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VOLUME IV, Issue II
Global Markets This issue of The Toronto Globalist is devoted to resources and politics, and the global financial crisis. 0"$!$.)I.7*!!"#5.'%*I
“One of the other major forces that emerged with the end of the Cold War... was transnational civil society networks. They emerged with a new power, and a new capacity to communi cate with each other, and to see, physically, proximately, each other as human beings. And that has meant a radi cally different and invigorat ed sense of what civil society organizations have engaged in, and the values that they pursued.” Dr. James Orbinski. Interview, Page 16. About the Cover: From Flickr, sourced under Creative Commons 2.2 Licensing. Credit: BK59 All content © The Toronto Globalist, 2009. All intellectual property belongs to respective owners, and is used under attached license. No content from this publication may be re produced in whole or in part without permis sion of the Toronto Globalist.
Letter from the Editor
The Lighter Side Amy Stupavsky
China’s International Relations: A Moral and Economic Dilemma Aisha Ansari
Global Happenings Amy Stupavsky
The Link between the Financial Crisis and Global Health 5 Marilyn Heymann Nothing Lasts Forever: The Water Crisis in the Middle East Bedour Alagraa 8
Preventing the Advancement of Peacebuilding in the DRC Yinuo Geng
Report on Korea: The Changing Status and Gender Roles of Women in Contemporary South Korea Anita Li
A Shade of Reality: Truth and Untruth in the Republic of Sudan 10 Angus Fei Ni
ASI400 Y1 Academic Field Study to Seoul, South Korea 24 Anita Li
!"#$%&'("#)"*+,-".)/'+("#+ Resources in Africa Matthew Escano
Europe: A Force for the New Century, or Decaying Superpower? Matthew Gray
Interview with Dr. James Orbinski 16 Natalie Krajinovic & Alexander Lim
Political Cartoon Matthew Gray
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
EditorinChief, Executive Director
EditorinChief, Editorial Director
NATALIE KRAJINOVIC Publisher
Head Productions Editor Website Administrator
FARHEEN SHAIKH Public Relations Manager
CATHERINE TSALIKIS Senior Editor
CHRISTINE LEE News Editor
JOSH XIONG Opinions Editor
ZACH DAVIDSON Staff Editor
AISHA ANSARI BRUNILDA CIMO IVANA JANKOVIC VIK HANDA Associate Publishers
FARHANA RAHMAN SAPPHIRE LI
Associate Productions Editors
AMY STUPAVSKY Staff Writer
ALEXANDRA TKATCHEVA Staff Photographer
DONALD AINSLI MARCEL DANESI JOHN DUNCAN
Advisory Board The Toronto Globalist 7 Hart House Circle Toronto, ON M5S 3S3 email@example.com The Toronto Globalist is part of the Global21 Foundation, a network of international af fairs magazines at premier universities around the globe. More information is available at www.global21online.org. The ?*+*",*' K&*3#&%(,' %(' "*,' #-!&%#,59' ;%,)' ,)5' University of Toronto. Above photo credit: DND CANADA
he theme of this edition of The Toronto Globalist, Global Economy and the Politics of Resources, is appropriate given that the economy is top of mind for citizens these days. Regular news articles and reports speak to the growing recession and the subsequent effects on citizens through lost savings, lost jobs and business closures especially here in North America. But, according to a pa per released by the World Bank on March 8th 2009, developing countries face a !"#"$%#&'()*+,-#&&'*-'./012011'3%&&%*"',)%('45#+6'#('7+%8#,5'(5$,*+'$+59%,*+('():"' emerging markets, and only one quarter of the most vulnerable countries have the resources to prevent a rise in poverty. According to World Bank Managing Director Ngozi OkonjoIweala, “when this crisis began people in developing coun tries, especially those in Africa, were the innocent bystanders in this crisis, yet they have no choice but to bear its harsh consequences.” The politics of resource extraction will only grow with this downturn in the economy as those developing countries with rich resources will continue to succumb to the greed of outside investors and internal politics. Several of our articles in this addition focus, not surprisingly, on the link 35,;55"'+5(*:+$5';5#&,)'#"9'$*"<%$,'%"'=-+%$#>''?)5'#+,%$&5'34'@#,,)5;'A($#B*' &**C('#,',)5',;%"'%((:5('*-'D+559'#"9'D+%58#"$5'%"',)5'*"D*%"D'$*"<%$,'%"'E#"4' African nations. Yinuo Geng focuses on the relationship between resource exploi ,#,%*"' #"9' $*"<%$,' %"' ,)5' F5E*$+#,%$' G57:3&%$' *-' ,)5' H*"D*6' #"9' =%()#' ="(#+%' looks through a lens of human rights and resource extraction in her article about China’s actions in the Sudan. Bedour Alagraa delves into the ongoing water crisis in the Middle East. Marilyn Heymann’s article takes a different path and discuss 5(',)5'(,+*"D'&%"C'35,;55"'D&*3#&')5#&,)'#"9',)5';*+&9I('!"#"$%#&'$+%(%(>''J#,#&%5' Krajinovic and Alexander Lim’s interview with James Orbinski also focuses on issues of health and human rights and is particularly timely, given the recent kid napping and recovery of a Quebec nurse working in Darfur for Doctors without Borders. Anita Li reports on gender equity and equality for working women in South Korea. Matthew Gray reviews two books with competing predictions about the future of Europe, and don’t forget to check out Amy Stupavsky’s The Lighter Side and Global Happenings. Finally, our feature article by Angus Fei Ni about his recent trip to the Sudan looks at a nation that has been under a magnifying glass for years. He uncovers a different perspective that should make all of us pause to consider our own preconceived ideas about reality and human rights. This is my last issue of the Toronto Globalist as Executive Director & EditorinChief, and I would like to welcome Natalie Krajinovic who will take over this position for the 20092010 school year. Natalie comes with a wealth of knowledge and experience, having served on our Editorial Board for the past two years. I would also like to thank our wonderful staff who have dedicated much of their time to making this issue a success.
Enjoy! Colleen Fox Executive Director & EditorinChief
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
THE LIGHTER SIDE Happy Birthday, Barbie! The doll with the impossibly perfect body, who has been delighting young girls and angering feminists for the past !85' 95$#95(6' $5&53+#,59' )5+' E%&5(,*"5' birthday in March of this year. She cer tainly is not showing her age: Barbie continues to be one of the most popular and bestselling toys. In October 2004, a boxed, mintcondition Barbie from LMNM' (*&9' *"' A3#4' -*+' .ONN/>N1P' ?)5' buxom blonde was created by Barbara Handler, who named the doll after her daughter. At the time, infant dolls satu rated the toy market, which made the adultlooking Barbie atypical. Handler intended Barbie to be a “teen fashion doll” which she hoped would encour age girls to dress and groom them selves properly. Gandhi’s Golden Touch A pair of spectacles, pocket watch, bowl, plate, and leather sandals be longing to Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi caused quite a stir in the auc tion community in March. Furor erupt ed in India when it was announced that Gandhi’s possessions would be put up for auction in the United States. One of Gandhi’s relatives even appealed to the government to prevent the sale, believ ing that the items should be returned to India. The seller, James Otis, is an =E5+%$#"' !&EE#C5+' #"9' (5&-27+* claimed peace activist. Initially he was willing to donate the items to India if the government agreed to increase spending on its poor to the tune of 5 per cent the GDP, but the offer was declined. An Indian businessman pur chased the Mahatma’s accoutrements -*+' .L>Q' 3%&&%*">' ?)5' %,5E(' ;%&&' 35' 7:,' on display in India. Otis said would D%85',)5'E*"54',*'#"':"(75$%!59 cause.
tor” was handed over to the Kwara State Police, who then placed it in custody. G57*+,('-+*E'7*&%$5'*-!$5+(';5+5'$*" <%$,%"DR'*"5'*-!$5+'(,#,59',)#,',)5'D*#,' would be held until the investigation terminated, but another said that they would keep the goat in case its owner came to claim it. Police reform activists used the arrest to call attention to the low educational level of many Nigerian 7*&%$5' *-!$5+(>' =' $*:",+4' (,55759' %"' tribal witchcraft and superstition, Ni geria relies on illeducated community 8%D%&#",5' D+*:7(' ,*' !&&' %"' ,)5' D#7(' &5-,' by the police.
Wasting Paper The Creative Paper Company in Burnie, Tasmania has begun making paper out *-';*E3#,'5S$+5E5",>'?)5'!+E'#&+5#94' made a name for itself with their un usual kangaroo dung paper products. They decided to take on the wombat, an Australian marsupial, after receiv Nigeria’s got it’s goat... %"D'<**9('*-'+5T:5(,('-+*E'$:(,*E5+(>' A Nigerian vigilante group arrested a Although the move is largely a publicity goat that they believed was actually a stunt, it certainly brings new meaning shapeshifting car thief. The “perpetra ,*'U+59:$56'+5:(56'+5$4$&5PV
FacetoFace with Shakespeare Experts agree that a previously uniden ,%!59'7*+,+#%,'%('E*(,'&%C5&4',)5'*"&4'%E age of Shakespeare painted from life. After subjecting the painting to three years of research and a panoply of tests (including infrared and xray exami nation), Shakespeare specialists dis covered that it dates from 1610, when the bard was 46 years old. It is believed to be the original source from which all other Shakespeare portraits have been copied. The painting, which is now owned by a trust, was part of the Cobbe family’s private collection in England. The Cobbes acquired the painting in ,)5' L011(' ;)5"' *"5' *-' ,)5%+' +5&#,%85(' married the greatgranddaughter of the third Earl of Southampton, Shake speare’s patron and friend who prob ably commissioned the painting. On =7+%&' /O6' W)#C5(75#+5I(' 3%+,)9#46' ,)5' “Cobbe portrait” will go on display at the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in StratforduponAvon. "*+%,-%.%-/0123/%./%4/5%6,78.29:-%;<992=2>%-?2@ 7,.9,A,3=% ,3% $3=9,-8% .31% *.B<C,3=% ,3% $0C<?2.3% 4/01,2-5
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
GLOBAL HAPPENINGS Australia: Up In Smoke (5+%5(' *-' ;%&9!+5(' +#8#D59' ,)5' southeastern Australian state of Victoria in January and February, causing massive devastation. As of Feb ruary 24, the death toll stood at 210, according to police reports. At least 2,029 homes were destroyed, leaving ):"9+59(' )*E5&5((>' X%+5!D),5+(' ,**C' on the almost impossible task of ex tinguishing the blazes. Severe drought coupled with temperatures hovering #+*:"9' LL0' 95D+55(' X#)+5")5%,' Y=:( tralia’s hottest summer on record) $#:(59',)5';*+(,'!+5'$*"9%,%*"('%"',)5' country’s history. Arson also played a (%D"%!$#",'+*&5'%"',)5'!+5(6';)%$)'Z58%"' Rudd, Australia’s prime minister, lik ened to “mass murder.”
