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Europe Politics

Angela Merkel bowed out of party politics as her conservatives elected a close ally of the chancellor to succeed her as head of her party, beginning what could be a protracted twilight for one of Europe’s most resilient leaders.
www.wsj.com | 12/8/18
Angela Merkel bowed out of party politics as her conservatives elected a close ally of the chancellor to succeed her as head of her party, beginning what could be a protracted twilight for one of Europe’s most resilient leaders.
www.wsj.com | 12/8/18
Italy’s populist government is looking for a route out of a fight with the European Union over its budget, as the financial fallout from the clash pushes the economy to the brink of recession.
www.wsj.com | 12/5/18
Italy’s populist government is looking for a route out of a fight with the European Union over its budget, as the financial fallout from the clash pushes the economy to the brink of recession.
www.wsj.com | 12/5/18
What lies ahead for companies, governments and individuals regarding cybersecurity in 2019? Will we see the EU government forcing US data centers to hand over data? Will the European Union issue its first major fines for organisations in contravention of its General Data Protection Regulation? Will our growing dependence on social media expose us to [&hellip
Central European University, founded after the collapse of the Soviet Union, has been forced from its campus in Budapest by the increasingly authoritarian government of Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
www.nytimes.com | 12/3/18
Slovenia's government on Tuesday appointed a female officer as the head of the army, a first for the small country which is a member of NATO and the European Union.
www.foxnews.com | 11/27/18
A day after European Union leaders waved through a deal laying out the terms for British departure from the bloc, the British government has shifted into campaigning mode for Parliament’s Dec. 11 vote.
www.wsj.com | 11/27/18
A day after European Union leaders waved through a deal laying out the terms for British departure from the bloc, the British government has shifted into campaigning mode for Parliament’s Dec. 11 vote.
www.wsj.com | 11/27/18

Several weeks ago, the White House published a document asserting that "America Will Win the Global Race to 5G."

The White House should get over it. This is not about America winning any global race to 5G, but the world working together on fundamentally different, complex, new communication networks and services. There are four important points, however.

1) It is not helpful to describe this as a race — it is the world collectively cooperating to bring about new network communication capabilities that "raise all ships."

2) Somewhat embarrassingly, the White House pronouncement lacks a basic understanding of 5G.

3) the actual metrics of open global industry collaborative activity in the global 5G marketplace provide a good indication of who is engaging to purse the emerging marketplace.

4) as FCC Commissioner Rosenworcel recently noted, the U.S. Administration's trade and other multilateral policies significantly impair U.S. ability to excel in the global 5G revolution.

There is some good news. U.S. industry's cloud data centres can be significantly leveraged in a 5G world — especially if the extraterritorial concerns can be effectively addressed. U.S. industry generally excels in a world of virtualised network services. The vulnerable old DARPA internets cobbled with bailing wire begin to disappear. And, making additional spectrum available in the U.S. for 5G is good if it is coordinated internationally in the ITU.

The White House could also enhance American engagement in the international activity by providing incentives for U.S. companies to devote resources to participate in the massive global industry venues like 3GPP that are collectively developing 5G technologies and services. It also would not hurt for U.S. government agencies to participate and develop their own knowledge of 5G developments. Some facts with pointers and a care kit follow.

What 5G is

What is significant and revolutionary about 5G is not just more ubiquitous, high capacity wireless access. It is the fundamentally different, new underlying network architectures, services, and devices that are all virtualised and orchestrated on demand from cloud data centres far and near (known as MEC – Multi-access Edge Computing). Desired networks are orchestrated as needed as "slices" through a 5G fabric. It enables far more efficient and secure network protocols like Carrier Ethernet to be deployed with lower overhead, other more secure internet protocols, and LISP IPv4 addresses and gateways on demand if you need them. (Bob Metcalfe and Larry Roberts should feel vindicated.)

It also allows for DNS, discovery and tagging service competition based on performance. (The 1.1.1.1's and 8.8.8.8's should be pleased.) And, it enables secure backplanes and ubiquitous virtualised middleboxes to better manage and secure network communication infrastructures.

How 5G evolved

All of this began about six years ago with the formation of the new Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV) Industry Specification Group bringing together industry (and a few governments) players from around the world. It grew rapidly, worked intensely, began working closely with other collaborative industry bodies, and developed the specification blueprints for revolutionary new virtualised network architectures and service provisioning.

The NFV group included a significant cross-section of the mobile industry that collaborates through the largest and most powerful of the global network communications bodies — 3GPP. Soon, 3GPP itself took up the challenge of instantiating the revolutionary new NFV platforms, combined with marrying it to ubiquitous new high capacity, programmable radio access platforms using additional radio spectrum allocations.

Where the 5G work occurs

The three major branches of 3GPP known as SA (Services & Systems), CT (Core Networks & Terminals), and RAN (Radio Access Networks), and their many sub-groups are the "specifications foundry" for 5G with a best-of-breed access portal. It is here that all the principal 5G meetings with participant and input document listings are found, as well as the specifications adopted and liaisons to other organizations. This includes a cornucopia of other relevant standards bodies, especially including ITU-R collaboration for spectrum, and extending to GSMA for operator and vendor implementation oversight, ETSI for additional security, ITU-T for worldwide multilateral implementations, CableLabs for cable implementations, OASIS for orchestration scripts, IETF for legacy DARPA IP — to name the more prominent. 5G IoT touches almost everyone - including the auto industry.

These 3GPP meetings typically are five days long somewhere in the world, with many hundreds of participants and literally thousands of documents; and they occur in clusters every 30-60 days. This level of work is unprecedented and constitutes by far the largest scale networking industry activity in the world today for network and end-user equipment vendors and service providers.

Metrics on 5G "leaders" in the global marketplace

The indicators of leadership can include many factors, and there are many specialized areas of 5G where leadership is compartmentalized to those areas. However, one of the more reliable indicators of leadership is the engagement in open industry collaborative processes to create that "rising tide which raises all ships" in a worldwide market. While those metrics themselves do not always map to marketplace success, they are strong indicators of stature in the global 5G market, and essentially all significant vendors and operators participate at varying levels — even when they pursue their own proprietary products.

Thus, by identifying the most important venues and analysing the metrics and impact of the involvement, an approximation of the leaders can be gauged. Those parties who actually invest relatively valuable human and intellectual property resources in the form of people engaged in the hundreds of meetings per years and working with many thousands of technical specification materials provided, tend to emerge as leaders. These are activities once mastered and dominated by the U.S. telecom and information network industry.

The rather massive concentration of 5G work in the sets of 3GPP committees provides a consistent and reliable method to see both resource deployment and broadly supported state of the art innovation. 3GPP generally holds meetings in clusters rotating among North America, Europe, and Asia. The past month provided an opportunity to examine two large clusters of 3GPP meetings — one which just occurred in Spokane, Washington, and the other next week in West Palm Beach, Florida.

