Hello everyone! I hope you’ve all had a good weekend. We have several things to cover, so let’s get started.
The biggest news out of Asia has been the disappearance of a Malaysian Airlines flight headed to Beijing. The plane went off the radar and at the time of this writing, no wreckage has been found. Interpol confirms that two of the passports listed on the passenger manifest were stolen; both were stolen in Thailand.
India’s elections are set for April 7 and will continue through May 12. Given that there are 814 million eligible voters in India, it takes a bit of time.
The Indian Navy suffered another mishap.
I haven’t been pleased with the Obama presidency for many reasons (even though I voted for him twice.) One of the big reasons is the continued drone strikes in Afghanistan that kill more civilians than “military targets.” The latest NATO airstrike killed five Afghan soldiers and is increasing already high tension since President Hamid Karzai has long stated that the airstrikes are inhumane. (Hint: he’s not wrong.)
North Korea has been testing long-range missiles that can reach cities in South Korea and possibly the US. China has gone from expressing “deep concern” when a Chinese plane witnessed a missile ballistics test to drawing a “red line” in the sand and stating they won’t tolerate a war in the Korean Peninsula. Well that’s…nice of them.
Speaking of China, the superpower is taking steps to curb air pollution.
Tabassum Adnan, a council-woman from the Swat Valley who started the first female jirga last year, has been invited to join the all male grand jirga. A jirga is a an informal judicial council that dispenses justice in most rural areas of Pakistan. Traditionally, these have been dominated by men.
In a twisted example of the old adage of, “If there is a will, there’s a way,” drug smugglers have been hiding heroin in the hollowed out middle of onions.
The Pakistani government is continuing peace talks with the Taliban despite continued bombings.
In news that can be filed under, “About freaking time,” FIFA has lifted the ban on head coverings during matches, opening the door for women and men to continue with religious observance while playing in official matches.