If Western audiences are inspired by the film "Shawshank Redemption" about a solo prison escape, then Taliban sympathizers must surely be heartened by today's spectacular escape of some 500 inmates from a Kandahar prison through a 1,180-foot-long tunnel. But while character Andy Dufresne had to dig out of Shawshank prison without any assistance, the Taliban prisoners are suspected of having help from guards. This is not the first jail break that has set back the US wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, nor is it even the first escape from this specific prison. Here's a short list of recent prison breaks (and one near-escape) in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The BRICS countries, five nations grouped together because of their burgeoning economies, are in the spotlight this week as their leaders meet in China. Made up of Brazil, Russia, India, China and, as of this week, South Africa, the BRICS countries are grouped together because while they are not yet economic powerhouses, they have the potential to become the world’s most dominant economies in the next few decades.
Americans might like to think of themselves as the world's hardest workers, but a new report ranks them ninth in terms of working hours when placed alongside 28 nations, including China, India, and South Africa. The study, released April 12 by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, found that Americans work about 15 minutes more per day than the average 8 hours worldwide. Chinese work about eight minutes longer per day than Americans. Belgians work the least, at seven hours a day. Here's a quick glance at the top five longest-working nations, which has some surprising members.
Out of the UN comes a new idea for ending war. Peacebuilders: An intensive process that gives permission for foreign 'interference' in conflict resolution.
Carlos Slim retained the top spot on the Forbes rich list for the second year in a row. The Mexican telecoms tycoon represents a growing trend of billionaires bubbling up from emerging markets worldwide. Over the past year, China doubled its number of billionaires, according to Forbes, and Moscow now has more billionaires than any other city. Of the 11 richest men in the world, the following five come from emerging economies in Latin America and Asia:
Today is the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day. In 1911 – the year the holiday was first celebrated internationally – women could not yet vote in most countries. Now, a number of women serve as presidents and in other positions of power. But there’s still more to do if women are to enjoy the same access and rights as men, say International Women’s Day organizers and the UN. This year’s focus? "Equal access to education, training, and science and technology: Pathway to decent work for women.” Read on to find out more about International Women’s Day.
Analyzing a selection of political revolutions - successful and not - around the globe since World War II
Switzerland froze the assets of Libya strongman Muammar Qaddafi and 26 other people from his entourage, less than two weeks after freezing assets belonging to Egypt's Hosni Mubarak.
Muammar Qaddafi and Hosni Mubarak are both said to be worth billions of dollars. 'Hiding money is not rocket science,' says Jeffrey Robinson, author of a money laundering exposé.
Switzerland says it has returned more than $1.5 billion over the past 20 years, but money laundering continues on a grand scale. 'It's like untying the Gordian knot,' says a former Department of Justice official.
A first step is identifying where assets are held. Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi is said to have billions stashed in bank accounts from Dubai to Switzerland.
Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi is earning widespread condemnation for his brutal tactics against a populist uprising. As the international community wrestles with how best to show their disapproval, one suggested option is imposing sanctions – a step French President Nicolas Sarkozy urged the European Union to take. But their effectiveness is hotly contested. Here’s a look at how useful sanctions have been in changing the behavior of other nations.
Prince William and Kate Middleton's royal wedding may have tinges of the turreted-castle fairy tale. But from romantic to ruthless, more than 40 modern monarchies, including Prince William's family, still influence global realities for better or worse.
It's official. On Feb. 14, China was recognized as the world's second-largest economy after the United States. Japan released its 2010 economic figures, announcing that its full-year GDP was $5.47 trillion – about 7 percent smaller than China's. But read between the lines and look beyond the top three rankings. You find that Americans are already convinced that the US has fallen behind China, that Japanese are not necessarily dismayed at the news that they've fallen to No. 3, and that other nations are showing notable economic changes.
With Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak appearing to be headed out of office, it’s likely he has thought about where he’d head next if he’s forced out of the country as well as the presidency. Ousted world leaders have a history of slipping away to other countries and living a life of relative anonymity and leisure in exile. If President Mubarak joins the ranks of those who fled their countries to live out the rest of their days elsewhere, where will he go? Some of his predecessors’ choices could give some guidance.
Weather, inflation, and biofuels pushed the United Nations food price index to an all-time high in December, sparking concern over the poor being left with empty plates.
The South Sudan referendum ended with an overwhelming vote for independence – 99.57 percent of those polled voted for it – and put the region officially on track to become independent in July. How often is a country born? (Or wrested from territory of an already existing one?) Here’s a look at five of the most recent declarations of independence:
Foreign investors see Africa as a breadbasket. Done well, investment could help with African hunger but create food security for the rest of the world.
Foreign investment in a Zambian farming firm may be a business model for Africa's hunger and food security problems.