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Posts Tagged ‘Observations of an Expat’

Observations of an Expat: Macronian Clouds on the Horizon

Reuters photo   By Tom Arms All Hail Macron! All Hail Macron! The new French President is the latest international political darling, man of the hour and flavour of—well at least a month.

Observations of an Expat: The God Story

Reuters photo   By Tom Arms God is infallible. Although you could argue that he made a big mistake when He (or She?) scooped up a mess of Middle Eastern mud and sculpted Adam. The first Chinese is reported to have enjoyed a similar creation, although the river was the Yangtze. As for India’s Hindus, […]

Observations of an Expat: The Korean Solution

AP photo   By Tom Arms I have a solution to Korea. It is…

Observations of an Expat: China at the Crossroads

AFP photo   By Tom Arms China is at a political crossroads with a nuclear-tipped Mack truck driven by a suicidal North Korean juvenile threatening to plough into its side with disastrous consequences for Beijing and the rest of the world.

Observations of an Expat: Syria, Russia and Trump

Kirill Kudryavtsev/Reuters   By Tom Arms What now in Syria? Will Russia drop its support For Assad? Will the US intervene? Will Assad stay in power? Will Russia come out on top?

Observations of an Expat: Brexit Goes Nuclear

PA photo   By Tom Arms The EU is worried about losing their American nuclear umbrella. The UK is worried about losing their European market and their seat at the European top table. Britain has nuclear weapons. The EU has markets. Is there a fit?

Observations of an Expat: Going Dutch

AFP photo   By Tom Arms Trump lost on Wednesday. I am not talking about the court ruling on version two of his travel ban. Neither am I talking about the mounting incredulity over his wiretapping claims and tax returns. I am talking about an event that took place 3,843 miles away from the White […]

Observations of an Expat: Guns, Butter and Bridges

AFP photo   By Tom Arms Donald Trump’s economic policy can best be described as guns, butter and bridges.

Observations of an Expat: Alliance 101

AFP photo   By Tom Arms The Western Alliance is in disarray. Americans are sick of picking up the tab for protecting a rich Europe from a communist threat which no longer exists. Europe is terrified at being abruptly left in the lurch facing a corrupt, authoritarian Russian threat which has replaced the communist one.

Observations of an Expat: Mind The Gap

AP photo   By Tom Arms Mind the Gap. Three very familiar monosyllabic words for anyone who has travelled on the London Underground. The taped announcement is a warning to beware of the potentially dangerous space between the railway carriages and the platform. But it has a political meaning too.

Observations of an Expat: Trump’s Aim

Joe Raedle/AFP   By Tom Arms   What is Trump’s Aim?

Observations of an Expat: I am a Liberal

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters   By Tom Arms The Brexiteering Trump supporter narrowed his eyes, curled his upper lip, glared at me and sneeringly stuttered: “You…you…LIBERAL.”

Observations of an Expat: The Hip Thigh Bone Theory of the World

Yuya Shino/AFP   By Tom Arms It is time to explain my hip thigh bone theory of the world.

Observations of an Expat: And So It Begins

Drew Angerer/AFP   By Tom Arms And so it begins. Or at least it will on Friday January 20th when Donald Trump stands on the steps of the US Capitol building, places his hand on The Bible and swears to protect and uphold the constitution of the United States.

Observations of an Expat: Disastrous Middle East Victory

Nicole Tung   By Tom Arms It looks as if the fighting in Iraq and Syria will draw to a close in 2017. We won and lost.

Observations of an Expat: A Good Year for Me

Negar Mortazavi   By Tom Arms It has been a good year for journalists. I have never known better. There has been an endless march of upsets, twists, turns, worries, cheers, jeers, doom, gloom and unadulterated surprised joy.

Observations of an Expat: And the Winner is…

By Tom Arms It’s official. The winner of the US presidential elections is Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin. I hear you. Putin’s name was nowhere near the ballot papers. It was Clinton versus Trump and a few also rans.

Observations of an Expat: Populism reaches its zenith

AFP photo   By Tom Arms The populist right is riding high—for now. Unfortunately for them, world demographics are stacked against them. And demographics—like the tides of history—are unstoppable.

Observations of an Expat: Trump’s First Major Diplomatic Faux Pas

AFP photo   By Tom Arms It didn’t take long. Fortunately Donald Trump’s first diplomatic faux pas involved America’s closest and most forgiving ally. But Donald Trump’s tweet that Britain appoint UKIP leader Nigel Farage as British ambassador to Washington won’t be forgotten.

Observations of an Expat: Post-truth Awards

AFP photo   By Tom Arms Backgrounder: This week the world’s premier lexicon—The Oxford English Dictionary—named post-truth as word of the year. This article imagines the Hollywood-style awards ceremony.

Observations of an Expat: Pax Americana—The End

AP photo   By Tom Arms It is the beginning of the end of Pax Americana. For 71 years the world has sheltered under the wings of the American eagle. The result has been one of the longest periods of prolonged peace, prosperity and political advancement in world history.

Observations of an Expat: What if We Voted on the Issues?

David Becker/Nancy Wiechec/Reuters   By Tom Arms Sitting on the Eastern side of the Atlantic, the Trump/Clinton battle seems more like a race to the Senate dock than to the door of the White House.

Observations of an Expat: The New Cold War—Authoritarianism vs Representative Democracy

Kevin Lamarque/Reuters   By Tom Arms There is a new Cold War. It has nothing to do with the twentieth century philosophical war cries of communism, socialism, capitalism or free enterprise.

Observations of an Expat: The Headless Brexiteers

AFP photo   By Tom Arms “They haven’t a clue,” the nameless senior civil servant told me as she pressed her hands to the side of her head, grimaced and squeezed her eyes shut.”

Observations of an Expat: The Modern Victim State

Josh Haner   By Tom Arms The residents of the Marshall Islands are the ultimate modern age victims. If they don’t die from cancer inflicted by nuclear testing they will drown from rising sea levels caused by climate change.

Observations of an Expat: Free Trade – Ups and Downs

Brian Snyder/Reuters   By Tom Arms Free Trade has its upside and its downside. It is also emerging as one of the top issues in the Trump-Clinton tussle. The Donald is ‘agin’ it and Hillary is ‘fer’ it.

Observations of an Expat: The Refuge of the Failed Politician

By Tom Arms It’s as if Brexit was a loose thread in the complex political tapestry of the European Union. The Eurosceptics worked Britain loose and are now pulling with all their might on the rest of the fabric.

Observations of an Expat: Trumped in Mexico

Yuri Cortez/AFP   By Tom Arms For a few short hours on Wednesday Enrique Pena Nieto was NOT the most unpopular man in Mexico. During that brief window the mantle was happily shouldered by presidential wannabee Donald Trump.

Observations of an Expat: Rio and the Paralympics

Martin Rickett/PA   By Tom Arms A society is judged by its treatment of those less able than the accepted norm. Rio, you have been judged lacking. I am not talking about green diving pools or empty Olympic stadium seats. All those issues pale into insignifcance compared to your plans for the staging of the […]

Observations of an Expat: Europe Still on the British Agenda

By Tom Arms It’s Thursday night. The votes are being counted as I am pressing tired fingers to a worn keyboard. As soon as I finish I am rushing off to Wandsworth Town Hall to find out if my wife Eileen has been elected to our local council. Up until the 23rd of June, ex-US […]