Stories of the Week
Horror in Dhaka, Baghdad, and beyond. Last Friday, militants struck an upscale cafe in Dhaka, holding more than 30 people hostage, with 20 ultimately killed. The targets were foreigners and non-Muslim, which did not stop Muslims from being killed (including those who heroically refused to leave behind friends.) In Baghdad, suicide bombers struck a busy area before Eid, killing over 250 people and wounding many more, in an attack aimed predominately at Iraq's Shia community. The horror continued with three separate attacks in Saudi Arabia, striking at the heart of the Muslim faith. The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for all attacks.
Donald Trump and anti-Semitism. Trump, he of the GOP presidential nomination for 2016, has a number of serious problems, one of which reared its head last weekend when his campaign nabbed a white supremacist meme for itself. A meme that featured a Star of David (Magen David, the symbol used by Jews around the world), money, and Hillary Clinton (who is not, notably, Jewish.) This has understandably cued accusations of anti-Semitism, and of plagiarism; Trump seems more concerned by the latter.
Chilcot. The much-anticipated Chilcot report dropped this week, which aimed to scope out the role of the Tony Blair administration in the UK re the Iraq war. The results are pretty damning, if completely expected, and indict former American President George Bush as much as Blair. They mean very little to Iraq, however, a country where pain is a daily reality and where the recent massacre in Baghdad has overshadowed all, including the joyful celebration of Eid al-Fitr.
Alton Sterling. (And then Philando Castile.) Another Black man was murdered by the police in the US mid-week. It's being investigated by the Department of Justice; hope for justice does not spring eternal. Meanwhile, Black people in the US are exhausted and devastated. Exhaustion and devastation that hit new levels when news of the shooting of Philando Castile, another Black man, also hit the news cycle. Castile was, by all accounts, a beloved human -- something that should not have to be a reality for his life to have been valued. Meanwhile, being adored by young children and mourned in death will not save you from the media if you are Black; Castile's traffic tickets have made the rounds, because everything is actually terrible.
Update: As of this morning, five police officers were killed during a protest in Dallas, Texas last night; several others are wounded. They were shot by at least one sniper, who seems to be unconnected to the Black Lives Matter movement at large, which has condemned the attack.
- Bangladesh's leadership has empowered its fringe and allowed fanaticism to bloom, says Scroll.
- Four people were killed during Bangladesh's largest Eid congregation when militants attacked the gathering.
- A Pakistani man carried out one of the Saudi Arabian bombings.
- Interesting developments in the Maldivian presidential race could make 2018 a year to watch the multi-island nation.
- Jammu and Kashmir chose to celebrate Eid with Pakistan, not India.
- Eid in Sri Lanka.
Southeast & East Asia:
- A car bomb in Thailand's deep south wounded two people and killed another. The attack was carried out by rebels--Muslims in the area have sought autonomy for years.
- Both Taiwan and eastern China are preparing for the mother of typhoons.
- Explosions in a Tapiei train car injured 24 people.
Europe & Eurasia:
- After driving the Leave side of Brexit, Nigel Farage, head of the UK Independence Party (which has lobbied to leave the EU) is stepping down.
- Hungary will hold a referendum on receiving refugees from the EU on October 2.
- In shocking news, a right-wing German party is having a problem with anti-Semitism.
- Germany has approved a 'no means no' law.
Middle East & North Africa:
- The UAE is advising its citizens not to wear traditional dress when they travel after an Emirati citizen was arrested in Ohio. The man was unarmed and had done nothing wrong.
- In Syria, a ceasefire is never really a ceasefire.
- Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula continues to gain power.
- Jordan's new mall is going green.
- An African passport for all Africans.
- A South African election ad using the voice of Nelson Mandela has angered his family.
- Olympian Oscar Pistorius received a six-year prison sentence for the murder of his girlfriend.
- Civil servants in Zimbabwe rose up over unpaid wages, and launched an impressive strike.
- Nine people died in Ghana due to an Eid stampede.
- Around 500 women in Venezuela pushed through the country's border with Colombia in search of food.
- Former Argentinian leader Cristina Fernandez has had her assets frozen by a judge over allegations of misconduct.
- Two Muslim teenagers were beaten outside of a New York City mosque over the weekend.
- An FBI investigation culminated in: no charges recommended for Hillary Clinton. (The Justice Department concurred.) We can all move on with our lives now. Except not.
- One in five indigenous children born in Western Australia has no birth certificate, according to research.
- The Australian election was confusing; here's everything that could happen based on the results.
Quote of the Week:
"There are no more red lines left for terrorists to cross. Sunnis, Shiites [Shias] will both remain victims unless we stand united as one." - Javad Zarif, Iranian Foreign Minister