November 16, 2015

We Must Be United – Hollande



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Paris Bombing Aftermath

France continued to mourn after the deadly triple attack on Friday night that left 132 people killed (you can read our full synopsis on it here). Here is a brief rundown of what we know since Saturday morning:
  • ISIS confirmed that it was indeed behind the attack in Paris.
  • The attacks appeared to be the work of three highly organized and coordinated teams with others backing them up with logistical support. 
  • Three of the attackers were confirmed as French nationals.
  • Police discovered a Syrian passport with a Greek entry stamp, creating suspicion of potential migrants. It is not yet confirmed if the passport belonged to one of the attackers. 
  • French planes bombed ISIS’ capital of Raqqa with the assistance of US intelligence. 
  • World leaders met in Turkey for a G20 summit where Obama and Putin had a heart to heart on Syria and ISIS (nice to see them working together now).
  • Global landmarks were lit up in the French tricolor (blue, red and white) in solidarity with the victims
  • A debate erupted on social media on which countries exactly people should be praying for!
In the next few weeks France (and the rest of Europe) will have to figure out how this attack slipped through their intelligence net and deal with the dual challenge of responding to this attack while protecting civilian lives. 

TOUCHING READ: A Look At The Victims Of The Paris Attack



Russia Begins Purge Of The Athletic Variety

The International Athletics Federation decided to suspend Russia from future sporting competitions following allegations of “state-sponsored” doping. Sports Minister, Vitaly Mutko, vowed to replace “9% of coaches and officials” saying current officials were “out of touch.” Russia is rapidly trying to show some reforms so that it doesn’t get banned for the 2016 Olympics. Current plan: fire everyone.

China: Yuan Piece Of Good News

In the most exciting piece of news in global currencies since the introduction of the Euro, IMF Chief Christine Lagarde gave approval for the Yuan to be considered a
reserve currency.” The move makes it more likely that the Yuan will be considered an SDR currency, a status only the USD, Euro, Yen and the British Sterling enjoy. China, which has been suffering from an economic slowdown, welcomed the move.   


#pnut4prez: Democratic Debate: In Case You Forgot

Over the weekend the three remaining Democratic candidates (Hillary++) attended a debate in Des Moines, Iowa. The debate opened with a minute of silence for the victims of the Paris terror attack and spent a significant amount of time on foreign policy vis-a-vis ISIS. Here is the rundown of who said what:
  • Hillary Clinton: She came under fire for campaign contributions from Wall Street Banks, claiming that she received them due to the work she did to rebuild the city in the aftermath of 9/11. A Twitter user called her out on it, forcing her to clarify her statement. She’s also for a $12 minimum wage.
  • Bernie Sanders: He took the opportunity to reiterate that he is still sick and tired of Hillary’s emails and assured voters that he would not increase the marginal tax rate to more than 90% (phew?).
  • Martin ‘I Did It In Maryland’ O’Malley: He drew the loudest applause of the night when he called Donald Trump an “immigrant-bashing carnival barker.” Yet he failed to provide any substance on what he would do aside from reassuring us that he has already done everything America needs as Governor of Maryland. Sanders wasn’t impressed with his track record. 

Keeping Our Eye On… 

  • Seoul Protests: The South Korean government vowed to crack down on further violent protests after 60,000 people took to the streets to rally against labor reforms. The protests were the largest of President Park Geun-hye’s term.
  • Japan Recession: Japan’s economy shrunk at an annualized pace of 0.8% in the third quarter, marking a return to recession for the world’s third largest economy. The fall was driven by a 5% drop in business investment.
  • Guantanamo Bay: The US Department of Defense has transferred five Yemeni detainees from Guantanamo to the UAE. The Obama administration is expected to send Congress a plan to close the prison and move the remaining 59 detainees to US soil. 



Google Driverless Car Stopped For Going Too Slowly

Google is a company that promises to “do no evil.” That obviously doesn’t apply to the road after one of the company’s self-driving cars was pulled over by cops for driving too slowly. Google’s self-driving vehicles have been involved in 16 accidents since they have been live (the company blames humans). No ticket was issued in this incident, but if you see a car that looks like a marshmallow with a helmet… steer clear.
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Correction: Eagles of Death Metal, the band that played at the Bataclan theater during the attack, is not actually a death metal band. 

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