2017 & the Return of OM’s Chatter

No Natural Disasters Here, Metaphorical or Otherwise

Observatory Media's Chatter is back, and the team hopes everyone had a super awesome holiday and happy new year! To ring in 2017 the gang starts off in Istanbul to discuss how the hunt for the gunman is going, and why the struggle is real for the Turkish government and their plethora of detained suspects. Then we move to North Korea, where we ponder whether the threats of an ICBM capable of reaching the US are credible and if Trump is throwing fuel on the fire with incendiary wild-card twitter diplomacy. Next up is Israel, the United Nations, and the United States, and their settlement drama. Will tensions increase or decrease when Trump takes over? Is Obama trying to pidgeon-hole the President-Elect? Last on

An Earthquake & A Climate Change ‘Debate’

The Round-Up Three Elections Gunman Referendum

The World in a Flash This week the Round-Up is short and sweet. We look at Renzi's resignation, the earthquake in Indonesia, Trump's pick for the EPA, and a possible peace deal for Aleppo.  1. Italy’s PM Resigns Following Referendum Following a constitutional referendum on Sunday, Matteo Renzi, the Italian Prime Minister, handed in his resignation three days later. The PM supported a change the national parliament’s upper chamber among other reforms in an attempt to pass legislation through quicker. However, the referendum failed, and the PM followed through on his promise to resign. The Italian President, Sergio Mattarella, has officially received Renzi’s resignation and is now in the process to speaking to major political parties in parliament to designate a new PM. The

Housing Bubbles & Oil Troubles

The Round-Up Three Elections Gunman Referendum

The World in a Flash This week's Round-Up covers news in Canada, OPEC, Troubles between Syria and Russia, and more! Canada’s Population New Over 36 Million Thanks to preliminary numbers released by Statistics Canada this week we now know that the population of the True North has now topped 36 million. Most of this is due to the large influx of immigrants and the large influx of Syrian refugees. The increase is being hailed as one of the largest increases since the baby boom in the 1950s. While this is an interesting milestone, it remains to be seen if we can manage to keep up the infrastructure and services needed for a larger population. US/Russia Syria Talks Break Down In a disappointing (and deadly)

Can’t Win ‘Em All

The Round-Up Three Elections Gunman Referendum

The World in a Flash This week's Round-Up covers the past week's interesting events including developments in Syria, British wall building and much more!   Syrian Army Accused of Chlorine Gas in Aleppo Attack One death and dozens of suffocations are the result of a suspected chlorine gas attack in the eastern rebel-held neighbourhood of al-Sukkari earlier this week. The Syrian government has of course been accused of chlorine gas use previously, but any evidence found by international organisations has fallen on deaf ears within the Assad administration. Though Syria joined the Chemical Weapons Convention in late 2013 as part of its chemical disarmament, the illegality of the alleged chlorine gas use depends on your definition of a chemical weapon. Truth be told, it

Midweek Madness: US Edition

American Madness While our podcast is on a hiatus, we at Observatory Media have decided to continue on the tone of the podcast in written form to placate our readers until we return with rundown rambles. We bring you Midweek Madness to cover all the outrageous, wild, and downright jaw-dropping stories from around the world. FBI warns that elections have been hacked! The FBI and other law enforcement agencies are apparently investigating whether or not Russia has become actively involved in the US elections through misinformation and hacking. Though there is no actual proof that the Russians have done anything there is a suspicion that they are attempting to obstruct the electoral proceedings. The FBI has accordingly encouraged states to increase their

NATO Day 2 Recap: An Alliance Committed

Alliance

In the past two days, the NATO members have made sure to show a unified image of the Atlantic alliance. Throughout his press conferences at the summit, NATO Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg, made sure to reiterate the strong ties amongst the allies. On Sunday, US President Barack Obama insisted again on America's commitment to NATO. In regards to this unified image, the allies also pledged a great many assets throughout the Summit, from the Baltics to Afghanistan, including a new naval mission, Sea Guardian, in the Mediterranean Sea. Canada, for its part, after giving details of the level of its participation in Latvia, within the new NATO Enhanced Forward Presence, also announced it will contribute US $465 million to the new US $1 billion

What About NATO’s Big Players?

One of the Alliance’s greatest strengths is the ability to come to a consensus. Each clause of the Warsaw Summit’s final declaration must be adopted by all members. If any member votes no, the specific clause cannot be adopted; this system effectively gives each member a veto right. This translates to an end result which every member can stand behind, and it sends a powerful message of unity to the rest of the world. However, this a consensus is also, in a way, a weakness, because each clause will be toned down until everyone reaches a common agreement. In such a scenario, the negotiation game is incredibly intense and each country heavily focuses on discovering its fellow members’ special interests. This

Talks, Reconciliation and Regression

The Round-Up Three Elections Gunman Referendum

The World in a Flash This week's Round-Up covers the Three Amigos Summit, developments out of Turkey, South East Asian politics, Brexit fallout  & more!   Three Amigos Summit This week saw NAFTA’s ‘dudeplomacy’ summit: a meeting in Ottawa between Prime Minister Trudeau, President Obama, and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto. The three dudes discussed climate change, trilateral trade, border issues, human rights, and security. As expected, out of it came a series of Memorandums of Understandings on most of the above, and general agreement on everything else. Trump was “mentioned”, in character if not by name, and Les Trois seemed to be on the same page with respect to the presumptive Republican candidate as well.   Terrorist Attack in Istanbul On Tuesday June 28, a terrorist

No Rest for the Protest

The Round-Up Three Elections Gunman Referendum

The World in a Flash This week's Round-Up covers the G7 summit, Greek migrants, the history of rally protests in the US, Obama in Hiroshima, El Nino & La Nina, and the problem with tomatoes in Nigeria.   Union Protests Over French Labour Reforms Over the past week, union protests over proposed labour reforms in France have escalated after months of tension. The labour reforms are aiming to make it easier for firms to negotiate with unions and let go workers in the hopes it will incentivise firms to hire more readily if they know they can more easily shed workers. Officials have stated they will not remove the proposed bill but are open to modification. The nationwide protests have blocked oil refineries causing

Venezuela is Falling Down

Observatory Media Chatter

OM Chatter: Episode 06 On this episode of Chatter, the Observatory Media Team discuss the Venezuelan crisis and the political upheaval in the country. How is President Maduro handling the pressure? Are there CIA operatives at play? Is the country ready to boil over? Can the price of oil help? Then, the team covers the stories from around the world including the migrants in Europe. What has Italy done to help migrants making the crossing from Libya? What can we learn about how the migrant crisis is affecting the political dynamics in Austria following the results of their presidential election? What is happening with refugees in Greece? We also cover Obama's visit to Vietnam, and what it means for the balance of power