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Finding resolution when justice is unlikely during #MeToo, The Vatican does the math in China, Russia struggles to control Syria narrative, Balancing security and sovereignty in the hunt for ISIS, Space exploration is both old and new for Arab countries

A roundup of global commentary for the Oct. 8, 2018 weekly magazine.

Erin Schaff/The New York Times/AP
The Senate Judiciary Committee holds a hearing for Dr. Christine Blasey Ford to testify about sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh at the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill Thursday, September 27, 2018.

The Guardian / London

Finding resolution when justice is unlikely during #MeToo

“It’s hard to describe how it feels to be a woman living through the #MeToo era,” writes Nesrine Malik. “Not at the centre of anything, but reflecting on your personal experiences.... For me and many of the women around me, the Brett Kavanaugh case in the US has triggered some unexpectedly profound emotions.... To walk into a world ... where the accused man has the US president on his side and take a swing, you had better not miss. But that is what is all the more moving about [Christine Blasey] Ford’s decision to come forward. It is very likely that she will miss the target, and very likely knows that.... [T]he reckoning and resolution is not in securing vindication, but in demanding it.”

South China Morning Post / Hong Kong

The Vatican does the math in China

“Well, business is business, even if it’s that of saving souls...,” writes Alex Lo. “[T]he Vatican has long resisted Beijing’s appointment of bishops. Now, a historic deal appears to have been reached, with Rome recognising seven bishops appointed by Beijing.... Of course, the real issue is whether or when the Vatican’s diplomatic recognition will switch from Taiwan to the mainland.... Rome is looking to the future.... The only significant growth in Catholicism has been in Africa and China.... I am as big a fan of Pope Francis as any lapsed Catholic. But it’s hard to think such considerations are not uppermost in his mind.”

The Moscow Times / Moscow

Russia struggles to control Syria narrative

“President Vladimir Putin and Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan met in the southern Russian city of Sochi [recently]...,” writes Yuri Barmin. “[It] was their second attempt to come to an agreement on how to deal with the terrorist threat in Idlib, while salvaging the existing de-escalation zone.... [T]his deal will help avert a full-scale Syrian offensive and maintain the illusion of calm in Syria, the deliverable on which Vladimir Putin and Recep Erdogan converge.... As Moscow struggles to keep its stability narrative on Syria from falling apart, the war rages on. In a rush to engineer a political solution to the crisis, Moscow is finding it increasingly hard to keep both its allies and opponents in line.”

Trinidad and Tobago Newsday / Port of Spain, Trinidad

Balancing security and sovereignty in the hunt for ISIS 

“Two citizens of Trinidad and Tobago have been sanctioned by the US Treasury Department on suspicion of financing ISIS...,” states an editorial. “This is a sensitive matter for this country, which is on record as being a surprisingly fertile source of young jihadists.... In August 2017, the Foreign Affairs Ministry declared in a press release that ‘Trinidad and Tobago remains a willing United States counter-terrorism partner’.... Many anti-terrorism activities begin to look like efforts at targeting Muslims if care isn’t taken to ensure that such efforts are driven by hard data and reasonable areas of concern.... But there is also no doubt that the US has greater resources available for tracking money transfers ... [and] it’s important that we ... support legitimate efforts to limit support for terrorist activities.”

Arab News / Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Space exploration is both old and new for Arab countries

“[The names of the United Arab Emirates’] first two astronauts have been revealed...,” writes Rym Tina Ghazal. “But, then again, the people of the Arab world have already ‘reached’ the Moon.... Some of the Moon’s craters are named after scholars from the Islamic world.... In 1997, the first satellite phone company in the Arab world, Thuraya, was founded in the UAE.... Arabsat ... was founded in 1976 by the 21 member states of the Arab League.... Space has opened up new opportunities in the knowledge economy for the Middle East, as the region rediscovers its thousand-year-old heritage. We are guided to the future by charting the ancient course set by our ancestors. We are back in space, grounded in our history.”

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