%"<#,%*"'+#,5'#,'*85+'L116111'75+'$5",6' yet these factors did not deter President Robert Mugabe from throwing himself a glittering birthday bash in Febru ary. Mugabe reportedly splurged over ./N16111' [>W>' ,*' $5&53+#,5' )%E(5&->' @:D#35I('(5&!()'(75"9%"D')#('$*",+%3 uted to the African nation’s economic ruin. Many Zimbabweans resort to beg ging in neighbouring South Africa to survive because of their own country’s lack of public goods and virtually non existent social infrastructure. Mugabe was elected president of Zimbabwe for his sixth term after a runoff election in June 2008, which was condemned as a sham by the international community.
President Robert “ Mugabe reportedly
splurged over $250,000 USD to celebrate his birthday, despite inflation of over 100,000% and 80 percent unemployment in his country of Zimbabwe.
World Economic Crisis Gone are the days of frivolous spend It’s His Party And He Can Spend %"D' #"9' $*"(7%$:*:(' $*"(:E7,%*"P' =,' If He Wants To! press time, the U.S. had resorted to Zimbabwe has an unemployment level numerous stimulus and bailout plans, of 80 per cent and the world’s highest Iceland’s economy had collapsed, and Continued on Page 5.
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
British banks cut interest rates to an unprecedented 0.5 per cent. Some economists believe we are headed for the “greatest depression” in history. What are the best ways to weather this crisis? Pundits advise people to search for jobs in healthcare and green energy (considered recessionproof), buy gold, #"9'35'!($#&&4 responsible. Where’s Castro? Cuban dictator Fidel Castro was spot ted slowly hobbling around Havana, the country’s capital, in early March. It ;#(',)5'!+(,'(%D),%"D'*-',)5'H*E#"9#" te since his 2006 intestinal surgery. The 82yearold dictator’s health remains grave, despite these reports. Castro’s 3+*,)5+'G#:&'*-!$%#&&4'#((:E59'&5#95+ ship in February of last year.
will be able to effect political change in their country. Afghanistan Plans for the Future U.S. president Barack Obama unveiled his ambitious plans for rebuilding Af ghanistan early into his term. The American strategy focuses on several concrete goals. Firstly, the country needs to be made secure, especially in the more dangerous south. The top commander, General David McKier nan, has been lobbying for over a year to send more troops in Afghanistan. Obama approved the deployment of L06111' E*+5' ,+**7(' ,*' ,)5' $*:",+4I(' southern regions to work alongside British and Canadian forces. This would put the United States in a po sition to stabilize Afghanistan within ,)+55' ,*' !85' 45#+(>' ?)5' [>W>' ;%&&' #&(*' pour billions more dollars into infra structure, constructing roads, schools, and irrigation tools. Another area cry ing out for improvement is Afghani stan’s struggling political system. Americans will work more closely with local leaders and tribal chiefs to imple ment a responsible government. Many Afghanis see President Hamid Karzai’s regime as corrupt.
China Mars its Calendar History casts a shadow over China this 45#+' ;%,)' ,)5' !-,%5,)' #""%85+(#+4' *-' the Tibetan revolt. On March 10, 1959, #+*:"9' O116111' ?%35,#"(' &#:"$)59' #' failed uprising against their Chinese occupiers by surrounding the Dalai Lama’s palace in Lhasa. In preparation for the anniversary, Chinese authori Attacks in Northern Ireland ties have placed the Tibetan parts of western China under martial law. Peo \"'@#+$)'06',;*']+%,%()'(*&9%5+(';5+5' ple are hopeful that this year protesters gunned down in a politically motivat
ed attack at an army barracks west of Belfast, Northern Ireland. Two other soldiers and two pizza delivery men were seriously wounded. Real IRA, a radical branch of the Irish Republican Army (IRA), claimed responsibility for the attack. The act of violence shocked ,)5']+%,%()'^(&5(R'%,'+57+5(5",('J*+,)5+"' ^+5&#"9I('!+(,'C%&&%"D('*-']+%,%()'(5$:+%,4 forces in 12 years. Sinn Fein, the Catho lic political party with ties to the IRA, has been criticized for not encourag ing Catholics to weed out the politi cal dissidents in their midst. The late soldiers are Cengiz Azimkar, 21, from _*"9*"6' #"9' @#+C' `:%"(546' /O6' -+*E' Birmingham. British Prime Minis ter Gordon Brown visited Belfast on March 9, assuring the public that the murderers would face justice and that they had failed to weaken Protestant Catholic relations. Brown believed that the attackers’ goal was to prevent a 22month old alliance between Irish Catholics and British Protestants from solidifying.
"*+%,-%.%-/0123/%./%4/5%6,78.29:-%;<992=2>%-?2@ 7,.9,A,3=% ,3% $3=9,-8% .31% *.B<C,3=% ,3% $0C<?2.3% 4/01,2-5
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
WORLD HEALTH & THE ECONOMIC CRISIS
oor economic times have never fa voured good health. The economic 9*;",:+"(' *-' ,)5' LMO1I(' #"9' LMQ1I(' and, more recently, the world food cri sis have shown how vulnerable a pop ulation’s health really is to economic <:$,:#,%*"(>' =(' ,)5' !"#"$%#&' ;*+&9' readjusts after the recent collapse, gov ernments, organizations and industry are restructuring programs, cutting 3:9D5,('#"9'#&,5+%"D',)5'<*;('*-'-:"9(' across the world. The various impacts of the col lapse are becoming increasingly appar ent. In particular, it is expected that the !"#"$%#&' $+%(%(' ;%&&' )#85' #' 7+*-*:"9&4' negative effect on issues relating to health for people all around the globe. Whose health will suffer most from this economic climate? The world’s poorest and most vulnerable popula tions. While higherincome countries are putting together stimulus packages for their economies, lowincome coun
tries are facing an increasing burden on their health care systems, drastic cuts in international aid, and a reduced ca pacity to address urgent health needs. International aid is said to be procyclical, meaning that having less
While higher-income countries are putting together stimulus packages, low-income countries are facing an increasing burden on their healthcare systems...
national revenue available often results in reductions in international aid. Re cently, some governments have started to retract funds and many NGO’s have closed their operations, calling into question how global health efforts will
be able to maintain their promises and their funding under the harsher eco nomic climate. According to the World Health Organization, countries within the European Union and the Organiza tion for Economic Cooperation and De velopment have declared that they will provide previously pledged funding for international aid, but the United States and other G8 countries are already fall ing behind on promised funds. After the past decade of increased attention and funding devoted to global health, ,)%('!"#"$%#&'$+%(%('7+*8%95('#'+5E%"9 er that global health is not a populist cause. Rather, global health efforts require sustained commitments, clear priorities and welldirected resources to stabilize and address varied health care needs. Many lowincome countries rely on international funding for the delivery of basic health care services. For these nations, cutting international aid can have a direct effect on the de livery of health care to the majority of the population. Furthermore, experts predict that the burden on these in creasingly resourcepoor health care systems will only augment in the com ing years. In lowincome countries, a large percentage of health care spend ing comes from private, outofpocket payments. (Continued on pg. 7)
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
Rising costs for food and medi cal supplies will render it impossible for many individuals to afford medical services on their own, resulting in an increased reliance on already weak and overburdened public health systems. Thus, in addition to the higher demand
Rising [costs] will render it impossible for many individuals to afford medical services on their own...
on formal health care systems, low income countries also face a reduced capacity to address health needs. In the longer term, lack of investment will further weaken health systems and re duce future capacity to take on escalat ing health challenges. How then, can the global com munity mitigate the negative impacts *-' ,)5' !"#"$%#&' $+%(%(' *"' )5#&,)a' ^"' #' report published in January 2009, the
There are more funding mechanisms available and more attention being given to global health now than ever before.
b*+&9' c5#&,)' \+D#"%d#,%*"' %95",%!5(' the need to increase efforts to monitor the emergence and indicators of dis ease, stabilize and protect health sec tors, and raise public and political sup port for global health. Moreover, global health needs to be on the agenda for policy, research, and public advocacy. X+#E%"D' ,)5' !"#"$%#&' $*&(5' #(' #"' “economic crisis” isolates the problem as strictly economic, but the impact on health reminds us of the inherently hu man nature of this crisis, as well as the acute and urgent need to address glob al health issues. It follows that action is need ed, and there is optimism to be found in the momentum of the global health community. There are more funding mechanisms available and more atten tion being given to global health now than ever before. Health priorities, tar gets and goals have been established in the form of Millennium Development Goals, and the global health communi ty is continuing to mobilize and evolve. ?)5' !"#"$%#&' $+%(%(' ;%&&' $5+,#%"&4' (5,' back the Millennium Development Goals and other global health agendas, .
but this only goes to show that develop ment and global health goals are mov ing targets that require evaluation and adjustments. We can therefore hope ,)#,',)%('!"#"$%#&'$+%(%(';%&&'-*+$5':(',*' evaluate existing efforts and will serve to mobilize and prioritize global health 5--*+,(' #(' #' +5(7*"(5' ,*' ,)5' !"#"$%#&' crisis.
6.C,9+3%D2+*.33%,-%.%E/8@+2.C%F<<1-G<C/8%;<9@ 92=2%-/0123/>%-?27,.9,A,3=%,3%D2.9/8%4/01,2-%.31% *,3<C,3=%,3%!<9,/,7.9%47,23725 .