The six Spokane 5G meetings focussed on services, security, and radio access technology. There were 1821 registrants from 297 different companies, institutes, and agencies. Almost all the larger transnational companies, such as Qualcomm, Intel, Apple and their counterparts in other regions, have as many as eight country subsidiaries represented. The top twenty players based on aggregated registered employees were:

93 Huawei
91 Ericsson
82 Qualcomm
77 Nokia
77 Samsung
54 Intel
54 LG
48 MIIT
47 ZTE
45 InterDigital
42 China Mobile
40 Apple
36 ETRI
26 MediaTek
26 NTT DOCOMO INC.
25 AT&T
25 Sony
25 VODAFONE Group
24 SHARP Corporation
24 Vivo Technologies

It is contributions individually and collectively, however, that constitute a more substantive measure of development leadership. For the six concurrent meetings in Spokane, there were 8,917 input documents from 201 different parties — biased significantly toward product vendors supporting 5G radio access devices and chipsets. Because there is a common interest in many of these contributions, and emphasis is placed on cooperation, the contributions often have multiple party submitters. Here, the top twenty contributors to the 5G specifications and studies based on disaggregated submitter metrics are shown below. Not surprisingly, there is a strong mapping to the number of registered participants.

1705 Huawei
1696 Ericsson
1633 Nokia
1278 Hisilicon
546 Qualcomm
533 ZTE
460 Intel
402 Samsung
352 LG
262 MIIT
218 MediaTek
211 NTT Docomo
202 OPPO
161 Vivo Technologies
156 China Mobile
142 ETSI
134 Sanechips
89 Apple
78 InterDigital
73 AT&T

In contrast to the Spokane meeting cluster, the six groups in West Palm Beach are focussing on 5G architectures, critical NS/EP communications, end-user devices, internet protocols, and signaling. There are 563 registrants from 126 different companies, institutes, and agencies. The top twenty players based on registered employees are the following.

53 Qualcomm
40 Huawei
40 Samsung
38 Ericsson
32 Nokia
19 InterDigital
19 Orange
17 NTT Docomo
12 LG
11 Deutsche Telekom
11 Intel
11 VODAFONE Group
11 ZTE Corporation
10 Apple
10 NEC
9 AT&T
9 BlackBerry
9 ETSI
9 Motorola
8 MIIT

For the six concurrent meetings in West Palm Beach, there are 2,317 participant input documents from 100 different parties — without a 5G radio access device and chipset bias. Here, the top twenty contributors to the 5G specifications and studies based on disaggregated submitter metrics are shown below.

783 Nokia
512 Huawei
426 Ericsson
230 HiSilicon
133 Qualcomm
124 Samsung
81 ZTE
78 Orange
57 Intel
55 China Mobile
53 AT&T
50 FirstNet
49 MediaTek Inc.
42 LG Electronics
42 Motorola
41 Deutsche Telekom
39 Harris Corporation
39 NTT Docomo
38 NEC
37 MIIT

Challenges, help, and reflection

The massive size and dynamics of the 5G activity in a body like 3GPP make it difficult to show leadership at the micro level. It requires a substantive understanding of constantly evolving details that are difficult to acquire, and examination of specific work items. It is available in very few companies and agencies. For those interested in a place to start, 3GPP's secretariat at ETSI has an excellent, constantly updated 5G site, including presentations and links to current workshops.

The most significant meta question that deserves being asked was posed by Red Team Master DARPA Emeritus Director Lukasik in his famous IEEE Millennium essay: will our lives be better because of these new network capabilities?

Endnote

The author's efforts directed at industry ecosystem analysis of strategic technology developments in network communication technical bodies began in the early 80s while working for the former DARPA Director in the FCC's Office of Science and Technology and evolved over nearly four decades. It is based on available authoritative open source information and enables others to do their own analysis.

Written by Anthony Rutkowski, Principal, Netmagic Associates LLC

www.circleid.com | 11/25/18
A fable about Italy, bond yields and politics in the European Union.
www.nytimes.com | 11/24/18
British Prime Minister Theresa May said Thursday that a good Brexit deal is within reach after the European Union and her government agreed on a draft declaration outlining their future relations.
www.foxnews.com | 11/22/18
A last ditch attempt by the UK government to prevent European judges hearing a legal challenge to the Brexit process is rejected.
www.bbc.co.uk | 11/20/18
As the British government convulses over Theresa May’s Brexit deal, its negotiating partners in Europe are watching with anxiety, tempered by a flickering hope that the U.K. Parliament might yet decide the pain of Brexit isn’t worth it.
www.wsj.com | 11/19/18
Germany is banning 18 Saudi citizens suspected of being involved in Jamal Khashoggi's death from entering Europe's Schengen zone. The government says it is also halting previously approved arms exports to Saudi Arabia.
www.dw.com | 11/19/18
As the British government convulses over Theresa May’s Brexit deal, its negotiating partners in Europe are watching with anxiety, tempered by a flickering hope that the U.K. Parliament might yet decide the pain of Brexit isn’t worth it.
www.wsj.com | 11/19/18

A version of this story on “Crystal Swan” first appeared in the Foreign Language Issue of TheWrap’s Oscar magazine.

First-time director Darya Zhuk’s drama “Crystal Swan,” one of the sleepers in this year’s Oscar foreign-language race, is set in the early 1990s and stars Alina Nasibullina as a young DJ desperate to get a visa and head to the United States. While it is not autobiographical, Zhuk did find herself waiting in many long lines when she secured student visas to study in the U.S.

The film is only the third Oscar submission ever from Belarus, and the first in 22 years. This interview is one in a series of conversations with directors of this year’s foreign Oscar contenders.

Also Read: Belarus to Enter Oscar Race After 22 Years With Indie Gem 'Crystal Swan'

The lead character in this film is a combination of your experiences and…
DARYA ZHUK: And the experiences of my friends, yeah. I grew up in Minsk, and after the fall of the iron curtain in 1991, there was a push to get out. Like a lot of the countries from the Soviet Union, we were trying to adopt a democracy. In ’91, ’92, ’93, ’94, it looked like, Oh, wow, we will really do this. We will follow the Western rules!” And then it swung back, slowly but surely.

So then the floodgates were open, and we had a huge brain drain in the mid ’90s. A lot of my friends live all over America and Europe, so it seemed like a very relevant story to tell. And even now, the numbers are back up — the numbers of people emigrating is comparable to the early to mid ’90s.

Why did you decide to turn that experience into a film?
I just felt that these people didn’t have a voice. None of the films that have been made in Belarus were for me. They were not reflective of my experience or the experience of my friends. I had a conviction that an audience was hungry for younger, edgier, festival titles. What was being made in Belarus was films to support the government, to please one person.

What were the particular dangers of shooting in Belarus, which is now considered a repressive dictatorship by most international observers?
They let us do what we wanted to do, but it wasn’t without problems. The distributor did ask me to make certain adjustments just to make it a little more palatable. At one point they wanted us to take out the opening title that says the film takes place in 1996, and just say it takes place in the ’90s. Because the current president [Alexander Lukashenko] was in office in 1996, so it could be seen as criticizing him. But the film still says 1996.

