Opinion: The truth of LAMUN

Opinion: The truth of LAMUN

Written by NHK World , photo by Zee News

This article is a contribution from Imogen Gilmore-Baldwin

What happens when a journalist spends a weekend listening in on several in committee and out of committee conversations? They use the platform given to share the experience of LAMUN.

LAMUN is different that a lot of other conferences this delegate as attended and heard about. It has a unique and quirky set of committees that spark thought provoking issues fosters growth in individuals.

It’s not just the committees that sets LAMUN apart for this delegate, but also the spirit of the people. Everyone here seems to be unapologetically here to work hard and party harder. To kick off the first day of the conference, there is a scheduled bar crawl in which every one 21 and up, or those who have ID’s claiming so, is encouraged to go out and have a good time. From Vodka funds in the Central Committee for the Communist Party to opening secession shots of Bacardi in the Plata o Plomo: The Cabinet of President Gaviria,1990. In addition, upon passing by an unnamed delegate this journalist could pick up whiffs of alcohol off, who they had previously noted drinking from a red solo cup (which they claimed contained vodka).

It is also of note of the friendly nature of many of the dias’ here. Whilst walking through the halls and to and from committee I have overhead copious amounts of laughter and cheering. The dias’ here really encourage delegates to have a good time and enjoy a good laugh with their delegates.

Currently this delegate sits in the hall as the crisis team blasts “hooked on a feeln’”, what a time to be alive.

However, some aspects of MUN will always be the same.

It’s well known and expected that hours of hard work and preparation from each delegate has put forth in lew of the weekend of April 4th to the 7th. It all feels worth it after the adjournment of our last committee session, where we can reflect in the bask of our accomplishments. Some have just passed several resolutions while others have submitted their last article.

It is expected that the purpose of our being here is to encourage international cooperation, as well as cooperation from different delegations coming from different backgrounds and schools. However, sometimes certain delegates have their eye on the prize instead of the cooperation.

It’s well known that known that some delegations get too caught up in being noticed by the dias, that they sacrifice building connections with other delegates or trying out new things. In the elevator NHK overheard two delegates of the UNHCR talked about their final committee. To keep anonymity these persons shall be referred to as delegate A, and delegate B. At the time, UNHCR was about ready to move in to voting bloc for their first topic. Delegate A hopes to move onto the next topic in committee so that they can have fun with it. However delegate B responds that this would be anti- beneficial in there hopes to impress the dias. Delegate B wants to come out of this looking good, and in the end delegate A agrees.

While this is in no means something to not think of, it is a bit disheartening to not fully be able to experience this opportunity, because one is too wrapped up in winning an award.

While this article may come across as negative, please be assured that being a member of this conference has been a tremendous experience. There have been stressful times, times that made one really push their limit, but overall an incredibly rewarding experience. The hard work put in by the chairs and secretariat is heavily applauded by this delegate.


Getting to know the United Nations Correspondents Association

Getting to know the United Nations Correspondents Association

Written by China Global Television Network

In a frenzy of press throughout the weekend, delegates of the United Nations Correspondents Association have been continuously covering world news from a variety of angles. Our representative from China Global Television Network (CGTN) sat down with several fellow reporters to explore their approaches to journalism.

One of the most openly slanted news organizations represented is Euronews, whose delegate unapologetically declared, “Euronews promotes universally recognized liberal values.” The delegate expounded to define these liberal values as freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and freedom of expression.

The delegate strayed from describing himself as “leftist” and reiterated that Euronews believes that it upholds universal values. Its journalistic focus throughout the conference, however, has emphasized traditionally leftist ideologies, including the importance of climate change and criticism of the United States on its refugee position.

Several additional outlets have echoed this sentiment, including Africa News, a subsidiary of Euronews. CNBC advocates for a similar moral conviction in their reporting, and has expressed, “Freedom of the press is a universal value, but liberal-leaning institutions are more outspoken in defending it.”

CNBC has also taken strategic steps to distance itself from competitors unrepresented in the Association, disagreeing that “fair and balanced” is a credible journalistic angle. According to the delegation of CNBC, diverse opinions should be fairly represented but not given equal weight in discussing the credibility of each stance. This approach is loosely reflected in the types of sources CNBC utilizes in its reporting. Readers can find one example here.

On the other end of the spectrum, Zee News, a major Indian outlet, acknowledges its right-leaning reputation but disputes the reputation’s legitimacy. CGTN learned from a Zee News reporter that the organization opposes state-run media because it values the private sector as the best watchdog of the government. Further, given their national interests, Zee News has taken a somewhat specialized stance on Indian issues.

Zee News’ conservative reputation does conflict with other state-run outlets in the Press Corps, including RT News, a major Russian outlet. Describing their journalistic approach, RT News argued that despite their state funding, they do not take sides. The delegate explained that they report “from the perspective of the Russian government” and “on global events related to the Russian government or its allies.” This slant is demonstrated in their critique of countries traditionally opposed to Russian policy, such as the United States.

Seemingly at the center of the journalistic spectrum lies BBC, who is state-funded but has distinguished itself from being state-controlled. The delegate representing BBC presented a view somewhat opposing CNBC and explained its responsibility to be fair and balanced: “Since we get all our funding from taxpayers, we need to represent any viewpoint expressed by anyone in the United Kingdom.” The BBC affirms, however, that it delivers news without bias, sharing only facts to inform but not sway the public. The BBC has, unsurprisingly, delivered several articles on traditionally western topics such as the Amazon Board of Directors.

All Press Corps delegates work under the direction of their Association editor Sam Wolf, who has outlined clear goals for the dissemination of news. Wolf explained that the differences between reporters in committee is intentional and valuable. She elaborated, “Collectively, they all represent different opinions and different outlooks that, compiled together, bring not only the best and brightest of journalists but also allow them to be in conversation with each other in a situation in which they might not otherwise be.”

Wolf went on to praise the value of diversity of opinion and hopes that as the journalists are exposed to views different from theirs, their own reporting will be challenged and strengthened--presumably increasing the overall quality of reporting by the United Nations Correspondents Association.

The Association has presently published dozens of articles on committee activities and encourages delegates to practiced an informed consumption of the news.

Claudio Borgia declared emperor of Germany as Balkan Front opens in war with Ottoman Empire

Claudio Borgia declared emperor of Germany as Balkan Front opens in war with Ottoman Empire

Written by France 24

Duke of Valentinois Claudio Borgia has been crowned emperor of New Germany in 1478, gaining territory and influence as the Turks continue to move on Naples and as a new Balkan Front opens in the war with the Ottoman Empire. In becoming emperor, Borgia has successfully consolidated the previously independent German states.

In a speech outlining his vision for the new empire, Borgia maintained his loyalty to the House of Borgia family and to the Catholic Church. “You might be accusing me of dual loyalty for splitting my allegiances between Germany, France, and the Borgia family,” he said. “But I have been working for the good of the Borgias the entire time. My sole goal in consolidating the independent states of Germany was to actually create a powerful empire that would be able to come to the military aid of the Borgia family.” Borgia is a former condottiero, or military leader, of Valencia.

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This military aid comes at an important time for the House of Borgia, as the Ottoman Empire is posed to attack Naples. There are currently 2,200 troops surrounding the city as well as six ships with 1,500 further forces. The Turks plan to blockade Naples in order to put pressure on the House of Borgia.

The Turks are not expected to send further reinforcements to Naples, as a new Balkan Front has opened in the war in Poland. The King of Poland, who has long been pressured by the Turks about opening up to eastern trade, has decided to enter the war, and the Ottomans are expected to send all further reinforcements to the Balkans.

Emperor Borgia took credit for the opening of the Balkan Front. “I’ve also been advocating using the forces under my control to set up a new front against the Ottomans to relieve some of the pressure from Italy and the areas under Borgia control,” he explained in his inaugural speech. “So I fully invite the committee to take full advantage of these resources that I have gathered and trust that I am still and will always be a Borgia at heart. Hail Germany, but above all else, hail the Borgia family, hail the Catholic Church, and hail Italy.”

As the House of Borgia mulls Emperor Borgia’s proposal to take advantage of German resources, Borgia forces continue to attempt to move through Milan and Venice to attack the Ottoman Empire. Passage through these areas, however, has been slow. The Republic of Venice has been reluctant to negotiate and the House of Medici recently ousted the Duke of Milan, complicating troop movement.

UNSC Response to the invasion of Polish troops in Ukraine

UNSC Response to the invasion of Polish troops in Ukraine

Written by RT News

Based on a recent crisis update from the United Nations Security Council, Poland has sent 1.5 million troops to invade Ukraine. However, this militarization has failed. Meanwhile, twelve delegates from Russia and China were killed during the bombing of the Russian Duma.

 Based on the conference reports our reporter has received in the last hour, since the start of its committee session earlier this afternoon, the UN Security Council has been in crisis mode. Delegates in support of Ukraine, such as the United States, China, and Russia, have been accusing Poland of human rights violations and publicly criticizing Poland for its actions of militarization and violence. 

According to the delegation of the United States, “The United States of America strongly condemns the Polish government for committing violence upon the innocent civilian in Ukraine. We are willing to work with other nations to offer peace talks in order to resolve the military conflicts and protect the Ukranian civilians.”

 The delegation of Russia also agreed with the United States and asked countries, including Belgium, France, and China, to cooperate with each other and increase humanitarian aid to defend the human rights of the Ukranian civilians and maintain international peace under the support of UNSC.

“The innocent Ukranian civilians do not deserve what is happening in their country right now. This is urgent. Our brothers need our help,” he added.

Members of the UNSC have been working on a possible solution to handle this crisis and come up with the best course of action that the Ukranian government should take in response to the invasion of Polish troops in its territory.