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
NOTHING LASTS FOREVER: A LOOK AT THE WATER CRISIS IN THE
ater is the most valuable resource on the planet, and is responsible for the metabolic functions that make life on our planet possible. In the Mid dle East, water supplies have reached a point of severe scarcity. According to /11N' b*+&9' ]#"C' !D:+5(6' ,)5' #85+#D5' per capita water availability in the re gion is approximately 1200 cubic me ,5+('75+'45#+R',)5';*+&9'#85+#D5'%('$&*(5' ,*' 0111>' ?)5' ^"(,%,:,5' -*+' =98#"$59' Strategic & Political Studies (IASPS) has reported that water levels in the Middle East have reached an alltime &*;';%,)'&585&('#99%"D':7',*'*"&4'LeO'*-' Asian supplies and an abysmal 15% of African supplies. Many blame this sharp in crease in water scarcity on several factors. First is the drastic increase in urbanization and population in the region. The dependency on oil is be coming exacerbated in countries such as Jordan where a population boom is forcing workers and their families to heavily depend on the country’s dwindling natural resources. Another contributing stress to the water supply in the region is climate change, which
!"!638-'1!","51"" has been steadily drying up the region’s scarce water supplies. Finally, the Mid dle East uses irrigation to grow crops such as rice and cotton – the two most hydrodependent domestic crops in the world. In order to compensate for these hydroelectric shortcomings, countries like Jordan and Israel have resorted to drilling water out of groundwater aquifers and mountain aquifers, both
The crisis [has] threatened previously established peace treaties, and decreased the likelihood of achieving long-lasting peace in the region.
of which are nonrenewable water sources. The combination of popula tion, climate, and agricultural stresses on the region’s water supply aggravates the political situation in the region, and adds a layer to the already complicated geographic ambiguities in the Israel/ Palestine region.
The result is a constant consti tutional dispute over individual coun tries’ rights to the limited water supply between Jordan, Palestine, Israel, Syr ia, Turkey, and the occupied Palestin ian region of the West Bank. The crisis has added tension to the already sen sitive political situation in the Middle East, threatened previously established peace treaties, and decreased the likeli hood of achieving longlasting peace in the region. Even if current disputes in the region are resolved, the question of when this dispute over water will mani fest itself in a regional war remains. Turkey is considered to be the most economically and politically pow erful country involved in this dispute. Turkey is home to both the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, and since the 1980s, relations between Turkey and neigh 3*:+%"D' W4+%#' )#85' 355"' %",5"(%!59' by water scarcity. The IASPS reported ,)#,' %"' LMQ06' ?:+C54' #"9' W4+%#' (%D"59' a water protocol – the Southeast Ana tolia (GAP) Project – which promised to allow Syria to gain more access to the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. De spite signing this protocol, Turkish ef forts have increasingly marginalized Syria’s access to these bodies of water. For example, Turkey’s construction of the Ataturk dam has created a wa ,5+' +5(5+85',)#,' 9%85+,(',)5' <*;' *-' ,)5' Tigris River away from Syria and into Turkey’s proverbial backyard (IASPS). =$$*+9%"D' ,*' b*+&9' ]#"C' !D:+5(6' ,)%(' diversion effort can lead to a decrease in water supply for Syria and Iraq by 40% and 80% respectively.
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST Jordan’s position in the crisis is particularly vulnerable, as its popu lation is expected to grow rapidly in tandem with increasing urbanization in the country. A 2005 World Bank re port shows that this trend is expected ,*'*$$:+'%"',)5'"5S,'LN'45#+(R'34'/1/N6' the per capita water supply will fall from the current 200 cubic meters per person to only 91 cubic meters, putting Jordan in danger of having an abso lute water shortage. Jordan is the only country with a guaranteed right to wa ter supplies – the main body of water in contention is the Jordan River Basin. A peace treaty signed in 1994 by Jor dan and Israel guaranteed Jordan its right to an additional 215 cubic meters of water annually through newly built dams, diversion structures, pipelines
government of a gross misdistribution of water. They argue that water is being taken from villages and refugee camps in order to further satiate the greed and hegemony of Israel, which is ef fectively perpetuating the relationship of super and subordination between the two sparring states. Palestine be lieves that consuming water from ille gally obtained territories (i.e. the West Bank region) is contrary to established international law and, thus, should be barred from treaties that allow Israel a disproportionate access to water. The implications of this multi lateral dispute are huge. Many see this $*"<%$,' 5($#&#,%"D' %",*' #' -:&&' +5D%*"#&' or even multiregional war. Israel’s Wa ter Commissioner, As Meir Ben Meir, stated in a BBC interview that “At the
Israel uses approximately 80 percent of water “ contained in [aquifers shared with Palestine], in
addition to water obtained from the illegally occupied West Bank region.
#"9'95(#&%"#,%*"e7:+%!$#,%*"'7&#",(>' At the moment, the Israeli government is mostly concerned with the political implications of this crisis. Since a water agreement has already been signed with Jordan, Israel’s main problem is the sensitive political and geographic situation that it shares with Palestine. Israel is concerned that the water crisis will spill over in to the ex %(,%"D' $*"<%$,' *85+' ,)5' b5(,' ]#"C' +5 D%*"6' #"9' ,)#,' ,)%(' $*"<%$,' $*:&9' 35' #' serious blow to the already delicate $5#(5!+5' #D+55E5",' (%D"59' %"' /11N>' Having signed the Indus Water treaty, Israel believes that it is legally within its bounds to extract water from the Jordan River and Mountain Aquifers, in direct proportions with what it sees as increasing demand in its cities. ' f#&5(,%"%#"' *-!$%#&(' 35&%585' ,)#,' %,(' &*"D2(,#"9%"D' $*"<%$,' ;%,)' ^( +#5&' ;%&&' %"95!"%,5&4' %",5"(%-4R' ^(+#5&' uses approximately 80 percent of wa ter contained in shared aquifers, in addition to water obtained from the illegally occupied West Bank region. f#&5(,%"%#"' *-!$%#&(' #$$:(5' ,)5' ^(+#5&%'
moment, I project the scarcity of wa ter within 5 years…I can promise that %-' ,)5+5' %(' "*,' (:-!$%5",' ;#,5+' %"' *:+' region, if there is scarcity of water, if people remain thirsty for water, then we shall doubtless face war.” If not war, ,)5"',)%('$*"<%$,';%&&':"9*:3,59&4'95 lay already postponed peace talks in ,)5'+5D%*">'^"'#99%,%*"6',)%('$*"<%$,';%&&' see the rise of new superpowers such as Canada, Sudan, Turkey, Russia, and ^"9%#R'#&&'*-';)%$)'#+5'+%$)'%"'-+5()';# ter supplies. Several solutions have been presented in response to this grim geo 7*&%,%$#&'(%,:#,%*">'?)5'!+(,'(,57'%"'#"4' (*&:,%*"' ;*:&9' 35' ,)5' +#,%!$#,%*"' *-' #' multilateral deal that would directly address the rights and/or constitution ality disputes when determining access to water in the region. Clear boundaries should be drawn as to how much water can be used and when it can be extract ed according to each country’s popula tion stresses and agricultural depen dencies. These boundaries should be +#,%!59'#"9'+5D:&#,59'34'#'"5:,+#&',)%+9' party such as Oman, a freshwater rich
country with a Middle Eastern perspec tive on the issue. This would rid the world of at least one tensioncausing problem, which in turn would free up valuable time to deal with other issues such as the occupation of West Bank, ,)5'$*"<%$,'%"'K#d#6'#"9',)5'c5d3*&&#)' agenda in Lebanon. The Gulf and interior states of the Middle East are surrounded by salt ;#,5+>'F5(#&%"#,%*"'Y,)5':(5'*-'7:+%!59' sea water as a last resort when the sup ply of natural fresh water runs out) is another solution to this problem. Un fortunately, desalination is costly – it requires the building and upkeep of desalination plants, hiring employees, engineers, and regulating waste miner als produced by desalination. Despite these challenges, there is a way for the Middle East to have its water and drink it too. The price of de salination is steadily decreasing, and by the time local aquifers dry up (15 years), the price of desalination will be much more affordable. The Gulf States have more than enough money and clout to fund the building of de (#&%"#,%*"' 7&#",(R' 7**+5+' $*:",+%5(' like Jordan can take loans from Gulf States and, seeing as many of these countries are made up of Muslim ma jorities, these loans will come at little or no interest as it would be contrary to Islamic doctrine to charge interest on loans. These countries would be able to pay these Gulf States back with the revenue created from the operation of the plants. As for disposing of waste minerals, this would put thousands of engineers and “green collar” workers to good use – the green movement is rap idly growing in the Middle East. With a combination of science, common sense and, most importantly, humanity, the Middle East, will be able ,*'#8*%9'$*"<%$,('*85+';#,5+'%-'#$,%*"'%(' taken immediately. Only then can we achieve the peace and prosperity that the Middle East so desperately craves. H21<0C%"9.=C..%,-%.%I31@+2.C%J3,K2C-,/+%;<992=2% -/0123/>%*.B<C,3=%,3%L3/2C3./,<3.9%M29./,<3-%.31% *,3<C,3=%,3%!<9,/,7.9%47,2372%.31%D,-/<C+5
udan is one of those places that, when mentioned, tends to elicit responses from people that range any ;)5+5' -+*E' ,)5' !5+$5&42(7%+%,59' ,*' the theatrical, but never anything in between. The plight of its millions of victims, of either genocide, civil war or the greed of big oil, presents a per fect cause to be championed by undy ingly devoted liberal hearts or debated ceaselessly amongst selfassured So cial Sciences/IR specialists. The sub ject of Sudan can be likened to a horse beaten to death many times over, but which periodically rises from the dead to incite new vigor in idealist, imagina tive young minds. I admit that I have played both these roles dutifully, going from passionate advocacy of humani tarian aid—not intervention—during ,)5' )5%D),' *-' ,)5' F#+-:+' $*"<%$,6' ,*' more recently a dismissive cynicism at the futility of it all. Such were my thoughts as ;5' !&59' 7#(,' D*85+"E5",' 9%D"%,#+%5(6' shaking hands and murmuring pleas antries in Arabic, on our way into the imposing conference hall, its cavernous interior bearing an eerie resemblance to Beijing’s Great Hall of the People. The date was November 26th, 2008, and I was in the Sudanese capi tal, Khartoum, taking full advantage of a Sudanese government invitation to attend a conference on Darfur and Sudan’s International Relations. I was excited to see for myself this place, so hotly contested in our moral and in tellectual landscapes, and ecstatic at abandoning the dreary winter of To ronto for the sunshine of the upper Nile. This weeklong trip, as confusing as it was revealing, enlightened and in jected a sense of purging reality into my sheltered and parochial mind, hitherto convinced by assumptions based on questionable secondhand information about a place that neither I nor anyone around me had ever been to. Here is some of what I experienced. Sudan being second last on the UN stability and human development %"95S5(6'^'5S75$,59',*'!"9'#"':"95+95 veloped and desperately poor fourth world backwater, with roads clogged by
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
SHADE OF REALITY: TRUTH & UNTRUTH IN THE REPUBLIC OF SUDAN A
donkey carts and perhaps some cam els. I was surprised, then, to be greeted with a functional, goodsized airport and wide asphalt boulevards. The lat ter were lined with shops and restau rants and traversed by what seemed to me to be wellfed people. Khartoum obviously had its drawbacks, but it was not the shantytown I had expect ed. I was told that as a result of its oil wealth, the country had built the most advanced telecommunications net work in Africa. Indeed, the cell phone shops near the hotel did brisk business throughout our stay. The Omdurman market, a vast, bustling affair that ri otously bought and sold until late into
the evening, was well stocked with both cheap goods and high end luxury items – gold shops alone lined a whole street. I saw not a single homeless person on the entire visit, and we traveled all over the Capital. Security for a country em 3+*%&59' %"' (585+#&' $*"<%$,(' *-' 8#+4%"D' degrees of intensity, and which only recently concluded a decadeslong civil war, should obviously be tight. One would expect the army to be patrolling the streets. Indeed, we had a twenty man police escort to and from the con ference venue, but this was likely just for show and speed. I was allowed to go explore the city alone and visit areas of
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
the capital with only a driver and guide. Further, the hotel’s other guests—in cluding a jolly group of Australian coast guardsmen in town to train the Suda nese—and staff were all unanimous in agreeing that Khartoum was as safe as any place on earth. The most heavily defend ed area we saw, with machine gun equipped guard towers on each corner
,)5',+%35('#"9'*%&'#+56',)#,',)5'!D),%"D' is visible. This leads me to the issue of oil, and with it, the much discussed Chinese presence. Both are evident in the capital. One of the largest and most distinguished looking structures in the city is the headquarters of Petro nas, the Malaysian oil giant—a com pany with a knack for building elegant
The most heavily defended area we saw ... turned out to be the UN compound. When questioned about the monstrosity, my guide wryly replied “That’s how the UN is.”