And my producer said we had to wait until the very end of the shoot to do a scene where the lead character is in a bus and she looks out and sees a street protest. That was risky. Any time somebody tries to do a protest, even if it’s a sanctioned protest, a lot of people end up in jail. The last one of those was March 27, while I was shooting. This type of political free speech is not allowed.

I talked to some friends who are creative people who live in Minsk, and they were like, “Wow, I’m really amazed that they let you show the film.” And closer to the Oscar deadline, there was more stress. One producer wrote an open letter to the president saying, “You just submitted a very liberal picture, how could you have done it?”

Also Read: Oscars Foreign Language Race 2018: Complete List of Submissions

The film has a lot of humor and a wonderfully light touch, but toward the end there’s a scene of sexual violence that changes the tone and casts everything in a darker light.
It’s like, that just could not not happen to this character in this particular circumstance. It’s such a common problem that in a way it also made the film for me. It is about this very individualistic character being taken down by her environment. You can have big dreams, but just because you want it doesn’t mean you’re going to get it. There are so many forces that are working against you, and things you don’t control.

But in a final scene with her assailant’s younger brother, there is a glimmer of hope.
There is hope, absolutely. That was important to me. I do firmly believe that change is possible.

The fact that it’s a period piece puts a little buffer there and allows people to think, “Oh, it’s about the past.” But in fact it’s very much about the present.

To read more of TheWrap’s Foreign Language Issue, click here.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Oscars Give More Power in Foreign Language Voting to LA Members (Exclusive)

'Roma,' 'Cold War' Lead Academy's List of 87 Films in the Oscars Foreign Language Race

Academy Makes More Changes to Open Up Oscars Foreign Language Voting (Exclusive)

www.thewrap.com | 11/18/18
Italy’s new government is rattling the country’s establishment, European Union and financial markets, but many Italians see the five-month-old government as a breath of fresh air.
www.wsj.com | 11/18/18

Over the past few years, the term "open internet" has become popular among politicians in Washington and Europe. It is bandied about in political pronouncements that assert that everyone needs to somehow support the open internet without ever actually defining it. It is sometimes used as a synonym for Net Neutrality.

In fact, it is a bogus public relations term that is rather like saying you believe in the Tooth Fairy. Furthermore, it vectors the focus away from more serious needs such as effective cybersecurity defense, and all too evident threats by adversaries who are using the open attributes of some internets to mount attacks on facilities and data repositories. It is time to stop using the term.

Open

The term "open" in the context of communication networks invokes potentially hundreds of different parameters. The first significant use of "open" occurred forty years ago with the emergence of the massive Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) initiative that governments and industry mounted in the ITU, ISO, and numerous other venues. The work led to massive numbers of standards, including in the U.S., the Government Open Systems Interconnection Profile (GOSIP) specifications that profiled open networking products. Indeed, an open and relatively secure OSI internet was rolled out using the internet protocol CLNP. Ironically, it was the DARPA internet for closed and carefully monitored R&D networks based on TCP/IP in the early 1990s that were pushed out into the public infrastructure by Clinton and Gore without any real security that has been recently politically advanced for openness.

Furthermore, the basic current construct of openness is fundamentally nonsensical. It is exemplified with a hypothetical conversation. "You have a smart phone and lots of computer devices, and probably a home network. Are you willing to allow everyone and anyone in the world to have unfettered access and usage? No?" Well, you get the idea now. It led to the Cato Institute dubbing this as the "What's Yours is Mine" philosophy.

Thus, lies the conundrum and absurdity of advocating unfettered openness of networks and devices. Advocating "openness" is equivalent to suggesting that all computer and network resources belong to everyone in the world for the taking and exploitation. No rational person, organization, or nation is likely to buy into that proposition.

Internet

Next, there is the oft-bandied term "internet." There is no singularity that exists as "the internet.". Many different internets have existed since Louis Pouzin developed the concept in France nearly fifty years ago, and will continue to exist. Indeed, after years of legal wrangling over IPR ownership of the term INTERNET, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in its landmark year 2000 order, legally recognized that INTERNET is a meaningless term and free for anyone to use for anything they choose.

Throughout the world, there are countless networks that at multiple levels are enabled to process and route digital packets among devices within their architectures. Many have varied gateways with other networks. Innumerable internets and related services coexist as virtual overlays among them. Increasingly in the rapidly emerging NFV-SDN-5G world, these will be network slices orchestrated from data centres that are gatewayed as needed using the most efficient protocols and endpoint addresses.

Even if one focusses on one of the most politically popular of the internets based on IPv4, the only real measurement of the topology by CAIDA is fuzzy to say the least, and comprising roughly 50 million routers, 150 thousand links, and 50 thousand autonomous systems. As CAIDA notes, it is also highly U.S. — centric.

By comparison, the GSM global mobile internet currently has nearly 9 billion connected devices and 5 billion users and growing at an exceedingly fast rate — offering substantial openness at higher security levels.

Open Internet

An obvious consequential question is how the term "open internet" originated and why it persists. The phrase is generally associated with the Obama Administration's Net Neutrality initiative — which itself was largely initiated by Over the Top (OTT) providers that rely on the DARPA internet's U.S. centricity to pursue offshore markets — especially for mining available information and directly reaching end users. The term's use was almost unknown prior to 2008, although it was the political successor to the Clinton Administration's Internet Freedom strategy.

In Washington lobbying circles, the term has been co-opted by almost everyone as a kind of political mantra without ever explaining details — even with the reversal of FCC Net Neutrality policy. Oddly, the U.S. State Department is still promoting the term abroad - even as the Trump Administration's Net Neutrality policy has changed domestically. However, incongruity is a stable of life in Washington and no one expects intellectual or policy consistency.

In the European Union, the term Open Internet is tightly bound to Net Neutrality, and has special significance in efforts to bring about a common market. Elsewhere in the world, it is not apparent that anyone really cares, as the global mobile internet infrastructure is more important.

What has changed?

Over the past several years, the exponential increase in the placement of malware and exfiltration of sensitive information via open networks should have re-vectored the Open Internet rhetoric. The DARPA Director who approved its R&D internet development in the 1970s began sounding the alarm in a continuing series of initiatives and papers to senior U.S. DOD officials beginning in the late 1990s. Evgeny Morozov at the political level began raising concerns in 2011 with his famous book, "Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom." The WikiLeaks Assange activism about the same time should also have been a wakeup call as to the ease and harms of massive data exfiltrations. Even the theft of the U.S. government's OPM clearance data failed to lessen the fervor for open internets.

However, it appears that a series of recent events in the U.S. have finally begun to heighten concerns about the dark side of internet openness. This began with the revelation in 2016 that Putin hoisted the U.S. on its own open internet petard in actively intervening in the U.S. elections and the U.K. Brexit vote. The confirmation by the Mueller indictments of FSB and GRU officers underscored the clear and present danger to the most critically important, existential governance of the nation. Subsequent events have amplified the concern with the emergence of neo-Nazi social media sites bringing about the mass murder at a Pittsburgh Synagogue and Facebook's being co-opted in active political influence campaigns as a service.

