Recently in International News Category

An anecdote

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"The first thing you notice upon entering Mitigia Airport in Tripoli is a series of signs with the word "No" in capital letters next to illustrations of automatic weapons," begins a NY Times Magazine article by Daoud Kuttab.
The story, and indeed it is literally an anecdote, continues from there in a first-person narrative in which guns do not actually figure greatly.
The story is deficient in context, as well as in analysis.
There is no exploration of the whys or hows of what happens, just a simple recounting. There are no insights as to the functioning of the airport, or the larger context of the Libyan revolution.
The elements of scenery could be used to greater effect were they applied to a news story, but as they exist, they just set up the last line in what would be better suited for a cocktail party.

Poverty in the Philippines

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Rates of poverty amongst Filipino families rising, says Social Weather Stations survey released in late Oct.
Business World Online reports that 52 percent of households consider themselves poor, a jump from a reported 49 percent in June.
The 52 percent represent an estimated 10.4 million households, Business World Online said.
Hunger numbers have increased as well, the Manila Times writes, with about 4.3 million families nationwide--21.5 percent--experiencing having no food at some point in the last three months.
The hunger numbers come as a 6.4 percent increase, Business World Online reports--a rise of over 1.25 million families.
The results are projected from face-to-face interviews with 1,200 respondents nationally, with an error margin of +/-3 percent.

Obituary: Swami Bhaktipada

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Swami Bhaktipada, who once led the American Hare Krishna movement, died in Thane, India, on Monday at the age of 74.
Bhaktipada, born Keith Ham in Peekskill, N.Y., in 1937, writes the Los Angeles Times, was the son of a Baptist preacher.
An early American disciple of Hare Krishna, he founded one of the largest Hare Krishna communities, West Virginia's New Vrindaban.
Later, convictions for racketeering and mail fraud would mar his name, and Bhaktipada spent eight years in prison. He was released in 2004, reports CBS News, and relocated to India in 2008.
According to the New York Times, Bhaktipada's brother, Gerald Ham, and sisters Joan Aughinbaugh and Shirley Rogers survive him.

Assange awaiting extradition judgment

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London's High Court will rule Wednesday whether Wikileaks founder Julian Assange will be extradited back to Sweden on allegations of sexual assault.
For Assange, who has been living under strict monitoring by the police for the last 11 months, Wednesday's verdict could make him a free man again.
Regardless of the verdict, The Guardian reports, either side will likely ask to appeal to the London Supreme Court.
According to Fox News, Assange claims he would not be tried fairly in Sweden--where he has not been formally charged with a crime--and that his return there could result in his extradition to America over Wikileaks' publishing of classified American documents.
Assange is being represented by human rights attorney Gareth Pierce, according to The Guardian.

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