[News] News From Other Places!

It's news you can use from places with different views! (Don't misuse or abuse you yahoos.)

LOL, holy sh*t, you're right.

ruhk wrote:

Biden has already released a statement congratulating Lula and explicitly noting the election as free and fair, which seems like a not-so-subtle signal to Bolsonaro that the US isn’t going to support a right-wing coup for the first time ever.
(well, not openly at least)


Better bring in the CIA chiefs to make sure they get the memo.

CIA Chiefs: I knew we forgot something this month!

Bolsonaro breaks silence without publicly conceding

Loooooooong way to go between now and Inauguration Day (January 1)

Benji might be back, baby!

Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is on course for victory in Tuesday's elections, according to exit polls.

The polls, which forecast the outcome before official results, give his right-wing bloc a slim majority of seats over his opponents.

Such a result would mark a dramatic comeback for Mr Netanyahu, toppled last year after 12 straight years in power.

"We are close to a big victory," he told his supporters in Jerusalem.

The election was widely seen as a vote for or against Mr Netanyahu's return.

Official results, which could still produce a different outcome, are expected in the coming hours.

His main rival, current Prime Minister Yair Lapid, said "nothing" was yet decided.

But as the polls were announced at 22:00 (20:00 GMT), upbeat music burst from loud speakers at the central venue of Mr Netanyahu's Likud party in Jerusalem.

So why is he still not in jail? Rhetorical question really…

That was from this Time Magazine article from May 2022 that was based on an interview that happened in late March 2022, about a month into the war.

Lula said a lot about the war in Ukraine in that interview beyond the above quote:

Time Magazine wrote:

I want to speak about the war in Ukraine. You have always prided yourself on being able to speak to everyone—Hugo Chavez as much as George Bush. But the world today is very fragmented diplomatically. I want to know if your approach still works. Could you speak to Vladimir Putin after what he’s done in Ukraine?

We politicians reap what we sow. If I sow fraternity, solidarity, harmony, I’ll reap good things. If I sow discord, I’ll reap quarrels. Putin shouldn’t have invaded Ukraine. But it’s not just Putin who is guilty. The U.S. and the E.U. are also guilty. What was the reason for the Ukraine invasion? NATO? Then the U.S. and Europe should have said: “Ukraine won’t join NATO.” That would have solved the problem.

Do you think the threat of Ukraine joining NATO was Russia’s real reason for invading?

That’s the argument they put forward. If they have a secret one, we don’t know. The other issue was Ukraine joining the E.U. The Europeans could have said: “No, now is not the moment for Ukraine to join the E.U., we’ll wait.” They didn’t have to encourage the confrontation.

But I think they did try to speak to Russia.

No, they didn’t. The conversations were very few. If you want peace, you have to have patience. They could have sat at a negotiating table for 10, 15, 20 days, a whole month, trying to find a solution. I think dialogue only works when it is taken seriously.

If you were President right now, what would you do? Would you have been able to avoid the conflict?

I don’t know if I’d be able to. If I was President, I would have phoned [Joe] Biden, and Putin, and Germany, and [Emmanuel] Macron. Because war is not the solution. I think the problem is that if you don’t try, you don’t fix things. And you have to try.

I sometimes get worried. I was very concerned when the U.S. and the E.U. adopted [Juan] Guaidó [then leader of Venezuela’s parliament] as President of the country [in 2019]. You don’t play with democracy. For Guaidó to be President, he would have to be elected. Bureaucracy can’t substitute politics. In politics, it’s two heads of state who are governing, both elected by their people, who have to sit down at the negotiating table and look each other in the eye and talk.

And now, sometimes I sit and watch the President of Ukraine speaking on television, being applauded, getting a standing ovation by all the [European] parliamentarians. This guy is as responsible as Putin for the war. Because in the war, there’s not just one person guilty. Saddam Hussein was as guilty as Bush [for the outbreak of the 2003 Iraq war]. Because Saddam Hussein could have said, “You can come here and check and I will prove that I do not have mass destruction weapons.” But he lied to his people. And now, this President of Ukraine could have said, “Come on, let’s stop talking about this NATO business, about joining the E.U. for a while. Let’s discuss a bit more first.”

