March 20, 2019

World

"On a recent visit to Fiji I was able to confirm that the majestic islands of the South Pacific remain as close to paradise as one can get in this world. But alongside the sparkling crystal waters... I saw something darker at work in the region..."

"The country’s prime minister and attorney general have mentioned banning semiautomatic firearms, but it’s far from a done deal."

"New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Friday afternoon that “our gun laws will change” after the mass shooting in Christchurch, by far the most deadly mass shooting in the country’s history."

"The Senate voted Wednesday to end U.S. support for the Saudi-led military campaign in Yemen, its latest rebuke of the Trump administration’s continued embrace of the Saudi monarchy..."

"The spectre of sectarianism haunts the Middle East. It is blamed for chaos, conflict, and extremism. It defines what is seen as the region’s principal fault line: Sunni versus Shiite."

"Media coverage of the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 framed a horrifying accident in appallingly familiar ways. In the aftermath of the tragedy, many Western media outlets reported the news with unevenly rationed compassion."

"A certain breed of traveller craves visiting “untouched” places and interacting with “authentic” peoples, and a certain breed of tour operator promises to deliver you to and among them—for a price."

"The most recent crisis was set off in mid-February when a Pakistani terrorist group, Jaish-e-Mohammed, detonated a suicide bomb in Indian-controlled Kashmir, killing 40 Indian paramilitary soldiers."

"It’s easy to see why Paris’s Rue Crémieux is such a hit on Instagram... Instagrammers love the colorful homes. Frustrated residents want to install gates to lock them out."

"What happens when a major metropolitan area runs out of water? The 4.5 million residents of Cape Town are hoping they won’t have to find out."

"The industry churned out 100 billion pieces of clothing for 7 billion people in 2015. The problem is so bad, some brands are burning unsold inventory. The waste has got to stop."

"Until last summer, Saudi Arabia was the only country in the world where women weren't allowed to drive, a policy that had been in place since 1957. The ban's origins are murky, but the country follows Wahhabism, a strict form of Sunni Islam..."

"Kim has a stable dictatorship that shows few signs of breaking — one that he can likely pass on to the next in line for dynastic rule. Why should he change it?"

"Anyone who thought the prospect of a deadline would clarify British minds on Brexit is turning out to be sorely mistaken. With a month left before Britain is due to leave the European Union on March 29, the political chaos is deepening."

"Even as Beijing is stepping up its persecution of Muslim Uighurs, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia cozied up to Chinese President Xi Jinping on his trip to China last week."

"Since Stonehenge slipped into the written record in the medieval era, it has been a place to project our ideas of ourselves. It was said, by the 20th-century archaeologist and writer Jacquetta Hawkes, that “every age has the Stonehenge it deserves”"

"In the years since the crisis began, more than three million Venezuelans have fled to other countries, and those who can’t afford to leave have seen their quality of life deteriorate to previously unthinkable levels..."

"Political leaders from all French parties, including former presidents Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy, joined Jews and non-Jews in Paris’s Place de la Republique to condemn antisemitic acts."

"She was a 20-yr-old college student in Alabama who had become convinced of the righteousness of the Islamic State. So she duped her parents into thinking she was going on a college trip, and instead bought a plane ticket to Turkey with her tuition."

"While neither 'Medicare for All' nor a wealth tax will turn America into Venezuela overnight, all it would take is a series of catastrophic policies."

"Apple, Google, Starbucks, and companies like them all claim to be socially responsible, but the first element of social responsibility should be paying your fair share of tax."

"Have world leaders really got the will to bring peace to Yemen? We hear much about Yemen’s crisis, but far less about the hypocrisy of states fuelling the very conflict they condemn."

"Her real name was Monica Elfriede Witt, an exemplary Air Force counterintelligence agent who had studied Farsi and carried out covert missions in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Qatar."

"On the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, a former political prisoner assesses the prospect of change in Iran."

"The Venezuelan people are already destitute, and anything that accelerates Mr. Maduro’s demise is good for them. But what happens next?"

"Japanese women are pushing back against a tradition that dictates they must give chocolates to male colleagues on Valentine’s Day, with growing anger at the practice of “forced giving”."

"An experiment with a state-sponsored basic income didn’t encourage the unemployed to look for work. But it did increase their sense of well-being."

"Stop looking for meaning in Brexit... This wasn't some great multi-decade reckoning... It wasn't foreordained. It was a series of accidents..."

"As the Mexican cartel leader’s trial draws to an end, one thing is clear: drug kingpins reign as long as they make their partners money. When they stop, they end up in jail."

"As in 1919, the temptation to pursue more democracy and deeper international cooperation must be managed carefully, lest tragic unintended consequences follow."

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JJ Editor's Daily Picks

"On a recent visit to Fiji I was able to confirm that the majestic islands of the South Pacific remain as close to paradise as one can get in this world. But alongside the sparkling crystal waters... I saw something darker at work in the region..."

"The American legal system pretends to marble-and-mahogany majesty, but is in fact often a rickety, underfunded contraption, run by overworked mortals who are sometimes incompetent and sometimes actually ill-intentioned."

"For generations, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been portrayed as the key to making regional peace. Proponents of this concept have claimed that a solution of the protracted conflict would pave the way to Middle East peace..."

"“So, I am a fat lady, and I deserve respect,” she said recently, recalling her mindset on this solo mission. “Here’s a list of all the horrible things men have done to me.”"

"We have tied work closely to our overall life satisfaction — indeed, to our very identities. It isn’t surprising, then, that our jobs are letting us down."

"What would happen if you put together a group of diverse people to produce information? What would the results look like? Evans knew just the place to conduct the experiment: Wikipedia."

"Nowadays, the Men’s Rights movement runs the gamut from incels to red pillers, but in the 1970s, men's libbers looked something like… feminists?"

" I’ve just finished Vicky Ward’s “Kushner, Inc.,” a scintillating investigation of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump’s White House sojourn, which comes out on Tuesday."

"The most obvious and glaring problem with Workin’ Moms is the privilege of its main characters, which is blinding, exhausting, and all-encompassing."

"Have you ever eaten wasabi? If you answered “yes” to that question, you are likely mistaken. Most sushi eaters—even in Japan—are actually being served a mixture of ground horseradish and green food coloring..."

"DNA identification has gone mainstream—from the elite labs of “CSI” to your living room. When it first appeared over 30 years ago, it was an arcane technique. Now it’s woven into the fabric of everyday life..."

"According to our Sages, Purim signifies a significant change in the attitude of the Jewish people towards how we encounter God. This shift is analogous to changes in our own time."