Rising Tide resolution raises some eyebrows

Rising Tide resolution raises some eyebrows

Written by Euronews

In the morning of April 6, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) gathered frantically to amend resolutions to be put on the floor for debate. The committee is discussing on the topic of climate refugees, more specifically, if there is such a thing as climate refugees and what to do with those displaced people.

The Rising Tide resolution stands on the floor amidst debate. Led by the US, the Rising Tide has variety of sponsors from Sweden to Venezuela. It calls for adopting the term Environmental Migrant to describe those forcibly displaced by climate change. It would also create a Scientific Substantiation Committee on Climate Change (SSCCC) that will track the effects of climate change by region. Clause 7 has the most support as it states that the UNHCR would support renewable energy sector by providing tax breaks to alternative energy companies.

Even China supports this resolution who has been stalling America’s agenda in the committee.

“It has all the same values we have,” said the delegate from China, as she read over the eight page resolution. When asked why the US suddenly changed their stance on climate change when they pulled out from the Paris Climate Agreement she said, “They did pull out but it doesn’t go into effect until 2020.”

While that is true, President Trump has been critical of scientific consensus on climate change. He once called climate change a hoax from the Chinese and then further reiterated that “I have a natural instinct for science.”

Rising Tide resolution fundamentally goes against America’s stance on climate change and refugees. The resolution even calls for developed nations to give funding towards developing nations to smooth their transition from fossil fuel to renewable energy.

President Trump’s disdain towards renewable energy is well documented. On April 2, he even claimed that noises from wind turbines causes cancer.

An anonymous source told this reporter that, “Some delegates are losing sight,” and instead, “focusing on pushing their own agendas.”

This agenda seems to be all about building consensus, even when it goes against their country policies. A delegate from an Oceanic country said, “The US is not very liberal. They’re trying to build consensus.”

Tanzania delegate pointed out to the report that giving tax breaks to energy companies are not in the jurisdiction of UNHCR. “They call for taxes to be collected but offer no way to do this on a global scale, since the UN cannot collect taxes,” he further went onto say that, “Even if it did, why would the US support it?”

Despite these inconsistencies, the US gained wide support for Rising Tide from nations such as Venezuela and Cuba. Before a delegate from an Oceanic country went back to the committee room the delegate commented, “It’s very weird. Interesting group of people are on that bloc.”


Opinion: Coming up next in UNSC, who gets to win the South China Sea?

Opinion: Coming up next in UNSC, who gets to win the South China Sea?

Written by RT News

Since 2015, the South China Sea crisis and territorial controversies have escalated due to the increase in expansionist behaviours by multiple Western and Asian countries such as the United States, China, Japan, and Vietnam. Tensions regarding the claims and occupations of the contested islands in the South China Sea between multiple nations have been front and centre and thus a matter and topic of crucial significance.

Domination of the previously uninhabited islands in the South China Sea area and raising conflicts between nations directly challenged global peace and security, which made it more difficult for the United Nations Security Council to maintain its peacekeeping structure within the international community. 

The South China Sea is a body of water that represents one-third of global maritime traffic and $5 trillion in annual trade with the vast wealth of natural resources such as fisheries, oil and gas deposits, and islands within the region according to the South China Morning Post.

According to multiple RT news reports from last month, The People’s Republic of China is preparing to reject the anticipated adverse judgment of the Permanent Court of Arbitration on the South China Sea. The Philippines accused China of illegally exploiting resources in the areas beyond the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) limits and forcibly preventing other nearby states like the Philippines from taking advantages of the resources in the same areas.

If the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) calls for China to abandon its nine-dash line claims and China opposes to this finding, what options would then be available to the international community? How would UNSC respond to the increasing tensions in the region?

Unlike the International Court of Justice (ICJ), PCA does not have the equivalent of article 94 in the UN Charter which ominously states that:  

If any party to a case fails to perform the obligations incumbent upon it under a judgment rendered by the Court, the other party may have recourse to the Security Council, which may, if it deems necessary, make recommendations or decide upon measures to be taken to give effect to the judgment. 

Nevertheless, ignoring a finding of the PCA would still be significant, as it would amount to neglecting international law. As such, since the start of committee sessions on April 4th, members of the UN Security Council have been engaging in negotiations and creating a possible resolution on the matter.

The delegation of Russia argues that the UNSC should “be considerate of the Chinese claiming of certain islands and their territorial histories in the South China Sea” by allowing fair international hearings as a response to the Chinese aggression in the region.

“We firmly respect the territorial sovereignty of our comrade China in the South China Sea and we ask other western countries to do the same,” he added.

It is possible that a rejection of the PCA finding is considered as highly damaging to the credibility of UNCLOS as well as its successful negotiation entailed. Thus, more tensions resulted from territorial disputes in the South China Sea regions can lead to further international friction, and hence within the UN Security Council’s mandate.

