Around the world, private schools are booming, especially in developing countries. The Economist reports that in 2010, there were an estimated 1 million private schools in the developing world and the figure has since risen quickly. From Latin America to Africa and Southeast Asia, private schools have been moving into communities – mostly poor – where the state has been slow to provide services.
Thank goodness that the long arm of Malaysian law has stretched out to spank the spandex-clad buttocks of some very silly Australians and ensure that the nation’s propriety and pride are once again salvaged.
At several moments throughout the US election campaign I have felt that something about Donald Trump was disturbingly familiar, but I couldn’t quite pinpoint it. After seeing the video of this US presidential candidate and married man talking about kissing women, grabbing their vaginas and using his celebrity to get them to do whatever he wants, I now fully recognise the guy I have known since I was a teenage boy.
Myanmar’s rivers have great economic and historical significance. The Ayeyarwady and many other rivers have supported various settlements along its banks, providing fresh water, natural resources and irrigation for agriculture.
“A bird with one broken wing, or a species with one wounded sex, will never soar,” writes Valerie M Hudson, one of the authors of a new book, Sex and World Peace. It ought to be obvious that you can’t have peace if half your people are being oppressed, but somehow that concept is all too often ignored or not understood.
Japanese women are making cracks in the glass ceiling of politics. On September 15, Japan’s main opposition party, the Democratic Party (DP), elected a woman as its new leader. In light of the dearth of women in politics and leadership positions in all sectors of Japanese society, this is a significant development.
Antonio Manuel de Oliveira Guterres is all but confirmed as the next secretary general of the United Nations with the Security Council set to forward his nomination to the General Assembly. He will become the fourth Western European, the ninth man and the first former head of government to hold the position.
The most startling news out of Southeast Asia in recent days, and by far the most important in terms of regional impact, came from Singapore. But many missed it because they were distracted by more outlandish comments from Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines, who hogged the headlines by saying he wanted to copy Adolf Hitler.
Myanmar's democratic transition and the consequent dynamics between Nay Pyi Taw and Washington have commanded strategic priority for America’s Asia policy. As the Obama years come to a close, and the White House prepares for its new president, how the US-Myanmar relationship pans out will be of interest to America’s strategic competitors and partners alike.
There is no subtlety about Rodrigo Duterte, the president of the Philippines. He has waged a brutal extrajudicial campaign against supposed drug dealers and users, killing thousands without due process. On September 30, he compared himself to Hitler in describing his desire to exterminate dealers and addicts.