Asia/Africa update: March 5 2019

ASIA AFGHANISTAN The New York Times highlights a budding split between urban and rural Afghans over peace talks with the Taliban: As American diplomats push for a peace deal with the Taliban to end the 18-year war, a strong voice of protest, largely coming from urban centers, has been cautioning against a rushed deal that could… Continue reading Asia/Africa update: March 5 2019

World update: December 15-16 2018

CLIMATE CHANGE The COP24 climate summit in Poland ended on Saturday with an agreement on implementing the Paris Climate Accord’s carbon emission pledges. But the process was not smooth and the outcome not without its issues: After fraught and much-delayed talks at the COP24 climate change conference here in Polish coal country, more than 190… Continue reading World update: December 15-16 2018

World update: December 14 2018

ASIA AFGHANISTAN A joint Afghan-US offensive in Kunar province late Thursday killed 20 Taliban fighters and/or 60 civilians, depending on whose story you believe. The Taliban are obviously pushing the latter scenario, while Kabul is obviously pushing the former. The savvy reader will note that they’re not mutually exclusive. Elsewhere, a drone strike in Helmand… Continue reading World update: December 14 2018

Asia/Africa update: December 10 2018

UNITED NATIONS ASIA The UN on Monday adopted the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration, absent 29 countries who have decided to reject the accord or are debating whether to reject it. It’s rare that an international treaty like this generates so much drama, but such is the power of racism I guess.… Continue reading Asia/Africa update: December 10 2018

Asia/Africa update: July 23 2018

ASIA ARMENIA Russian media has started portraying Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan as a “carbon copy” of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, which is obviously fighting words in Russia. Pashinyan has been trying to reassure Moscow that his accession as PM isn’t going to change the Russia-Armenia relationship, but he also went to the NATO summit two… Continue reading Asia/Africa update: July 23 2018

Asia/Africa update: July 21-22 2018

ASIA AFGHANISTAN Afghan Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum returned home on Sunday after spending the past 14 months in exile in Turkey dodging legal charges that he and his men kidnapped and tortured one of his political rivals in late 2016. He was welcomed home by a suicide bombing, later claimed by ISIS, at the… Continue reading Asia/Africa update: July 21-22 2018

Asia/Oceania/Africa update: July 18-19 2018

ASIA GEORGIA Georgia is run as a fiefdom by billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, who served one term as the country’s prime minister in 2012-2013 but prefers to operate behind the scenes to remain as unaccountable as possible. Earlier this year he stepped back into the spotlight a bit, returning to his previous post as head of the… Continue reading Asia/Oceania/Africa update: July 18-19 2018