“The worst financial crisis since the Great Depression,” bas become standard shorthand for the global financial crash and resulting severe recession. This fall, we will mark the sixth anniversary of the 2008 benchmark bankruptcy of investment house Lehman Brothers.
Set to the tempo of escalating violence, widespread human rights violations, and spreading regional conflict, Syria's civil war continues into its fourth year. But beyond the increasingly grisly statistics, a U.N. panel has concluded the crisis has reached a “tipping point” threatening the entire region. Tellingly, both sides to the conflict, the Assad family regime and the gaggle of Islamic fundamentalist rebel groups share blame for the bloodletting.
According to the Asia University Rankings 2014, published recently by Times Higher Education, when it comes to the nation with the most institutions in the running, Taiwan fell from second to fourth place. National Taiwan University (NTU) is still Taiwan's leading institution and took 14th place, remaining in the same position as last year.
Stories of domestic worker Erwiana Sulistyaningsih made headlines when she spoke out against her employer's abhorrent abuse while working in Hong Kong. Gruesome cuts and burns on her body were so bad that she was unable to walk when she returned to Jakarta.
Reports of forced labor in Thailand have drawn little attention from most Thais, though they have become a focus for the international community, led by the U.S.
2014/6/19, 1 Comment
Last month's US$400 billion, 30-year China-Russia deal on natural gas, the biggest such deal ever, has implications beyond energy resources and Sino-Russian relations. For one thing, it reaffirms a decision by major emerging economies to move away from the U.S. dollar into their national currencies. At the same time, it is a big step toward the internationalization of the renminbi, or yuan, China's national currency.
The dismal results of government school students in the School Leaving Certificate (SLC) exam have shamed all Nepalis this week. What is even more alarming is the declining trend of the percentage of students that pass in recent years. In 2011, the pass percentage was 47 percent whereas this year, it is less than 29 percent. Compare that alongside the increasing government expenditure on education. In 2011, the education budget was almost NPR$58 billion whereas in 2014 the number went up to NPR$82 billion.
It seems that the Japanese government is laying the groundwork for a visit to North Korea by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, which, if realized, could pose diplomatic challenges not only to South Korea but also other major players in the region.
The furor over the American POW Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl continues to escalate. U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel on June 11 faced hostile questioning before the Armed Services Committee of the House of Representatives. Members of Congress complain the White House broke the law by not consulting in advance
The Taiwan Competitiveness Forum and the Apollo Survey and Research Company published its jointly conducted poll on the national identification of the people of Taiwan again last Thursday. The quarterly survey asked four main questions. Samples were asked whether they are Taiwanese and also Chinese, could be Taiwanese but also be Chinese, are Taiwanese though they don't deny they are also Chinese, or are Taiwanese and not Chinese.
- Joe Hung, 14 Comments