JULY 29, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 1.19.38 AMBy Omkar Mahajan

This week was characterized a by a diverse group of events.

The militant organization in Syria Jabhat al Nusra severed ties with al Qaeda and changed its name to Jabhat Fateh Al-Sham. Its leader, Abu Mohammad al-Golani, expressed in a video that his group will have no affiliation with any other organizations. Although the split does represent infighting between various militant groups, it allows Al Nusra to ally itself with rebel groups in Syria.

Despite a number of recent terrorist attacks claiming the lives of dozens, German Chancellor Angela Merkel refused to stop her open-door refugee policy. Critics have alleged that this policy allows terrorists posing as refugees to travel into Germany through its open borders. In response to this, Merkel argued that Germany has an obligation to fulfill humanitarian needs and will increase security and counterterrorism measures while continuing to accept more refugees.

In the United States, Donald Trump continued to surprise scholars with his verbal outbursts and bizarre policy proposals. This time, at a news conference, he called on the Russian government to hack opponent, Hillary Clinton, and display the alleged 30,000 emails from her investigation. Some scholars have argued that Trump’s proposals, if carried out, threaten the security of the United States and violate the constitution.

Meanwhile, in Nigeria, a coalition of multinational forces successfully recaptured a town from Boko Haram, a militant organization affiliated with ISIS. The city, Damasak, was taken over by Boko Haram in October 2014 and was part of a larger territory the size of Belgium controlled by Boko Haram. Boko Haram has seen a loss in territory in recent months.

Further south, a new species was discovered in Antarctica by researchers from the University of Barcelona. The species, an invertebrate marine gastropod mollusk known as Doto carinoa, lives in the cold waters of the Weddell Sea in the Antarctic ocean. The mollusk lives 277 meters below the surface of the Weddell Sea. The researchers published their findings in the scientific journal PLOS ONE.

In Venezuela, a new law was signed by President Nicolas Maduro allowing the labor ministry to force all able-bodied workers to work in government programs aimed at increasing food production. The law is in response to increased food shortages and rising costs of basic goods. Critics of the law argue that the law is introducing forced labor since it requires people to work in the fields while proponents argue that it is necessary in regards to food shortages.

On the other side of the world, a growing number of industries, businesses, and start-ups in India have led to a new growing class of wealthy individuals. In fact, half of all multimillionaires in India are under the age of 40. The number of young multi-millionaires in India has nearly tripled since 2011. This increase in millionaires is mostly due to the boom in the internet economy in India during the last three years and also the rise of young entrepreneurs and celebrities.

Photo by AK Rockefeller

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