Mideast / S. Asia

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‘Islamic State’ down but not out, UN warns

‘Islamic State’ down but not out, UN warns

By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — Despite dramatic territorial losses, stunning military setbacks and dwindling numbers of militants, the so called Islamic state of Iraq also know as (ISIL) has been degraded but still remains a “global threat,” according to a new UN report. In a candid briefing to the Security Council, Vladimir Voronkov, […]

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Looking ahead to 2019: The bumpy road ahead

Looking ahead to 2019: The bumpy road ahead

By John J. Metzler New York — It’s that time of the year again to consult the crystal snow globe and look ahead at what global political crises we may face in the upcoming year. After a tumultuous 2018, it would be nice to have a respite from the political jolts, lurches and surprises of […]

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Free fall for ‘Jupiter’: French Yellow Jackets sting Macron

Free fall for ‘Jupiter’: French Yellow Jackets sting Macron

By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — Elected on a wave of dynamism a mere eighteen months ago, French President Emmanuel Macron has morphed into the figure of derision and disillusion. From a stunning 66 percent landslide win in the May 2017 elections to a perilous political free fall, Emmanuel Macron, France’s youngest president, now […]

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George H W Bush: Grace, gravitas, grit through tumultuous times

George H W Bush: Grace, gravitas, grit through tumultuous times

By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — “He showed me what it means to be a President who serves with integrity, leads with courage and acts with love in his heart for the citizens of our country,” intoned former President George W. Bush in an emotional eulogy at his late father’s state funeral. Magisterial commemorations […]

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Yemen’s agony tops global crisis list

Yemen’s agony tops global crisis list

Special to WorldTribune.com By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS —The continuing crisis in Yemen, a country beset with tribal fault-lines, jolted by sectarian clashes, and magnified by a clash of cultures between Arab monarchies and the Islamic Republic of Iran, has shaken the Arabian peninsula to the core. Now after five years of warfare between […]

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‘Kafkaesque’: UN Human Rights Council mirrors abusive global village

‘Kafkaesque’: UN Human Rights Council mirrors abusive global village

Special to WorldTribune.com By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — In a riveting election for new members of the Human Rights Council, the General Assembly voted for 18 new members. Yet, given that all prospective candidates were unopposed, the perfunctory ballot simply selected a list of states where everyone won, including some notorious human rights […]

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UN speeches in review: Moralizing, demonizing and occasional common sense

UN speeches in review: Moralizing, demonizing and occasional common sense

By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — In a week of speeches which swirled from the sublime to the ridiculous or were simply just boring, the recent UN General Assembly debate reached some notable exceptions. Among the sonorous drone of 193 addresses, either restating the obvious or repeating by rote the contemporary global mantra of […]

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UN session opening contrasts with last year’s N. Korean crisis

UN session opening contrasts with last year’s N. Korean crisis

By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — Presidents, Prime Ministers, Kings and Potentates have converged in New York for the 73rd UN General Assembly. The annual rite of Autumn brings together world leaders from 193 member states to discuss and hopefully try to solve key global crises ranging from the wars in Syria and Yemen, […]

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UN peacekeeping; vital but tarnished tool

UN peacekeeping; vital but tarnished tool

By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — One of the UN’s most vital, unsung, but necessary operations concerns its global peacekeeping missions. For more than sixty years, the UN “Blue helmets” have seen service from the Sinai to Cyprus and the Congo. In 1988, UN Peacekeeping won the Nobel Peace Prize. But in recent years […]

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Syrian endgame threatens new migrant surge

Syrian endgame threatens new migrant surge

By John J. Metzler UNITED NATIONS — After seven years of bitter fighting, twelve million civilians displaced, and more than a half million people killed, Syria’s relentless civil war may be coming to a dramatic conclusion. The final showdown seems set for the north-western province of Idlib, a rebel stronghold, where three million civilians are […]

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