Moldovans are calling en masse for their government’s resignation.
- Russia’s presence in Syria is concerning many Western countries.
Middle East & North Africa:
- In a tragic sequence of events, the Egyptian military mistook a group of Mexican tourists and their guides for terrorists and killed 12 people while leaving an additional dozen wounded.
- Egypt’s cabinet has also quit, which isn’t great news.
- A Mecca crane killed over a hundred pilgrims making the hajj in Saudi Arabia.
- Clashes between Jews and Palestinians marked the beginning of the High Holy Days in Israel.
- Yemen’s prime minister returned to Aden months after fleeing.
- Suicide bombings killed several people in Cameroon. The attack is believed to be the work of Boko Haram.
- The DRC is doing surprisingly well economically.
- Aid workers in South Sudan say they fear increasingly for their safety.
- Sierra Leone has reported a new Ebola death.
- Presidential guard officers in Burkina Faso have seized power in a coup.
- Chile was hit by a massive quake and then 14 foot waves.
- Following severe forest fires, California has declared a state of emergency.
- A professor at Delta State University was shot and killed early this week by another professor, who later killed himself.
- An appeals court has briefly halted the execution of a man in Oklahoma following emerging evidence indicating he might be innocent.
- A young refugee on Manus Island (where refugees are held while Papua New Guinea re-writes its refugee policies) was reportedly assaulted violently by a guard.
- Malcolm Turnbull has ousted Tony Abbott as prime minister of Australia.