So Volodomyr Zelensky should have talked to Putin more, even with 100,000 Russian troops at his border?

I don’t know the President of Ukraine. But his behavior is a bit weird. It seems like he’s part of the spectacle. He is on television morning, noon, and night. He is in the U.K. parliament, the German parliament, the French parliament, the Italian parliament, as if he were waging a political campaign. He should be at the negotiating table.

The real question is what does Lula think now, nine months into the war, with the lie that the invasion was just about NATO or EU expansion exposed for Putin's desire to revive Russia's long-dead empire.

Either way Brazil is very likely to continue its path of studiously avoiding any overt alignment with any major international power as witnessed by their abstention from the recent UN Security Council vote condemning Russia's fake annexation of Ukrainian territory while acknowledging that the vote was illegitimate and didn't genuinely reflect the will of local population.

BRIC seems to be taking on a new meaning.

It's a pity Lula was the only alternative to Bolsonaro.

‘I can’t be protected’: South Korea’s youth tested again by Itaewon tragedy

In a Seoul gymnasium, rows of trainers, high heels, jackets, and Halloween accessories lie spread out on the floor. They are all numbered in the hope that their owners will come and find them. Many may never be collected.

They belong to victims and survivors of last Saturday’s crowd crush in Seoul, which has so far killed 156 people. Ninety-four per cent of the dead were in their teens, 20s, and 30s.

A makeshift shrine has appeared outside Itaewon station’s exit 1, covered in piles of chrysanthemums, photographs of fallen friends, pots of cup noodles, Haribo and soju bottles offered to console their souls. Prayers are chanted by Buddhist monks.

Condolence messages are written on colourful post-it notes. One, attached to a packet of beef jerky, reads: “I’m sorry we couldn’t protect you, I pray you’ll be happier there”. Another says: “You did nothing wrong.”

Also, there was an attempted assassination in Pakistan this week:

Hundreds of police officers equipped with teargas hurriedly took positions near a junction connecting Islamabad with its twin city of Rawalpindi as a group of protesters burned wood and chanted slogans on Friday.

The two groups edged towards each other, and then the protesters hurled stones at the police, who responded with teargas rounds. Not long afterwards, the protesters dispersed, and police reopened the junction to traffic.

The brief flashpoint was one of many in cities across Pakistan – including Lahore and Karachi – as supporters of Imran Khan took to the streets after an assassination attempt on the former prime minister.

The attack on Khan’s convoy on Thursday killed one man and wounded at least 10, significantly raising the stakes in a political crisis that has gripped the south Asian nation since Khan was ousted from power in April.

In a rambling address given from a wheelchair in hospital in Lahore on Friday, Khan accused his successor, Shehbaz Sharif, the interior minister, Rana Sanaullah, and a senior army commander of involvement in a plot to kill him. “These three decided to kill me,” Khan said in his first public appearance since Thursday’s attack, adding that two gunmen were involved.

He offered no evidence for his claims and the government has denied any involvement, blaming the assassination attempt on a gunman fuelled by religious extremism. Sharif led a coalition of parties that removed Khan from power through a parliamentary vote in April.

Eighteen-year-old Ali Sher was among the protesters chanting, “What do we want? Freedom” in Rawalpindi on Friday. “We want freedom from corrupt politicians and we won’t leave until Shehbaz Sharif resigns,” he said as he waved a flag with Khan’s picture on it.

Echoing Khan’s comments, Sher claimed Sharif was behind the attack as part of what he described as a conspiracy to keep Khan out of office. “They wanted to kill him, but his attack is not going to kill our spirit for freedom,” Sher said.

The 70-year-old Khan, a former international cricket star, had been leading a campaign convoy of thousands since last week from Lahore to the capital Islamabad. Khan was looking out at the crowd when bullets were sprayed at his modified container truck as it slowly inched through a thick crowd in Wazirabad, about 105 miles east of Islamabad.

On Friday he reiterated a call for fresh elections, adding: “The revolution will come whether with peace or with bloodshed … I will call for the march towards Islamabad as soon as I recover fully.”

