December 7, 2023

A riot policeman (R) shoots a student protester with a pinball gun as he is arrested during a protest against the government to demand changes in the public state education in Santiago, September 27, 2012. Chilean students have been protesting against what they say is profiteering in the state education system. REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado (CHILE - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST EDUCATION)

Protests in Chile turn violent, yet another Brexit development, and peace in Syria?!

Protesting has been hot in the streets around the world in 2019 as we’ve seen historically long and passionate protests in Hong-Kong, Lebanon, Venezuela and pretty much anywhere else you can imagine. Add to that list Chile, where the president just had to cancel two significant international summits because of protests over income inequality.

The protests, which have left at least 12 dead and hundreds more injured, occurred in what is considered one of the most economically and politically stable countries in South America.

What began as an exercise in mass-fare dodging in response to a 3% hike in subway fares…

…soon erupted into a full scale riot, transforming the capital city Santiago into a massive bubble of chaos.

Note to Bill DeBlasio, maybe don’t taze passengers for hopping turnstyles if you don’t want Manhattan to burn to the ground, just a thought,

While it seems like things in Chile have calmed for the moment, the civil unrest and demands for better public services/stronger government response to income inequality are yet another example of citizens across the globe demanding more from their leaders.

Now, from a country with citizens exercising their right to protest to a country where its shocking they don’t protest a lot more.

The neverending clusterfuck/political nightmare that we call Brexit developed a fun new wrinkle this week as lawmakers voted yes on the Prime Minister’s request to hold a general election.

Boris Johnson’s latest gambit comes after Parliament struck down his latest deal with the European Union to leave, and the country will now vote on December 12th in what will symbolically be a referendum on Brexit.

BoJo, frustrated with his lack of a majority in British Parliament, is almost throwing a hail mary in a last ditch effort to earn a larger conservative showing in Parliament who will approve his deal.

What this means for now is that the U.K will not leave the EU on Halloween as it was slated to. What it means going forward is still a mystery.

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While current polls show Boris Johnson as the current frontrunner, opponents like Jeremy Corbyn in the Labour Party, as well as smaller parties like the Liberal Democrats and the Brexit Party are also in position to suck away votes from Johnson’s conservatives.

Long story short, the future is unclear as ever for the U.K, but we may finally be seeing the first inkling of a light at the end of the tunnel.

Lastly we’ll look at middle east, where, surprise! conflict in Syria rages on.

Despite the multiple warring factions, including but not limited to: Turkish soldiers, ISIS, Islamist militias working with Turkey to kill the Kurds, Syrian forces, Russians, and and a smattering of other rebel forces…

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… the U.N is attempting to kickstart peace talks by bringing Syrian government forces together with rebels in Geneva to try and form a new constitution for the country.

Now I’m gonna level with you, most countries draw up a constitution AFTER everybody stops bombing the shit out of each other, but Syria is not most countries.

US President Trump’s decision to decrease American influence in northern Syria has opened the door for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, with the help of Putin’s Russia, to recapture swaths of territory and consolidate power in the north.

The seismic shift in power balance in the region makes for an entirely different middle east, one where things that didn’t seem possible before may not be so outlandish anymore

The last negotiator gave up seven years ago after calling it “mission impossible”

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Not now Tom Cruise

and the current negotiator actually said “the constitutional committee itself will not bring a solution to the conflict”) the fact that they are taking place now is significant enough.

The U.N has given no timetable for the talks so for now, we wait.

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