A ‘Jungle Bro Session’ and Statue-Toppling: The Week in Global-Affairs Writing

The Tragic Farce of El Chapo

Patrick Radden Keefe | The New Yorker

“A number of journalists who have spent years covering the border and the drug wars pointed out that whereas the [Sean] Penn interview is a bit of a stunt—a mutually admiring jungle bro session, replete with tequila, that was written up in a florid, Gonzo fashion—the actual job of covering the cartels in Mexico is fraught with incredible peril. Scores of reporters have been killed, beaten, intimidated, and forced, by the cartels, to censor themselves.”

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Zentai: Japanese Dress in Full-Body Suits to Escape the Pressures of Modern Life

Matthew Carney | Australian Broadcasting Corporation

“University student Yukinko spends most of her time in the library or at choir practice by day, but she is also a member of the secret Zentai club. ‘My family is conservative. They like me to be quiet and feminine but in secret I wear all over tights and let loose,’ she said.”

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In Exile

Jonathan M. Katz | The New York Times Magazine

“On the most basic level, it was hard to figure out how to classify Parc Cadeau’s residents. Some might legally be considered refugees. Others could be dual nationals, or Haitians who returned home. Were these people the responsibility of the Dominican government? The Haitian government? The international system? Or were they entirely on their own?”

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A Short History of Statue-Toppling

Martin Gayford | The Spectator

“[T]he fate of the thousands of sculpted Stalins, Lenins and Karl Marxs that once strode and gestured all over the Soviet empire is an index of changing times. Several Lenins fell in western Ukraine in 2013 and ’14, but similar sculptural topplings have been going on for over half a century. In 1951, a colossal figure of Stalin was put up in Budapest to commemorate his 70th birthday. It was pulled down by revolutionaries in October 1956, leaving only a remnant of bronze footwear on the plinth.”

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Stop Calling Taiwan a ‘Renegade Province’

Isaac Stone Fish | Foreign Policy

“Beijing has ‘never renounced the use of force to bring the island of 23 million people, which it calls a renegade province, back under its control,’ Reuters stated in early January, while The Wall Street Journal wrote in late December 2015, ‘Beijing sees the island as a renegade province but Washington is obliged by U.S. law to help defend it.’ The Washington Post, the Associated Press, the Los Angeles Times, Time, and Bloomberg, among other news outlets, have all employed the term recently. … But that term is almost nonexistent in China, either in an English or a Chinese incarnation.”

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25 Years of Bombing Iraq [Video]

Center for Strategic and International Studies

“January 17, Iraq time, marks an unrecognized milestone. The United States has been bombing that country, almost continuously, for a quarter of a century. What has the U.S. been trying to accomplish with all these air attacks?”