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  William Vocke    Special to The China Post
Shortly after the Security Council unanimously condemned the recent North Korean missile launch and demanded that the Democratic People's Republic of Korea abandon nuclear testing, Pyongyangî–¸ rulers decided to up the political ante.
The hydra-headed challenge of global terrorism continues as the threat continues to change and mutate in response to increasingly effective counter-measures.
Regions of a vast landlocked country, remote but strategic, have fallen under the control of al-Qaida terrorists and fundamentalist forces. Hundreds of thousands of people have fled a regime which persecutes women, imposes stringent Sharia law, and desecrates and destroys ancient towns and even mosques. The outside world has shrugged off this simmering crisis. Afghanistan 2001?
The global economy risks sliding back into recession.
It's time once again to look at the crystal ball, or snow globe, and attempt to peer ahead at the global political and economic horizon as we enter the New Year.
One year ago the renowned author, playwright, and former President of Czech Republic Vaclav Havel died at age 75. In tribute to this extraordinary European Renaissance Man, I'm reissuing my column in the spirit of memory and the season.
The European Union, the concert of 27 countries ranging from the Bay of Biscay to the Baltics and the Balkans has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway.
The impending launch of a North Korean ballistic missile has as much to do with the propaganda goal of putting a satellite into orbit as to serve as a less than subtle bullying to neighboring states all undergoing a period of political transition.
Tis' the season in the General Assembly for some serious if generally overlooked work and reports. The Assembly's Third Committee has soundly condemned the continuing human and political rights abuses in three global transgressors; Syria, the Islamic Republic of Iran and the quaintly titled Democratic People's Republic of Korea, aka North Korea.
The historic visit of U.S. President Barack Obama to Myanmar, the highest profile American diplomatic contact ever to this long isolated political pariah state, saw the United States enter a high stakes geopolitical chess game in Southeast Asia.
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