Top Asian News at 9:30 a.m. GMT

April 17th, 2014 No comments

MOKPO, South Korea (AP) — An immediate evacuation order was not issued for the ferry that sank off South Korea’s southern coast, likely with about 290 people trapped inside, because officers on the bridge were trying to stabilize the vessel after it started to list, a crew member said Thursday. The first instructions from the captain were for the passengers to put on life jackets and stay put, and it was not until about 30 minutes later that he ordered an evacuation, Oh Yong-seok, a 58-year-old crew member told The Associated Press.
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Top Asian News at 9:00 a.m. GMT

April 17th, 2014 No comments

MOKPO, South Korea (AP) — An immediate evacuation order was not issued for the ferry that sank off South Korea’s southern coast, likely with about 290 people trapped inside, because officers on the bridge were trying to stabilize the vessel after it started to list, a crew member said Thursday. The first instructions from the captain were for the passengers to put on life jackets and stay put, and it was not until about 30 minutes later that he ordered an evacuation, Oh Yong-seok, a 58-year-old crew member told The Associated Press.
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Algeria on the Eve: Some Thoughts

April 17th, 2014 No comments

Algerians go to the polls tomorrow. There will be six candidates on the ballot, five men and a woman, of varying ideological orientations and ages. Then they will elect an ailing 77-year-old man who made no public campaign speeches.

But you knew that already.

Some analyses seem to see the Algerian situation as a reminder of the worst features of Arab authoritarian republics: the lack of a mechanism for succession and the unwillingness of autocrats to give up power, despite increasing disabilities. Those are no doubt factors. Others see it as a symptom of the fact that Algeria did not go through the ferment of Arab Spring. That’s true, too, no doubt, to some extent.

But I also think that whether or not tomorrow’s polls are freely held and fairly counted, Bouteflika would win anyway. One reason is that the Algerian establishment, from the military and security service generals Algerians call le pouvoir to the two big parties, the government bureaucracy, and the business and energy sectors, don’t have anywhere else to go. Lately profound fissures have been visible within the establishment, but there is no agreed alternative to Bouteflika.

That is one side of the “stability at all costs” argument. The other side is the risk aversion of Algerians who fear  repetition of the violence of the 1990s. Even the half of all Algerians in their 20s and younger bear some scars of the troubles of the 1990s, when some 200,000 died. Older generations remember the eight year war of independence from 1954 to 1962, when perhaps a million died.I suspect this, and the sobering memory of the civil war in Libya next door, are one reason why there has been  so little turbulence in Algeria.

Bouteflika did not end the troubles single-handedly, but he presided over reconciliation, and the absence of any obvious successor means the alternative to another term might be renewed carnage.

Bouteflika will win, though perhaps not by the 90% he got in 2009 or the 85% in 2004. But we can hope that he, or at least le pouvoir, can find a solution to the succession question before Bouteflika is even less able to govern than now: a Vice President with real power perhaps, and a clear succession mechanism.
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Comment on 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan’s Taliban by Jay L

April 17th, 2014 No comments

I am wondering how wealthy Bundy is. 1000 cattle are likely worth more than $1 million. People must remember that the issues (of Bundy using the federal land rent free or not) have been litigated and a federal court ruled against Bundy. That is called due process.
I would not want to risk my life, in a gun fight with the government, in support of a wealthy rancher.

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Comment on 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan’s Taliban by Neil B

April 17th, 2014 No comments

Matt, Prof. Cole titled this piece “five ways _____ resembles Pakistan’s Taliban.” The existence of shared traits does not imply either that the two groups must either be on average alike in *all* respects, or that all of their members are like each other (aside from the first question.) To pretend that the latter was implied, is the straw man fallacy. Are you aware of the logical and background to rational debate, and of the responsibilities expected of those who engage?

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Top Asian News at 12:00 a.m. GMT

April 17th, 2014 No comments

MOKPO, South Korea (AP) — Koo Bon-hee could see the exit. For half an hour, as the doomed ferry filled with water and listed severely on its side, the crew told passengers to wait for rescuers. With their breathing room disappearing, the 36-year-old businessman and some of the other passengers floated to an exit and swam to a nearby fishing boat. But 290 of the 475 people aboard — many of them high school students on a class trip — were still missing after the ferry sank Wednesday off the southern coast of South Korea. Six were confirmed dead and 55 were injured.
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Top Asian News at 11:30 p.m. GMT

April 16th, 2014 No comments

MOKPO, South Korea (AP) — Koo Bon-hee could see the exit. For half an hour, as the doomed ferry filled with water and listed severely on its side, the crew told passengers to wait for rescuers. With their breathing room disappearing, the 36-year-old businessman and some of the other passengers floated to an exit and swam to a nearby fishing boat. But 290 of the 475 people aboard — many of them high school students on a class trip — were still missing after the ferry sank Wednesday off the southern coast of South Korea. Six were confirmed dead and 55 were injured.
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Top Asian News at 11:00 p.m. GMT

April 16th, 2014 No comments

MOKPO, South Korea (AP) — Koo Bon-hee could see the exit. For half an hour, as the doomed ferry filled with water and listed severely on its side, the crew told passengers to wait for rescuers. With their breathing room disappearing, the 36-year-old businessman and some of the other passengers floated to an exit and swam to a nearby fishing boat. But 290 of the 475 people aboard — many of them high school students on a class trip — were still missing after the ferry sank Wednesday off the southern coast of South Korea. Six were confirmed dead and 55 were injured.
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Comment on 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan’s Taliban by Jack

April 16th, 2014 No comments

It’ll get more interesting if Obama sends in a couple of drones to keep a close watch on these dangerous, gun-toting right-wing kooks. Bringing the drones home will allow Obama to send ‘em to Nebraska after he gives the go ahead for the Keystone pipeline. They can keep a close watch on all the envirowackos, old hippies from the 60s, and other radical types. It’ll be like Woodstock without the bands. All they need is a Nebraska farmer to play Max Yasgur….

“I’M A FARMER” AND I WANNA STAY A FARMER!!!

Obama will go to Nebraska and give his own “Mission Accomplished” speech.

“We all know this pipeline is very dirty and oh-so-STINKY. I can smell it from here, but the real issue is JOBS, JOBS, JOBS for all Americans.”

A couple of drones will be circling overhead.

No guns means all the protestors get locked up until the pipeline is finished.

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Comment on 5 Ways Nevada Rancher Militia Resembles Pakistan’s Taliban by Steve Caunce

April 16th, 2014 No comments

The American Taliban supported the invasion of Iraq and wanted armed intervention in Libya, Egypt, Syria and now the Ukraine. Darn right they kill innocent people and terrorize the globe. They also advocate Fundamentalist Religion and the suppression of women. The only difference is that Obama does not send troops and drones to kill the American Taliban in their houses or at their weddings.

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