It’s been a chaotic week for me, with numerous meetings, parties, and now preparation for teaching Model United Nations and Public Speaking to high school students. I’m now a trainer for United Netherlands’s High School Program, so on Tuesday I’ll be in front of a class for the first time. This has all left very little time for Your World Explained. So today it’s again a few stories from around the world that interested me this week
The world (or everyone interested in Russian politics in any case) holds its breath as it waits to see if Vladimir Putin will show up for a meeting this Monday. He’s been out of sight for days now, which is unusual for a man who has so much power over the Russian state. While most likely he just has a case of the flu, it’s a sign of how dependent the Russian government has become on one man – and a man for whom there is no clear successor.
A UN agency has published a shocking series of satellite photos from Syria. The destruction is unbelievable, with one photo showing an entire district razed to the ground. The war is now entering its fifth year, and is as unsolvable as ever. Today the US said for the first time that talks with Assad would be beneficial, a statement that many are reading as an admission that the US’s policy (or lack thereof) has been utterly ineffective.
In this article on humour website Cracked, Luke McKinney gets into the various ways in which people use statistics to deceive their audience. It’s a useful thing to remind yourself of if you regularly read the news – no one is better at lying to you with numbers than the media.
Wannabe jihadists aren’t the only Westerners flocking to Syria and Iraq. There are also those who want to join the Kurds in their fight against Islamic State. This article provides a insight into their complex reasons for joining the fight.