Monday Briefing | April 13, 2015

Monday Briefing | April 13, 2015

Photo Credit: Patrick Marella
Photo Credit: Patrick Marella

Stories to Follow

USA and Cuba get Cozy

Having just signed an agreement with Iran, Obama turns to improve relations with another longstanding American foe, Cuba, which has been under a variety of sanctions and travel bans for over fifty years. At the Summit of the Americas in Panama, President Obama broke the historic animosity through dialogue with Raul Castro, signaling that what remains a fragile and nascent rapport in myriad ways continues to mend. The two leaders’ meeting was the first time an American president has met with one of Cuba’s communist leaders.

Read more: The Economist, BBC

Yemen: A Battlefield

Yemen’s brittle democracy has been ransacked by a mixture of internal instability and regional chaos with its democratically elected president flees to Saudi Arabia while a coalition of Gulf Arab states together with Jordan, Egypt, Morocco and Sudan take on rebels in a bid to retain control of the strategic Bab Al-Mandab strait.

Read More: Reuters, The Christian Science Monitor, PBS

Greenland Seals in Jeopardy

Seals will increasingly find themselves at the end of the food chain as the European Union Commission gets closer to accommodating hunted seal products. Canada, which subsidizes a controversial annual seal hunt in the spring, is pushing for a relaxation of restrictions on the sale of these products. Conservationists are concerned that the relaxation of hunting limits will spur on commercial sealing, devastating seal populations.

Read more: Digital Journal, Huffington Post Canada

 

Upcoming Events

Film Screening: The Wind That Shakes the Barley

Joint JPI and IRPA showing of Ken Loach’s 2006 Palme d’Or winning drama on the Irish War for Independence and subsequent civil war, starring Cillian Murphy and Teddy O’Donovan.

Runs from 6-9:00pm at 45 W 4th, Room Goddard B06 on April 17th.

IRPA Elections
Come out and vote for next year’s student executive board!

April 13th, 19 University Place (Room 228), 6:30 PM

Book Talk: The Future of Violence: Robots and Germs, Hackers and Drones—Confronting A New Age of Threat 
Come and hear a panel discussion with authors Benjamin Wittes and Gabriella Blum presented by NYU’s Center on Law and Security. Register through: http://www.lawandsecurity.org/April-13-2015.

April 13th, at Vanderbilt Hall, the Snow Dining Room, 11:30 AM

Discussion with Norway’s Finance Minister
Columbia University is hosting Siv Jensen, who will discuss Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, “with an emphasis on sustainable and ethical investing policies”. Register here.
April 15th, from 10-11:30am, at Columbia University Morningside Campus International Affairs Building, Room 1501

Book Talk: The FBI’s Secret War on American Maoists

The Center for the Cold War and the United States at Tamiment Library will host a discussion with one of the authors of Heavy Radicals, a look into the FBI’s COINTELPRO surveillance programs of the Cold War.

April 15th, from 6-7:00 on the 10th floor of Bobst.

In Your Spare Time

When you feel that you are stupid, take this quiz: http://www.economist.com/economist-quiz

Watch for ideas if you are stuck on what to write: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZEmxby8g8A

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