While it is inevitable that the United States, and perhaps also Russia and China, would seek to prevent the UNSC from discussing the issue, what would be the likely position of the other countries represented in the United Nations Security Council?

According to the RT news reports, many of the non-permanent members strongly support a UN security council discussion of the case. Japan is speaking the language of the “rules-based global order” in relation to the South China Sea. Malaysia also appears to be increasingly concerned about the situation. However, it has also sought to maintain a “special bilateral relationship” with China and has been unwilling to publicly confront China’s actions or take a strong stand regarding the South China Sea Crisis.

So, what’s the next step that UNSC will take?

The scope of the power of UNSC remains controversial as the involvement of western powers in the South China Sea might be based on imperialistic intentions instead of genuine offers of humanitarian aid.

It remains unclear what path the UN Security Council will take, but all members are currently working on a resolution that will provide a detailed plan of action about the economic and military strategies the governments should take in order to reduce the regional conflict in the South China Sea.

Long live Pope Rodrigo Borgia: How the Borgia family took control of the papacy

Long live Pope Rodrigo Borgia: How the Borgia family took control of the papacy

Written by CNN

The christening of Pope Rodrigo Borgia brings an end to months of political warfare between the Houses of Borgia and Medici, both of whom were vying for the papacy.

The battle for the papacy began with the courting of the College of Cardinals, a group of Cardinals who elect the next Pope. As previously reported by CNBC and China Global, Pope Sixtus IV’s death threw Italy into chaos. Since then, the Borgia and Medici tried to build on the cadres of Cardinals that they had under their control.

The College of Cardinals began with 32 Cardinals, until three were mysteriously killed. CNN has word from within the Borgia family that all 32 Cardinals were invited to a family feast in an effort to wine and dine the group before the big vote. All of the Cardinals already loyal to the Medici declined the invitation, but the undecided Cardinals joined with the Borgia-bound Cardinals for an evening of festivities.

However, inspired by the failed Medici plot to poison Cardinals loyal to the Borgia, one of the maidens in the House of Borgia poisoned three of the undecided Cardinals. Until now, the circumstances surrounding the deaths of these Cardinals was a closely veiled secret. It’s rumored that these Cardinals were leaning toward voting for the Medici papal candidate.

That left 29 Cardinals, with 15 in favor of the Borgia and 14 for the Medici. But the foul play was not finished. The Borgia and Medici each worked to bribe the Cardinals, and both were successful.

Each family was only able to sway two Cardinals through bribery, so the totals in each cadre remained equal. The Borgia candidate, Rodrigo, was elected by the College of Cardinals as the Bishop of Rome, becoming

Even though they have won the papacy, the Borgia family is not out of the woods yet. They must now deal with an opiod crisis in Venice and a Turkish invasion from Naples.

The state of democracy in the Galactic Empire

The state of democracy in the Galactic Empire

Written by BBC

The recent death of the Senator from Bothawui, Savielk Trey'dra by execution served as an example to any others in the Senate who wished to act against Emperor Palpatine or the military industrial complex. A recent survey of the senate and a series of Interviews by the BBC have found, however, that most Senators have fallen in line behind the Emperor. Or, at least they are not willing to say otherwise.

Military Governor of Hypori and recently promoted Admiral of the Outer Rim Director Orson Krennic, a vocal critic of the deceased, said, “Emperor palpatine is the reason we are all alive, and determines whether we live or die.” Asked if he believed if that Emperor palpatine holds complete control over the senate, Admiral Krennic answered, “No, Emperor palpatine holds the final say in the senate, but the senate as a whole is a democratic body.

However, there is a sense of loyalty that holds the Senate together as a democratic institution.” Admiral Krennic said that, while he never disagreed with emperor palpatine and has been rewarded for it with an Admiralship, there have been others who have. He considers the fact they have not been killed by the Emperor to be evidence of the Emperor’s kindness.

Admiral Krennic named Senator Ibis who is supposedly in contact with monks in the outer rim as another possible dissenter to the Emperor. The Admiral intends to take Senator Ibis to court as well.

Military Governor of Carida and former intelligence agent Vice Admiral Dodd Rancit said that he was completely in agreement with the Emperor as well. He listed Mon Mothma, Bail Organa, and the senator from Naboo as potential dissenting voices. He said that, “As long as they remain law abiding citizens they have nothing to fear. However, crossing hairs with our glorious leader, as you saw during the execution, does not bode well.” As for the execution, Rancit said only that he wished it was even bigger. He was not able to produce any evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the deceased, stating only that, “that is classified information.”

One of the supposed dissenters, a senator from Chandrila Mon Mothma, said that he was in support of democratization through reform, but was not against the emperor. Asked if he thinks people have the freedom to speak out against the emperor, he said that people have the freedom to speak about reform but, “people should not speak out against the man that saved us.” He insisted that the Emperor was quite popular.

A former member of the secession movement declined to comment or be named.

