2 August 2016   Leave a comment

Taiwan’s President, Tsai Ing-wen, offered an apology to the island’s indigenous people who have suffered for centuries under Dutch, Spanish, Chinese and Japanese rule.  The indigenous peoples, who comprise about 2% of Taiwan’s population, are organized into several tribes which were unfortunately defined by the Japanese during the period of Japanese imperial rule. Many of the indigenous peoples reject these artificial classifications.  President Tsai shares ancestry with these people, and she has offered greater autonomy to them but it is hard to imagine what concessions would address the injustices these people have suffered.

Japan has issued a defense white paper that accuses China of “territorial aggression” in disputes over the East and South China Seas.  The paper asserted that China was attempting “to turn these coercive changes to the status quo into a fait accompli.”  The paper was issue after Chinese Defense Minister Chang Wanquan called for a “people’s war at sea.”  The rhetoric between the two states is escalating rapidly after the decision of the International Arbitration Tribunal at the Hague that repudiated the Chinese maritime claims.

Climate change has been linked to an outbreak of anthrax in Russian Siberia.   Temperatures in the Arctic Circle in that region of Russia have actually reached 95° F.  Researchers believe that the anthrax spores, which can be frozen for many, many years, was released when the permafrost thawed.  One child and more than 2,500 reindeer have died from the outbreak and more than 60 people have been hospitalized.  The last time anthrax was active in the region was in 1941.

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Posted August 2, 2016 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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