Assad Still Shaky, Despite Russian Airstrikes

Simon Leitch argues that given the propensity for NATO or American-led airpower to make an appearance in Middle Eastern civil wars, Russian intervention in Syria could have been expected at some point. Yet, amazingly, Western politicians, media and the military leadership appear to have been surprised by the brazenness of Russian moves and have taken to the whole thing rather poorly.

It’s the Society, Stupid!

Professor Adil Khan of University of Queensland argues: “as the year 2015 winds down we can take stock of the successes and failures of the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Whether these goals have succeeded or failed in certain places, one thing is clear – the wellbeing of society, or lack thereof, is not reflected in GDP growth figures or employment outcomes. We need to put more effort into the development of society and community rather than simply building bigger neoliberal economies.” This is an excellent critic of UN’s new agenda for development –Sustainable Development Goals.

World prepares to recommit on climate change

Dr. Moazzem Hossain, who jointly convened a session on ‘Asia on the Frontlines: Projected Implications, Vulnerability and Adaptation’ during the recently held International Scientific Conference in Paris titled ‘Our Common Future under Climate Change’, reflects on the conference outcomes and implications. The four-day conference was the largest forum for the scientific community to come together ahead of the 21st UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP21).