UNHCR to vet resolution drafts concerning water access

UNHCR to vet resolution drafts concerning water access

Written by Africanews

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees is focusing on the aspect of climate refugees and why they choose to leave their home behind for uncertain situations abroad. The delegates for each country spoke about what each resolution seeks to accomplish as well as the methods they will use. The committee spoke in a 2-for-2 against format.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo is one of the leading voices on this issue as they are the second most populous country in Africa as well as the country with the highest rate of displaced people brought into their borders.

The population of the DRC has been impacted by a multitude of factors including the genocide in Rwanda, as well as the shrinking of farmable land in nearby countries such as Burkina Faso. This diversity of causes makes it difficult for the DRC to move forward with any one program.

Because of this, the delegate from the DRC to the UNHCR is one of the sponsors for the largest and most comprehensive resolution draft in the committee. With efforts to increase water infrastructure as well as to ensure that those who need access to capital in order to succeed, have that access, particularly women throughout the Global South.

“I believe the continent of Africa will be the most affected by the shortages of water and that this will create issues for surrounding continents if Africans are forced to flee the country because they can no longer farm their land, or because they experience violence at the hands of warlords.” Said the delegate from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Of particular note is the Water Advisory Board that the DRC believes will have a substantial impact on water usage in countries that are struggling to manage their water usage, whether through over-consumption or through not properly containing their water supply into reservoirs or other such mechanisms.

The limitations of Africa’s current water infrastructure means that many people throughout the continent are water insecure, even if they live near a source of water. There are floodgates being proposed to help limit the damage of water that does overflow existing reservoirs during monsoon seasons. There is also a push for more water treatment facilities as these are necessary to ensure the health of people.


Everything you need to know about the Central Committee of the Communist Party (CCCP)'s plan for World War III

Everything you need to know about the Central Committee of the Communist Party (CCCP)'s plan for World War III

Written by NHK World

After the Death of their leader, Joseph Stalin, members of the ccommunist party are ready to take on the United States, Western Europe and Japan.

During discussion on April 6th, many members of the CCCP have voiced the call for war as well as their plan of action.

Nikolai Belyaev got the ball rolling, stating, “Obviously now is the time we declare war on the US… it’s what the people what...it’s what those american pigs deserve”. Currently Belyaev and several others such as Nikolai Bulganin are working to combine directives to create a “single comprehensive directive.”

It is then that many members detail their plans for war. Delegates spoke of conventional war efforts such as “undermine american populus view of the war” to “undermine their view of their own government” and being training of troops to fight the United States promptly. Gregory Malakoff and others voiced there desire for nuclear space weapons to be employed. Many members were keen on the idea of nuclear war, and swiftly bombing three key points in the United states; Washington DC, New York City, and Los Angeles. The idea here is that the United States wouldn’t be able to retaliate quick enough. Ivan Konev, the soviet military commander, is keen to “retaliate as soon as possible” to avoid “further embarrassment” and get “WWW III” well on it’s way.

Other ideas included converting spys to double agents, gain control of factories to being producing supply and equipment for war, intercepting enemy communication and taking advantage of Italy's instability to spread the communist regime before war.

This committee was formed in 1912 and is composed of those elected by congress to serve as leadership for the communist party. However over the years under Stalin’s Regime, the committee began to lose power. After Stalin’s death 1953 the committee had the chance to rise to power once more.

This news comes as the committee has just lost their appointed Chairman on United States soil. Many are outraged with the western countries and refers to the United States as “america pigs” or “capitalist pigs”.

Currently, their main concern is going to war with the United States and potentially other nations. This would not be done purely for revenge, but to show communism as the dominant world power, a fear many Western states share.

Ramsses II returns from the dead

Ramsses II returns from the dead

Written by CNBC

The Crown Prince Ramsses II, previously found dead as one of hundreds of victims of a mysterious cholera outbreak, has come back to life.

It is unclear who is responsible for this supernatural event. Wennenefer, the High Priest of Osiris blamed a new fringe religious group: a mysterious cult whose emergence has rocked the foundation of Egypt to its core. The origins and mission of this cult is unclear, as is its name. It is currently being referred to as both the Cult of the Dead, the Death Cult, and sometimes the Cult of Darkness.

There have been reports of suspicious activity by this cult in isolated villages. They are believed to have been experimenting with raising other people from the dead, though it is unclear if these resurrections are related to the return of the Crown Prince. The council of Ramsses II is working to uncover more information.

Another group potentially responsible for the resurrection is the religious following of Geb. The insignia of Geb was found on the former grave of the Crown Prince. The religious following of Geb was started by Penre, the Commander of the Medjayu Militia.

Members of the council were split in their opinions of how pressing the issue of the death cult is. It was suggested that perhaps the resurrection was the result of a simple mistake. As one member of the council pointed out, “Mummification is a very complex process and it’s possible that a couple of steps were skipped in the motions… maybe these are just some terribly preserved people walking around.”

