Over the weekend, internationally renowned human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin finally tied the knot with a noted American actor by the name of George Clooney. You've probably heard of him. You probably know an awful lot about him actually. In fact, by this point, you're likely aware that the two exchanged vows in Venice during what was, in all likelihood, a fairly well-to-do ceremony, attended by the likes of Bono, Bill Murray and Bradgelina.
But though Alamuddin's name doesn't have quite the global currency of her new husband's, she is definitely awesome. Over her storied career, Alamuddin has worked with the UN on a broad spectrum of human rights issues, including drone warfare, protecting children caught in war zones and ending sexual violence in London, where she lives. Her new husband is an Oscar winning actor who has lately found some innovative ways to combat genocide. Congratulations to the happy couple ... Discuss
Tens of thousands of pro-democracy demonstrators were subjected to tear gas, batons, rubber bullets and pepper spray, after police in Hong Kong attempted to disperse massive protests and sit-ins across the region this weekend. The crackdown has led for calls for Hong Kong’s leader Leung Chun-ying to resign as democratic movement spokespeople demand free elections. In a state-run newspaper, Chinese officials called the protests a threat to “social order,” and experts believe they may have even threatened to send in the Chinese army.
The Occupy Central movement and student groups organized the sit-ins that began on Friday, and have drawn massive crowds who are demanding democratic reforms. Though the region is a part of China, it operates semi-independently. However, despite being promised free-elections by 2017, China is only allowing candidates who they’ve individually approved of. The Democratic Party chairwoman told Time, “The people have spoken, and we will work with them to try to secure democracy … Not a single window has been broken. I challenge you to go around the world and to find such huge demonstrations where there is no looting, there is no rioting” ... Discuss
The France 2 news network recently aired this report using footage secretly captured by a Syrian woman living in the ISIS-controlled city of Raqqa. In the video, traffic proceeds silently as music and entertainment are banned, women are harassed and forced to be fully covered and pedestrians are armed with assault rifles. At one point, the camera-operator goes into an Internet café where a French woman explains to her weeping family that she is not returning, after moving to make a new life in the self-described Islamic state. In the past week, the United States has stepped up airstrikes against ISIS, who now controls large parts of Iraq and Syria ... Discuss
The U.S. and a group of Arab nations have launched a new bombing campaign, targeting ISIS within Syrian borders. The multiple airstrikes marked the United States’ first major military action in Syria, and targeted Raqqa, the city that ISIS leaders have claimed as the capital of their Islamic State. The nations of Saudi Arabia Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Jordan all assisted in the operation which was aimed at destroying the militant network’s ability to effectively train and lead its fighters ... Discuss
US military & partner nation forces have begun striking ISIL targets in Syria using mix of fighters, bombers and Tomahawk missiles.
This weekend, more than 300,000 people marched on midtown Manhattan in what’s being called “the largest mobilization against climate change in the history of the planet.” Celebrities (including Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo), political leaders (including UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and former Vice President Al Gore) and people who were bussed in from cities around the country took part in the People’s Climate March, a massive effort to persuade world leaders to take more dramatic action to fight climate change. This week, global political leaders will gather at a UN summit and discuss measures and new agreements that will be put in place to combat climate change. In a statement, Ban Ki-moon said, “While marching with the people, I felt that I had become a secretary-general of the people. There is no Plan B because we do not have a planet B. We have to work and galvanize our action” ... Discuss