Due to my midterms – Comparative Politics, Middle East: Culture and Middle East: Economics – and a few essays that need writing, time isn’t on my side this weekend. Seeing as it’s been a slow news weekend, here are some interesting stories on other matters.
Last week I came across a new poster by the Australian government explaining to prospective asylum seekers by boat that: “NO WAY – You will not make Australia home”. The blunt way that the government is telling the most vulnerable people in the world that they will never be accepted is unbelievable. It shows that these days the myth Australians tell themselves – that it’s a country where everyone can have a fair chance – is just that, a myth.
Over 50 years after the Communist-led revolution in Cuba, the United States still blocks all trade and economic ties with the country – which has cost Cuba immensely. According to the US government, the embargo will only be lifted once Cuba opens its society to more democracy and more foreign involvement in the economy. The embargo is a bizarre leftover from the Cold War, and one mainly kept in place by Cuban-American exiles with a lot of political clout.
While absolutely no one was watching, Libya has fallen apart. After the fall of Gaddafi, the world gave virtually zero support to Libyans trying to construct their first democracy. The media too turned away from a story that wasn’t quite as interesting as plucky rebels fighting a mad dictator. As a result, the country is now hopelessly divided between militias, Islamists and even two rival parliaments.