Prince Ramsses, the brother of the undead Prince Ramsses II, voiced concerns about religion fracturing within Egypt. Supernatural events naturally rock people’s foundational beliefs, and this can lead to internal instability, which, as Ramses II put it, “will only be used by [their] enemies to destroy [them].” Wennenefer agreed, defending the traditional religion of Egypt, and urging people not to forget their loyalty to their religious roots.

Fracturing due to religious differences has only been exacerbated by the ongoing war with the Hittites. The council is scrambling to deal with these many crises while maintaining internal social and religious unity.

More updates as this story develops.

Treachery, incest, murder and rape: Why religion and power don't mix

Treachery, incest, murder and rape: Why religion and power don't mix

Written by Al Jazeera

“The Borgia family is like, the worst”, confidently stated Marcantonio I Colonna, member of the notorious and incredibly scandalous Spanish family.

Producing two popes and several other political and church leaders, the Borgia family, who reigned during the Italian Renaissance,  remains today as one of the most heavily tainted families by charges including treachery, incest, murder, and rape. As described by Marcantonio, “The family tree looks like a circle because everyone in this family is so inbred”.

The family finds its’ root with Alfons de Borga, also known as Pope Callixtus III, who was renowned for a career of deeply entrenched corruption and nepotism. From there, his nephew Rodrigo was accused of buying and bribing his way to the papacy when he was elected as Pope Alexander VI in 1492. Because of his powerful position within the church, he became lavishly wealthy and was rumored to have taken several mistresses and fathered numerous children.

These members aren’t the worst of them all however; Rodrigo’s children committed several sins that only furthered the family’s reputation of being extremely sinful. Cesare, an established murderer by age of 25, was widely reputed to have killed his older brother and slept with his sister. Lucrezia especially has been a particular source of interest to historians around the world. Being married off in a manner that resembles cattle being auctioned, Lucrezia was passed on from husband to husband based on which would benefit her family more. Known as one of the earliest ‘femme fatales’ in history, Lucrezia was known for using her charm and beauty to win men’s hearts.

Seeped in sin and immorality, this family has lived throughout history as one of the most notorious and corrupt there ever was. However, why are they specifically targeted when history reports several other families of being equally sinful?

The easy answer is religion and power. Being so seemingly treacherous at a time when they were in such a high position of power in society, all eyes were on the Borgias and therefore all of their movements and actions, the scandalous and the honest, were being scrutinized. At the times when Lucrezia and Cesare were at the height of their mischievousness, this behavior was actually reported to be not uncommon at all in Renaissance Italy and Spain, but being the children of the already somewhat dishonored Pope, they were subjected even further to society’s religious standards.

History’s reputation of the Borgias is a prime example of how families such as the Borgias were placed under an intense eye of scrutiny because of how intertwined religion was with their power. While their actions aren’t completely preposterous and uncommon as history dictates it as because they were committed at a time where families in power were supposed to be the symbol of upholding religious standards, they will forever be known as one of the most sinful families there was.

A one-on-one with the most powerful individual in the Galaxy

A one-on-one with the most powerful individual in the Galaxy

Written by Africanews

Chancellor Sheev Palpatine is the main force behind the Galactic Empire. In fact he controls the Galactic Senate through his ability to add and remove senators from office at his discretion. This absolute power over the government gives the senator the capacity to run the government with a rubber stamp.

The Galactic Empire is controlled nominally through the Galactic Senate. They are the faces of the Republic. Yet, they have strings attached to their limbs. The power wielded by the position of chancellor is nearly absolute.

When speaking on the potential for rebel groups to become more powerful and to challenge the power of the Galactic Senate, Emperor Sheev Palpatine dismissed any such movements as fringe groups.

To the Senate, Palpatine believes that the greatest threat currently is the rise of Darth Maul’s shadowy collective. Said Palpatine, “Darth Maul is a religious fanatic of a deceased tradition, he’s no more than a terrorist.” His is the only known organization that is able to publicly stand against the power of the Empire. In fact, the Empire is currently undertaking a military expedition against this group of crime syndicates to try and remove them from the Galaxy.

The Empire, to Palpatine, is the greatest iteration of the Galactic government to happen for the people of all star systems, regardless of the dissent that some might express. According to Palpatine, those who commit treason will be subject to punishment, however, those who are loyal will be treated with respect.

There are whispers amongst some in committee that refute the weakness of the splinter groups, and even deny that the Empire is as strong as it seems. One senator who asked to remain anonymous even mentioned the potential for certain senators to try and sabotage the government from within.

According to this senator, the Supreme Chancellor is capable of controlling the Galaxy however he wishes, with little recourse for those in the Senate to try and remove him from power. There is speculation that all of the small rebellions are designed to drum up support for the government and the Chancellor himself.

With regards to the execution of a different senator, the Senator who came forward was granted anonymity.


Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos elected 46th President of the United States as Department of Justice files charges against his company

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos elected 46th President of the United States as Department of Justice files charges against his company

Written by France 24

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has been elected the 46th President of the United States. His victory on Tuesday, November 3, 2020 marks the end of a long campaign in which the political newcomer and business tycoon consistently shot to the front of a crowded Democratic field and beat current President Donald Trump. His victory also comes as the Department of Justice files charges against Amazon for antitrust violations.

Bezos’ victory marks the end of a grueling campaign in which he was the last candidate to announce his bid for the presidency in the Democratic field. Even before he announced his candidacy, Bezos polled at 20 percent in February 2020 among likely Democrat voters, coming in second behind Senator Kamala Harris. Bezos declared on Super Tuesday, ending months of speculation, and chose former presidential candidate Andrew Yang as his running mate at the 2020 Democratic Convention in Milwaukee.

Bezos has no previous political experience. He founded Amazon.com, Inc. in 1994 as an online book retailer, and the company quickly expanded to all 50 states and 45 countries within two months of its founding. Amazon today is the world’s largest e-commerce and cloud computing platform, having moved beyond its initial book market. It has revenues of $178 billion and employs over 550,000 people.

The movie Relentless, produced by Amazon Studios and released earlier this year, helped to raise Jeff Bezos’ profile and paint him as an inspirational, motivating, self-made entrepreneur. Starring Christian Bale as Jeff Bezos, the movie chronicled the business tycoon’s life and the founding of Amazon. Bale won the Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal of Bezos, marking Amazon Studio’s first Oscar win.

Bezos’ victory comes as the U.S. Department of Justice files charges against Amazon for potential antitrust violations. While President Trump and Attorney General William Barr are expected to aggressively pursue convictions, it is unclear whether the Bezos Administration will dismiss the charges after the President-Elect takes office. Concerns have already been raised about the possibility of Bezos using the office of the presidency to enrich and protect his business.

In a Board of Directors meeting, Amazon executives expressed elation at Bezos’ election while discussing strategies to stall the antitrust investigation. Vice President for Worldwide Prime and Marketing Neil Lindsay argued for flooding the Department of Justice with as much documentation as possible. “We truly flood them with all of our data, all of our info, as many documents as possible,” he argued, “so we can delay this investigation as much as possible. If we are able to do this, they cannot say we have been holding back on them.”

Vice President and CTO Werner Vogels agreed with calls to delay the investigation. “We can confuse them with tech jargon,” he told those assembled. “I think that the only group of people who know less than we do about computing is the DoJ. I am writing a directive right now called ‘Confuse them with Cyber Nonsense,’ which is basically that we are going to do nothing illegal but we are going to delay this investigation as much as possible by presenting as much as possible in code, in weird languages.”

Other executives expressed the need to protect former CEO Bezos as he transitions into the presidency. “President Trump just lost to President-Elect Bezos, and he doesn’t seem like a great loser,” Senior Vice President and General Counsel and Secretary David A. Zapolsky. “He won’t be particularly happy with him right now, and he might take that out on Bezos’ company.”

Jeff Bezos’ twin brother Beff Jezos has been chosen by the Amazon Board of Directors to succeed his brother as chairman, president, and CEO of the company.


Lack of cohesive plan leaves UNHCR in amendment Hell

Lack of cohesive plan leaves UNHCR in amendment Hell

Written by CNN

The five resolutions under debate in UNHCR are all under fire, which signals a fundamental failure of previous debate.

Despite the group reaching a general consensus and having similar goals, all five resolutions contend that they are all different enough that they deserve their own special consideration. The working papers, creatively titled RAIN, RISE(ing) TIDE, DRRIP, TIER DROP, and Comrades all cover Topic A, refugees from Climate Change.

All recognize the plight of refugees, all recognize national sovereignty, and all want to establish similar organizations to help these refugees. Yet, because of small differences in exact organization type and duties, these resolutions are being drowned in amendments by sponsors of other resolutions. For example, one resolution coins the term “Environmental Migrant” while another prefers the term “climate-disaster migrant”. Such minutiae is deraining the committee.

This is not how the United Nations should operate. These small differences should be worked out through debate, not after each bloc has written a complete resolution and just wants to see their own work pass. Amendments are not the time to hash out differences and gain consensus. That should have been done in formal and informal debate.

The UNHCR Chair needs to put their foot down on these self-serving debate tactics. The committee needs to rethink their goals and move toward more functional moderated debate to understand each other’s opinions before writing resolutions that are different only in name. Over the next session, I’d like to see more cooperation and a frank discussion about what actually differs between these resolutions. Ideally, only one resolution will pass, and such a comprehensive resolution will contain elements that answer all points addressed in committee.

Unfortunately, if my time in UNHCR is an indication, we’ll instead get five different terms for forced migration due to climate change.


Let’s move to resolution

Let’s move to resolution

Written by NHK World

The NHK Editorial Board is impressed by the relations in international relations shown by the committee for the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), and hopeful to see the passing of several draft resolutions. During our visit to the AOSIS we saw three strong draft resolutions being presented before this body.

