Stories of the Week
Massacre in Kabul. On Saturday, Kabul experienced one of the worst terror attacks of its kind since 2011. A large protest in the city's Deh Mazang square was supposed to allow minority Hazaras to voice their opposition to the shifted direction of a powerline, initially slated to pass through their villages, providing them with much-needed electricity. Instead, the powerline was relocated in order to cut costs, and the community marched on the capital in order to voice dissatisfaction. Two suicide bombers interrupted the protest, killing over 80 people and wounding 200 more. Hazaras have long been the target of racism (due to their Asiatic features, they are easy targets), but this attack seems to have been entirely rooted in sectarianism -- the Islamic State claimed the massacre, and has stated the cause was the Shia beliefs that many Hazaras hold.
Bad week everywhere else too. Japan, a country with a low murder rate and cultural norms that run very counter to countries with high murder rates, saw tragedy this week. A knife attack outside Tokyo, carried out at a mental health facility by a former employee, left at least 19 people dead and 20 wounded. Elsewhere, in the German city of Ansbach, a Syrian refugee who had been denied asylum blew himself up and wounded nearly 20 others. The man had a history of suicidal tendencies. A man with a machete also killed a pregnant woman in southern Germany, and a shooter killed nine people in Munich.
DNC drama and Hillary makes history. The second major political convention arrived in the US, and while it didn't match its Republican equivalent for drama, there were still tense moments and uplifting segments. There was no Ted Cruz-style moment, but Bernie Sanders' supporters did not go quietly. Boos and chants drowned out several speakers, and many Sanders supporters protested vocally against Hillary Clinton's nomination. In the fallout from an email scandal (orchestrated by...Russia?), DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz was forced to resign, and did not gavel in the event. This scuffle aside, speeches from Elizabeth Warren, Bill Clinton, and, most notably, Michelle Obama, all stove to emphasize unity and the togetherness of the party, a contract from the RNC. Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, emerged the first female presidential contender for a major party -- an historical and glass-shattering moment.
Bonus: Women born before women had the right to vote on what Clinton's candidacy means to them.
- Bangladesh arrested four female members of a terrorist group linked to the cafe attack in Dhaka that killed 22 people.
- Indian actor Salman Khan has, shockingly, avoided criminal charges for something illegal yet again.
- Kashmir and the inheritance of loss.
Southeast & East Asia:
Europe & Eurasia:
- Russian athletes narrowly escaped a blanket ban from the Olympics. Instead, sports organizations involved in the event will be allowed to decide on a case by case basis.
- Turkey has now turned its attention to journalists in its purge.
- Theresa May's student visa crackdown.
- The world's largest Yazidi temple is currently being constructed in Armenia.
- Two men stormed a church in France and killed a priest early in the week. They are believed to be linked to the Islamic State.
Middle East & North Africa:
- The Arab League met in Mauritania to discuss terrorism and national security. The event was cut to a single day after absences became too high to justify a longer meeting.
- A car bomb near Khalis, Iraq killed at least 17 people at the beginning of the week.
- Iran helpfully destroyed 100,000 satellite dishes last weekend. The dishes are illegal but very common.
- Two bombs hit Kurdish headquarters in Qamishli, Syria, killing at least 50 people.
- Tunisians are protesting a problematic new amnesty bill.
- Twin car bombings at the Mogadishu airport killed at least 13 people in Somalia.
- South Sudanese soldiers raped dozens of ethnic Nuer women near a refugee camp.
- Two people were killed and 17 injured outside a nightclub in Fort Meyers, Florida late Sunday evening when a gunman opened fire.
- After years of back and forth regarding the fate of Yahoo!, Verizon acquired the company for $4.8 billion.
- An email dump that may or may not be linked to the Russian government has forced out DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz.
- Donald Trump essentially condoned foreign espionage and asked Russia to hack Hillary Clinton's emails.
- Charges have been dropped against all police officers involved in the death of Freddie Gray, a blow to activists.
- In Australia, controversy dominated the week after disturbing imagery emerged showing the dehumanizing detention of teenagers in the Northern Territory. Incarceration rates in the area have risen considerably in recent years, and an inquiry has been ordered into the treatment of those in detention -- which some have likened to an Abu Gharib-scale scandal. A large portion of the population of the territory are indigenous Australians.
Quote of the Week:
Strikingly, the reasons people commonly give for hating Clinton now are almost the exact opposite of the reasons people gave for hating her in the 1990s. Back then, she was a self-righteous ideologue; now she’s a corrupt tool of the establishment. Back then, she was too rigid; now she’s too flexible. - Why do people hate Hillary Clinton so much? (Michelle Goldberg for Slate)
Blue Out: Bill's fetching pantsuit.