April 20, 2024

Photo Credit: P.Marella

Photo Credit: P.Marella
Photo Credit: P.Marella

Stories to Follow

“Nepal Earthquake”

A catastrophic earthquake of 7.8 magnitudes shook the Himalayan nation on Saturday, killing at least 3,400 people. The death toll is still rising. The quake struck an area of central Nepal between the capital, Kathmandu, and the city of Pokhara hardest. There are reports of victims in India, Bangladesh, Tibet, and on Mount Everest as well. The situation was exacerbated by a 6.7 magnitude aftershock on Sunday. The government has issued a state of emergency and countries around the world are sending in relief efforts.  There are also many charities and NGOs that are participating in the recue and recovery effort. Find out how you can help here.

Read More: CNN, BBC, The Wall Street Journal.


“U.S. Drone Strikes”

On April 23rd, President Obama admitted that a drone strike on al Qaeda compound on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border accidentally claimed the lived of an American and Italian hostage being held there unbeknownst to the White House. Two other American nationals, who belonged to al Qaeda, were also killed. The administration has engaged in drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, Iraq, and Somalia to target suspected terrorists without directly endangering American lives. However, the president’s announcement on Thursday and the exposure of numerous cases of civilian casualties are drawing pessimistic assessments by human rights organizations.

Read More: The New York Times, Foreign Policy, The Guardian, JPI, NBC


“China’s New Rise with the AIIB”

Last April, China formally declared the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). Beijing aims to address a major shortcoming in the supply of easy-to-acquire infrastructure financing for developing Asian nations outside the established rubric of the U.S.-dominated World Bank, and the U.S.- and Japanese-dominated Asian Development Bank (ADB). The Obama administration has engaged in intense lobbying efforts against the bank and issued vocal opposition against joining the bank. However, major American allies including Britain, Italy, France, Germany and South Korea, along with 57 other countries met the application deadline to become founding members of the institution. Now the debate is focused on weather the bank can establish a financial system to parallel and counter Washington’s influence over the global economy.

Read More: The Telegraph, The Wall Street Journal, The Diplomat


Upcoming Events

Journalism: Albert Camus

Tuesday, April 28th – 6:00pm | 7th Floor Commons, 20 Copper Square, New York, NY 10003

The Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute hosts a panel discussion on the journalism of author and philosopher, Albert Camus.
Learn More


Brazilian Income Distribution: Past/Current Changes and Prospective Agenda

Monday, April 27th – 1:00pm – 2:00pm | International Affairs Building, Room 802

Learn More


The 20th Anniversary of the Srebrenica Genocide: Film Screening of Neither Here, Nor There & Panel Discussion

Monday, April 27th – 6:00pm – 8:00pm | Columbia University Morningside Campus International Affairs Building, Room 1501

Learn More


Serbia’s Transition: Challenges for Policy-makers

Wednesday, April 29 – 4:00pm – 6:00pm | Columbia University Morningside Campus International Affairs Building Room 413

Learn More

In Your Spare Time

Nepalese Disaster Relief

There are many charities and NGOs participating in the recue and recovery effort following the April 2015 earthquakes. Find out how you can help here.

Switzerland Is “World’s Happiest” Country

According to the annual World Happiness index produced by Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), the land of chocolates and private banks is the world’s happiest country. Find out the rank for your own country.

Read More: BBC, The Guardian

The Hubble Space Telescope Turns 25

Twenty-five years ago, on April 24, 1990, the Hubble Space Telescope was launched into Earth’s orbit. Since then, its lens has captured the mesmerizing cosmos from the birth of a star to the anatomy of a black hole. See the legendary images of the most successful and productive astronomical observatory in human history.

Read More: The New York Times, National Geographic

Hillary Clinton and Alexander Hamilton on Stage
Two musical on two figures of American politics. “Hamilton” runs only through May 3rd, however. “Clinton: The Musical” does not have a set end date. Reviews and venue information can be found here and here.


This week’s Briefing is brought to you by Ji Min Kim. Ji Min is a first year master’s student in politics, with a concentration in political theory. Ji Min graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Franklin and Marshall College, majoring in government with a concentration in modern political theories and philosophy. Her research interests include the history of political philosophy, theories of justice and social contract theories.

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