So today, the Open Internet mantra is a hard sell — especially to foreign countries who likely have no interest in suffering the same experiences of the U.S. The mantra should be discarded and re-focused on providing something of considerable current value - effective cyber defense for all communication networks. In many cases, that requires internets that provide effective cyber defense at network gateways and considerably greater attention to the threat vectors like the so-called Pervasive Encryption protocols that exacerbate data exfiltration and malware placement. In many cases involving critical infrastructure, it means ensuring totally closed internets.

If a communication freedom mantra is needed, political leaders should return to the proven legacy norms such as "reachability" and "universality."

Written by Anthony Rutkowski, Principal, Netmagic Associates LLC

www.circleid.com | 11/17/18
Italy’s new government is rattling the country’s establishment, European Union and financial markets, but many Italians see the five-month-old government as a breath of fresh air.
www.wsj.com | 11/17/18

A brilliant orator, Eban served as diplomat, government minister and Member of Knesset. As Minister of Foreign Affairs, he sought to consolidate Israel’s relations with the United States and secure association with the European Economic Community. Before and after the Six-Day War, he led Israel in its political struggle in the UN.

Read More...


www.isracast.com | 11/17/18

Period pieces have always been a bit bittersweet for me: Stunning costumes aside, the films rarely offer something to which a woman or a person of color can connect. Historical tales often cast women as bitter and evil, or soft and in need of rescuing, and they also erase people of color completely from existence.

Contrary to what far too many filmmakers seem to believe, people of color didn’t just drop from the sky in the past few decades. We have been here all along; we’ve fought in wars, built cities, have been part of royal courts, and lived in lands as peasants, soldiers and laypeople all over the world. And women have always been a spectrum of personalities, opinions and lifestyles, muted only for the comfort of the male gaze.

“Mary, Queen of Scots” acknowledges both the struggles of women and the fact that people of color have always been part of society, even during the Renaissance and Age of Discovery. The film also provides an intense, gorgeous and fully fleshed-out story of two queens, each born to rule yet still controlled and manipulated by the very men in whom they invest their trust and lives.

Watch Video: 'Mary Queen of Scots' Trailer Pits Saoirse Ronan Against Margot Robbie's Queen Elizabeth I

Adapted by Beau Willimon (“House of Cards”) from John Guy’s biography “Queen of Scots: The True Life of Mary Stuart”, the film opens in 1561, when Mary Stuart (Saoirse Ronan) returns to Scotland after the death of her husband, King Francis II. Alhough Mary is the true sovereign of Scotland, the kingdom has been run by regents since her infancy, and she had little knowledge over the complex politics taking place there. Her devout Catholicism, in a land mainly comprised of Protestants, leads everyone, from her advisors to her people, to cast a suspicious eye upon her. But Queen Elizabeth I (Margot Robbie) knows what it means to be a woman in power, and how even a throne can feel like a cage, but when it comes to dealing with Mary, Elizabeth doesn’t defy the advice of her all-male court for fear that her own people would turn against her and strip her of her crown.

First-time screen director Josie Rourke brings her stage experience to every frame of “Mary Queen of Scots.” In the theater, every second is meticulously planned out; every turn has a purpose; every moment, a need. She uses this knowledge to create scenes that are thrilling and effective, simply by focusing on the subtle details — a mischievous smile from Ronan, a wavering look from Robbie, small and precise, a process unveiling moment by moment. These minute details make Mary and Elizabeth’s long-distance battle of wits as thrilling to watch as any bloody battle scene from “Game of Thrones” or “Gladiator.”

Also Read: 'Mary Queen of Scots' Gets Early December Release From Focus Features

Shying away from conventional history, Willimon’s screenplay devises a new narrative for the strained relationship between Mary and her cousin Elizabeth; the writer’s take feels fresh and much more believable, and in line with the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements. It presupposes that the Queens not only cared for but also respected each other, but that their conflict, and ultimately Mary’s demise, was constructed by the men around them who feared women being given too much power. This isn’t a far-fetched idea if you’ve kept your eye on politics, or even the workforce, over the past few decades. Women comprise over 51% of the population and yet, even after this recent election, we see a majority of men making decisions about women’s bodies and what rights they have over them. It’s the reason there’s still gender pay inequality, and why victims of assault are persecuted in the public square. It’s not a far-fetched idea at all.

Simultaneously, it’s refreshing to see people of color cast, not merely as background pieces spread about like bacon bits in a bland salad but given speaking roles and playing real historical figures. Even in recent period films (“First Man,” I’m looking at you), excuses of “that’s just how it was” are given to excuse the erasure of people of color. Even in the 15th century, Europe had migrants from what is now known as the Middle East, as well as Asia, India, Sub-Saharan Africa, and more. Casting talented actors like Gemma Chan, Adrian Lester, and Ismael Cruz Córdova — the latter plays an unapologetically queer character, another important aspect of representation often lacking in historical films — shows a heightened sense of awareness and creates a more realistic world.

Also Read: Margot Robbie in Talks to Star in Barbie Movie At Warner Bros

But back to the Queens: The contrast between Mary and Elizabeth is both focused and balanced, and neither the camera nor the script ever gives preference to either. The dynamics and power plays between the two are smart and calculated, and uniquely feminine. There’s a particular sequence that moves fairly quickly, where Elizabeth sends her lover (Joe Alwyn as Lord Robert Dudley) to Mary to propose that Mary take him as a suitor. Mary, completely unfettered, and perhaps a little impressed, knows exactly the chess move her cousin has made, because it plays on what Elizabeth knows Mary craves the most — a partner with whom to produce an heir. Without batting an eyelash, Mary turns the play around on the famously unmarried and childless Elizabeth, which frustrates and, in a way, delights her. Those are some boss moves.

Speaking of boss behavior, bow down to Ronan and Robbie for taking two legendarily complex characters, who have been reborn countless times in film and television, and completely owning both roles. Ronan’s fiery Mary and Robbie’s emotionally complex Elizabeth truly reign divine on screen. History has not been kind even to powerful women, and “Mary, Queen of Scots” strikes a complicated balance of making sure both characters are seen not only as icons but also as imperfect, vulnerable and subjected to so much of what women in the workplace have had to endure ever since women were allowed in the workplace.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Margot Robbie's 'Birds of Prey' Sets February 2020 Release Date

Margot Robbie Is Sharon Tate in First Look at Quentin Tarantino's 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood' (Photo)

Saoirse Ronan, Timothée Chalamet in Talks to Reteam for Greta Gerwig's 'Little Women'

