After Major Scandal, Iceland’s Ruling Party Stays On Top

On October 28, Iceland held a snap parliamentary election. Surprisingly, given the scandals plaguing the governing coalition, not much changed. The ruling right-wing Independence Party was still the largest party in the Althing (Iceland’s Parliament), and the Left-Green movement was still the second largest party. This came as a surprise, given recent opinion polls and the scandals plaguing the Independence Party. In fact, the only reason for these elections are due to scandal. The sca...
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After King’s Cremation, Thailand Potentially Unstable

After a year and two weeks since his death, the former Thai king Bhumibol Adulyadej has finally been cremated, ending a year-long mourning period, and making the reign of his son Maha Vajiralongkorn official. During the cremation, hundreds of thousands of Thais, all dressed in black, mourned along the procession in Bangkok, hoping to see the elaborate golden royal urn. Once the king’s ashes were interred, people went back to work in a Thailand that has been in political limbo. One issue i...
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After King’s Death, Thailand Is Vulnerable

A couple weeks back, the Thai king Bhumibol Adulyadej died after years of prolonged illness. Given the king’s reputation, the massive outpouring of grief was unsurprising. Government employees have been ordered to wear black for a year, the infamous red light district in Bangkok has all but shut down, and the mourning has gotten so severe that there is a shortage in black clothing. The response makes sense, given how much the Thai people loved him. For many Thais, Bhumibol was a people’s king...
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After Unprecedented Elections, Uncertainty In Taiwan

In only the span of only three years, another East Asian nation had elected a woman to the presidency. The nation: the Republic of China. The woman: Tsai Ing-Wen. In an equally unprecedented move, the Taiwanese elected Tsai’s party, the Democratic Progressive Party into the majority of the Legislative Yuan at the same time. Many on the island see the January elections as a referendum against the policies of the ruling Kuomintang party and the president, Ma Ying-Jeou, which have slowed down th...
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After Massacre, Le Pen and National Front Benefits

Amid the aftermath of massacre in Paris on Saturday, some French politicians have decided to politicize the tragedy in time for December’s regional elections. The main culprit: Marine le Pen and the National Front, the far-right party she leads. In the last three weeks of the campaign season, Le Pen and her party has called for the immediate halt of all intake of migrants in France in a statement released following the massacre. These statements also echo similar ones from other far-right gro...
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On Ruling Party’s Seventieth Anniversary: North Korea’s Leadership In Precarious Position

Yesterday was the seventieth anniversary of the founding of the dominant party in North Korea: the Workers’ Party. The massive amount of pomp and propaganda are juxtaposed with the precarious position that the reclusive nation is in. The nation is facing the worst drought it has encountered in a century, with much of its rice paddies drying up within the past year. To make matter worse, the diplomatic situation in North Korea has reached its nadir. The relationship between the DPRK and China, as...
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Japanese Parliament Reverses Precedent of Pacifism

  Last week, in a move that reversed a seventy-year-old precedent, the Japanese Diet, led by Premier Shinzo Abe, curtailed its constitutionally-mandated pacifism. On September 18, 2015, late in the evening, the Diet passed legislation expanding the ability for the nation to engage in war for “collective self-defense.” Under the planned changes, Japan can now assume combat roles to aid their allies, namely the United States, even if Japan itself is at no risk of direct military att...
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