Canada's progressive direction; foggy forecast for US presidential election; security in Turkey; migrant crisis sinks into chaos; Russia's aging population

A round-up of global commentary from the Nov. 2, 2015 weekly magazine.

(Justin Tang/The Canadian Press via AP)
Liberal leader Justin Trudeau greets supporters at the Liberal party headquarters in Montreal, Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015. Trudeau, the son of late Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, became Canada’s new prime minister after beating Conservative Stephen Harper.

Toronto Star / Toronto
A new progressive direction for Canada
“Confounding the pundits and pollsters, Justin Trudeau’s Liberals have pulled off a remarkable political comeback after spending the past decade in the political wilderness.... Trudeau’s compelling vision of a Canada that is ‘open and confident and hopeful’ caught the spirit of voters who believe this country can be more generous, more ambitious and more successful...,” states an editorial. “Bitter as the outcome is for Tom Mulcair and the [New Democratic Party] ... they deserve credit for running a principled, if overly cautious, campaign.... [G]iven the sheer strength of the popular vote for change, the NDP can credibly lend support to a Liberal government ... and deliver the progressive, accountable, equitable governance the country needs.”

The Sydney morning herald / Sydney, Australia
US presidential race foggy with uncertainty
In the Democratic presidential debate in the United States, Hillary Clinton “deftly reminded viewers that as Obama’s secretary of state she’d sat in the Situation Room where difficult decisions had been made.... It was a performance to ... alert the Republicans to the fact that Clinton is likely to be a more formidable contestant than they’d perhaps been allowing...,” writes Anne Summers. “The Republican field is in chaos.... [It appears that] increasingly, the Republican Party is losing the will – and the ability – to actually govern.... You’d hope the country would opt for ... the person who knows how to govern.... But if the angry, (mostly) white disenfranchised groups were to continue to wield the disproportionate political power that has got so many Freedom Caucus members into Congress, then the outcome is far from certain.”

Today’s Zaman / Istanbul, Turkey
Reprioritize security measures in Turkey
“[President Recep Tayyip] Erdoğan and the AKP [Justice and Development Party] only have themselves to blame” for the recent terror attacks in Turkey, writes columnist Ömer Taşpinar. “They insisted on prioritizing the [Kurdish militant group] PKK as the [No. 1] national security threat at a time when [Islamic State] had so obviously become the most dangerous terrorist menace against Turkey. The worst terrorist attack in the history of the country ... [on Oct. 11] is partly a product of this strategic blindness. Today, when it comes to fighting terrorism, the AKP is out of tune with the world, the region and its own population.”

Deutsche Welle / Berlin
European migrant crisis sinks further into chaos
“The bitter reality is: European refugee policy over the last few months has failed and now risks sinking into utter chaos. The European Council helplessly speaks of common European solutions while trying to avoid assigning blame. Member states are a step further on that front...,” states an editorial. “The current state of lawlessness, which sees each EU state looking out for its own interests, cannot continue.... The people ... [who suffer] most directly from this chaotic situation are, of course, the refugees, who must serve as a political football to leverage policy in one direction or the other. What kind of situation is that? What happened to European values?”

The Moscow Times / Moscow
Russia’s aging population forgotten for fighter jets
“To the Kremlin, only fighter jets and their precision bombing will make Russia competitive internationally. But this isn’t a viable political or economic model, and it will eventually cave in under its own demographic weight: the aging population, shrinking workforce, low birth rate, and influx of migrant laborers ... are serious problems that the government has been reluctant to confront...,” writes Andrei Kolesnikov of the Carnegie Moscow Center. “Only a democracy with functioning political institutions can cope with these challenges; the Russian state and society will not survive if they remain nationalistic and imperialistic.... If the state actually had working institutions, it would have dramatically increased its investments in human capital, education, and health care. Instead, the state prefers to invest in protecting its only institution: ‘the besieged fortress.’ ”

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