Wednesday Night #2122

Written by  //  November 14, 2022  //  Wednesday Nights  //  No comments

Jeremy Kinsman sends a link to Tuesday night’s discussion with Larry Haas that covers the key international news, while omitting any reference to Cop27 A bomb lands in Poland, the Ukraine war lands in Bali, and Xi and Biden actually seem to get along. Agreement that it is most likely that the missile strike in Poland was a mishap rather than a deliberate attack – Poland’s president and the G20 seems to agree

The G20 Summit, largely dominated by Wrangling over the Ukraine war, and disrupted by the news of the missile strike in Poland, has wound down. A missile hits Poland and Russia leaves early — These were the big moments from the G20 summit in Bali We would add that The G20 Bali Leaders’ Declaration is notable for its strong statements addressing food insecurity (see paras 6-10).

News from Sharm el-Sheikh  is not encouraging, but it seems that any COP  deal is always achieved at the very last minute, thanks to the unanimity requirement, meantime Behind the scenes: work gets done.
COP27 negotiators still far apart on strong climate deal
G20 leaders expressed support for climate action
Lula boosts COP27 with ‘Brazil is back’ message
But countries struggle for climate deal in Egypt

Did Iran’s leaders think we were too busy with G20, COP27 and Ukraine, so were not watching?
Iranian police open fire at Tehran metro station and beat women on train
Video footage shows people running for exits and police with batons beating women in metro carriages
Metro stations and public transport – often patrolled by morality police – had become a site of state violence and surveillance of female citizens in the summer during a crackdown on female clothing.

Following the uncertainty of final mid-term results last Wednesday, a collective (global?) sigh of relief could be heard when it was confirmed that Democrats were able to flip Pennsylvania, while holding on to the highly competitive seats in Arizona and Nevada, and thus have kept Senate control. Meanwhile, AP hasn’t called control of the House yet because neither party has secured the needed 218 seats – and we may be waiting for a while.
Had Democrats not won the very close Senate races in Pennsylvania, Arizona, and Nevada, Georgia’s December 6 runoff between Democratic incumbent Raphael Warnock and Republican challenger Herschel Walker would have represented the second straight overtime match in the Peach State that decided control of the upper chamber. … What is entirely unclear at this early point is which of the two runoff candidates benefits from the suddenly nonexistential stakes of the overtime contest.
As WN’s Atlanta correspondent, Gloria Calhoun, wrote last week: “I think Republicans will only turn out for Walker if it’s clear that Senate control is at stake. There were very many Republicans here who openly described him as a “just hold your nose and do it” choice, and they were already at the polls to vote for Kemp, anyway. They are less likely to make a special trip for Walker, unless it’s clearly make-or-break. That said, a Trump announcement could re-energize the Democratic turnout. My polling methodology is not very scientific: there are a few neighbourhoods that I have watched for so many years that I consider them the bellwethers, and I make a point of noting their yard signs. There are very many places that would normally have had signs for all the high-end races that have only had Kemp signs this year. Others that had signs for Walker’s primary opponents later had a Kemp sign and a generic “Vote Republican” sign. We’ll have a little more clarity by next week—I hope!”

Donald Trump announced a run for the 2024 presidency on Tuesday night but it was hardly greeted with the wholehearted enthusiasm that he surely expected. Seems a lot of Republicans -not to mention Rupert Murdoch– have other preferences and even the faithful Ivanka has said she will no longer be involved in politics.
AP’s headline Foreign trip becomes victory lap for strengthened Biden can’t have offered the deplorables much encouragement -if they read.
For a somewhat lighter take, see The Atlantic Daily newsletter for 16 November

More good news for President Biden
NASA’s mightiest rocket lifts off 50 years after Apollo
A space capsule hurtled toward the moon Wednesday for the first time in 50 years, following a thunderous launch of NASA’s mightiest rocket in a dress rehearsal for astronaut flights.
No one was on board this debut flight, just three test dummies. The capsule is headed for a wide orbit around the moon and then a return to Earth with a Pacific splashdown in about three weeks.