of multilayered walls, bristling with barbed wire and surrounded by block ades, was one I initially assumed to be the ministry of defense and which turned out to be the UN compound. When questioned about the monstros ity, my guide wryly replied, “That’s how the UN is.” The government district, on the other hand, where the ministry of defense was located, featured only gates manned by city police and honor guards at the Republican Palace that (E%&59' #"9' 3#"D59' ,)5%+' +%<5' 3:,,(' *"' the ground in salute when we passed by. To be fair, I must note that this is only Khartoum, the wellprotected cap ital. It is in the south and west, where
and imposing structures, having also brought us the twin towers in Kuala Lumpur. The Chinese presence is quite noticeable, our hotel itself being run by a division of Sinopec. The Chinese also supply just about every manufactured product in the country. Our conference hall turned out to be a gift from China, hence the resemblance to the Great Hall of the People. Yet I was heartened to hear from everyone I talked to that they welcomed the Chinese presence, and that any suggestions of a new “co lonialism” are absolutely misplaced. I was repeatedly told that the Chinese build supermarkets, infrastructure and industry, invest huge sums, and only
,#C5' *%&' %"' +5,:+">' \:+' )*,5&6' !"#"$59' and built by the Chinese, is under Chi nese management, and will be given to Sudanese owners after a 15year lease has expired. Over the years, Chi nese investment in the country seems to have built a relationship that, from the ground in Khartoum, appears to be E:,:#&&4'35"5!$%#&>' Finally, there are the people themselves. Being university students we requested and were granted the chance to visit several universities in Khartoum. Khartoum University, the best in the country, was an interesting experience to say the least. Touring the place with a student guide, I managed to catch a glimpse of university life not unlike our own: amorous boys chatting up coy girls. Between stops in class rooms, I managed to get away from our minder while he was distracted and stole a few quick exchanges with pass ing students, almost all of whom spoke English. It turns out that most of the student body—a privileged group, of course—supported AlBashir, the pres ident accused by International Crimi nal Court prosecutors of crimes against humanity. The students were hopeful and optimistic for development and a steady bettering of the state of their country and the lives of their fellow countrymen. Student elections being
FEATURE ARTICLE only several weeks away – a serious af fair in a country where universities can be national political battlegrounds – loudspeakers were set up in the middle of campus, and student leaders gave passionate and rousing speeches while hundreds gathered to watch and clap. All in all, it seemed an animated affair, with students rushing to class, resting *"'8#(,'D+55"'!5&9('#"9'7%"D'(*$$5+6' all within a lively campus that bustled with energy and freedom. There were even a few rabbits, a pair of gazelles, and a kitten rolling around on their equivalent of the King’s College Circle !5&9>' What left the deepest impres sion, though, was speaking with the head of the governing party’s student union, a man by the name of Muham
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST war and strife. His sullen dejection at hearing that my knowledge of Sudan essentially consisted of the words “Dar fur” and “genocide” betrayed a weari ness of war, as well as a sincere desire to move beyond it to a better future for his people. Even so, he did not dodge my inquiries about Darfur and tried his best to explain that everyone knows that there is a problem there, but that they are trying their best to solve it. Throughout the week, he repeatedly begged me to try and see the better side of the country, to see that they were trying hard to improve and to move away from the narrow view of Sudan as only a byword for war, strife, or North African basket case. He represented a side of Sudan that I had naively never expected to exist.
What left the deepest impression though, was “speaking with the head of the student union, who earnestly pleaded with me to go back to Canada and tell people what I saw with my own eyes.
mad, who earnestly pleaded with me to go back to Canada and tell people what I saw with my own eyes. He wanted desperately for people outside of Su dan to see a side of it that was beyond
I am not suggesting here that there is no genocide going on in Sudan, or that everyone in Africa’s largest country – be they Darfurians, Nubians, Northern
Arabs, or Southern Coptic Christians – are all doing as well as the government functionaries and businessmen I saw in Khartoum. Indeed, I did not leave the capital once during the trip and am clearheaded enough to know that E:$)' *-' *:+' 8%(%,' ;#(' (,#D52E#"#D59R' that we did not get a chance to see the poorest parts of Khartoum. A quick <%D),' ,*' F#+-:+' ;#(' ($)59:&59' -*+' *:+' last day, so that we could “see” that there was no genocide. I had to forgo the trip for a philosophy exam the next day, but I had no doubt that the “vil lage” we were to see would have been #'E*95&'*-'!"5'&%8%"D'#"9'(5$:+5'7+*( 75+%,4>' ^"95596' F#+-:+' %(' #' 3%D' 7&#$5R' without a GPS, the authorities could )#85' <*;"' :(' #"4;)5+5>' g5,6' #,' &5#(,' in Khartoum, Nubians, Arabs, Mus lims, Christians, Black Africans, and Chinese, to the extent I could see, got along perfectly. With this article then, I would like to question the practice of going to other countries to dig up dirt and pub licize the worst aspects of a people, as if the citizens themselves did not know it. As if only the exasperation of a Western news audience at some of the inevitable injustices of development and pover ty—much of it the fault of the West it
[The head of the student union] repeatedly begged me to try and see the better side of the country, to see that they were trying hard to improve and to move away from the narrow view of Sudan as a only a by-word for war, strife, or North African basket case.
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
self—makes such things real. In Sudan, I found a country that, though poor, was full of a serious desire to develop, to leave war and poverty behind, and to be respected. The government, whatev er questionable practices it may be en gaged in, showed an almost desperate desire to cooperate and work with who ever was willing to listen and see the struggles of this warweary but hopeful people. In many ways, Sudan was the exact opposite of what I had been led to believe it would be. One wonders,
would cooperation and encouragement of its better tendencies not be a supe rior way of dealing with this country than sanctions and embargoes? Our trip had its share of unpleasant expe riences, the least of which being the conference itself, which turned out to be a giant venting venue for scholars espousing a “victimization of Islam by the West” narrative. Yet I found in the end that between the news, one’s own judgmentatadistance, and reality, “truth” and “untruth” are never quite
what one thought they would be, that it is always better to see for yourself the state of things before buying what television tells you, and that your ideas, )*;585+' $*"!95",&4' 4*:' E#4' )*&9' them, may just turn out to be preju diced, selfformed preconceptions that a good dose of reality can surely cure you of.
In Sudan, I found a country that, though poor, was full of a serious desire to develop, leave war and poverty behind, and be respected.
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
UNDERSTANDING CONFLICT & RESOURCES IN AFRICA !"!#"&&234!3%0"9-
iolent spasms constantly shake the frame of African politics. Wars erupt between insurgents and govern E5",' -*+$5(R' (,*+%5(' *-' 8%*&5"$56' +#756' and mutilation are told and retold again and again, to the point where the inter national community becomes numb to the cry of Africa’s victims of war. Insur gencies seem to be almost common place in everyday African politics. It is as if something particular about Africa makes it prone to violent outbursts and stories of destitution. Media coverage has been unrelenting in catching every bloody detail that occurs each day, but while they do capture the horror and atrocity of war, the root causes of the $*"<%$,(' (55E' ,*' 35' *3($:+59' #E%9(,' what appears to be an endemic state of affairs. What comes to be increasingly common is the idea that much of these $*"<%$,(' #+5' 9:5' ,*' 7+%E*+9%#&' 5,)"%$' divisions – deepseeded hatreds be tween peoples that have raged on un til this day. Worst of all, this constant %"<:S'*-';#+6'(,+:DD&56'#"9'95(75+#,%*"' in the news seems to naturalize the idea that African people are simply prone to violence and corruption. To top it off, when African countries do not suffer
from the strife of civil war, they suffer from severe mismanagement of their resources. However, the two are con nected. What may seem to be “ethnic” in origin is in fact part of a bigger pic ,:+5>' @:$)' *-' ,)5' $*"<%$,' %(' :"9*:3, edly over power, and much of the time, it is power over who will control the country’s resources. When there is lit ,&5' $*"<%$,6' ,)5' +5(*:+$5(' ,)5E(5&85('
In countries with entrenched poverty and the lure of natural resources, the potential for insurgency is high.
serve as a curse. This is not only limited to Africa, but also worldwide. ' b)5"'*+%D%"('*-'$*"<%$,'#+5'#, tributed to ethnicity, it is important to remember that many of these socalled “ethnicities” were actually imposed upon groups of Africans by their colo nial occupiers. Take the grisly reminder of Rwanda as an example – Tutsis and Hutus did not exist prior to colonial oc
cupation. Based solely on physical ap pearance, people were given ID cards designating them as ‘Hutu’ or ‘Tutsi’. For anyone who was disturbed enough by the lack of involvement by the inter national community, further research revealed that this was not as much an 5,)"%$' $*"<%$,' #(' #' (,+:DD&5' -*+' 7*&%,% cal power. Hutus targeted those who E#4')#85'355"'#-!&%#,59';%,)',)5'GfX' – mostly Tutsis – but some moderate Hutus were killed as well. The problem was that news coverage had interpreted %,',*'35'#"'5,)"%$'$*"<%$,'+#,)5+',)#"'#' political one, and by doing so the gen eral feeling was that this was a primor dial ethnic hatred against which little could be done, and that this was in fact the nature of the two groups. So then, if ethnicity is not at fault, what is it that causes so many insurgencies in Africa? By looking at what there is to gain, it seems that this is where the politics of resources comes into play. ' f#:&'H*&&%5+'#"9'="C5'c*5-<5+' from the University of Oxford came up with two motivations for insurgencies: greed and grievance. Upon closer in spection, many insurgencies seem to be related to the capture of resources, or greed. The risk of civil war seems to be directly related to a country’s income. In countries with entrenched poverty and the lure of natural resources, the potential for insurgency is high. When two or more groups enter into a power struggle for these resources, grievances are sure to follow for those on the los ing side. Politics in Africa is usually a zero sum game.