How 'Lady Bird' Star Saoirse Ronan Grew Up (and Got Off Twitter)

www.thewrap.com | 11/16/18
The decline in the currency comes as the British government struggles to find support for its plans to leave the European Union.
www.nytimes.com | 11/15/18
Prime Minister Theresa May of Britain spoke about her plan for leaving the European Union after two cabinet ministers quit her government and others in her own party showed a lack of support.
www.nytimes.com | 11/15/18
Security firm Kaspersky Labs has opened its first self-styled ‘Transparency Center’ and begun processing threat-related data from European users in data centers located in Switzerland — flipping the switch on the start of a relocation commitment it announced late last year in the face of suspicion that its antivirus software had been compromised by the Russian government […]
techcrunch.com | 11/13/18
Romania's president said Monday his country isn't ready to take over the European Union's rotating presidency on Jan. 1 and called for the government to step down.
www.foxnews.com | 11/12/18
Battles that have riven national politics across the EU are hitting the continental stage as campaigning for the bloc’s legislature threatens the center-right’s commanding position.
www.wsj.com | 11/8/18
Battles that have riven national politics across the EU are hitting the continental stage as campaigning for the bloc’s legislature threatens the center-right’s commanding position.
www.wsj.com | 11/8/18
A breakaway European Super League would impair the culture of English football, says a senior UK government source.
www.bbc.co.uk | 11/5/18
A breakaway European Super League would impair the culture of English football, says a senior UK government source.
www.bbc.co.uk | 11/5/18
Maassen reportedly heavily criticized the government to other European security chiefs in his farewell speech. Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, who backed Maassen in other controversies, has declined to do so this time.
www.dw.com | 11/4/18
The Bank of England is expected to keep interest rates on hold Thursday as it waits for the outcome of the stalled Brexit discussions between the British government and the European Union.
www.foxnews.com | 11/1/18
Denmark interrupted an Iranian assassination plot, the Danish government said, as it called for the European Union to respond.
www.wsj.com | 10/31/18
Italy's government is playing a game of chicken with European authorities and financial markets over plans to spend big — and it's unclear whether the country can avoid a collision that would spread wreckage throughout Europe and the rest of the world.
www.foxnews.com | 10/26/18

Next Monday, 29 October, most of the formal representatives of the world's nations will convene for three weeks to collectively consider the most significant developments in global network communications networks and services, and make multilateral adjustments in a treaty instrument signed by almost every country at the end. They will also elect heads of the various International Telecommunication Union (ITU) secretariats and permanent bodies for the next four years. Once called a "conference of high contracting parties," it is today referred to as the "plenipotentiary conference" because the representatives can act and sign for their Nation States. PP-2018 is being hosted by the UAE in Dubai.

This multilateral process has been occurring for the past 168 years since nations first decided to interconnect their communication networks and services. Contrary to purported experts, the ITU is *not* part of the U.N., but its own independent treaty-based organization which has an agreement to facilitate U.N. member needs through its own separate instruments and activities that date back a hundred years before the U.N. came into existence.

It is also worth noting that it was the U.S. after both the First and Second World Wars who was chiefly responsible for creating the contemporary ITU — writing its treaty instruments and hosting the related multilateral conferences in Washington DC and Atlantic City. The U.S. at the time was seeking cooperative international global solutions for internetwork and security challenges posed by new technologies spanning multiple national jurisdictions, and one of the principal leaders, Jerry Gross, was subsequently elected Secretary-General. Until the mid-90s, the U.S. dominated almost all the many ITU venues.

I have had the privilege of writing some of the history and analyzing the "Plenipots" for the past fifty years — including stints on the inside both as a ITU Member U.S. government employee and helping running the PP-1989 Nice Secretariat. It is making "legislative sausage" on a global scale. My interest as a lawyer and engineer analyst variously in government, industry and academia is public international law and the treatment of major technical and operational challenges.

Worth noting is the larger reality that the ITU activities have always set on a global political-economic ecosystem that shapes where and how communication products and services are created and made available in the marketplace. Both the individual national and institutional players in that ecosystem have changed significantly over the past two decades. For example, there has been dramatic transformative shifts from legacy government-provided telecommunications to diverse mobile offerings and internets, and now to NFV and 5G combined with the proliferation of device connectivity and big data analysis. Institutionally, the industry work has shifted massively to 3GPP and a mix of non-ITU venues.

The principal enduring requirement — maintaining sovereignty

Every nation has absolute, sovereign jurisdiction within its geographic boundaries over its communication networks and services, including radio emissions and satellites. It is the basic predicate of public international law and national existence. Every nation asserts its absolute sovereignty. Its assertion has existed as the threshold provision in every related treaty instrument. Every communication and radio emission that crosses a national boundary occurs pursuant to ITU treaty provisions — with the understanding that each nation nonetheless still has absolute jurisdiction within its borders and can establish additional non-contravening arrangements.

Sovereignty became a challenge when networks were first interconnected across national borders in 1850, and increased with each new technology — especially radio internets a hundred years ago, then radio communication satellites in the 1960s, then data communication internets in the 1970s.

Today, similar challenges arise from virtualized extraterritorial networks and services instantiated across national boundaries — both NFV (Network Functions Virtualisation) and so-called Over the Top (OTT) manifestations provided from cloud data centers. It is a profound change for network architectures and provisioning with substantial obstacles. Emerging use of ephemeral end-to-end encryption dramatically escalates the jurisdiction (and security) concerns. Rational nations are not likely to forfeit needed controls over these implementations — which if not accomplished multilaterally, will result in domestic Balkanisation within each country that will drive up provider costs. Some treatment of these prominent exterritorial developments that adversely impact the exercise of national sovereignty were expected at PP-2018.

The second enduring requirement – maintaining cybersecurity

Cybersecurity challenges today have become enormous as a result of multiple legal and technical factors. As with sovereignty, national security requirements have been a fundamental component of ITU treaty instruments since their inception.

Although cybersecurity solutions were developed for the radio sector a hundred years ago, the challenge for internetworking platforms on top of transport services have proven intractable and become exponentially devastating over the past two decades in part because Member nations have been unable to cooperate in establishing necessary multilateral legal, technical, and operational platforms and practices. Tossing the problem to "the marketplace" or end-users has also proven to be a non-solution.

The emerging use of ephemeral end-to-end encryption is beginning to create significant vulnerabilities as both criminals as well as nation-state sponsored adversaries adapt the platforms for theft, fraud and regime-change tactics by tunneling into remote servers and user end-points. Here also, significant treatment of cybersecurity was expected at PP-2018.

The PP2018 proposals

Extensive proposals were submitted by six regional blocs: Africa; Asia-Pacific; Arab; CITEL (Americas); Europe; RCC (Russian Regional Commonwealth). An additional nine proposals were separately submitted by: Argentina, Canada, Costa Rica & Dominican Republic; Brazil; Canada & USA; Central African Republic; China; Germany; India; Switzerland; USA. A common practice in recent Plenipots, the proposals focussed on the Resolutions contained in the Final Acts rather than organic provisions of the Constitution and Convention. The documents are publicly available.

While most of the proposals are generic and certain to be widely supported, a substantive focus also emerges on sovereignty and cybersecurity — manifested through resolutions on OTT provisioning, cybersecurity, and revision of the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs).

OTT. The OTT concerns internationally are a parallel to Network Neutrality domestically. Along with network operators, nations assert a right to control the communication services on their infrastructures to meet their own requirements — including sovereignty. OTT developments are also a precursor of NFV and 5G implementations of virtualized services and a fundamental change in how network communications are implemented. From a sovereignty perspective, the "global rules of the road" are fundamentally important for every nation. At the PP-2014, only the Arab bloc mentioned OTT developments. Now, four years later, OTT related proposals were submitted by four regional blocs (Africa, Arab, Europe, RCC) plus Brazil and China individually.

