Category: Politics

Brazil still in a quagmire?

  • Yes - economic crisis continues.
  • Political crisis continues too - Rousseff hugely unpopular.
  • Petrobras corruption scandal moving closer to her as investigators arrest corporate, financial, judicial & political grandees.

Macrosnap Russian & Turkish leaders, Putin & Erdogan?

  • Both are authoritarian, populist leaders with big egos, thrive on confrontation, and are preoccupied with national pride.
  • Not a lot of warmth between them (publicly or in private).
  • Differing Syria strategies - Turkey wants Assad removed, Russia wants him to stay.

Explain EU’s wooing of Turkey in attempt to stem refugee flow?

  • EU wants Turkey (which currently has 2.5m refugees on its soil) to become a migrant buffer, instead of a gateway.
  • So Brussels is ignoring Erdogan's autocratic drift, and is showering Turkey with political and financial favours.
  • In return, Turkey would stem the flow by providing job and education opportunities for refugees, and tighten border controls.

Macrosnap Argentina presidential election?

  • Argentina votes for change and moves to right.
  • Conservative Mauricio Macri narrowly defeats populist/Peronist Scioli.
  • Voters seek reboot after 12 years of mismanagement under Kirchner husband-wife duo.

What Obama administration wants from Paris climate summit?

  • Prefers to join an accord by executive agreement (i.e. a swish of Obama's pen).
  • If accord contains legally binding obligations, Obama will need to put it to the Senate.
  • But the Republican majority in the Senate is hostile to scientific consensus vis-à-vis climate change.

Why is a binding global climate accord so difficult to achieve?

  • Because there's a divide between rich and poor nations.
  • Rich nations' industrialisation resulted in global warming - now poor nations want their own share of industrial wealth.
  • Also, the Republican party in the US is hostile to to scientific consensus vis-à-vis climate change.

Macrosnap Myanmar election?

  • Aung San Suu Kyi's opposition party's (NLD) historic win against ruling military-backed elite.
  • Despite landslide electoral win, 25% of parliamentary seats are allocated to the military, so they will have huge influence.
  • So she will need to work with them.
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