L’Europe sur un pied de guerre
La fin de l’abondance, de l’insouciance et de l’évidence
Sentant l’appel du terrain, l’ancienne journaliste et députée Paule Robitaille vient d’entreprendre un voyage en Europe. De Paris à Vienne, de Varsovie à Rome, de la Lituanie à la Géorgie, elle dépeindra les impacts concrets de l’invasion de l’Ukraine sur les Européens et fera ressortir les enjeux qui nous concernent tous : crise énergétique, flux migratoires, démocratie mise à mal… Tous les samedis, d’ici Noël, vous pourrez suivre ses chroniques dans la section Débats. Bonne lecture

Canada on the international scene
Xi Jinping scolds Justin Trudeau over release of details from their unofficial chat at G20
Amateur hour?
Trudeau left out in the cold as China’s Xi engages in a whirlwind of diplomacy at G20
…with the emerging Indo-Pacific strategy, Prime Minister Trudeau has clearly picked a side and it’s not China,” added Margaret McCuaig-Johnston, a senior fellow at the University of Ottawa’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. “So a meeting with Xi would not be in keeping with the new direction Trudeau is signalling.”
Last week, Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly said the long-awaited strategy, to be unveiled in December, would name China as an increasingly disruptive global power – a reversal of the government’s previous policy of trying to avoid confrontation with the world’s second-largest economy.
Watch CBC News: The National: “The AtIssue panel discusses Ottawa’s new strategy for the Indo-Pacific region, which includes a strategy to address tensions between China, Canada and the rest of the world.
Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly hints at Canada’s new strategy for Indo-Pacific relations, including addressing the tensions between China, Canada and the rest of the world.
Hosted by CBC Chief Political Correspondent Rosemary Barton and featuring leading political journalists; Chantal Hebert, Andrew Coyne, Althia Raj and Elamin Abdelmahmoud.

Will it never end? Two murderous attacks on college students: 4 Idaho college students killed in ‘targeted attack,’ and three members of the University of Virginia football team.

Media
Hard to imagine PBS NewsHour without Judy Woodruff, but at 75, she is moving on to other projects

Judy Woodruff Is Too Busy for Nostalgia
At 75, “the last grown-up in Washington journalism” prepares to sign off after nearly a decade as an anchor of “PBS NewsHour.”
Her last night as the anchor of “PBS NewsHour” will be Dec. 30. She plans to stay on at the public television network in the role of senior correspondent at least through the 2024 elections, and she will also host a new segment for PBS NewsHour, “Judy Woodruff Presents: America at a Crossroads.”
Dear Elon, Please buy FOX news next.
Who can follow the daily twists and turns of the Twitter story?
NPR reports that
In an email to staff entitled “A Fork in the Road,” Musk said Twitter would “need to be extremely hardcore” to succeed. Those who choose to stay should expect long, intense hours of work. Those who leave will receive three months’ severance pay, he wrote.
In the ultimatum, first reported by The Washington Post, Musk wrote that he values engineers over designers, project managers and other staff in what he envisions will be “a software and servers company.”
The combative message is the latest sign of escalating tensions inside Twitter, a company that has been beset by chaos and confusion since the billionaire’s $44 billion takeover in October.
Musk immediately fired top executives. Since then, he’s laid off about half of the staff, or roughly 3,700 employees, and fired others after they publicly criticized him. People who held key roles in divisions including content moderation, cybersecurity and legal compliance have resigned.

Varia
Tuvalu turns to the metaverse as rising seas threaten existence
Tuvalu said on Tuesday it plans to build a digital version of itself, replicating islands and landmarks and preserving its history and culture as rising sea levels threaten to submerge the tiny Pacific island nation.
Tuvalu’s Foreign Minister Simon Kofe told the COP27 climate summit it was time to look at alternative solutions for his country’s survival and this included Tuvalu becoming the first digitised nation in the metaverse – an online realm that uses augmented and virtual reality (VR) to help users interact.
Farmers in Kashmir try growing saffron indoors
Agriculture scientist Nazir Ahmed Ganai said indoor cultivation is helping boost saffron production, which has been adversely hit by environmental changes in recent years.
Tiffany Trump was married last Saturday – Slate makes much of the timing of the event in the wake of the midterms The forgotten Trump chose the most hilarious possible weekend to get hitched

Long reads
The G20 Bali Leaders’ Declaration
We designated the G20 the premier forum for global economic cooperation, and today we reaffirm our commitment to cooperate as we, once again, address serious global economic challenges.
Heather Cox Richardson November 14, 2022
…the outcome of the [midterms] had huge implications for foreign policy. As today’s column by conservative columnist Max Boot of the Washington Post notes, “Republicans lost the election—and so did [Russian president Vladimir] Putin, MBS [Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman], and [former/incoming Israeli prime minister Benjamin] Netanyahu.”
Putin’s Fear of Retreat
How the Cuban Missile Crisis Haunts the Kremlin
The Russian Empire Must DieA better future requires Putin’s defeat—and the end to imperial aspirations.
By Anne Applebaum

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