World News you probably haven't heard.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s “Ya’ll Come” open door policy has led to a backlash race to build border reinforcements in Europe: The Shengen arrangements, whereby EU citizens had freedom to move state to state, has essentially ended. Hungary has closed its border to Serbia; Bulgaria has closed its border to Turkey (and built a wall/fence); Austria has closed its border to Hungary; Hungary has closed its border to Austria; Germany temporarily closed its border to Austria; Slovenia is building a wall on its Croatian border. Turkey has closed its doors to refugees from the Middle East. The UK has closed its doors to the EU through Brexit. Now as Merkel reverses her position, dashed expectations have left desperate refugee camps in the Middle East and North Africa. These are Angela Merkel’s walls, and these camps are her legacy, along with the rise of populist nationalists throughout Europe.
Spain has issued a warrant for the arrest of Catalon’s democratically elected leaders after the independence vote. The charges haven’t been used since 1981 and carry a sentence of up to 30 years. EU has gone quiet. Scotland, Wales and any group who fancies secession: take note.
Anti-semitism is on the rise in Germany, especially bullying and harassment in schools. 470 cases reported in 2016. The Muslim community in Germany has strongly condemned this behavior and pledged to make it clear that this is not acceptable. This is a German problem, not merely a Muslim problem. We must find ways to accept one another.
Why isn’t China putting the squeeze on North Korea? Because China has a vested interest in the division between North and South Korea. China prefers a divided state and buffer to having a united Korea aligned with the West, which is why they have not flexed their muscles to finding a solution. Meanwhile the US is installing an anti-ballistic missile system in South Korea.
China has also stepped up its assertion of its claim to sovereignty in the South China Sea, threatening trade routes, security routes, and fishing in The Philippines and Vietnam.
Donald Trump is flying through Tokyo, Seoul, Manila and 9 other countries at the moment. China's sentiment is that President Trump needs to learn some things from China if he wants to #MAGA.
Russia continues to exert itself in the Middle East, particularly in Syria. So much ground was lost under Obama. Meanwhile, Forbes Magazine named Vladimir Putin the most powerful person in the world. Russia is also celebrating the 100 year anniversary of the Russian Revolution.
The Middle East
2,521 civilians died in the liberation of Mosul, Iraq. A great city which took centuries to build is now a pile of rubble. God help them.
80% of the world's opium is grown in Iraq; the US consumes 70% of it. Let that sink in and rethink everything you think you know about our role in Iraq.
Prime Saad Al-Hariri has resigned, fearing for his life. His father was assassinated and he knew his days were numbered.
US has recently landed over 6,000 soldiers in Somalia. YTD missions is over 3,500 against ISIL/Daesh/IS, compared to just 172 last year.
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