The Foreign Service Journal - December 2013 - page 12

12
DECEMBER 2013
|
THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
Several cornerstones should be laid to underpin a de-Amer-
icanized world. For starters, all nations need to hew to the
basic principles of the international law, including respect for
sovereignty, and keeping hands off domestic affairs of others.
Furthermore, the authority of the United Nations in handling global
hotspot issues has to be recognized. That means no one has the right
to wage any form of military action against others without a United
Nations mandate.
Apart from that, the world’s financial system also has to embrace
some substantial reforms. The developing and emerging market
economies need to have more say in major international financial
institutions, including the World Bank and the International Mon-
etary Fund, so that they could better reflect the transformations of the
global economic and political landscape.
What may also be included as a key part of an effective reform is the
introduction of a new international reserve currency that is to be created to
replace the dominant U.S. dollar, so that the international community could
permanently stay away from the spillover of the intensifying domestic
political turmoil in the United States.
Of course, the purpose of promoting these changes is not to completely
toss the United States aside, which is impossible. Rather, it is to encourage
Washington to play a much more constructive role in addressing global
affairs.
And among all options, it is suggested that the Beltway
politicians first begin with ending the pernicious impasse.
—Excerpted from an
Contemporary Quote
ral edition of its
.
In a pithy phrase, the WFF defines
modern-day slavery as the substitution of
property value for personhood. This ter-
minology also encompasses forced labor
and human trafficking, which are major
components of slavery in the 21st century.
The Global Slavery Index would per-
form a welcome service if it only compiled
quantitative data on the prevalence of this
deplorable phenomenon across the world,
but it goes much further. It identifies the
factors responsible for the practice of slav-
ery, explains what individual governments
can do to address them, and recommends
specific steps the global community can
take.
Howmany slaves are currently held
across the globe?The Index counts
29.8 million in all, and also calculates
the prevalence of slavery among each
nation’s population. Mauritania, Haiti and
Pakistan have the highest current levels
of slavery as a percentage of population,
while India, China and Pakistan have the
highest absolute numbers. But slavery is
not absent from the United States or the
developed world, since high demand for
cheap labor often creates a market for
human trafficking that operates under the
radar.
The Walk Free Foundation has also set
up a
, and is
partnering with
to set
up a
to take
direct action against those who profit from
this ancient scourge.
Valerie Sanders, Editorial Intern
Weibos Want to Be Free
A
nyone who follows developments
in the People’s Republic of China is
probably familiar with
, the
Chinese microblogging website that is
akin to a hybrid of
Twitter
and
Facebook
.
One of the country’s most popular sites,
Weibo has a market penetration similar to
what
Twitter
has established in America.
more than half a billion registered users,
who post about 100 million messages a
day. However, the Chinese government
closely monitors the site and routinely
deletes items that mention, or are seen as
alluding to, any subject the PRC deems
too sensitive for public discussion.
In response, anonymous activists set
up
, a website dedicated to
tracking and undermining PRC censor-
ship. “We offer uncensored and anony-
mous
Sina Weibo
searches. We ignore
relevant laws, legislation and policy,” the
homepage declares, adding that
FreeWe-
ibo
is 100-percent blocked in China.
The site certainly does not lack for fod-
der. Consider Chinese news coverage (or
Square on Oct. 28. The car crashed and
burst into flames, killing two pedestrians
and the three occupants of the vehicle,
and injuring 38 others.
Hundreds of posts about the incident
(some from eyewitnesses, complete with
photos) began surfacing on
Weibo
and
other social media sites, but were just as
quickly deleted en masse by censors. This
was particularly true of messages suggest-
ing that the crash might have been a case
of self-immolation, an increasingly com-
mon form of protest in China.
FreeWeibo
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