Category Archives: International News

OPINION: Bribery and corruption – By Neville J. Bissember

By Neville J. Bissember

In February 1999, as the second round of negotiations on a successor Agreement to the Lome Convention advanced – the name Cotonou had not as yet been determined – the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group and the European Union (EU) travelled to Senegal to hold those discussions, honoring the tradition of an ACP Member State playing host to a session.  Besides the EU’s intention to “balkanise” the grouping into six regional trade blocks and to dispense European Development Fund assistance differently, a priority area for them in the political dimension of the cooperation arrangement was on introducing good governance, which included addressing bribery and corruption, as an essential element.    Continue reading

CANADA: Justin Trudeau on a hot tin roof – By Rex Murphy

 Rex Murphy – The National Post – Canada

What an unholy mess and farce this all is.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau waves after buying ice cream at a snack stand in Ottawa on July 13, 2022. The Trudeau government seems divorced from the concerns of regular Canadians, writes Rex Murphy.

© Provided by National PostPrime Minister Justin Trudeau waves after buying ice cream at a snack stand in Ottawa on July 13, 2022. The Trudeau government seems divorced from the concerns of regular Canadians, writes Rex Murphy.

Is this a government or a travelling road show?

The prime minister darts around like a summer fly, off to useless summits one day, on a European photo-op mission the next, drops in to Ukraine to pose with Madame Joly for the obligatory photo with the beleaguered Volodymyr Zelenskyy, flits back home for a while, off to Calgary, back to Nova Scotia (the quotient of apologies must be maintained), then on to Ontario for an EV announcement, and then off to a police-guarded lunch in Montreal.        Continue reading

Russia-Ukraine War: Update on the latest developments – July 11. 2022

Russia-Ukraine War: Unable To Even Fix Its Own Tanks, Russia’s Humiliation Is Now Complete – Opinion

Putin’s bid to take over industry propels the country back to the command economy of its Soviet past

Ben Marlow | The Telegraph

The simplistic take on events in eastern and southern Ukraine is that Russian troops have finally gained the advantage over their battle-weary, vastly outgunned opposite numbers.

The capture of Lysychansk, a key strategic city in the Luhansk region of the breakaway industrial Donbas republic by Russian forces suggests that Moscow has been able to grind down spirited resistance, western officials begrudgingly acknowledge.

On the other hand, Vladimir Putin is still a long way away from taking the whole of the Donbas, with half of the Donetsk area still under the control of tens of thousands of Ukrainian troops, and fighting in the east taking a heavy toll on his army.          Continue reading

GUYANA: Shocking bribery disclosures regarding Vice-President Bharrat Jagdeo +video

EDITORIAL – By Stabroek News – July 10, 2022

Vice President, Bharrat Jagdeo, and President Irfaan Ali

The most disquieting report we have carried in a very long time appeared in our edition of July 8. It was an account of the extended version of VICE News’s video documentary titled ‘Guyana For Sale’, the initial portion of which had been carried on June 18. This part had consisted largely of an interview with Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo and his tenant, Mr Su Zhirong, along with a VICE reporter posing as a Chinese businessman interested in a deal here. The meeting had been arranged, according to the documentary, in order to demonstrate to the supposed entrepreneur that Mr Su, a middleman, had “access at the highest level.”

In the clips of the interview which were shown Mr Jagdeo did not implicate himself directly in the ‘business deal’, and he later strenuously denied any implication that he was associated with corrupt practices. As for Mr Su’s specific allegations about him accepting bribes, he responded that his tenant had abused their friendship for his own gain and had lied about him, and if VICE News had been discerning, then they would have realised they were “being duped”.  Subsequently he announced he was bringing a defamation suit against Mr Su, who not surprisingly is no longer his tenant.        Continue reading

USA: US influence in the Americas is waning – The Long View by David Jessop

Sunday | June 26, 2022 – Jamaica Gleaner

The recently ended Summit of the Americas will likely be best remembered for the US decision not to invite Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua, the chaotic unprepared way in which Washington tried to manage this, and the decision by some hemispheric leaders, most notably Mexico’s president, not to attend.

While this may be unfair in terms of substance, it is a real indication that in the longer term, the United States’ influence in the Americas is waning and that others sense opportunity for influence or division.