All of the proposals except China's offer different versions of a new resolution on OTT that largely call for further study over the next four years. The Africa bloc expresses a specific concern regarding OTT end-to-end encryption. Rather than proposing a new resolution, China simply notes that "fast growing OTT, in particular, has posed unprecedented challenges to the development and security of telecommunications/ICT worldwide" and calls for its consideration as part of further studies related to amended International Telecommunication Regulations.

Cybersecurity. Because countries treat national security as a fundamental role of the State, cybersecurity provisions have been a basic component of every treaty instrument since 1850. Those provisions are scattered throughout the bodies of the instruments. With the increasing introduction of DARPA internet platforms in public infrastructures beginning in the mid-90s, cybersecurity emerged as a serious network security challenge. The scaling security incidents resulted in the first explicit Plenipotentiary resolution in 2002 — subsequently known as Res. 130 and prescient in its articulation of the problems.

The Resolution evolved and expanded every four years since 2002, and for PP-2018 is the subject of all the regional bloc proposals (except RCC) plus Brazil and India. All the proposals are a variation on similar themes — calling attention to the problems and for all ITU bodies and participants in its work to collaborate globally to meet growing threats and challenges. Brazil called for use of the concept of cyber-hygiene that has been appearing in national cybersecurity strategies, as well as using the common term "cybersecurity" rather than the odd political construct "building confidence and security in the use of information and communication technologies." Although cybersecurity remains a profound threat for every nation, the complexity and dynamics of the challenges in a global intergovernmental setting seem to elude definitive solutions.

ITRs. Among ITU treaty instruments, there are presently two sets of International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs) - one signed by essentially all nations in 1988 to enable public internets and facilitate global trade in services, and another in 2012 signed by half of those nations. The divergence represents a bifurcation among nations on the role of multilateral instruments and ITU bodies as facilitating institutions. Entwined are concerns of sovereignty and cybersecurity, as well as growth and control of global markets for products and services. The divergence resulted in a PP-2014 resolution calling for additional dialogue and study — designated Res. 146.

Five regional blocs (Africa, Arab, Europe, CITEL, RCC) submitted proposals plus China. The proposals not unexpectedly reflect the existing divergence with Europe opposing any further ITR related efforts, and the others offering Res. 146 changes that continue the efforts and look toward further consideration at PP-2022. RCC offered a detailed composite of the 1988 and 2012 ITR provisions and suggesting a harmonization among them.

Although the divergences here have existed since the inception of the ITU and its precursors, current nationalistic trends are leading away from convergence and cooperation, so the course for the near future remains uncertain until triggered by evolving extraterritorial or cybersecurity requirements. In the meantime, Res. 146 seems likely to remain in modified form to continue study and dialogue.

The PP2018 elections

The elections are comparatively uneventful. The current Secretary-General Houlin Zhao is a highly regarded and experienced leader set to begin his second term and running uncontested. Other positions among the various ITU secretariats and boards are either uncontested or being pursued by multiple highly qualified candidates. The organization's construct of relatively independent sectors largely driven by industry contributions — except for the very large Radio Sector which is driven by every nation's spectrum management agency — is a proven construct that continues to serve common global needs.

The Long Arc

Although there are contemporary challenges, the PP-2018 should finish successfully. The submitted proposals are rather generic and designed to promote unity and stability. The process of reaching agreement on Final Acts tends to result in provisions on which every nation can give nuanced approval — sometimes combined with clarifying statements. For 168 years through constant technical and political-economic changes in the world, the value proposition of engagement and cooperation under the ITU aegis have remained compelling.

Written by Anthony Rutkowski, Principal, Netmagic Associates LLC

www.circleid.com | 10/25/18

This blog by Ira Magaziner, often called the "the father of ICANN," is part of a series of posts CircleID will be hosting from the ICANN community to commemorate ICANN's 20th anniversary. CircleID collaborated with ICANN to spread the word and to encourage participation. We invite you to submit your essays to us in consideration for posting. (You can watch the video interview of Magaziner done for ICANN’s History Project here.)

* * *

My story begins in ancient times when dinosaurs ruled the earth. It was a time when you could download a movie onto your desktop computer through your 56k dial-up connection if you had a few days. It was a time when more people were on the Minitel in France than on the Internet globally and when the Republic of Korea could fit all of its internet users into one small hotel room. I know because I met them all in that room.

In early 1995, then United States President Bill Clinton asked me, as his senior advisor for policy development, to help recommend what steps he could take if re-elected in 1996 to accelerate the long-term growth of the US economy. I suggested that we set a policy environment in the U.S. and globally that could accelerate the growth of the newly developed Internet, we could help fuel a global economic transformation.

I realized that the Internet had great potential, but that its future was very precarious, balanced on a knife’s edge between two extremes that could delay it or even destroy it. On the one side, if the Internet was too anarchic with no publicly accepted guidelines, it could engender constant lawsuits, scaring away investors and people who wanted to help build it. On the other side, if typical forces of bureaucracy took over with a mass of government regulations and slow intergovernmental governing bodies, the creativity and growth of the internet would be stifled.

We formed an inter-departmental task force and over the next few years: passed legislation and negotiated international treaties with other countries that kept Internet commerce free of tariffs and taxation; recognized the legality of digital signatures and contracts; protected Internet intellectual property; allowed the market to set standards rather than regulators; kept Internet telephony and transmission in general free from burdensome regulation; and empowered consumers to use the Internet affordably, among other measures. We aimed to establish the Internet as a global medium of communication and commerce that could allow any individual to participate.

As we did all of this, there was one problem that concerned us deeply: how could the technical coordination of the Internet succeed and scale in the face of the complex political and legal challenges that were already beginning to undermine the legitimacy of the Internet as it then existed?

At that time, IANA was housed in a small office at the University of Southern California (USC) and run by Jon Postel under a contract the University had with the U.S. Department of Defense/Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

From a small office filled with large stacks of paper and books on the floor, on tables, and hanging off of shelves on the walls, it was Jon who decided what the top-level prefixes were for each country, and who in each country should be responsible for administering the Internet.

The A-root server was run by a company called Network Solutions in Virginia under a contract with the U.S. Department of Commerce. It had a virtual monopoly to sell domain names. It worked with Jon to synch up numbers with names.

But, Jon and the leadership of Network Solutions did not get along. There were constant disputes. They were so frustrated with each other that on more than one occasion I found myself trying to referee disputes between them at the request of the Department of Commerce and DARPA who, as administrators of the contracts, were often caught in the middle.

Internet infrastructure was also insecure. I went on a tour to visit some of the servers that ran the Internet. Some were in university basements where I literally could have walked in and pulled the plugs on the servers. There was no security.

The tenuous nature of these arrangements led to significant concerns which came to a head one fateful week in early January 1996. During this week, the following events occurred:

  • The head of DARPA called me saying that it would no longer oversee the contract for IANA when it expired because there was too much controversy.
  • The President of USC called saying that they could not take the lawsuits being directed against them and wanted out of their contract.
  • Our legal counsel visited and described more than fifty lawsuits around the world challenging the validity of the Internet technical governance that could tear the Internet apart.
  • The International Telecommunication Union approached me demanding to take over the Internet after a decade of opposing the adoption of the Internet protocols.
  • A delegation of U.S. Congressmen and Senators visited and insisted that the U.S. Government had created the Internet and should never give up control of it.
  • Several delegations of representatives from over 100 leading IT and media companies, and 10 trade associations visited saying that Internet technical coordination and security had to be brought into a more predictable global environment before they would invest any further in it.
  • A European Union delegation spent two hours telling me that they would pursue their own regulation of the Internet routing system for Europe.
  • Representatives from the Internet Society told me that the Internet Society governed the Internet and they would resist any attempts by others to take control.
  • The US government security task force on the internet delivered a report saying that the internet was in danger of fracturing from the lawsuits and lack of agreed upon coordination mechanisms.

It was quite a week. We clearly had to do something.

I went home that Sunday, and while watching my favorite U.S. football team lose terribly on the television, I drafted the first concept memo of what an organization could look like that could successfully solve the current and potential challenges.

The idea of setting up a global, private, non-profit, apolitical institution, staffed by technical experts, that would be a grassroots organization accountable to Internet users and constituencies, while also being recognized by governments, was unprecedented and risky. When I discussed it with my interdepartmental taskforce, we knew it would be difficult and somewhat messy to implement, but we felt it offered the best chance to allow the Internet to grow and flourish.

The organization would have a government advisory group that could ensure the views of the collective governments were at the forefront, but that the governments would not control it. The organization would provide a strong focal point recognized by governments to combat any lawsuits. It would be flexible enough to evolve as the Internet evolved. It would generate its own independent funding by a small fee on each domain name registration, but it should never get too big. It would be stakeholder-based, and its legitimacy would have to be renewed regularly by its ability to persuade the various Internet constituency groups that it remained the best solution.

After two years of consultation, vigorous debate and many helpful suggestions and excellent modifications, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) was born in 1998.

Grassroots democracy is by its nature contentious and there have been bumps along the way. Overall, thanks to the efforts of many people who have played pivotal roles like Becky Burr and Andy Pincus who worked with me in the U.S. Government to establish ICANN, Esther Dyson, Vint Cerf, Mike Roberts and Steve Crocker who guided ICANN at key points, and the efforts of many others too numerous to mention who did the hard work of building the organization, ICANN has succeeded.

The political, policy and technical controversies that threatened to stifle or even destroy the Internet in its infancy in the late 1990s did not do so. The Internet is alive and well.

Billions of people now use the Internet. It accommodates a myriad of languages and alphabets. Wi-Fi, mobile devices, applications, and the “Internet of Things,” have all been incorporated. Despite almost unimaginable amounts of data and more addresses and domain names than we ever contemplated, one never reads about technical or legal problems that caused the Internet to break down.

While serious issues of privacy, security and equity must be addressed, no one can doubt that the Internet has created a positive transformation in the way the world communicates and does business. The Internet economy has grown at ten times the rate of the regular economy for more than twenty years now.

Congratulations to all of the people who have made ICANN a success over the past twenty years and to those of you working with ICANN today who will ensure its success over the next twenty years.

Written by Ira Magaziner

www.circleid.com | 10/25/18
European countries have to "get ready for a rough ride" says an author who rejects claims of turbulence in world history over in recent decades.
www.bbc.co.uk | 10/23/18
Italy’s government vowed to forge ahead with its spending plans, despite warnings by the European Union that its proposed budget would breach the bloc’s fiscal rules, raising the prospect of a clash with Brussels.
www.wsj.com | 10/22/18
Chancellor Angela Merkel has offered government support to efforts to open up Germany to U.S. gas, a key concession to President Trump as he tries to loosen Russia’s grip on Europe’s largest energy market.
www.wsj.com | 10/22/18

Amazon Studios has tapped Chris Castallo as head of unscripted television.

Castallo replaces Heather Schuster, who left Amazon in August, after less than a year on the job.

In his new role, he will spearhead development of unscripted as the company eyes formats with global appeal. Castallo will be heavily involved in Mark Burnett’s “Eco-Challenge” and the upcoming fashion series with Tim Gunn and Heidi Klum. Castallo will report directly to Amazon TV co-heads Albert Cheng and Vernon Sanders.

Also Read: Amazon Studios Names James Farrell Head of International Originals

Castallo was most recently head of development at Verizon’s mobile platform, Go90, until it was shut down in July. He was also a former head of alternative for CBS, where he oversaw reality series including “Survivor,” “Amazing Race,” “Undercover Boss” and “Big Brother” during his 10-year tenure. He was named executive VP of alternative programming in 2013 after previously serving as senior VP.

Schuster’s exit came after an investigation into her corporate conduct, according to Deadline. Citing an unnamed source, the site reported that the investigation stemmed from concerns about Schuster’s verbal behavior. Schuster was named to the position last October, filling the vacancy left by Conrad Riggs during the executive shakeup following the ouster of former programming boss Roy Price.

Last week, Amazon named James Farrell as head of international originals. In the newly created role, Farrell will lead the international originals teams in Japan, India, Europe, Mexico and Brazil, as well as future locales. He’ll report to Jen Salke.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Amazon Studios Names James Farrell Head of International Originals

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Amazon's Jeff Bezos: Social Media Inflames 'Identity Politics, Tribalism'

www.thewrap.com | 10/22/18
The Lebanese government should coordinate with European governments to look into the fate of missing Lebanese journalist Samir Kassab, the director of a media freedom NGO said Sunday, five years after Kassab was kidnapped in Syria.

LONDON/BELFAST ? Hundreds of thousands of supporters of the European Union marched through London on Saturday in the biggest demonstration so far to demand that the British government holds a public vote...

www.nationnews.com | 10/20/18

Amazon Studios has named James Farrell as head of international originals. In the newly created role, Farrell will lead the international originals teams in Japan, India, Europe, Mexico and Brazil, as well as future locales. He’ll report to Jen Salke.

Previously, Farrell was Amazon Studios’ head of content and international expansion. He helped launch Prime Video in Japan, India and Latin America.

“We’ve had significant success in this area to date and, by streamlining our International Originals Team under one creative leader, we can strategically carry out our ambitious global vision and ensure our future growth,” said Salke, the head of Amazon Studios. “Breakout ideas can come from creators all over the world and, by ramping up global production and making Amazon Studios the home for creators worldwide, the possibilities are endless in terms of what we can bring our Prime Video audience.”

Also Read: Ebay Says Amazon 'Illegally' Poached High-Value Sellers in New Lawsuit

“The opportunity around the world to find top quality original content and deliver it to Amazon’s global customer base is absolutely huge. Our goal is to search out the most unique voices throughout the world and then move quickly to help bring their visions to life,” said Farrell. “We’re committed to finding the best stories, no matter their country of origin, and will be casting a wide net and moving very fast in the months and years ahead. There’s nothing I enjoy more than talking with creators in their offices and homes around the world, and it’s very exciting to be taking on this new role at Amazon Studios.”

Brad Beale, vice president of worldwide content licensing, will continue to oversee the acquisition and licensing of television and film for Prime Video globally.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Amazon's Jeff Bezos: Social Media Inflames 'Identity Politics, Tribalism'

Blake Lively Scripted Series in the Works at Amazon

Mark Judge's Memoir Selling for $1,899 on Amazon — Yes, You Read That Right

www.thewrap.com | 10/19/18
Italy’s government approved a draft budget law for next year, confirming a set of expansionary measures that could lead to a fast-rising deficit and a conflict with the European Union.
www.wsj.com | 10/15/18
Italy’s government approved a draft budget law for next year, confirming a set of expansionary measures that could lead to a fast-rising deficit and a conflict with the European Union.
www.wsj.com | 10/15/18

A chill must have gone down the spines of dissident journalists all over the world when the news about Jamal Khashoggi came out a week ago — that he had disappeared inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey and may have been killed and dismembered by Saudi government operatives.

Iranian journalist Masih Alinejad found it frightening and ominous. “My first reaction when I heard the news was I got goosebumps,” she told me last week on a visit to Los Angeles. “I said, ‘This could happen to me as well.’ We journalists of the Middle East — this is the fear we have in our hearts. We are not totally out of their reach.”

Like Khashoggi, the 42-year-old Alinejad is based in the United States, nominally beyond the reach of the regime that she relentlessly criticizes over her social media channels, in her recent book “The Wind In My Hair” and in her work for various outlets including the Voice of America Persian service.

Also Read: WME Parent Company Endeavor 'Assessing' Saudi Partnership After Jamal Khashoggi's Disappearance (Exclusive)

How safe is she?

Alinejad leads a large and growing civil disobedience campaign against the compulsory hijab, encouraging women in Iran to remove their hijabs and posting photos and videos of them doing so on social media.

She encourages women to out their sexual harrassers by taking video and sending it to her, and she posts that as well.

Her Instagram videos typically draw millions of views, making her the voice of dissident Iranian women from her home base in Brooklyn and a constant thorn in the side of the Iranian regime.

Also Read: New York Times Cancels Hosted Saudi Arabia Trips After Khashoggi Disappearance

The parallels to another authoritarian regime, Saudi Arabia, are unmistakable for Alinejad. In March, she was threatened by a prominent member of the Basij — Iran’s feared paramilitary arm.

The official told BBC’s Persian Service “that he would hire someone in America to kill Masih — to cut her chest, cut her tongue and send it to her parents in Iran,” Alinejad recalled (she wrote about it in the Washington Post at the time).

When she tried to lodge a complaint at the Iranian interest section in the Pakistan embassy in Washington, she was told she could not enter unless she covered her hair. She refused.

Also Read: CNN Pulls Out of Saudi Arabia Conference Amid Khashoggi Disappearance

That is not the only threat that Alinejad has faced. A year ago, the Iranian government prevailed on Alinejad’s parents to invite her to Turkey, saying that they wanted to “have a chat” with her. Alinejad smelled a trap and declined to go.

After that incident, her parents publicly denounced her and she said she no longer is in contact with them.

Recently came word that a senior official in the Iranian department that oversees public morals told the Iranian Fars News Agency that if Alinejad enters any embassy outside of Iran, she should be arrested. So far Alinejad has not gone abroad, but the still-unconfirmed fate of Jamal Khashoggi weighs heavily on her.

Also Read: Iranian Feminist on How Western Liberals Are Making Women's Lives Worse in Her Country (Video)

“I have to be more careful, that’s it,” she said. “But I don’t want to live in fear. I don’t want to keep silent because of that.”

Alinejad spoke at a WrapWomen event earlier this year, talking about the responsibility of the West to support dissident voices — even when it made diplomatic relations more complicated. To fail to do so, she argues, betrays our democratic values.

“This story is beyond sad,” she said. “Being a journalist and living in fear all your life in your country — you leave your country for one dream — to be safe, to be the voice of the people who are suffering from lack of freedom. And then, in a safe country you get killed? It means they attacked your dreams. And it’s more sad if you see the West doesn’t take any action.”

Also Read: STX Entertainment CEO Robert Simonds Withdraws From Saudi Conference Amid Khashoggi Disappearance

Alinejad had harsh words for those in America and Europe who welcomed Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman as a reformer without scrutinizing his other repressive actions, such as locking up his relatives and women who had challenged the driving ban.

“They are talking about bin Salman’s reform to let women drive, but they never ask where are the campaigners against the driving ban,” she observed. “They are in prison right now in Saudi Arabia, but they (the West) doesn’t care because the reform is the main issue… When we are fighting the dictatorship in the Middle East, and the West legitimizes them — that kills us.

“We try to stop living in paranoia,” she said. “I have only one life. If Khashoggi was alive he’d say the same thing, I’m sure. We have only one life. We dedicate ourselves to our goal, to our dream. What really kills me is that in a really free country, in the West, you can take action, but because of the political agenda they keep silent. They don’t force the Saudi government or Iranian government to pay the price. That’s what kills me.

“What is the West going to do?” she asked.

Watch Alinejad’s interview from last June below. She will also be appearing at WrapWomen’s Power Women Summit on November 1-2 in Los Angeles.

Related stories from TheWrap:

STX Entertainment CEO Robert Simonds Withdraws From Saudi Conference Amid Khashoggi Disappearance

New York Times Cancels Hosted Saudi Arabia Trips After Khashoggi Disappearance

CNN Pulls Out of Saudi Arabia Conference Amid Khashoggi Disappearance

WME Parent Company Endeavor 'Assessing' Saudi Partnership After Jamal Khashoggi's Disappearance (Exclusive)

www.thewrap.com | 10/15/18
European Social Fund money is not being dispersed to local projects quickly enough, says Local Government Association.
www.bbc.co.uk | 10/12/18

Filed under: Government/Legal,Safety

5-year process to get technology long used in Europe and Japan

Continue reading NHTSA OKs advanced headlights for use in U.S.

NHTSA OKs advanced headlights for use in U.S. originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 11 Oct 2018 18:14:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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www.autoblog.com | 10/12/18
Italy’s fiscal watchdog criticized the economic forecasts of the country’s new government, in a blow to the credibility of budget policies that are unnerving investors and the European Union.
www.wsj.com | 10/9/18
Italy’s fiscal watchdog criticized the economic forecasts of the country’s new government, in a blow to the credibility of budget policies that are unnerving investors and the European Union.
www.wsj.com | 10/9/18

The politics of Europe deals with the continually evolving politics within the continent. It is a topic far more detailed than other continents due to a number of factors including the long history of nation states in the region as well as the modern day trend towards increased political unity amongst the European states. The current politics of Europe can be traced back to historical events within the continent. Likewise geography, economy and culture have contributed to the current political make-up of Europe. Modern European politics is dominated by the European Union, since the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Eastern Bloc of Communist states. After the end of the Cold War, the EU expanded eastward to include the former Communist countries. By 2007, it had 27 member states.


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