Khan said he was shot four times, twice in each leg. A doctor who was in the room with him said Khan was hit twice in the right thigh and twice in the left thigh, and that his left tibia had been fractured.

Noor Khan, a shopkeeper who had travelled a few hours from Nowshera to join the Rawalpindi protest, said: “I do not know much about politics but … Imran Khan, whatever he says, he is always right and I follow him. I do not care about my life, I will always follow Khan.

“There are protests in Nowshera too but I came here to protest against what happened to Khan and throw out this government.”

Parts of that sound... familiar!

The Ford government blinked.

There is no other way to describe it.

Doug Ford and the Ontario government got into a game of chicken with public sector unions. Let's be clear in this about the difference in power between the two sides.

The government got into a staring contest with CUPE.

The Ford government blinked.

The government holds literally all the cards. The only option for the unions was to illegally go on strike (because that's what the strike on friday and monday were) and risk fines of $4000 per day for the members (more than 10% of their annual salary) and $500,000 per day for CUPE.

The Ford government blinked.

The members of CUPE, supported by pretty much every other union across Canada, said "bring it."

And the Ford government blinked.

Sure, you will see messaging by the Ford government that CUPE gave in for the students, but it is just spin.

The Ford government blinked.

The next time someone says that unions are not effective and aren't needed anymore. Just remember. The Ford government held all the cards.

And the Ford government blinked.

I think the jury is still out. The Ford government hasn't done anything but say they are going to do something. We already know truth isn't the Ford family's strong point. Even if they do roll things back as they said, all they've done is go back to where this started. CUPE employees are still waiting for a reasonable deal that the Ontario government has shown it won't negotiate.

I think CUPE gave Ford a free pass. They should have said negotiate today or we continue the protests and organize the other large unions behind us for support. Instead they're back to square one, which is really square -20.

CUPE is looking at this much longer term.

They were on strike for 2 days, and didn't get fined the $1 million they could have been fined. Their members who walked didn't get the $8000 in fines the could have gotten.

This was a test run to see if he could get away with it prior to truly engaging with the teacher's unions.

France calls time on anti-jihadist Operation Barkhane in Sahel

President Macron will use a speech in Toulon on Wednesday to bring to an official end France's eight-year anti-jihadist operation in the Sahel.

Operation Barkhane has been inoperative since February, when France announced its military withdrawal from Mali.

The last French troops left their base in the Malian town of Gao on 15 August.

According to the Élysée Palace, Mr Macron wants to spell out new priorities that from now on will govern military interventions in Africa.

At its high point, there were 5,500 French troops taking part in Operation Barkhane, which was initially launched in 2013 to stem the advance of jihadist insurgents in Mali. The other countries in the partnership were Niger, Chad, Burkina Faso and Mauritania.

But faced with the continuing spread in the region of groups linked to al-Qaeda and Islamic State - as well as a growing casualty list of French troops (58 dead) - military leaders and politicians in Paris became increasingly doubtful of the viability of the campaign.

Fear of an older future in Japan and South Korea

The population of the world’s third-biggest economy, where adult incontinence pads outsell babies’ nappies, has been in decline for several years and suffered a record fall of 644,000 in 2020-21, according to government data. It is expected to plummet from its current 125 million to an estimated 88 million in 2065 – a 30% decline in 45 years.

While the number of over-65s continues to grow – they now account for more than 28% of the population – the birthrate remains stubbornly low. A Japanese woman can expect to have an average of 1.3 children during her lifetime – well below the 2.1 needed to sustain the current population size.

Official encouragement to have more children – backed by modest financial inducements – and warnings that long-term population decline will damage the health of the economy, have had little effect.

In 2021, the number of births totalled 811,604, the lowest since records were first kept in 1899, a faster decline than projected by demographic experts. By contrast, the number of centenarians stands at more than 90,500 – compared with only 153 in 1963.

Like their counterparts in neighbouring South Korea, Japanese women are increasingly reluctant to marry and have children – deterred by the financial pressures and traditional gender roles that force many to give up work as soon as they become pregnant and shoulder the burden of housework and childcare duties.

Immigrant-welcoming countries improve. Xenophobic countries decline.

JLS wrote:

Immigrant-welcoming countries improve. Xenophobic countries decline.