Despite this, the Los Angeles summit had multiple positive short to medium-term outcomes and saw a consensus among participants on several shared concerns.            Continue reading

USA: How the US could lose the new Cold War – By Joseph E. Stiglitz

By Stabroek News –  June 27, 2022

 By Joseph E. Stiglitz

NEW YORK – The United States appears to have entered a new cold war with both China and Russia. And US leaders’ portrayal of the confrontation as one between democracy and authoritarianism fails the smell test, especially at a time when the same leaders are actively courting a systematic human-rights abuser like Saudi Arabia. Such hypocrisy suggests that it is at least partly global hegemony, not values, that is really at stake.

For two decades after the fall of the Iron Curtain, the US was clearly number one. But then came disastrously misguided wars in the Middle East, the 2008 financial crash, rising inequality, the opioid epidemic, and other crises that seemed to cast doubt on the superiority of America’s economic model. Moreover, between Donald Trump’s election, the attempted coup at the US Capitol, numerous mass shootings, a Republican Party bent on voter suppression, and the rise of conspiracy cults like QAnon, there is more than enough evidence to suggest that some aspects of American political and social life have become deeply pathological.                Continue reading

FINANCE: Dollar Dominance: Russia, China Set to Develop New Reserve Currency

Russia and China are brewing up a challenge to dollar dominance by creating a new reserve currency

BRICS countries leaders Xi Jinping, Vladimir Putin, Jair Bolsonaro, Narendra Modi, and Cyril Ramaphosa
Russia and the other ‘BRICS’ countries are working on an alternative reserve currency that would rival the IMF’s SDR. 
Sputnik/Alexey Nikolsky/Kremlin via Reuters
  • Russia and China are developing a new reserve currency with other BRICS countries, President Vladimir Putin said.
  • The basket currency would rival a US-dominated IMF alternative and let Russia widen its influence, an analyst said.
  • The dollar’s dominance is already eroding as central banks diversify into the Chinese yuan and smaller currencies.

GUYANA: Commonwealth backs judicial process to end Guyana/Venezuela border controversy

The flags of several Commonwealth member states fly high in Rwanda. [Photo: Office of the President/ June 25, 2022]

 NEWSROOM GUYANA – 25 June 2022
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In a significant move, the 54-nation Commonwealth, which includes the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia, have backed the legal route at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to bring a “peaceful and definitive” end to the Guyana/Venezuela border controversy.       

Communique issued in Kigali, Rwanda        

In a communique issued in Kigali, Rwanda at the end of their summit, the heads of government of the Commonwealth expressed their “full commitment” to the ongoing judicial process to bring an end to the long-standing controversy.          Continue reading

AFRICA: Why France faces so much anger in West Africa – “Neo-colonial arrogance” – BBC News

By Paul Melly – Africa analyst – Published

It all started so positively. Where have things gone wrong? Why does France now appear so unpopular in Africa?

French President Emmanuel Macron has increased aid to the continent, begun the return of cultural artefacts stolen during the colonial wars and reached out beyond the usual inter-government ties to engage younger generations and civil society.

He has kept French troops in the Sahel to fight the jihadist militants that kill so many local civilians, police and soldiers and supported the regional bloc Ecowas as it tries to defend electoral politics against military takeovers.

Yet his country is now the target of embittered African complaints and criticism on a scale that is probably unprecedented.     

Continue reading

REFUGEES: No room for today’s ‘tired, poor, huddled masses yearning to breathe free’ — By Mohamed Hamaludin

By MOHAMED HAMALUDIN

The number of free African Americans increased from around 60,000 in 1790 following the Revolutionary War to about 300,000 in 1830 and European Americans feared they would help the still enslaved to escape or revolt and believed anyhow that they were an inferior race who would be better off elsewhere. The American Colonization Society and others came up with this solution: send them to Africa.

African Americans, in general, objected strongly, with some pointing out that they had lived in the United States for generations and were “no more African than white Americans were European,” as Wikipedia puts it. Shame upon the guilty wretches that dare propose and all that countenance such a proposition,” abolitionist and scholar Frederick Douglass declared. “We live here—have lived here—have a right to live here and mean to live here,”

Still, 4,571 African Americans were relocated between 1820 and 1843 to West Africa, in a collection of settlements with names such as Mississippi in Africa, Kentucky in Africa and Republic of Maryland that formed the nation of Liberia by 1857. Because of diseases, only 1,819 survived. Continue reading

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