Global News Journal

Berlusconi’s Italy: miracle or illusion?

August 13, 2008

Berlusconi holds up broom in NaplesResidents of Naples, who had promised to demand that Silvio Berlusconi be declared a “saint straightaway” (Santo subito!”) if he managed to clear their streets of rotting garbage, will probably agree with Newsweek’s headline “Miracle in 100 Days” about the Italian prime minister’s first three months in office. Resolving the city’s garbage crisis was supposed to be his top priority and he has managed it, for the moment at least, while his other prime target — crime, especially involving illegal immigrants — has been tackled in a very visual way by deploying thousands of soldiers to the streets to help the police (see earlier blog “Italy sends in troops, but why?“).

from Pakistan: Now or Never?:

Kashmir: is this a re-run of 1989?

August 12, 2008

Protesters shout pro-freedom slogans in Srinagar/Fayaz KabliAfter months of relative peace which turned Kashmir into a near-forgotten conflict, the region has exploded  again with some of the biggest protests since a separatist revolt erupted in 1989.  What started as a dispute over land allocated to Hindu pilgrims visiting a shrine in Kashmir has snowballed into a full-scale anti-India protest, uniting Kashmiri separatists and reviving calls for independence.

Iraqi politics riven by suspicion and intrigue

August 12, 2008

k22.jpg   “Kirkuk will never be part of Kurdistan, even if the blood
comes up to our knees!” a lawmaker hissed as he passed a group
of reporters outside parliament.

Can the Caucasus flames be controlled?

August 11, 2008

ossetia.jpgThe Caucasus tinderbox is alight again. How far will the flames spread this time and what can the outside world – the United States, the European Union, NATO – do to extinguish them?

Cold War reheated as U.S. and Russia duke it out over Georgia

August 11, 2008

Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin

The temperature at the United Nations Security Council hasn’t been this high in years — and it’s not because the U.N. management raised the thermostat slightly to cut electricity costs. It’s due to the heated exchange of insults and accusations between Russia and the United States, which has reached a fever pitch reminiscent of the Cold War years.

from Changing China:

Watching human rites

August 9, 2008

Hu Jintao and George BushIn the end they came of course. Remember all that talk about leaders boycotting the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games over China's ties with the government of Sudan or its crackdown on Tibetan rioters?

from Changing China:

The Games have begun, but what was that ceremony about?

August 8, 2008

Opening ceremony pictures

I've been deafened by the drums, astounded by the aerial acrobatics and blinded by the cornea-carving light show. The torch is lit in its giant cauldron hanging from the lip of the Bird's Nest stadium and the 2008 Olympic Games have begun.

Was South Ossetia’s fate sealed in Kosovo?

August 8, 2008

south-ossetia.jpgIs Kosovo to blame for the fighting in South Ossetia?

When the Serbian province seceded from Belgrade in February, South Ossetia was quick to reassert its own claim to international recognition.

Iran and women: Can appearances deceive?

August 8, 2008

iranian-women-walk-on-the-beach.jpg Iran is a land that cannot be easily pigeon-holed.

 America’s sworn enemy which brands the United States the “Great Satan” is the only country in the Middle East where citizens went onto the streets with a candlelit vigil in a spontaneous show of sympathy immediately after 9/11.

from Pakistan: Now or Never?:

Impeaching Musharraf will not end the problems

August 7, 2008

Pakistan's fractious coalition has agreed to begin impeachment proceedings against President Pervez Musharraf but can it really pull it off ?  Do they have the numbers -- the two-thirds majority required from the National Assembly and  Senate combined? Impeachement is like a trial, so what charges will they bring against him?