A million times this.

That sounds like a gross over-simplification.
Aren't most 1st world countries dealing with this issue?

Girls are forced to do unspeakable things in Iran. Strong content.

slazev wrote:

That sounds like a gross over-simplification.
Aren't most 1st world countries dealing with this issue?

No. Most have the problem but almost none are dealing with it. Immigration is part of the story but definitely not all of it. Even countries with traditionally strong traditions of immigration have populations with low birth rates.

Given a free choice women generally want more children than the replacement rate (link to survey results)

Many western countries are hostile to children in their policies. Even after we talk about maternity leave, very few have adequate provision for childcare outside of school. So very often people have to wait until later in their careers to have children.

Then there is the fact that most areas of the 1st world countries have a housing crisis where there are jobs and a jobs crisis where there is housing. So the choice of children leads to a material reduction in standard of living (despite the intangible benefits of having children).

When I wrote "dealing with this issue", I meant they have this issue (I blame on it English not being my native language ) but, yeah, what you wrote is generally the impression I have of the root causes.

slazev wrote:

When I wrote "dealing with this issue", I meant they have this issue (I blame on it English not being my native language ) but, yeah, what you wrote is generally the impression I have of the root causes.

Ah miscommunication on my part, . Apologies, I think I am being a bit oversensitive to any linking of birth rates and immigration. Generally it’s being used as a wedge issue by the far right to roll back any feminism, since if women have no choice but to be mothers, then I guess this will solve the uppity women problem. The framing is wrong, people don’t need to be forced to procreate, we just need society to suck less.

If you were placing bets, putting down 100 on this would get you 10:

Bolsonaro derided for ‘senseless’ challenge to Brazil election he lost last month

Jair Bolsonaro has challenged the Brazilian presidential election he lost last month to Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, arguing votes from some machines should be “invalidated”.

Bolsonaro’s claim seems unlikely to get far, as Lula’s victory has been ratified by the superior electoral court and acknowledged by Brazil’s leading politicians and international allies. It could however fuel a small but committed protest movement that has so far refused to accept the result.

Alexandre de Moraes, the supreme court justice who currently leads the TSE, said in a ruling seen by the Reuters news agency that Bolsonaro’s rightwing electoral coalition, which filed the complaint, must present its full audit for both rounds of October’s vote within 24 hours, or he would reject it.

Gleisi Hoffmann, the president of Lula’s Workers party, described Bolsonaro’s election complaint as “chicanery”.

“No more procrastination, irresponsibility, insults to institutions and democracy,” she wrote on Twitter. “The election was decided in the vote and Brazil needs peace to build a better future.

The Brazilian Social Democracy party, a traditional rival to Lula’s Workers party, called Bolsonaro’s complaint “senseless”, tweeting that it would be resisted “by institutions, the international community and Brazilian society”.

Bolsonaro’s coalition said its audit of the 30 October second-round runoff between Bolsonaro and Lula had found “signs of irreparable … malfunction” in some electronic voting machines.

“There were signs of serious failures that generate uncertainties and make it impossible to validate the results generated” in older models of the voting machines, Bolsonaro allies said in their complaint. As a result, they urged that the votes from those models should be “invalidated”.

Some Asia news:

Chinese migrant workers stranded in Guangzhou’s Covid-19 homeless crisis

Hundreds of migrant workers have been left homeless on the streets of Guangzhou in southern China, according to multiple sources in the city where the most severe Covid-19 outbreak of the pandemic has been raging for a month.

The workers – mostly from the central province of Hubei – have been released from Covid-19 quarantine centres, called fangcang hospitals, but cannot return to their homes in the urban villages of Guangzhou’s Haizhu district, epicentre of the latest outbreak.

Officials say the district is still in a severe epidemic situation and one government notice encouraged the workers to return to their home provinces, saying management of the outbreak will take a further month.

With nowhere to go, the migrants carry their backpacks as they look for temporary shelter under bridges, in underpasses or by the riverside near the urban villages, workers and community volunteers said.

But probably more importantly:

Truckers in Korea Strike in Latest Threat to Global Supply Chains

Truck drivers went on strike in South Korea for the second time in less than a year, targeting major ports in a bid to disrupt key exports from autos to petrochemicals.

