6 non-Coronavirus ‘white swans’ that could still fly, post-pandemic

by Rashmee

Posted on July 11, 2020 / The Focus


Before Covid-19, there were black swans — unknown unknowns — and white ones, or predictable financial crises. Not too long ago, economics professor Nouriel Roubini laid out the “white swans” of 2020, which is to say predictable financial crises that occur because vulnerabilities are not addressed. The professor’s list, briefly summarised, contained six, non-Coronavirus white swans. They could still … Continue reading “6 non-Coronavirus ‘white swans’ that could still fly, post-pandemic”

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Why China may not want to ‘become more like a western country’

by Rashmee

Posted on July 9, 2020 / The Focus


Just the other day, Sir Malcolm Rifkind was on the BBC World Service, fulminating about China. Britain’s former foreign secretary  spoke in tones of righteous indignation (starting at 03:53 minutes) about Beijing’s behaviour towards Hong Kong. Rifkind had been responsible for the negotiations leading up to the British handover of Hong Kong back to China on June … Continue reading “Why China may not want to ‘become more like a western country’”

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The moral case for the world to have access to covid-19 drug

by Rashmee

Posted on July 4, 2020 / The Focus


As someone with a vested interest in Gilead Sciences, the company that makes the covid-19 drug remdesivir, I’m looking for a return on investment that’s not encashable. Remdesivir is not a cure for covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. But it is one of only two drugs proven to help people recover … Continue reading “The moral case for the world to have access to covid-19 drug”

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The US and EU are competing to play peacemaker in the Balkans

by Rashmee

Posted on June 30, 2020 / The National


The Serbia-Kosovo dispute is back in the news more than two decades after the war ended. A peace summit that was to be held over the weekend at the White House between the presidents of both countries had to be postponed. But Kosovo’s Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti and Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic met the president of the European … Continue reading “The US and EU are competing to play peacemaker in the Balkans”

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The strange case of Europe’s early coronavirus sightings

by Rashmee

Posted on June 20, 2020 / The Focus


Did SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes the covid-19 disease, really start to make its deadly way around the world from Wuhan, China? That’s what much of the world says but China, quite naturally, has cast doubt on the sequence of events. There has, however, but been considerable pushback to Chinese attempts to deny responsibility. … Continue reading “The strange case of Europe’s early coronavirus sightings”

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India and China aren’t in a shooting war, just a savage one

by Rashmee

Posted on June 19, 2020 / The Focus


  Indians throwing away a Chinese TV followed by a foot-tapping dance by society uncles in Gujarat. pic.twitter.com/cDFjfcvPkb — Uzair Hasan Rizvi (@RizviUzair) June 17, 2020 The video posted on Twitter by a journalist in western India is astonishing in its savagery. A television set is flung over a balcony, then beaten severely with sticks … Continue reading “India and China aren’t in a shooting war, just a savage one”

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Corona-alliances, travel corridors and air bridges: taking a flight is no longer business as usual

by Rashmee

Posted on June 17, 2020 / The National


While there is neither vaccine for cure for Covid-19, international travel is tentatively resuming in a strange new world of bubbles large and small, air bridges, green lanes, negotiated corridors and colour-coded zones. The cartographical features of the new travel order are not yet set but it is safe to say they will be unique. … Continue reading “Corona-alliances, travel corridors and air bridges: taking a flight is no longer business as usual”

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Beijing virus cases sound a warning: normal may be a fantasy for now

by Rashmee

Posted on June 16, 2020 / The Focus


China is racing to control a coronavirus outbreak of 106 new infections in Beijing less than a month after the country recorded no new confirmed cases. New Zealand, which reported its last active case of covid-19 on 22 May, now has two new infections. South Korea, which successfully countered one of the worst early covid-19 … Continue reading “Beijing virus cases sound a warning: normal may be a fantasy for now”

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Bubbles, air bridges, green lanes: Travel in a post-pandemic world

by Rashmee

Posted on June 6, 2020 / The Focus


It is a truism that the pandemic will change travel. How we travel, of course, but also where. Until there is a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes the covid-19 disease, international travel is set to resume in a strange new world of “bubbles”, “air bridges” and “green lanes”. What might the cartographical … Continue reading “Bubbles, air bridges, green lanes: Travel in a post-pandemic world”

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Lafayette Square is not Tiananmen Square

by Rashmee

Posted on June 5, 2020 / The Focus


Exactly 31 years ago today, a powerful military stamped out a peaceful protest by idealistic young people. It became known as the Tiananmen Square massacre, a categorisation to which China objects and which it has tried to scrub from its peoples’ memory. But this year’s anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown has been overtaken by … Continue reading “Lafayette Square is not Tiananmen Square”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK