World watch – Sunday

Saturday GMT


For posting on events, news, opinions and anything of interest from around the world.


  1. Missy

     /  February 18, 2018

    Five months after the election and there is still no certainty in Germany.

    Whilst a coalition deal has been agreed between Merkel’s CDU/CSU and the SPD, with the CDU making a number of concessions, it has still to be agreed by the membership of the SPD.

    There are divisions in both the SPD and CDU over the coalition deal. SPD support is decreasing in the polls after a public dispute over ministerial roles has led to doubt over whether the members will ratify the coalition deal.

    The members of the SPD will vote on the deal in a postal vote starting this week, and if they reject the deal it is likely the German people will head back to the polls, however, a bright spot could be a poll released yesterday (Friday) that says 2/3 of the members of SPD favour forming a coalition with CDU.

    There is anger from some in the CDU who believe Merkel’s concessions went too far, but there is also concern that the SPD will not prove to be a reliable coalition partner. One influential member of Merkel’s party has said that a minority government is better than a coalition with SPD, and yesterday urged the Chancellor to do just that.

  2. Missy

     /  February 18, 2018

    The Corbyn spy story has taken another turn as today it has been reported that the Czech agent who leaked the story initially says he paid Corbyn as an informant and spy. It is also claimed by the Czech agent that Corbyn was aware that he was a spy.

    Corbyn and Labour are denying this.

    The Czech authorities are saying that whilst the man Corbyn met with was a spy he was not declared to Corbyn as a spy, and Corbyn believed he was meeting with a diplomat.

    Supposing the Czech’s are telling the truth (it is after all intelligence so everything needs to be taken with a grain of salt) then it still shows an astonishing level of naivety by Corbyn. As I have said before diplomats from Eastern European countries (a bit like the Chinese today) were usually all spies for the intelligence agencies, and that Corbyn didn’t consider this at the height of the Cold War, especially as it is likely he was briefed on this when entering Parliament (and if he wasn’t then that is a shocking dereliction of duty for MI5).

  3. Chinese police snatch a Swedish publisher and parade him on TV
    “He said that Swedish authorities had pestered him into making an attempt to leave the country, even though he was not allowed to do so because of an ongoing investigation into his “illegal” bookselling. Mr Gui said that he had been happy in China but that his “wonderful life” had been ruined by this misadventure. He asked Sweden to stop “sensationalising” his case and said that he would give up his Swedish citizenship if the embassy continued to “create troubles” for him. He ended by saying that he hoped his family would “live a good life” and that he would solve his own problems.”

    That’s NZ’s big buddy.