If a tree falls over in the jungle and no one hears it, does it make a noise?
The old riddle now has a new counterpart: If an international legal body hands down a landmark verdict but no one enforces it, is it irrelevant?
Ma Ba Tha, the abbreviation of what in English is the Committee for the Protection of Nationality and Religion, is a Buddhist nationalist organisation that thrust itself into political prominence two years ago.
Many Brexit voters in the UK and elsewhere are angry at economic experts. They say that the experts failed to foresee the financial crisis of 2008, put efficiency first in their policy advice and blindly assumed that the losers from their policy prescriptions could be compensated in some unspecified way.
Official Chinese media are having a field day touting the dysfunction of Western democracies. Between the British vote to “Brexit” the European Union and the nomination of Donald Trump as the Republican candidate for the US presidency, not to mention increasingly frequent terrorist attacks, they have plenty of evidence. But the truth is that the West’s loss is not China’s gain.
An impressive wielding of the powers of patronage has kept Malaysia’s Najib Razak out of legal trouble so far, but a looming money laundering investigation by the US Department of Justice looks likely to finally sink him.
The world’s system for dealing with refugees is broken, and the Asia Pacific is no exception. Leaders in the region need to create a market of tradeable refugee quotas to deal with this issue. Such a system would produce better outcomes for refugees, introduce a fairer way of sharing the burden, and be much more cost effective.
The launch of the government’s economic policy last week was always meant to be the occasion for an announcement of a broad set of economic principles, rather than a detailed set of policy measures for individual sectors and industries.
Flooding ravaged parts of north and east China this month. More than 150 people were killed by landslides and surges of water. In one of the worst-hit provinces, Hebei, people in the town of Xingtai, where at least 25 people died, demonstrated against the government for failing to warn them of the flooding and for ineffective rescue attempts.
“Myanmar's Lady cosies up to the general”: There was something about this BBC headline this week that made me uncomfortable – and it wasn’t just unease about what behind-the-scenes deals may have taken place to provoke Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing’s apparent repositioning of himself as a born-again champion of religious freedom and military accountability.