Monday Headlines

Integration Of Syrian Refugees Is Only Real Option For Turkey
When refugees began fleeing the war in Syria, Turkey, more than any other country in Europe, opened its borders to them. Six years later, Turkey is struggling to handle the 2.6 million Syrians who now call the country home. Compounded by the flow of migrants from conflicts in Iraq, the Turkish people are growing weary and opposition to refugees is increasing.

Unfortunately, says Brookings Institution scholar Kemal Kirişci, the on-the-ground reality is that the only way forward is to integrate Syrian refugees in Turkey.

To avoid refugees getting locked into a permanent state of dependence on handouts or becoming alienated from the rest of society—both of which are likely to generate security challenges—integration is the only way forward,” he asserts.

But that will require the international community to step up in terms of both financial commitments and further cooperation on efforts to provide education for refugee children and employment for adults.

Illiberal Democracy Or Undemocratic Liberalism?
The rise of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders has confounded many political analysts trying to grasp what their candidacies mean in terms of the strength or weakness of democracy.

Some argue that too much democracy is responsible for Trump’s ascendency, while others attribute his rise to too little democracy.

However, Yascha Mounk, a political philosophy scholar at Harvard University, says the choice is not between one extreme or the other, but a hybrid.

Mounk argues that many consequential decisions – from trade and monetary policy – are made by behind closed doors or, in the case of social matters, they are settled by constitutional courts. While citizens enjoy the freedom to voice their views, they feel left out of the decision-making process.

“It is hardly surprising, then, that citizens on both sides of the Atlantic feel that they are no longer masters of their political fate. For all intents and purposes, they now live under a regime that is liberal, yet undemocratic: a system in which their rights are mostly respected but their political preferences are routinely ignored,” he writes.

“Alienated from an unresponsive political establishment, voters are flocking to populists who claim to embody the pure voice of the people,” he adds.

In order to avoid a further erosion of our political democracy, he suggests implementing policies that seek to alleviate the economic anxiety felt by the middle class, while also opening the system up to alternative forms of political participation.

In Kenya, A Simple Running Shoe Is Changing Lives
The startup running shoe company Enda is demonstrating how building the local economy through empowerment and ownership can change lives.

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