TIGARAS, Indonesia (Reuters) – The death toll from an Indonesian ferry disaster could top 180, as authorities raised an estimate of the number of people missing two days after the wooden tourist boat sank in a lake formed in the crater of an ancient volcano.
CIUDAD JUAREZ/TIJUANA, Mexico (Reuters) – Epigmenio Centeno had hoped to cross the Mexican border into the United States in the coming months, but he and his wife have shelved their plans for fear of being separated from their two sons under U.S. President Donald Trump’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump told Republican lawmakers on Tuesday he would back either of the immigration bills making their way through the House of Representatives, as the outcry grew over his administration’s separation of immigrant parents and children at the U.S.-Mexico border.
In Manchester, groundbreaking economics courses are giving locals the means to challenge some of society’s received wisdom – for free. • Listen to Aditya Chakrabortty talking about game-changing economic models on The Alternatives podcast
In a makeshift classroom, nine lay people are battling some of the greatest economists of all time – and they appear to be winning. Just watch what happens to David Ricardo, the 18th-century father of our free-trade system. In best BBC voice, one of the group reads out Ricardo’s words: “Economics studies how the produce of the Earth is distributed.”
Not good enough, says another, Brigitte Lechner. Shouldn’t economists study how to meet basic needs? “We all need a roof over our heads, we all need to survive.” Nor does the Earth belong solely to humans. Her judgment is brisk. “Ricardo was talking tosh.”
They also warned that Washington could risk violating key international agreements regulating the demilitarization of space, potentially destabilizing the international order.
“There’s a major risk that the Americans would commit grave violations in this field…if one takes into account what they do in other spheres,” said Viktor Bondarev, the head of the Russian Federation Council’s Defense and Security Committee.
While Trump wasn’t exactly clear about what he meant, he said he hoped to achieve “dominance” in space, ignoring the fact that the US is a signatory of the 1967 “Outer Space agreement,” which bans the deployment of nuclear weapons in space. However, the US has seemingly made a habit of withdrawing from major international agreements. For example, George W Bush backed out of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, and Russia has threatened to “strongly retaliate” if the US violates the outer space agreement by sending weapons of mass destruction into orbit. The treaty also prohibits states from building military bases on the moon, according to RT.
Still, violating the “Outer Space agreement” could potentially create problems because, during his speech, Trump mentioned something about establishing a “permanent presence” on the moon – though he didn’t explicitly say that it would be a “military” presence. Trump said during his speech that a “separate but equal” (from the other branches of the military) Space Force would be needed for America to maintain a tactical advantage over its geopolitical adversaries (adversaries like China and Russia).
Speaking with CNN after Trump’s speech, an analyst pointed out exactly why “dominance” of space will be so important for national defense in the future: “I hate the term ‘the final frontier’ but (space) is the ultimate high ground. Space doesn’t dominate one small geographic area – it dominates continents, oceans,” said US Lt. Col. Rick Francona
“Most military thinkers know this is the battle space of the future.”
One US Congressman warned that the US is already behind, and that “Russia and China” are dominating the space race.
“Russia and China are surpassing us in space capabilities and we need to dedicate a separate force solely with a space mission,” Mike Rogers said.
The Chinese have also spoken out against the US’s planned “dominance” of space.
Responding to a question from CNN regarding Trump’s announcement Tuesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Geng Shuang said that “Outer space is an asset shared by all mankind. China always advocates the peaceful use of outer space, and opposes the weaponization of outer space and space arms races.”
But of course, more than anything, Trump’s declaration reminds us all of that famous “Chapelle Show” sketch.
ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – South Sudan’s rebel leader Riek Machar arrived in Ethiopia on Wednesday for a meeting with South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir, as part of talks to try to negotiate an end to a five-year-old civil war, a rebel spokesman and an Ethiopian official said.