Archive for the ‘World current affairs’ Category


The explosion in the global population

November 15th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

A sobering thought: in my lifetime, the world population has more than trebled. In 1948, it was about 2.5 billion. Today it is estimated to have reached 8 billion. Some further information, a graph and a short video here.

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A review of the book “Border Wars” by Klaus Dodds

November 9th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

Ever since the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648, we have seen an increasing dominance of the notion of the nation state in geo-politics. If you look at a globe or an atlas, every patch of land on the planet is claimed by (at least) one nation with neat black lines defining who owns what. The […]

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World poverty reduction has come to a stop

October 14th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

The UN has identified 54 developing economies with severe debt problems. While accounting for little more than 3% of the global economy, they represent 18% of the world’s population, and more than 50% of people living in extreme poverty. Some countries are spending more on debt interest payments than on health, education and social protection combined, and […]

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The global cost of covid in lives and illness

October 13th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

Covid has killed almost 6.5 million people and infected more than 600 million. The WHO estimates that 10% to 20% of survivors have been left with mid- and long-term symptoms such as fatigue, breathlessness and cognitive dysfunction. Women are more likely to suffer from the condition.

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Why do so many migrants wish to reach Britain?

October 9th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

As I regularly do, I spent the day in Milton Keynes entertaining my two granddaughters. Now the local taxi company that I use in the city is staffed by drivers who normally hail from Pakistan. But not today. This time my driver was from Afghanistan. There are many ethnic groups in Afghanistan and I was […]

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How many countries are double landlocked?

September 30th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

A country is “doubly landlocked” or “double-landlocked” when it is surrounded only by landlocked countries (requiring the crossing of at least two national borders to reach a coastline). There are two such countries: Liechtenstein in Central Europe, surrounded by Austria and Switzerland. Uzbekistan in Central Asia, surrounded by Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan. I have just returned from almost two weeks in Uzbekistan but I have never […]

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A review of “The Long Game” by Rush Doshi (2021)

August 21st, 2022 by Roger Darlington

Important and informative though “The Long Game” is, it is not an easy read. There are 400 pages of small and dense text with a good deal of repetition and almost 1,500 notes. But Rush Doshi knows what he is writing about and what he is writing about is of huge geopolitical significance. Doshi is […]

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On the 75th anniversary of independence for India, how much is there to celebrate?

August 16th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

Politics in India is much rougher and much more corrupt that in the democracies of Europe and North America. Assassination is not uncommon: the revered Mahatma Gandhi in 1948, the Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1984, and the Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991 were all murdered, although it has to be noted that these […]

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Aircraft carriers: how many of them are there and who has them?

August 14th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

Currently I’m reading a book by American researcher Rush Doshi entitled “The Long Game” and subtitled “China’s grand strategy to displace American order”. Recently I read the section on China’s development of aircraft carriers which led me to wonder: how many aircraft carriers are there in the world and which nations have them? As usual, […]

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How strong is China’s claim to Taiwan? And what about Mongolia?

August 6th, 2022 by Roger Darlington

Taiwan has been settled for at least 25,000 years. Ancestors of Taiwanese indigenous peoples settled the island around 6,000 years ago. In the 17th century, large-scale Han Chinese immigration to western Taiwan began under a Dutch colony and continued under the Kingdom of Tungning. The island was annexed in 1683 by the Qing dynasty of […]

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