By Roberto Savio* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
ROME (IDN | OtherNews) - For those who think that Occupy Wall Street, the indignados in Spain, the World Social Forum and the hundreds manifestation of protest worldwide are expressions without concrete outcome, the result of the recent Swiss referendum (March 3 2013) on capping the salaries and bonuses of banks executives should make them think twice.
Like it or not, two-thirds of the Swiss, who are not exactly a revolutionary people, have given the shareholders of financial institutions the right to decide salaries and bonuses of their executives, which is thus no longer to the cosy mutual enrichment of their boards, and another referendum is due shortly on limiting the salaries and bonuses of executives of companies of all sectors to a figure that does not exceed 15 times that of the average salary of their employees.
By Angela Kane* | IDN-InDepth NewViewpoint
NEW HAVEN, Connecticut, USA (IDN) - Disarmament is, first and foremost, one of the UN's oldest and most durable goals. The term appears twice in the UN Charter – which we should recall was adopted before the first nuclear weapon was even tested. The first resolution adopted by the General Assembly established on January 24, 1946 the goal of eliminating nuclear weapons and all other weapons "adaptable to mass destruction", later called WMD.
By Richard Johnson | IDN-InDepth NewsReport
PARIS (IDN) - “Despite considerable success on many economic and social policy fronts over the past 19 years, South Africa faces a number of long-standing economic problems that still reflect at least in part the long‑lasting and harmful legacy of apartheid,” according to a new report by the prestigious Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) .
By Murray Hunter | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
ARAU, Perlis (IDN | Geopoliticalmonitor.com) – A frequent traveller to Thailand who goes around the country today, couldn’t help but notice a rapid rise in the prominence of Muslims in the country, stretching from Chiang Rai in the north – right down to the south. Many of Thailand's 6-7 million Muslims are totally integrated into Thai culture and society, a country that takes great pride in its cultural homogeneity.
By Ramesh Jaura | IDN-InDepth NewsReport
OSLO (IDN) - A global movement to outlaw nuclear weapons is in the making with significant support from Norway, which is protected by the U.S. nuclear umbrella as a member of the 28-nation North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). This emerged from a two-day ICAN Civil Society Forum in Oslo.
Some 400 youthful participants gathered in the Norwegian capital on March 2 and 3 ahead of an ‘international conference on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons’, which the five ‘official’ nuclear powers that are also permanent members (P5) of the UN Security Council – United States, Russia, China, France and U.K. – have boycotted in a concerted move that surprised officials and non-governmental organizations at the ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons) Forum.
By Nilanthi Samaranayake* | IDN-InDepth NewsViewpoint
ALEXANDRIA, VA (IDN) - Is India’s influence declining in the ocean named after the country? That seems to be the conclusion of some analysts after Maldives' cancellation of an airport development contract with an Indian company in November 2012.
These concerns are elevated by China's increased engagement with smaller states in the Indian Ocean, including Maldives. Given the legacy of the 1962 war between China and India and ongoing competition for influence, New Delhi is right to have suspicions about Beijing’s intentions in its neighbourhood and whether smaller Indian Ocean countries are playing the two sides off each other.
By R. Nastranis | IDN-InDepth NewsReport
VIENNA (IDN) - Media coverage of migration issues is far from conducive to promoting better understanding between cultures, religions and peoples around the world, according to a study presented at the Fifth Global Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) in Vienna on February 28.
The study – a pilot project by the UNAOC and the European Journalism Centre (EJC) – was a highlight of the Global Forum, which was attended by over 2,000 people from around the world. Participants included youth leaders, representatives from the private sector and civil society, journalists, foundations, alongside governmental and multilateral representatives.
WASHINGTON DC (IDN) - Robert D. Hormats, Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment, speaking at a conference here on February 19, 2013, urged that solving the problem of post-harvest food losses should be made a global priority. That would be "a giant step forward" towards conserving the world’s natural resources. It would, as well, improve the food security of the world’s poor and boost the incomes of smallholder farmers in developing countries, he explained.
Measures to avoid post-harvest losses are "within reach" he emphasized – if "bold action" is taken.
By Xanthe Hall* | IDN-InDepth NewsViewpoint
BERLIN (IDN) - The latest acronym in the disarmament community is CHC. It stands for Catastrophic Humanitarian Consequences and is the message that the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear weapons (ICAN) is trying to get across, both to the general public and to governments. So far, so successfully.
By Lawrence Wittner* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
ALBANY (IDN) - In a major address in Prague on April 5, 2009, the newly-elected U.S. President, Barack Obama, proclaimed “clearly and with conviction America’s commitment to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons.”
On January 24, 2013, however, Senator John Kerry, speaking at Senate confirmation hearings on his nomination to become U.S. secretary of state, declared that a nuclear weapons-free world was no more than “an aspiration,” adding that “we’ll be lucky if we get there in however many centuries.” Has there been a change in Obama administration policy over the past four years? There are certainly indications that this might be the case.
By Shastri Ramachandran* | IDN-InDepth NewsAnalysis
NEW DELHI (IDN) - The big-versus-small debate pervades all facets of our lives. Big may be better, but small is smarter. This seems to be the subtext of a recent "happiness survey" in the Indian daily Hindustan Times. The happiness index was based on whether people are happy with their health, wealth and sex lives.
The survey's findings are important for what they state as much as for what they conceal. Small is not always beautiful or smart.