Global News Journal

Angela Merkel’s “read my lips” moment

May 31, 2010

    Angela Merkel has already abandoned plans to pursue billions of euros in tax cuts next year — the central policy pledge of her 2009 election campaign and main plank of her 7-month-old coalition agreement with the Free Democrats.

Colombia’s Santos vs Mockus – Who will be the next president?

May 31, 2010

Colombia’s presidential electiCOLOMBIA-ELECTIONS/on had been painted like an establishment versus anti-establishment contest between Juan Manuel Santos – a former government minister and son of a wealthy family – and Antanas Mockus, who once dressed up as a superhero while mayor of Bogota and sent mimes into the streets to shame residents into obeying the laws. With a strong party machinery and the rural popularity of President Alvaro Uribe, Santos cruised to victory on Sunday when nearly 15 million Colombians caste their ballots, 47 percent for Santos – not enough to bypass a June 20 run-off but enough to send a strong signal of support for the former defense and finance minister. Opinion polls in the lead up to the vote showed Mockus and Santos deadlocked with no clear winner; the surveys said the same thing about the second round in June. But looking at a map of who won each province, Colombia is orange – the color of Santos. Only a single province was colored green for Mockus, trapped in the ginger sea. Alliances will be key for the run-off, but after securing only a fifth of votes, Mockus might find himself all but friendless. How would the country be different if Santos won versus if Mockus were elected?

Holiday in the “axis of evil”

May 28, 2010

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This article by Stephen Kinzer originally appeared in GlobalPost.

YAZD, Iran —“You are American?” a surprised Iranian asked me as I sat down near him in a restaurant famous for eggplant and pomegranate stews. “How did you get a visa?”

from MacroScope:

Spend Save Man Woman

May 28, 2010

Far from being lauded as a virtue, China's high savings rate has been blamed for the economic imbalances underlying the global financial crisis. The criticism being that the Chinese spend too little and rely too much on exporting to Western consumers.

Japan prime ministers haunted by ever-present media

May 27, 2010

Japan’s Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama at a news conference on April 28, 2010. (REUTERS/Toru Hanai)

from Pakistan: Now or Never?:

Between golf and war, Pakistan’s General Kayani’s future is debated

May 26, 2010

kayani profileThe Pakistan Army prides itself on being an institution which rises above politics and personal ambition, committed to defend the interests of the nation. That this has not always been the case is demonstrated by its history of military coups, and a tendency of past military rulers, from General Zia ul-Haq to former president Pervez Musharraf, to impose a very personal brand of leadership.  Where Zia pushed Pakistan towards hardline Islam, Musharraf aimed at "enlightened moderation" in a country he wanted modelled more on Turkey than on Saudi Arabia.

EU squabbles feed market frenzy

May 25, 2010
Jose Manuel Barroso

Jose Manuel Barroso

  The European Union can rarely have been more in need of a
show of unity than now, as it tries to convince financial
markets it can handle the euro zone’s debt crisis.

Deal or no deal for Iran?

May 25, 2010

In broad terms Iran seems to have done what world powers urged it to do months ago and accepted a plan to part with some of its nuclear material.

The Fire Next Time in Thailand

May 24, 2010

(Thai firefighters douse the Central World shopping mall building that was set on fire by anti-government “red shirt” protesters in Bangkok May 19, 2010.  REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis)

Tax evasion becomes extreme sport in Greece

May 21, 2010

By Dina Kyriakidou

GREECE-TOURISM/In Greece, hiding a little from the taxman is considered good sport, so the government, struggling with a debt crisis is shaking international markets, is firing every weapon in its arsenal to crack down on rampant tax evasion.