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST ' ?)%(' %(' ;)5+5' 5,)"%$' $*"<%$,(' can also come into play. Because there is little class differentiation, most poli tics tend to be based on the one thing that can bring people together – eth nicity, real or imagined. Politicians must play on these identities to gather support in their game for resources. With resources like oil concentrated
as its spread into neighbouring Sierra Leone. Resources are not only a main $#:(5' *-' $*"<%$,' #"9' $*++:7,%*"6' 3:,' #&(*'#'E5#"(',*'(:(,#%"'"5;'$*"<%$,(>' Liberia’s case is not an unusual one. Many economists believe that nat ural resources in poor countries serve as a trap that paradoxically prevent them from becoming as rich as devel
Many economists believe that natural resources in poor countries serve as a trap that paradoxically prevent them from becoming as rich as developed nations
%"' #' (75$%!$' #+5#6' ,)%(' (75&&(' ,+*:3&5' for ethnic groups, which tend to be re gionally clustered. Coincidence or not, a combination of natural resources and ethnic identities sets the stage for #'$*"<%$,'*-'#$$5((',*';5#&,)>'?)5'$*" <%$,'%"'(*:,)5+"'W:9#"'%('55+%&4'(%E%&#+' to this situation. While both sides claim it is a border dispute, the territory in question – Abyei – is oilrich land. The northern government in Khartoum and the Sudan People’s Liberation Move ment (SPLM) are using the Misseriya nomads and the southern Ngok Dinka. As stated in a May 22, 2008 Econo mist article on Abyei, “since time im memorial they have clashed over land and water...such issues can usually be resolved...but the groups have become pawns in a bigger game.” This bigger game is one over resources. Liberia is another resource rich $*:",+4'35(5,'34'$*"<%$,>'_%35+%#I(';#+' was not the cause of its poverty, but it ;#('95!"%,5&4'#'$*"(5T:5"$5'*-'%,>'=']]H' news report states that the reliance on exporting their raw materials was a fac tor in propagating that poverty. It was a small portion of the elite who ended up dominating the indigenous Africans, who then resented the government and its institutions. The rural youth joined the militia groups early in the civil war. It is over, but now the peace remains fragile because of the unresolved issue *-';)*';%&&'5S7&*%,'#"9'35"5!,'-+*E'_% beria’s natural resources. In addition, Liberia’s diamonds are a resource that served to propagate the war as well
oped nations. Resource riches should not be seen as the answer to sustained growth. In fact, economists refer to this problem as “the Dutch disease,” af ter what happened from the effects of North Sea oil on the Dutch economy. A BBC report on the issue explains this as when the resource exports boost the country’s currency to rise in value against other currencies. This in turn makes the country’s other exports un competitive in the market. If such is the case, why not diversify exports? In many African countries, the simplic
African literature, Chinua Achebe’s novel, A Man of the People, has a pas sage that perfectly sums up the situa tion. “A man who has just come in from the rain and dried his body and put on dry clothes is more reluctant to go out again than another who has been indoors all the time. The trouble with our new nation...was that none of us had been indoors enough to say ‘To hell with it’. We had all been in the rain together until yesterday. Then a hand ful of us...had scrambled for the one shelter our former rulers had left, and had taken it over and barricaded them selves in”. Before Africa can be dismissed as an inherently violent, corrupt, and poor continent, careful consideration must be given to how this all took place. The international community, especially the former colonial powers, must help bear this responsibility. Af rica must be recognized as a continent of potential instead of one prone to “ethnic” or “tribal” warfare. The ques tions are, of course, where to start. How should resources be managed? What sort of international intervention
riches should not be seen as the answer “ Resource to sustained growth. In fact, economists refer to
this problem as “the Dutch disease”, after the effects of North Sea oil on the Dutch economy.
ity of picking out easily exploitable resources crowd out the potential for any additional economic growth cre ated by manufacturing industries. In addition, the volatility of raw material prices does not serve Africa’s interests ;5&&R'#(',)5'7+%$5'*-'*%&'<:$,:#,5('%"',* day’s market, it is hardly conducive to long term investment. The legacy of co lonialism cannot be forgotten either – many African colonies were reduced to farming a very limited variety of crops to their colonial powers, and once the bondage of colonialism was broken, the newly independent countries had little else to work with. It is unfair to expect so much from a continent that has suf fered for so long. For those who follow
is needed? What new strategies can be implemented? These are no easy an swers. The best bet is with Africa’s citi zens, who know the troubles they face more than any other. Until their con dition is stabilized, no progress can be made.
6.//82G%$-7.Q<%,-%.%E/8@+2.C%4/5%6,78.29:-%;<9@ 92=2% -/0123/>% *.B<C,3=% ,3% !<9,/,7.9% 47,2372% .31% "3/8C<?<9<=+5
INTERVIEW !"!9"&",/3!*1">/9-)/0! ?!",3@"9831!,/#
DR. JAMES ORBINSKI /<Q.6B:9K.$<;HFKJH.UBK.0<9KHG9F?.=>.7YG9NHFK.KBFK.2<=F?HZ<9K[/=N?=<K.UH?@=E?.)=<G9<KQ.."9. HK.K@=UF.@9<9.KL9BJHFS.B?.I=<J.-FHP9<KH?TQ... &23%/,39&(2-&-51"(231!.013"&/)3!0-##-9%7
Natalie Krajinovic, Colleen Fox and Alexander Lim used the information from the following interview, in part, for an article on Individual Global ization in the Case of Doctors without Borders. It was presented at the Glob al21 conference in Istanbul for all Glo balist chapters in the summer of 2008.
AIDS. In that experience, I was really confronted with the power of politics and the impact of politics on people’s access to healthcare in the developing world. And at that very young age I naively believed that I would just be a good doctor and I wanted to somehow avoid the messy business of politics and just focus on delivering good medi cal care, and when necessary, speaking Natalie Krajinovic: out on behalf of what I know, and MSF There seems to be no other organiza was the organization that somehow en tion like MSF that is so implicitly in capsulated that for me at the time. So, a volved with delivering immediate care group of friends and I started a chapter to areas in need. Why do you think here in Canada. people join MSF and what is their mo tivation for doing so? Krajinovic: Countries are connected through eco Orbinski: nomic and political struggles. How has I joined in 1990 after having worked globalization facilitated an environ in Africa as a researcher on pediatric ment where Canadians would be able
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST to help other countries that are suffer ing? Orbinski: I have a very different view. I don’t have such a purist view of the world and what you call globalization. Glo balization is not new. Human beings have been interacting with each other and with different communities. City states, nationstates, for as long as hu man beings have existed have traded across communities, and across politi $#&'$*"(,%,:5"$%5(>'f5*7&5')#85'-*:D),R' disease has spread for as long as we know. So the idea of globalization as a kind of a new phenomenon is an idea that I basically reject. There is a phe nomenon that has taken place, since the end of the Cold War, and it’s a rapid acceleration in the speed and the scope of that interaction that has been part of human history and that has been driv en by a very particular political agenda, the agenda of neoliberalism. It has had a very particular affect on the inclu sion and exclusion of people in differ ent parts of the world, both within the west and outside of the west. One of the other major forces that emerged with the end of the Cold War, again, not as a new force, but in a new ac celerated form, was transnational civil society networks. They emerged with a new power, and a new capacity to com municate with each other, and to see, physically, proximately, each other as human beings. And that has meant a radically different and invigorated sense of what civil society organiza tions have engaged in, and the values that they pursued. Alexander Lim: Would you say this has, helped the mis sion of MSF, or has it hampered it in some ways? (continued on p.17) Orbinski: MSF’s sense of itself is something that %('#'+5<5$,%*"'*-',)5'7*&%,%$#&'$*",5S,'%,' is in. And as that context has changed as I have described so too, has the, the practical operational intent of the orga nization. But in principle, it’s commit
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST ment to the dignity of all people, and to rendering or bringing to bear medical assistance to people who need it in situ ations of war, or social crisis, or famine, or epidemic, or exclusion. That hasn’t fundamentally changed. Lim: With international agreements such as the TRIPS agreement, and all those patent laws, how has that affected the ability of MSF to, for example, move supplies in between regions, keep their vaccines and all their supplies stocked? Has it been an impediment, with all these new legislations? Orbinski: There’s always been legislation, inter national structures, legal, logistical and operational structures that govern ac tion in that space. And there’s always been national law, whether it’s in Ma lawi or France or Canada that you have to accord to or comply with. When 4*:' ,#&C' (75$%!$#&&4' #3*:,' ,)5' ?G^fW' agreement that is a product of this post Cold War neoliberal hegemony. That’s what it came out of, and that has had an enormous impact on the ability of organizations like MSF to purchase lowcost generic medications for use in their projects. It means that that the majority of new medicines will be pat ented, and it also means that therefore, at a much higher cost. Also, that R&D for medicines, vaccines, diagnostics, will be driven by a purely marketized conception of those products and so it has implications. Serious implications. Lim: When MSF goes into different coun tries, do you work with the permission of the government? Orbinski: Well, in the main, yes. And in the main, MSF works under international hu manitarian law, which, in situations of war, particularly international human itarian law, mandates very clearly the right of people to receive humanitarian
assistance, and the duties of state and belligerence to allow access of indepen dent impartial humanitarian organi zations. So that’s essentially the legal framework that you operate under in war. We should work with government, and get permission. But if it is not pos sible, then, you have to make a deci sion. What are you going to do? Are you going to cross a border illegally? In the past, MSF has made the decision that 45(R'%,'%('D*%"D',*'$+*(('#'3*+95+'%&&5D#&&4' in some situations.
maceutical plants. They essentially refused to allow us, and the few other organizations that were there, access to those territories, and they essen tially forced us out of the country. We denounced the situation publicly and their unwillingness to allow humani tarian assistance to get to the people who needed it. We refused, publicly, to be complicit with a regime that was starving its own people. So that’s how you react.
