14th December – International News Round-Up (Part II)

Security

Defense One

America’s Africa strategy going forward is apparently to focus on driving American investment into the region. While this might help the United States in increasing their stake in the region (economically), it is not clear the security implications this will have, given that China is economically and militarily firmly embedded.

“….But he did not announce significant new military assets or changes to the size, location or mission of U.S. troops in Africa to counter that threat. The new strategy calls for countering Chinese influence on the continent through bilateral trade and investment programs, while simultaneously reevaluating foreign aid and assistance programs, including financial support for United Nations peacekeeping missions in countries whose governments oppose American interests at the world body.”

Society

Pitbull covers Africa by Toto for the Aquaman movie.

Britain

BBC

Theresa May tells the EU that the withdrawal agreement won’t be passed by her parliament and that her MP’s still need convincing. EU leaders say this is the only deal that could possibly be negotiated. It seems that perception is where balance will be achieved.

United Nations

Al Jazeera

Head of the UNAIDS body has put in his papers following reports that he cultivated an unhealthy and damaging work environment. There were different scenarios including allegations of “a patriarchal workplace attitude” and “a cult of personality”.

United States

Jacobin

The Role that both Republicans and Democrats have played in ensuring that the war in Yemen continues.

Media

Polygon

How Cloverfield and The Cloverfield Paradox are connected.

 

July 24th – International News Round-Up (Part IV)

United Kingdom

LSE Blog

The increasing polarization of Brexit politics led to an enormous political space in the center. As Labour moved further left and insisted that all immigration was good, the Conservatives moved further right and insisted on being British. The post discusses how neo-liberalism as a political and economic ideology has led to the peculiar character of British politics at the moment.

Jeremy Corbyn (Source: Wiki Commons - https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/10/Jeremy_Corbyn_Bahrain_1.png/1024px-Jeremy_Corbyn_Bahrain_1.png)
Jeremy Corbyn (Source: Wiki Commons)

Libya

Al Jazeera

More reports of executions of ISIS linked rebels. This one is from Libya. According to a video that has been circulated online (which I have not personally watched). General Khalifa Haftar and his soldiers are said to be seen carrying out executions. This adds to the wider trend of executions of ISIS fighters from Iraq to Syria and Libya, after being sentenced by kangaroo courts.

General Haftar and his forces are still in control of the eastern part of Libya, with the backing of the UAE and Egypt.

Cambodia

The Cambodia Daily

The King of Cambodia, Norodom Shiamoni has reportedly left the country.

“His departure follows a formal petition delivered by the CNRP on Thursday asking the king to avoid endorsing the changes, which could hold the party liable for any endorsement of or affiliation with its former, exiled president Sam Rainsy.”

This is the not the first time the Head of State has done this. He made a trip to China during another critical time as negotiations for constitutional laws were taking place. The ruling CPP claims that they have exerted no pressure on the King and that he is acting purely on his own volition.

Security

Small Wars Journal

Trump’s pick for Special Ops and low intensity conflict has floated a scenario in which a commercially available drone could be used to great effect and he says that the future where that would be a reality is just 5 years out.

Jordan

Trend via Reuters

Two Jordanians entered the Israel embassy at Amman under the pretext of being workers and opened fire, before they were shot. Jordan and Israel don’t get into it very often, but Israel and its metal detectors at one of Islam’s holiest sites in the Middle East is causing increasing tension with its otherwise quiet (if reluctantly) neighbors.

Lebanon

Long War Journal

Hezbollah claims to have made advances on the Lebanese border against Sunni jihadist forces.

“Hay’at Tahrir al Sham (HTS), a coalition of different jihadist and rebel groups in Syria in which al Qaeda’s branch operates, has also claimed that its forces killed over 50 Hezbollah fighters and that several attacks were repelled. This number is likely exaggerated.”

Venezuela

Sputnik

President Maduro says that he will arrest all the Supreme Court judges that were appointed by the opposition led parliament. This is in response to what he sees as a new “parallel state” being formed.