Saturday Readings

Saudi Arabia Rebuffs The United Nations
In a move to surprised many, Saudi Arabia rejected an offer by the United Nations to join the UN Security Council. Each year the UN Assembly selects a nations to fill two-year rotating posts on the Council and this year Saudi Arabia was nominated. To the surprise of many, the Gulf state said no thanks citing its displeasure with the inaction by the body to take affirmative action in Syria and to foster peace between Israel and Palestine.

“Saudi Arabia … is refraining from taking membership of the U.N. Security Council until it has reformed so it can effectively and practically perform its duties and discharge its responsibilities in maintaining international security and peace,” said a Foreign Ministry statement.

The Christian Science Monitor’s editorial board took the position that the rejection may have been more “a cry for help,” rather than a thumb in the eye of the UN.

“Saudi pique has often been directed at the US over certain actions it didn’t like. Now the country’s displeasure is aimed at the UN. The path to fulfill the promise of the UN will be a long and frustrating one. Its predecessor, the League of Nations, failed. If it is to succeed, the UN needs to keep true to the values inscribed in its charter. And when one country complains, the UN must see it as an affirmation of the need for a global body that works toward peace,” write the editors.

China Facing Shortage Of Workers
As more Chinese students head to college rather than to the farm, the economy is facing a challenge of adjusting to a changing demographic landscape and a shift in labor trends internationally.

“It must be a relief for the government that a secular demographic change is narrowing inequality in a way that its own policies have not. However, the strains of a rapidly changing population also bring new and unfamiliar complexities. Growth is slowing as China’s economy runs short of underemployed laborers to power its export juggernaut and anchor the “China price” for which the country is so famously known,” writes Darnien Ma and William Adams in Foreign Affairs.

Captain Phillips Is Fictional Picture Of A Real Problem, reports The Brookings Institution.

Police Step In To Halt Election In The Maldives, BBC News reports.

Syria Still Has Potential To Explode, writes Robert Beckhusen.




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