A humanitarian organization at least as far as “I understand it... is one that responds to the most vulnerable people in the most direct way. ’’ Krajinovic: Have you ever been in a situation where you were just not welcomed to help? How did you respond to that? Did you just leave or remain in the country?
Orbinski: Yes. Well, in North Korea MSF was trying to provide humanitarian assis tance to millions of people who were starving. And the government refused to acknowledge that those people were starving. MSF was allowed to only ;*+C'%"'O'*+'h'7+*8%"$5(6')*(,%"D'LL11' $&%"%$(6'i1'-559%"D'$5",5+(R'#'):D5'*7 eration. But we knew that in the other provinces, there were millions of people starving and the government refused to let us work there. What they wanted us to do was to provide pharmaceuticals to the government, and that’s not what a humanitarian organization is about. It’s not about responding to a request for a particular product by a govern ment that can be seen as in some sort of generalistic way as a good, you know, a medicine. A humanitarian organiza tion at least as far as I understand it, and as far as MSF certainly understood it then, is one that responds to the most vulnerable people in the most direct way. And if you know that there are a million people starving, that’s what you should focus on, not on building phar
Krajinovic: Do you believe in the global village as a plausible concept? Will advanc ing technology and more modernized needs allow for international advance ment? Or will third world countries be essentially omitted from participating? Orbinski: You know, if you take that from a technological perspective, I think that actually we have an emerging techno &*D%$#&' #7#+,)5%96' ,)#,' 95!"5(' #"' j:(I' and ‘them’, even more starkly then in the past. You ask me do I believe in the global village. In a certain way I do believe in utopia. What I believe in, is engaging, working, struggling, and ex 75+%E5",%"D' ;%,)' *,)5+(' ,*' !"9' ;#4(' and means that respect our basic hu man dignity. That’s what I believe in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
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
CHINA’S INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS: A MORAL & ECONOMIC DILEMMA
n 2008, China held the world’s at tention, and opulently hosted the 2008 Summer Olympics. The country’s hosting of the Olympics was symbolic of its newly asserted global leadership. As Chinese performers dazzled view ers from around the world, leaders and diplomats scrambled to take a stance on growing concerns over China’s busi ness and political ties with Sudan. Soon, )%D)'7+*!&5'#$,%8%(,(k-+*E'#$,+5(('@%#' Farrow to director Steven Spielberg— described the events of the summer as the “genocide Olympics,” linking Chi nese business exchanges with Sudan as explicit complacency over the Suda nese government’s hostile actions to wards its own people. AntiChina pro tests erupted across Europe and North America, often obstructing the ceremo nial journey of the torch. At issue are lucrative Chinese business contracts with the Sudanese D*85+"E5",>' H)%"5(5' !+E(' )#85' %" vested millions of dollars in China in exchange for Sudanese oil. As China’s productive capacity increases, its need for oil resources are expected to in crease and Sudanese oil presents itself
as a viable, new market for oil. ' =(%95' -+*E' ,)5' !"#"$%#&' 5S change between the two nations, critics have slammed China’s diplomatic tip toeing around the issue of Darfur. Add ing to a marred domestic human rights record, China’s complacency towards the governmentsponsored genocide in Darfur has sparked outrage around the world. What began as objection to Chinese oil contracts, which provided monetary support for the oppressive regime, has turned into global outrage over the country’s global human rights abuses as well as the complacent atti ,:95'*-'H)%"5(5'*-!$%#&(',*;#+9('W:9# nese President Omar alBashir’s gov ernment. In 2005, in a groundbreaking move, the United States declared the atrocities of Darfur to be “a genocide,” and called upon the United Nations Se curity Council to impose sanctions on Sudan. In an uncharacteristic move, the American stance on the humani tarian disaster in Darfur was more aggressive than that of the United Na tions. The latter had previously issued a report on genocide concluding, “no
genocidal activity has been pursued or implemented in Darfur by the gov ernment.” As an ensuing bureaucratic debate over semantics unfolded, the Chinese government increased its eco nomic, political and military ties with Sudan, and stalled UN action in Dar fur. ' ?*'H)%"5(5'*-!$%#&(6'[J'%",5+ vention in Sudan is problematic for two reasons. Firstly, China’s economic oil contracts with Sudan could be jeopar dized in a UN embargo scenario. Sec ondly, intervention in Sudan could cre ate a dangerous precedent for China. China’s human rights record at home is far from perfect. With stateowned media and contentious ties with Tai wan, Myanmar and Tibet, China would much rather prefer that the world stay out of its backyard. China’s inaction at the United J#,%*"('%('"*,',)5'!+(,',%E5'#'W5$:+%,4' Council member has voted strategically in accordance with its political and eco nomic interests. However, in 2008, the British Broadcasting Corporation un covered conclusive evidence of China’s ties to the governmentfunded Janja weed, armed gunmen in Darfur, which directed international attention to the human costs associated with China’s involvement in Sudan. As death tolls +*(5' ,*;#+9(' O1161116' 5S7*+,59' H)% nese army Lorries were found in Dar fur, in the hands of rebel leaders. In ad dition, sources told the BBC that China has been involved in militarily training Sudanese pilots for Chinese Fantan l5,(6' %E7*+,%"D' UZQV' !D),5+' ,+#%"5+(' designed to train Sudanese personnel for Fantan jets supplied by Chinese au thorities. A regional and global super power, China’s record with the United Nations on the issue of Darfur is trou bling to say the least. Chinese involve ment in Darfur directly contravenes a UN arms embargo that stipulates all foreign nations should take measures to ensure they do not militarily assist #"4*"5'%"',)5'$*"<%$,>'H)%"#')#('355"' reluctant to use its political clout to 3+%"D' #3*:,' $)#"D5' %"' F#+-:+6' (75$%! cally in its capacity as a member of the
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST Security Council on the United Nations. China has repeatedly used its UN veto to block international intervention and the imposition of sanctions on Darfur. The negative press associated with the BBC’s discoveries did not translate into a change in Chinese policy, and were largely denied by Chinese authorities. ?)5' ]]HI(' !"9%"D(' $#E5' *"' ,)5' )55&(' of a visit by Chinese President Hu Jin tao to Sudan in which he forgave mil lions of dollars of Sudanese debt, and provided alBashir’s government with a multibillion pound interestfree loan to be spent on a Presidential palace. China is now one of Khartoum’s larg est investors, and has spent millions in developing Sudanese oil infrastructure. Hu also offered Khartoum an increase in military cooperation, solidifying ties between the two nations. Global spectators have not let
lenge. China has become one of the world’s most formidable economic and political powers, and is the world’s most populous country. Diplomatic tensions with China runs the risk of an exten (%85'!"#"$%#&'-#&&*:,6'#"9'%"',)5'-#$5'*-' a global economic crisis, there is little incentive on the part of leaders to anger the world’s largest holder of American dollars. A recent World Bank report described growing Chinese economic partnerships with Africa as an “encour aging trend,” drawing international at tention to Chinese involvement in the continent. To date, Sudan has received L>O'3%&&%*"'9*&&#+('-+*E'H)%"#>'\"&4'0m' *-',)%('!"#"$5'%('+5&#,59',*'+5(*:+$5'5S traction projects. As China exerts political and economic leadership in other realms of international affairs, the need to be known as a responsible, trustworthy
Chinese actions in Darfur go unno ,%$59>' ^"' /1106' (*E5' L11' [W' &5D%(&# tors wrote letters calling on Beijing to take immediate action, adding another voice to the growing Darfur relief lobby. As global attention honed in on China during the lead up to the Olympics, Chinese authorities showed some signs *-'#'$)#"D5'*-'$*:+(5>'H)%"5(5'*-!$%#&(' put forth stronglyworded diplomatic pressure on Khartoum, urging Sudan ,*' ()*;' %"$+5#(59' <5S%3%&%,4' ,*;#+9(' the United Nations. China also pledged to a delegation of engineers to the UN that it would assist any peacekeeping operations in the nation. For both western and Chinese authorities, reacting to Chinese ties with Darfur presents itself as a chal
E5E35+>'=('%,('D&*3#&'7+*!&5'+%(5(6')*;' ;%&&' H)%"#' +5#$,' ,*' -:,:+5' $*"<%$,(a' Moreover, Chinese stalling on the Dar fur issue packs another punch to the UN’s already waning global reputa tion and legitimacy as an instrument of change, and champion of human secu rity. The global community is at a pivotal point in time. Although China’s eco nomic engine shows little signs of slow ing, its political and economic prowess is not unrivalled. World leaders could, in theory, exert pressure on Chinese authorities to cease all operations in Darfur until there is an ending of hos tilities by retracting business contracts and trade missions with the nation. Its seat on the Security Council and global economic power make its actions dif !$:&,' ,*' %D"*+5>' ?)5' *":(' "*;' &%5(' *"' Chinese and world leaders to under
