A tyrant to some and a liberator to others, Fidel Castro of Cuba died on November 25, a decade shy of a century. While his own countrymen stay divided on his legacy on two sides of the Straits of Florida, the revolutionary icon was a towering figure for the rest of the world. The cigar chomping, fatigues-clad, bearded man, who famously survived more than 600 assassination attempts, was the last stalwart defending communism to his last breath.
Persistent indigestion may point to the cancer of esophagus, throat or stomach. This prognosis is a sufficient hint for the wise to understand why development without democracy isn't good for a nation. It's no solace for people to know that highways and bridges are being built unless they also feel connected to their country, because it altogether misses the point. A free country is desirable so that people can enjoy, not the freedom of luxury, but the luxury of freedom.
The Americans had their eye on Asia since Commodore Perry opened Japan in 1853, but now they have their heart set on this distant continent. It's clear as daylight that a quiet showdown is imminent, if not already at work. The United States signed a 10-year defense framework agreement with India last month. Japan is trying to reel in Russia. The purpose is to build a bulwark against China, and isolate it in its own backyard.
The world is demographically lopsided more than ever before: old people are concentrated in the rich countries, and the rest of the world is crowded with the young. Whoever said that the young shall inherit the earth must think again. As nations get more affluent, their populations also get more aged. In an increasingly prosperous world, the future generations are losing entitlement.
The Muslims make 14.2 percent of India's 1.25 billion people. But, 25 percent of India's 370,000 beggars are Muslims. The newly released data by researchers at the University of California, Davis, and the London School of Economics, published in the journal Human Nature, also show that the Muslim population inside Indian jails is rising. For example, Maharashtra jails have 31.09 percent Muslim prisoners against a state average of 19.06 percent. Arthur Koestler famously writes that statistics don't bleed, but it's the detail which counts. What counts in this instance is that the plight of the second largest Muslim population in the world after Indonesia is nothing but dismal.
Ever since the Chilcot Inquiry vilified former Prime Minister Tony Blair on July 6 for taking the United Kingdom to war in Iraq, the world is waiting for the other shoe to drop. If Blair deliberately exaggerated the threat posed by Saddam Hussein, the report assessed he had done it at the behest of his American ally George W. Bush. That gives sufficient ground for the Americans to have their own Chilcot. Blair had bought the distribution rights on this of the Atlantic for the biggest lot of hogwash Bush sold to the entire world.
Greek historian Herodotus, living in the fifth century, couldn't have known in advance that a headmaster was going to be humiliated in Narayanganj on the second Friday of May 2016. But when he said that men trusted their ears more than their eyes, it set the standard of mob justice for all time to come. Those who've watched the disgusting video of that outrageous incident couldn't believe their eyes while ears burned with shame. The headmaster was doing earholding sit-ups while an all-daddy lawmaker wagged his finger, keeping count. When the exhausted and embarrassed victim fell on the floor after the third time, he was pulled up to stand on his feet. Then like a mechanical toy, the poor man was made to raise his folded hands to his forehead asking for forgiveness before a hysterical crowd.
Ever since the Panama Papers hit the fan, the leak has been working like a series of introductions at a high-profile gathering. It's putting a bunch of names to a bunch of faces, men and women leading a double life because of their money. It also shows that these folks have something in common with the squirrels. The rodents hide their nuts, and they hide their assets.