Burma's Opium Dilemma

This week, the UN released a report highlighting that illegal opium production in Burma is on the rise for the sixth straight year, despite recent government efforts to limit production.[1] Burma is the second largest opium producer in the world, producing approximately 25% of the world’s supply.[2] Beyond its numbers, the report provides the world with a deeper insight into opium trade throughout Burma. Many believed that through Burma’s most recent democratic reforms, the country would take a...
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Tax Evasion: Does the Greek Government Really Care?

Throughout its modern history, Greece has been plagued by tax evasion. Studies of the Greek budget estimate that by the time the sovereign debt crisis arose, the country had been failing to receive between $20 and $35 billion in tax revenues each year.[1] This “shadow economy” of unreported income constitutes up to a quarter of Greece’s adjusted Gross Domestic Product.[2] As a comparison, the amount of American income which is off-shored for the purpose of evading taxes is only about seven perce...
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A Spotlight on the World Bank's Infrastructure Development

Many of the people reading this are or formerly were Model United Nations delegates. Oftentimes, our resolutions called upon other UN or international institutions to carry out our plans and to make our goals come to fruition. One such institution is the World Bank, which provides financial and technical assistance to developing nations around the globe.[1] Among the many factors necessary for human and national development is the establishment of a secure and highly functional physical infrast...
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Should We Start Worrying About Greece?

If you're reading this, chances are you have a basic understanding of the situation in Greece; bad things are happening. The economy is terrible, they're dragging the EU down, our stock market is falling because of it, and various other blurbs CNN runs every once in a while. That said, it shouldn’t come as any surprise that these things have reach far beyond the purely economic realm; the downturn has given rise to a flavor of politics the world is loath to see in Europe. Specifically, I’m refe...
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Malala Yousafzai: One Girl Takes On the Taliban

It’s hard to believe that less than twenty years ago Pakistan took the enormously progressive step of electing a woman, Benazir Bhutto, as its Prime Minister. For the first time in Pakistan- or anywhere in the Muslim world, for that matter- a woman was allowed to, even elected to, lead the citizens of a nation. Now it seems that in parts of Pakistan, a girl is not even permitted to pursue an education. Since the United States invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, the Taliban has shifted much of its ...
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Reevaluating the "War on Drugs"

According to the New York Times, late July this year, the Honduran Air Force shot down two planes suspected of transporting illicit drugs in the Caribbean. Controversy has arisen over the lack of government confirmation on the death toll and cargo of the intercepted planes. In fact, the two planes were never found after they had been fired upon. These two incidents are the latest addition to the saga of multinational cooperation in the illicit drug conflict. In light of the two planes that have ...
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Justice for All, or None?

This past week, two Somalis were sentenced to life in prison in the United States for their participation in the hijacking of a yacht that resulted in the death of four U.S. citizens. Two other members of the group had also been sentenced to life in prison this past summer. As the remaining Somali hijackers await their sentence, it is worthwhile to consider the jurisdiction of the U.S. justice system. The U.S. has taken a leading role in trying the suspects even though the hijacking and murders...
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