Daily Archives: May 20, 2020

The World: A Brief Introduction: Richard Haass

An invaluable primer from Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, that will help anyone, expert and non-expert alike, navigate a time in which many of our biggest challenges come from the world beyond our borders.

Like it or not, we live in a global era, in which what happens thousands of miles away has the ability to affect our lives. This time, it is a Coronavirus known as Covid-19, which originated in a Chinese city many had never heard of but has spread to the corners of the earth. Next time it could well be another infectious disease from somewhere else.

Twenty years ago it was a group of terrorists trained in Afghanistan and armed with box-cutters who commandeered four airplanes and flew them into buildings (and in one case a field) and claimed nearly three thousand lives. Next time it could be terrorists who use a truck bomb or gain access to a weapon of mass destruction. In 2016 hackers in a nondescript office building in Russia traveled virtually in cyberspace to manipulate America’s elections.

Now they have burrowed into our political life. In recent years, severe hurricanes and large fires linked to climate change have ravaged parts of the earth; in the future we can anticipate even more serious natural disasters. In 2008, it was a global financial crisis caused by mortgage-backed securities in America, but one day it could well be a financial contagion originating in Europe, Asia, or Africa. This is the new normal of the 21st century.

The World is designed to provide readers of any age and experience with the essential background and building blocks they need to make sense of this complicated and interconnected world. It will empower them to manage the flood of daily news. Readers will become more informed, discerning citizens, better able to arrive at sound, independent judgments. While it is impossible to predict what the next crisis will be or where it will originate, those who read The World will have what they need to understand its basics and the principal choices for how to respond.

In short, this book will make readers more globally literate and put them in a position to make sense of this era. Global literacy–knowing how the world works–is a must, as what goes on outside a country matters enormously to what happens inside. Although the United States is bordered by two oceans, those oceans are not moats. And the so-called Vegas rule–what happens there stays there–does not apply in today’s world to anyone anywhere. U.S. foreign policy is uniquely American, but the world Americans seek to shape is not. Globalization can be both good and bad, but it is not something that individuals or countries can opt out of. Even if we want to ignore the world, it will not ignore us. The choice we face is how to respond.

We are connected to this world in all sorts of ways. We need to better understand it, both its promise and its threats, in order to make informed choices, be it as students, citizens, voters, parents, employees, or investors. To help readers do just that, The World focuses on essential history, what makes each region of the world tick, the many challenges globalization presents, and the most influential countries, events, and ideas. Explaining complex ideas with wisdom and clarity, Richard Haass’s The World is an evergreen book that will remain relevant and useful as history continues to unfold.

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What is America’s Place in the New World Order Post COVID-19? | Amanpour and Company

Amanpour and Company Published on May 20, 2020

We live in a complex and interconnected world. What happens in China or Russia can impact the lives of people thousands of miles away. Former State Department official Richard Haass highlights this connection in his new book, “The World: A Brief Introduction,” in which he argues that we need to abandon rivalry and embrace global cooperation. Haass speaks with Walter Isaacson about how we might get there.

Originally aired on May 20, 2020.

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U.S. deployed over 200 military biological laboratories across the world


Published on May 20, 2020

The United States has deployed more than 200 military biological laboratories across the world. Among them, more than 30 have been exposed. The rest are hidden in unknown places. Do these laboratories develop biological and chemical weapons? Or use lethal viruses and bacteria? What’s the true purpose of these biological laboratories.

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WHO reports most coronavirus cases in a day, sees steep rise in poor countries

FRANCE 24 English

Published on May 20, 2020

The World Health Organization expressed concern on Wednesday about the rising number of new coronavirus cases in poor countries, even as many rich nations have begun emerging from lockdown

En-ROADS Introduction for Bill McKibben and The New Yorker

Coronavirus Conspiracism – Open Source with Christopher Lydon

Coronavirus Conspiracism

What we’re learning again in coronavirus time is that when the medical system stumbles in a pandemic – and when the media machinery, the chattering class stumbles on top it – watch out! Something like it happened two centuries ago when Yellow Fever struck New York and Philadelphia. Nobody knew then to blame the mosquitos that carried the bug, so a society of feckless thinkers – the Illuminati, so called — took the heat. We are in a boom time again for blaming all sorts of people for Covid 19: Bill Gates, Globalism, Dr. Fauci, China. It is high season for conspiracism, and YouTube videos have become the place to tune in.

32 Countries Are Beating Coronavirus. The U.S. Isn’t One. | All In | MSNBC


May 13, 2020

Chris Hayes looks at how the U.S.’s coronavirus response compares to that of other countries: “It’s really hard to look at all this data and come to any conclusion other than that our leaders are failing.” Aired on 05/13/2020.

India, Bangladesh prepare for Cyclone Amphan


May 20, 2020

Millions in India and Bangladesh are in the path of Cyclone Amphan, which is due to make landfall, bringing damaging winds and heavy rain to a region already struggling with the coronavirus pandemic.

India and Bangladesh brace for cyclone Amphan | DW News

DW News

May 20, 2020

Millions of people in India and Bangladesh are fleeing their homes as a huge storm races in. Cyclone Amphan is packing dangerous hurricane-force winds. It’s already brought heavy downpours and major flooding is expected as it moves inland. Amphan is also hampering the response to the coronavirus in both countries.

What will the coronavirus second wave look like? | COVID-19 Special

DW News

May 13, 2020

As lockdown measures are lifted, many parts of the world are feeling a sense of relief. But experts warn of a second, possibly worse wave of the coronavirus. There is a precedent for multiple peaks in a pandemic. The second wave of the 1918 Spanish flu was more deadly than the first. With coronavirus, could the worst be yet to come?