power is imperative to foster solid po litical and economic alliances. In addi ,%*"6'H)%"#I('*-!$%#&',%5(';%,)',)5'Z)#+ toum government implicate it with associating with a government accused of slaughtering its own citizens. Sudan has repeatedly resisted UN pressures to intervene within Sudanese borders by claiming such measures would con stitute an affront to Sudanese sover eignty. With China as a key ally, the Sudanese position is safeguarded from further international scrutiny, placing China in the problematic role of poten tial benefactor of Sudan—a role from which China wants to distance itself. China’s inaction at the United Nations also creates a troubling precedent for its behaviour as a UN Security Council
(,#"9' ,)5' +#E%!$#,%*"(' *-' $*",%":59' Chinese interaction with the hostile Sudanese government. In an age of the Responsibility to Protect, and a univer sal pledge to “never again” permit geno cide, China faces a moral and economic dilemma that it must address clearly. If China seeks future positions of global leadership, its actions in Sudan will un doubtedly slow its journey. As outcry continues over Chinese presence in the region, Chinese action on the issue will 95,5+E%"5' ,)5' *:,$*E5' *-' *"5' %,(' !+(,' international diplomatic tests. ",-8.%"3-.C,%,-%.%E/8@+2.C%PC,3,/+%;<992=2%-/0123/>% 1<0U92% *.B<C,3=% ,3% L3/2C3./,<3.9% M29./,<3-% .31% !<9,/,7.9%47,23725
he history of the Democratic Re public of the Congo, mired in cor ruption, selfinterest and war, has not been a happy one for its civilians. Since colonial times under the rule of the Belgians, the people of the Demo cratic Republic of the Congo have seen the wealth of their land siphoned away. The curse of natural resources meant that while the vast amount of gold, diamond, coltan, copper and cobalt should have brought the populace out of poverty, they have instead rewarded only elites and foreign powers. Despite several attempts at peace agreements involving many of the actors, and the deployment of the largest UN peace keeping force in the world, tensions in the country continue to create instabil ity. Exploitation of Congo’s natu ral wealth occurred, and continues to occur, on a large scale. In fact, the Con go War, or wars as some analysts have $#&&59' %,6' ;#(' (5&-2!"#"$%"D>' =(' (:$)6' while the illegal trade of primary com modities may not have been a cause of the war, there certainly developed an economic aspect that has prolonged ,)5' $*"<%$,' 34' $+5#,%"D' %"$5",%85(' -*+' belligerents to maintain a chaotic state for selfinterested resource extrac tion. Even as the rebels led by General JC:"9#'$*",%":5',*'!D),',*;#+9'K*E#' with the claim of protecting Tutsis against Hutu atrocities at the end of October 2008, aid agencies told the ]]H',)#,',)5'!D),%"D';#('#&(*'-*+'$*" trol of the abundant supply of natural resources in the eastern Congo. Politics and economics in the DRC have thus been shaped by the exploitation of such resources. Mismanagement and cor +:7,%*"' )#85' &59' ,*' ,)5' <*:+%()%"D' *-' informal economies that are easily ex ploited against the interests of the great majority of Congolese people. The original root causes of the $*"<%$,' )#85' 35$*E5' *85+;)5&E59' 34' vicious atrocities and the addicting !"#"$%#&' 7*;5+' *-' +5(*:+$5' $*",+*&>' Those same root causes – ethnic ten sions and land claims – have become %"$+5#(%"D&4'9%-!$:&,',*'+5(*&85';%,)*:,' the political will of elites and foreign
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
PREVENTING THE ADVANCEMENT OF PEACE-BUILDING IN THE
!@9.9]LA=H?B?H=F.=>.FB?E<BA.<9K=E<N9K.HF.?@9./Q%Q.1=FS=.@BK.;99F.BF.HKKE9.>=<.G9NBG9KW.BFG. HK.=F9.=>.?@9.<==?.NBEK9K.=>.NE<<9F?.HFK?B;HAH?T.?@9<9Q.. 1/&"!4/,,"31&!.+,/0*17
powers who have, instead, continued ,*' 35"5!,' 5$*"*E%$#&&4>' X+#"n*%(' K+% gnon’s article on Economic Agendas in the Congolese Peace Process analyzed how “economic interests have been in tegrated into the peace process and be come a virtual ‘hidden script’ whereby belligerents cooperated with each oth er and their foreign governmental pa trons to protect and disguise their own and their patrons’ economic interests.” Consequently, economic interests are obstacles to longterm peace not only because they are an incentive to con tinue the chaotic situation of war, but also because they are not being man aged within current peace processes.
Among the Congo’s vast resources, colombotantalum (also known as coltan), gold and diamonds have been of particular interest due to their “loot able” nature. Coltan has been especially %E7*+,#",'35$#:(5'$*&,#"6'*"$5'+5!"59' into tantalum, is a critical component in the production of most hightech equipments. The lootable aspect of these minerals means that these prod ucts can be mined by unskilled artisan labourers and smuggled across borders without largescale, capitalintensive industrial production. Furthermore, these three resources also have low weighttovalue ratios so that they are cheaply extracted and easily plundered,
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
E#C%"D',)5E'5S,+5E5&4'7+*!,#3&5'9:+ ing times of war. This, of course, cre ates an enticement for belligerents to continue the exploitation during war situations to escape government regu lations. Despite the creation of the UN Security Council’s Panel of Experts on the Illegal Exploitation of Natural Re sources and Other Forms of Wealth in 2000, there remains a lack of emphasis on the resources issue within the peace process. How important is the wealth from the DRC’s natural resources to each belligerent’s interest in continuing war? Without incorporating the eco nomic agendas concretely within the 75#$5' 7+*$5((6' ,)%(' %(' #' 9%-!$:&,' T:5( tion to answer. The UN report, besides indicating the role of local actors, also recognized the economic attraction in the DRC for regional and international actors. Regional actors, such as Rwan da and Uganda, have sent troops not only for political or ideological pur poses, but also for the control of im portant diamond mines. Many western multinational companies, named and shamed in the UN report, maintain the exploitation of the DRC’s natural resources at the expense of the well be ing of civilians as well. Unfortunately, western governments protected sev eral major multinational companies that engaged in illegal and exploitative activities during the war in the DRC, and their names were excluded in the UN Report to prevent embarrassment. Nonetheless, the acknowledgement of misconduct by multinational compa
nies places pressure on foreign compa "%5(',)#,';%()',*'7+*!,'-+*E',)5'FGHI(' vast resources, to invest according to the standards of international law. What can be done? Other than analyzing, monitoring and speaking out, all actors also have a role in en suring that exploited natural resources have no market for sale. The Kimberley Process, even with all its failings, is a good start. The Kimberley Process Cer ,%!$#,%*"' W$)5E5' (55C(' ,*' 7+585",' ,)5' trade of illicit diamonds, which have caused the loss of so many lives in so
It is only when the incentives to illegally exploit are undermined that the road to long-term stable peace can continue.
E#"4' $+%(%(' (%,:#,%*"(>' ?)5' $5+,%!$# ,%*"' ($)5E5' #,,5E7,(' ,*' )#&,' ,+#-!$C ing by requiring all extracted diamonds ,*')#85'#'$5+,%!$#,5'(,#,%"D',)5%+'E%"5' of origin. Notwithstanding its obvious faults caused by a lack of administra tion in many wartorn areas, the Kim berley Process is a step in the direction of curbing economic incentives for war by making all companies along the diamond supply chain (technically) re sponsible for meeting standards of cer ,%!$#,%*">'W:$)'(,#"9#+9(6'7+*75+&4'#7 plied, are the beginnings of decreased incentives for resource exploitation in general. The international community
can also seek to invest legally in the H*"D*I('+5(*:+$5('(*',)#,'7+*!,('D*',*' the public and not into private hands. If state institutions within the DRC are to become capable and effec tive, the economic factors cannot be ig nored. If illegal resource exploitations and corruption are stopped, then such revenues can enter the appropriate channels and be used for the strength ening of those institutions. Being clear with economic investments will lay the foundation for better patterns of gover nance and for more sustainable devel opment. When civil servants and sol diers receive proper pay, they can then have the motivation to do their jobs. Major actors that seek to reach a solution to the root causes of the Con go War have agreed to peace accords. However, those peace deals have not been able to successfully and explic itly address economic concerns and have, instead, provided an opportunity for belligerents and foreign actors to continue exploitation. Thus, it is only when the incentives to illegally exploit are undermined that the road to long term stable peace can continue. There fore, the economic incentives for pro &*"D%"D' ,)5' H*"D*' $*"<%$,' )#85' ,*' 35' prominently recognized. Only then can the Democratic Republic of the Congo continue its journey toward becoming a stable and secure state.