The strike began Thursday morning, with demonstrations at 16 sites across the country. The union, which represents 25,000 workers, didn’t disclose details of the work actions in a statement Wednesday, but a representative earlier this week said it planned to block all ports in the country.

Prederick wrote:

Loooooooong way to go between now and Inauguration Day (January 1)

Brazilian protests intensify; Bolsonaro stays silent

The two men were sitting at a bar on Nov. 21, sipping drinks for relief from the scorching heat of Brazil’s Mato Grosso state, when police officers barged in and arrested them for allegedly torching trucks and an ambulance with Molotov cocktails.

One man attempted to flee and ditch his illegal firearm. Inside their pickup truck, officers found jugs of gasoline, knives, a pistol, slingshots and hundreds of stones — as well as 9,999 reais (nearly $1,900) in cash.

A federal judge ordered their preventive detention, noting that their apparent motive for the violence was “dissatisfaction with the result of the last presidential election and pursuit of its undemocratic reversal,” according to court documents reviewed by The Associated Press.

For more than three weeks, supporters of incumbent President Jair Bolsonaro who refuse to accept his narrow defeat in October’s election have blocked roads and camped outside military buildings in Mato Grosso, Brazil’s soy-producing powerhouse. They also have protested in other states across the nation, while pleading for intervention from the armed forces or marching orders from their commander in chief.

Since his election loss, Bolsonaro has only addressed the nation twice, to say that the protests are legitimate and encourage them to continue, as long as they don’t prevent people from coming and going.

China Covid: Protests widen against strict lockdown measures

Protests in China against government's strict Covid measures have intensified, with some people publicly venting their anger at the Communist Party leaders.

Thousands of protesters took to the streets of Shanghai, where the BBC saw people being bundled into police cars.

Students have also demonstrated at universities in Beijing and Nanjing.

The latest unrest follows a protest in the remote north-west city of Urumqi, where lockdown rules were blamed after 10 people died in a tower block fire.

While Chinese authorities deny that Covid restrictions caused the deaths, officials in Urumqi did issue an unusual apology late on Friday, and pledged to "restore order" by phasing out restrictions.

Prederick wrote:

China Covid: Protests widen against strict lockdown measures

Protests in China against government's strict Covid measures have intensified, with some people publicly venting their anger at the Communist Party leaders.

Thousands of protesters took to the streets of Shanghai, where the BBC saw people being bundled into police cars.

Students have also demonstrated at universities in Beijing and Nanjing.

The latest unrest follows a protest in the remote north-west city of Urumqi, where lockdown rules were blamed after 10 people died in a tower block fire.

While Chinese authorities deny that Covid restrictions caused the deaths, officials in Urumqi did issue an unusual apology late on Friday, and pledged to "restore order" by phasing out restrictions.

That's in Xinjiang, too.

Did you know? The Chinese invented powderkegs.

No idea what percentage of the Chinese population is fed up with Zero COVID, but clearly, it's not insignificant:

China Covid: Police clamp down after days of protests

China's protests against Covid restrictions which erupted over the weekend appear to have died down, as authorities begin clamping down.

A heavy police presence has been reported in several cities, and some gatherings were quelled or failed to materialise.

Reports have emerged of people being questioned and their phones searched.

But overseas Chinese have continued protesting, in at least a dozen cities across the world.

Last weekend's demonstrations had grown after a fire in a high-rise block in Urumqi, western China, killed 10 people on Thursday.

It is widely believed residents could not escape the blaze because of Covid restrictions, but local authorities have disputed this.

As a result, thousands took to the streets for days, demanding an end to Covid lockdowns - with some even making rare calls for President Xi Jinping to stand down.

But on Monday, planned protests in Beijing did not happen after officers surrounded the assembly point. In Shanghai, large barriers were erected along the main protest route and police made several arrests.

On Tuesday morning, police could be seen in both cities patrolling areas where some groups on the Telegram social media app had suggested people should gather again.

A small protest in the southern city of Hangzhou on Monday night was also quickly stopped with people swiftly arrested, according to social media footage verified by the BBC.