July 18, 2016

A Shooting In Baton Rouge And A Counter-Coup In Turkey




Busy week ahead with the four-day bonanza known as the Republican National Convention kicking off in Cleveland today. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the highlights.



Shooting In Baton Rouge Kills Three Cops

Three police officers died in another Dallas-style shooting yesterday and another three were wounded in Baton Rouge Louisiana. The shooter, a 29-year-old black man who served in the marines used an assault rifle to shoot at the police. He was reportedly angry about the shooting of black men by the police. President Obama condemned the shooting and a leader of the Black Lives Matter movement made a call to end violence.

What does this mean?

Both the shootings in Dallas and Baton Rouge were carried out by veterans with high powered guns bringing together racial injustice, policing practices, gun control and veteran care in a toxic cocktail of issues that the US has historically been unable to solve. Tensions are so high that police in Cleveland asked Governor Kasich to declare a state of emergency and suspend “open-carry” laws around the pro-gun Republican Convention…


Turkey Coup Proves Convenient For Purging Enemies

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan responded to a botched coup by a faction of the Turkish military on Friday with a counter-coup of his own. After members of the Turkish military tried and failed to capture the President and take over the country, forces loyal to the government embarked on a “purge” of the military and judiciary ostensibly to root out coup sympathizers. 6,000 people were arrested including almost 3,000 judges. It is unclear what role so many judges could have played in a 12 hour coup attempt… 

The counter-coup has been so ruthless that conspiracy theorists suggest that Erdogan himself might have staged the coup to use it as an excuse to purge his enemies. And Erdogan has a lot of enemies: from secular generals opposed to his Islamist-leaning ideology to Kurdish separatists to a Pennsylvania based Turkish preacher/cult leader who Erdogan blames for the coup. However, there is no evidence that Erdogan staged the coup. In fact, emerging reports indicate that he may have just barely escaped death himself. 

In Case You Missed It: Our Special Pnut On The Turkish Coup



Pakistani Celebrity, Qandeel Baloch, Killed For Being A Woman

The brother of “Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian” drugged and killed his sister on Friday in an apparent “honor killing.” The brother was unrepentant when police arrested him saying he was ashamed at the photos and comments his sister was making. Qandeel Baloch often used her social media fame to poke fun at Pakistan’s patriarchal society. This isn’t the first time moderates were attacked just for being moderate. Last month a Sufi singer was gunned down and in 2012, 15-year-old Malala Yousafzai was shot just for asserting that she had a right to an education.

Good Book: I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban


Venezuela Opens Its Borders So People Can Actually Get Supplies

Venezuela opened its border with Colombia yesterday to let people go across the border to buy medicines and staples that can’t be found in Venezuela. The country has been suffering an economic crisis due to low oil prices and terrible economic mismanagement. To get even the most basic foodstuffs shoppers have to Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty” target=”_blank” style=”color: #076EB3;mso-line-height-rule: exactly;-ms-text-size-adjust: 100%;-webkit-text-size-adjust: 100%;font-weight: normal;text-decoration: none !important;”>wait for hours in often violent lines outside empty shops. Faced with an economy in free-fall and a hostile parliament President Maduro is now turning to the military to save him… classic move.

Thought-Provoking Book: Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty



Brexit: Australia seized the opportunity presented by Brexit and said it would like a “free trade agreement” with its former colonial overlord. British Prime Minister May was quite keen about the whole thing.

Nice: Authorities identified the attacker in last week’s Bastille Day attack that left 85 people dead as 31-year-old Tunisian national Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel. They say he was “radicalized quickly” and ISIS claimed him as one of their soldiers. 

Saudi: Congress declassified 28 pages of the 9/11 report that details Saudi involvemement in the 9/11 attack. The report absolves the government of wrongdoing but says that “some of the September 11 hijackers were in contact with, and received support or assistance from, individuals who may be connected to the Saudi Government.”


South Korea To No Longer Serve ‘Roast Grandmother’

The South Korean government is assembling a task force with the sole purpose of standardizing menu translations across the country to serve the millions of tourists that visit each year. The government is apparently tired of the embarrassment that comes with menu mistranslations common in tourist traps around the world. Almost a third of restaurants have mistranslations with some ranging from the misleading (dynamic stew) to the absurd (roast grandmother) to the obscene (chicken a**hole house)… Yup, that actually exists on a menu somewhere. 



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