_,30<% #23=% ,-% .% E/8@+2.C% `,7/<C,.% ;<992=2% -/0@ /!&+0) :2%&+.3) (#!'%1.%;%&<) %&) =!1'!) 1&/) >2&4%'+) 4/01,2-% .31% L3/2C3./,<3.9% M29./,<3->% .31% *,3<C@ ,3=%,3%?8,9<-<?8+5
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
REPORT ON KOREA: THE CHANGING STATUS & GENDER ROLES OF WOMEN IN CONTEMPORARY SOUTH KOREA !"!"9/&"!,/
uring our University of Toronto sponsored academic trip to Seoul, W*:,)' Z*+5#6' E4' =(%#2f#$%!$' W,:9 ies seminar class (ASI400Y1) had the privilege of attending lectures at top universities throughout the city. In ,)%(' +57*+,6' ^' ;%&&' !+(,' (:EE#+%d5' #"9' subsequently analyze one such lecture entitled “Korean Women as Workers” by Imlyang Ryu, Research Associate for Seoul National University’s Insti tute for Gender Research. I will then analyze, within a comparative context, the changing status and gender roles of women in contemporary East Asia by &**C%"D' #,' E4' !+(,2)#"9' 5S75+%5"$5(' and academic literature relating to this issue in South Korea and China, re spectively. To conclude, I will attempt to determine how these changes will af fect the country’s future. In her lecture, Ryu presented the current situation of Korean fe male workers, the recent changes of the status of female workers, and the obstacles that such workers encounter on both personal and professional lev els. According to Ryu, the employment rate for women has risen steadily from
42.8% in 1980 to 50% in 2008. Fur thermore, these women are increasing ly engaging in leadership roles in the workforce. For instance, the number of female lawmakers has been increasing ;%,)' 0N>Mm' *-' -5E#&5(' 5&5$,59' #(' &#; makers at the national level in 2008 (versus 4.8% in 1992). Ryu asserts that such women can be characterized as ei ther an ‘Alpha Girl’ or ‘Gold Miss,’ with the former “a young woman who is des tined to be a leader…talented, highly E*,%8#,596' o#"9p' (5&-2$*"!95",6V' #"9' ,)5' &#,,5+' #' (%"D&5' ;*E#"' %"' )5+' O1(' ;)*'7*((5((5('!"#"$%#&'7*;5+>' However, gender equity—the process of being fair to both women and men—and gender equality—both sexes’ enjoyment of equal status in society—still has a long way to go in South Korea. For instance, in terms of monthly wages, women earn only 01>Nm'*-',)5'(#&#+4',)#,'E5"'5#+"'585"' when possessing a 4year college de gree. Indeed, despite some progres sion, societal views of female gender roles largely remain traditional. In re sponse to the survey question, “What do you think about women in the
workforce?” the majority of respon dents preferred women to focus on marriage and childrearing. Moreover, in response to another survey ques tion, “Who do you think should be in charge of housework?” an overwhelm ing number of both male and female re (7*"95",(kiO>Om' #"9' NN>Qm6' +5(75$ tively—believed that the wife should primarily be responsible for household chores, with the husband only needing to “help.” Such patriarchal views create further obstacles for women. When one assesses employment by gender and age, for example, it is interesting to note that 1985 saw a drop in the em ployment rate for women in the 25 to 29 age group, whereas 2008 saw a drop -*+' ;*E5"' %"' ,)5' O1' ,*' Oh' #D5' D+*:7R' this demonstrates that modern Ko rean women are increasingly postpon ing marriage and birth to later in their lives. However, when these women re ,:+"',*',)5';*+C-*+$5',)+55',*'!85'45#+(' later, there are no more jobs available -*+',)5ER'#('#'+5(:&,6'E#"4'35$*E5'j%+ regular workers,’ in that they take un desirable or parttime jobs (e.g. waiting tables). Indeed, in 2008, the majority of irregular workers—64.5%—were fe E#&5>' @#"4' (:$)' ;*+C5+(' !"9' %,' 9%-! cult to make a decent living, and there fore become impoverished, leading to increased socioeconomic polarization amongst Korean women. Even those who manage to attain gainful employ ment have to contend with issues such as lack of social welfare catered to fe males (e.g. paid pregnancy leave), or hate crimes against women, and resis tance against a perceived emergence of feminism. Although Ryu provides some informa tion about the status of female workers in South Korea, I feel that her lecture ()*:&9'35'$&#+%!59'#"9'5*+#,59>'X:+ thermore, one should establish what these conclusions could mean for the country’s social, political, and econom ic future. ‘Women,’ as a social category, ()*:&9'!+(,'35'$*E7&%$#,59'#"9'$*",5S tualized in order for it to be able to pro vide any insightful conclusions about
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST the plight of females in South Korea. For example, factors such as educa tion, age, and geographic location are important variables to consider, as they intersect with gender in determin ing the highly disparate experiences of women in modern Korean society. In contrast to the entrepre neurial Alpha Girl or Gold Miss, it ap pears that another group of women has achieved upward mobility by drawing *"' ):E#"' $#7%,#&6' (75$%!$#&&4' ,)5%+' beauty and youth. In China, such wom en are dubbed ‘Young Misses.’ In order to adequately represent the glowing image of ‘modernity,’ commercial, ser vice, and entertainment industries hire these attractive and stylish women, and display them in venues ranging from restaurants to nightclubs. Despite pos sessing no formal education or skills, Young Misses are earning high wages by entering these largely private sec tor industries. Combining consumer ism and sexism, these ventures objec ,%-4'#"9'$*EE*9%-4';*E5"R'3:,'+#,)5+' than being passivelymanufactured ob jects of desire, Young Misses are actu ally taking an active role in their own 5S7&*%,#,%*"' ,*' E#S%E%d5' 7+*!,(' #"9' advance career opportunities. While in Seoul, I witnessed these women selling merchandise in places such as ‘YES a/ pM,’ an indoor shopping mall and mar C5,>'?)54'#+5'#&(*'-5#,:+59'%"'#'(%D"%! cant number of advertisements—wear ing miniskirts and bikinis—in the Seoul Metropolitan Subway. Both of these examples attest to the many Young Misses who are willing to participate in the sexism that currently pervades Ko rean society. Ryu’s portrayal of Korean women as passive victims of sexual dis crimination neglects to consider this other reality. Similar to Young Misses, col legeeducated women are also using their femininity to earn a living. How ever, these young professionals, called j@%((' \-!$5I' *+' jb)%,5' H*&&#+' ]5#:,4I' in China, and ‘Alpha Girl’ in South Z*+5#6'*7,',*'!"9'$&5+%$#&k$*"(%95+59' “feminine”—positions in foreign and joint venture companies. As aforemen tioned, they are the elite group of wom
en of whom Ryu described as eventual ly taking on higher authority positions such as managerial or “unfeminine” jobs. Such young urban profession als were particularly evident at our residence, Ewha Womans University, a topranked allfemale educational institute that boasts illustrious alum ni. For example, one of the students providing our class with a campus tour expressed her intent to become a diplomat, and was therefore studying foreign languages in order to achieve that goal. These types of women who achieve postsecondary education go on to earn a high income, and also en gage in high consumption. However, as Ryu stated, they also encounter explicit gender discrimination, as many enter ,)5' ;*+C-*+$5' ,*' !"9' ,)#,' E#&5' $&#(( mates with inferior academic records are recruited for jobs that are denied to them. On the other hand, it is also im portant to consider Ryu’s assertion that in spite of the aforementioned progres sion, there is greater socioeconomic polarization amongst Korean females. That is, in addition to women like those studying at Ewha, there are also those ;)*' (,+:DD&5' ,*' !"9' D#%"-:&' 5E7&*4 ment. For example, women who are out of the workforce for several years 9:5',*'$)%&93%+,)'#"9'$)%&9+5#+%"D'!"9' %,' 9%-!$:&,' ,*' (55C' +525E7&*4E5",' *+' steady employment, as their absence largely leads to sharp downward mo bility in both income and status. This therefore results in many women over ,)5' #D5' *-' O1' ,*' Oh' 45#+(' ,*' 35$*E5' what Ryu termed ‘irregular workers.’ Ryu’s conclusion corresponds with what I witnessed during my time in Seoul—middleaged or older Korean women employed in undesirable jobs such as street vending, while younger Korean women are employed as Young Misses or White Collar Beauties. One policy recommendation I would like to make is for the South Korean govern ment to provide training, and to up grade the social status of domestic and (5+8%$5';*+C5+('%"'W*:,)'Z*+5#6'#('*-! cial women’s organizations are doing in China. This way, there will be a market
5=:9F.B<9.B?.B.N<=KK<=BGK.HF.?@9.%9LE;AHN. =>.8=<9BQ.. 61/"9!935/9!.+,/0*17
for older women to continue being em ployed as ‘regular workers’ in wellpaid jobs with respectable statuses. It is shortsighted to analyze ‘women,’ as a social category, on its *;"R' +#,)5+6' %,' %(' "5$5((#+4' ,*' &**C' #,' other factors such as age and education that intersect with this category in or der to obtain a full and accurate picture of the diverse lives of modern Korean women. Our class trip enabled me to draw from both academic lectures and E4'!+(,2)#"9'5S75+%5"$5('%"'W5*:&6'#"9' ultimately come to the aforementioned conclusions about the changing status and gender roles of women in contem porary South Korea. .
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T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
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T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST
EUROPE: A FORCE FOR THE NEW CENTURY OR DECAYING SUPERPOWER? O
ne of the favourite hobbies of mod ern political scientists is predict ing the future of the world balance of power. Often, they focus on the United StatesChina competition that is begin ning to come into view. What, how ever, do political scientists predict for Europe? In the two recent books, The Last Days of Europe: Epitaph for an Old Continent, by Walter Laqueur and Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century, by Mark Leonard, two starkly contrast ing predictions of the future of Europe are portrayed. There is little disagreement that Europe is no longer the economic or political force that it once was, in the period of colonial empires that spanned whole continents. With the end of the Second World War, and the subsequent Cold War, Europe has entered into a period of relative calm, a socalled “Pax Europaea”. The countries of Europe
are cooperating on a level never before seen in history. Rather than engaging in bloody skirmishes against each oth er, they are blazing a new trail of close integration. Their cooperative mone
[Laqueur] argues that ... lax immigration policies, a low birth rate in ethnic Europeans [will cause a permanent change in the face of European politics
tary policy through the European Cen tral Bank, shared agricultural policy, new shared military initiatives (such as EUFOR) are all examples of a dissolu ,%*"'*-',+#9%,%*"#&'$*",%"5",#&'$*"<%$,(>'' However, the future of the European
Community is a hotly debated topic. In these two previously mentioned books, authors debate the domestic and inter national pressures that will dictate the future of the continent. In Laqueur’s book, he makes very bleak predictions for Europe. He argues that a combination of factors relating to demographics will perma nently alter the face of Western Eu rope. Through lax immigration poli cies, and the relatively low birth rate of ethnic Europeans, Laqueur argues, the racial background of the continent will change. According to Laqueur, recent immigrants to Germany, France, and the United Kingdom are not assimilat ing into society, which leads to clashes between the ethnic groups. He points to the murder of Theo van Gogh in the J5,)5+&#"9(6'#'$*",+*85+(%#&'!&EE#C5+' and critic of Islam. Van Gogh’s grue some murder sent shock waves through the Netherlands, inciting an increase in antiIslamic violence. This sort of $*"<%$,' #"9' ,5"(%*"6' )5' 35&%585(6' ;%&&' (%D"%!$#",&4' ;5#C5"' A:+*756' %"' 7#+,' due to the accepting nature of Euro pean society. It is evident, Laqueur be lieves, that the politics of Europe, both domestically and internationally, will change with the shift in demographics. On the other hand, Mark Leonard’s book is more focused on
BOOK REVIEW & COMIC
T HE T ORONTO G LOBALIST the foreign policy of the EU and mem ber states, and the nature of European “soft power”. Leonard primarily ad dresses the belief that unilateralist American foreign policy will continue to dominate the world stage. On the $*",+#+46')5'#+D:5(R',)5'E:&,%&#,5+#&%(,' nature of the governance of the Euro pean Union will serve as an example for future international cooperation. Due to the confrontational nature of American foreign policy, under the previous administration, the United States’ image abroad has become tar nished, and is not capable of execut ing complex diplomatic maneuvers that may be required of it. With the
Obama administration, this is chang ing, though it can be argued that U.S. policy is, in fact, taking some cues from Europe. With President Obama saying that he is willing to meet with leaders of states that were considered opponents of the United States, it is clear that a new page is being turned at the State Department. Whether either of these pre dictions will be true is unknown at the current stage. One is particularly pes simistic, and the other very optimis tic. For certain, however, is that the world’s largest economy and second largest military spender, the European Union, will continue to be a force in
global politics for decades to come. No matter the change in balance of power between the United States and China, it is unlikely that the most dire predic tions of Laqueur’s creation will ring true. Neither will the old continent be able to overcome the demographic, environmental, and economic issues that face it in the future. All will rely upon the ability of the European mul tilateral approach to succeed, and upon the fragile system of governance that resides in Brussels. 61++,!*) C$13) %() 1) -$(+B3!1$) D22/(*2$+,) >2.@ 92=2%-/0123/>%*.B<C,3=%,3%L3/2C3./,<3.9%M29./,<3-% .31%!<9,/,7.9%47,23725
Comic by MATTHEW GRAY
TIME IS MONEY. WHY WASTE BOTH ON FRUSTRATING COMPUTER PROBLEMS? GIVE US A CALL AND RELAX.
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