Top Stories of the Week
Admin note: This newsletter is sending early this week, and will be off for the rest of this week and next.
Donald Trump wants to: Deport 2-3 million immigrants, potentially prosecute political opponent Hillary Clinton, build "the wall", really screw with Obamacare and abortion, undo decades of work by gun safety proponents, and the list just goes on from there. Americans are understandably terrified, as are many people around the world. More than 400 hate crimes have been recorded by the Southern Poverty Law Center in the time since the election, and the number is only growing.
Syria's horror continues. After a flirtation with a ceasefire, Russia and the Syrian government have resumed their bombardment of Aleppo, whose terrified and starving residents are trapped. The UN has indicated that those in the city will soon be completely without food, and international bodies have no way of reaching them, to say nothing of lacking the means to even make deliveries happen. Meanwhile, Syria's dictator has expressed an interest in cuddling up to Trump, meaning that the US may have even less incentive to help do something about the conflict.
Gwen Ifill, you will be missed. Hate crimes. How to save the earth in the era of Trump. Leonard Cohen is gone and Trump is here -- how will we sing in the darkness now? Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is here for everyone who has ever needed to put a white man in his place. Female writers who are broken over the American election. What normalization means. Berlin's queer club scene, before Hitler destroyed it. There's no right way for women to orgasm. Solnit on how to survive a disaster. Screw your feelings. Female antihero.
South, Southeast, & East Asia:
- An attack on a shrine in Baluchistan, Pakistan killed more than 50 people and wounded over 100.
- The Burmese army killed 25 people in Rohingya villages at the beginning of the week.
- The governor of Jakarta, a Christian of Chinese descent, has been accused of blasphemy.
- South Korea's president will be questioned as her controversial ties to a cult leader continue to spark headlines.
- China is censoring the search term "Kim fatty the third" following a request from North Korea.
- Pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong are facing severe crackdowns from the Chinese government.
Europe & Eurasia:
- One year after the Bataclan massacre.
- France and Germany will move forward on EU security, with or without the UK.
- Pro-Russia candidates triumphed in both the Moldovan and Bulgarian elections.
- Julian Assange, who has been hiding in the Ecuadorian embassy in London avoiding rape charges in Sweden, is finally responding to the charges.
- President Hollande is seeking to extend France's state of emergency.
Middle East & North Africa:
- The death sentence of deposed Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi has been overturned in court.
- Iran was forced to close schools on Monday due to a heavy smog.
- Yemen's Houthi rebels have indicated they would like to end the war and join a national unity government.
- 75,000 children could starve to death in Nigeria in the country's northeastern Borno province, where Boko Haram has previously held a stronghold.
- Two white men were arrested in South Africa following a deeply racist and horrifying stunt involving a coffin.
- Kenya will delay the closing of three Somali refugee camps.
- Colombia seems to have arrived at a new peace deal with the FARC.
- Cuba pardoned around 800 prisoners following a call from Pope Francis advocating for greater mercy in dealing with such issues.
- Trump's election has sparked a new wave of Mexican nationalism.
- New Zealand was struck by a strong earthquake over the weekend.
Quote of the Week:
"Life is facing in one direction, to one place. I don’t think there’s any novelist, or any artist, that doesn’t experience that feeling. You are death-facing: That’s just a fact. Particularly when you have children, you are now what’s between them and death. You change positions. I think that’s just an existential fact that can’t be avoided. But I do feel, as I think people do feel when they’re up against it, that you get tired of trying to represent your people to other people, and expect their sympathy and understanding. At a certain point you just want to defend your people for yourself and for them, and become less externally facing because there doesn’t seem to be so much point. I feel like the Black Lives Matter movement is part of that reradicalization of the civil rights movement, saying, “We are our people and we will protect our people.”" -- Zadie Smith