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August, 25, 2016

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Commentary
One week after the launch of little, well-known monsters in an augmented reality gaming application called "Pokemon Go" in Thailand, the Thai junta has been on alert to tackle them as a peace and order situation.
 
In the coming days, until Aug. 21, more than 3 billion people worldwide will watch on their televisions or online through live streaming the spectacular performance of 10,500 athletes from 206 countries competing in the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
 
Among the many tragedies that have afflicted Karachi over the decades -- such as crime, terrorism and urban blight -- the city's solid waste problem is assuming crisis proportions.
 
Donald Trump prospers where other candidates perish. His abrasive rhetoric, repudiated by some, is embraced by many more.
 
Dedicated analysts, casual observers and of course politicians are struggling to decipher the outcome of Sunday's referendum in Thailand, in which a majority of voters backed the draft constitution and agreed that military-nominated senators should be allowed to help elected MPs choose the prime minister for at least five years.
 
Queen Elizabeth I had a subtle way of bleeding her English nobility of their wealth. Periodically, she would invite herself with her ponderous court to stay at their homes, living at their expense until she moved to the castle of another victim. For her, it was cost-effective; for her hosts, ruinous.
 
The last few weeks have been tough on the environment of Hong Kong as the local beaches, coasts and harbors have been covered by waves of sea debris of dubious origins. Such trash has no doubt jeopardized the local marine biology, our coasts and, let's say it, people's leisure time.
 
We live in an age where, by means of a single social media post, the reputations of innocent people can easily -- and instantly -- be destroyed or damaged. All it takes is a name, a face, and a caption.
 
Today, one of Turkey's greatest modern poets wrote about his wife in verses composed in his prison cell in 1945, presumably anticipating a visit: "Nazim Hikmet's woman must be beautiful/ Like a rebel flag ..." Last Sunday, one could have been fooled into thinking that a vast meeting space in Istanbul was awash with rebel flags.
 
Mainland China's simmering feud with South Korea over the deployment of an American missile defense system is the latest in a string of foreign policy challenges piling up on mainland China leader's Xi Jinping's desk as he prepares to host the annual summit of the G-20 nations next month.
 
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