Over this weekend, AOSIS has been working hard to read through and question the three draft resolutions that three different blocs have worked to create. The topics the committee is working to address are sustainability and the global green economy, increasing rates of brain drain, and climate change/global warming.

The papers being placed before these bodies are pleasantly diverse in content. The papers are titled SEED, CAP, and U-CLA. As a cooperation with great investment in the foreign bodies on a global scale, we hope to see all three of these draft resolutions passed for the betterment of these small somewhat overlooked states.

The first draft, SEED, is focused on sustainable development and funding through the formation public and private relations. There is an emphasis on the “protection of the AOSIS states” from those potentially wanting to take advantage of them, and the hope to create a new board titled EASIS to advise these nations on climate change related matters.

The second draft, CAP, is focused heavily on infrastructure and agriculture. There ideas intail investing strongly into “cash crops”. Developing research and grants for the addition of sustainable energy. As Well as restoring and preserving natural phenomenon and improving infrastructure to be more green and stable. Other interests they mentioned were disaster relief, developing more communication between nations and employment opportunities for renewable energy.

Lastly U-CLA wants to implement several projects to protect seas, implementing more towards the Paris Agreement goals and fully transitioning to renewable energy. There plans for funding rely in NGOs and other larger states. They recognize the rise and benefits of Ecotourism, and what to implement ways to preserve the AOSIS states in order for this to continue.

NHK would like to see a future with these beautiful nation states in them. The work done by the delegates in this committee is commendable, and our cooperation hopes to see it pay off in the passing of all three resolutions.


From the South China Sea to the Arctic: Why the UNSC process of crisis resolution is the myth of the century

From the South China Sea to the Arctic: Why the UNSC process of crisis resolution is the myth of the century

Written by RT News

Since the start of committee sessions of April 4th, the United Nations Security Council has been dealing with countless crises that took place in the South China Sea and the Arctic regions including a live-fire military drill in the Taiping Islands by Taiwan, an outbreak of violence in Brunei, and the “Putin Pipe Bomb” On Trans-Alaska Pipeline.

However, the UNSC process of crisis resolution continues to be puzzling. Due to the fast pace of the committee, delegates seemed to neglect many important issues resulted from these crises and failed to agree upon a detailed plan of action in response to the territorial disputes as well as environmental disasters that are happening in the South China Sea and the Arctic regions.

Largest Oil Spill In History

According to ZEE News, “A pipe bomb, allegedly fixed with a photo of Russian President Vladimir Putin, caused over 100 million barrels of oil spill in Alaska, which is about 20 times larger than Deepwater Horizon,” marking the largest oil disaster in history.

In response to the oil spill, the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) simply addressed the severity of this issue and possible measurements without creating a detailed and collective plan to investigate and solve the environmental problems caused by the oil leaks and oil spill.

During committee sessions, conversations regarding the environmental and oil crises in the Arctic regions are rather ambiguous as delegates often repeated each other’s point on the need for a global force to contain the impact of the oil spill and improve the international marine environment.

“It is time for us to clean up the Earth!” -- Delegation of France

“We need to protect the environment.” -- Delegation of Kuwait

“The U.S. can handle the oil spill for now, and if it spreads to the international waterway, then we will figure something out later.” -- Delegation of Indonesia

Will UNSC figure out the proper way to deal with the oil spill before it spreads to the international waters? Probably not.

RT News believes that UNSC did not handle the oil spill in the most effective way because all delegates completely ignored and were not aware of the magnitude of this particular oil crisis in Alaska. RT would like to call for more attention and drastic actions on this issue as the oil spill is making its way towards the international waterways sooner than they think.

“The cold never bothered me anyway..” but does it actually not tho?

Based on a recent RT news report, last night, Russia has become the primary operator in the Arctic, and even proposed “The Cold Never Bothered Me Anyway,” a detailed plan of action that would strengthen international cooperation to explore more possibilities of alternative energy resources and create an international research team for environmental protection of the Arctic and the South China Sea regions.

However, are countries in the UNSC actually going to cooperate with each other?

According to the delegation of the United States, “The United States of America would like to take advantage of the possible energy and economic resources in these regions. We want the oil.”

In addition, many countries such as Russia, China and France have also been competing for territorial claims in the Arctics and the South China Sea, which further increases tensions between them and imposes potential threats of militarization.

RT would like to call for more actions and productive discussions relating to this topic as the cold has for sure bothered nations in UNSC. RT urges each delegate to be honest about the intentions of their interventions as well as their economic and political interests in the Arctics and the South China Sea in order to enforce international peace within these areas in a more efficient way.

An outbreak of violence in Brunei

This morning, there has been an outbreak of violence in Brunei where the impoverished are outraged because of the enforcement of adultery and homosexual laws by the Brunei government, which can potentially lead to a civil war in the country. Nations such as the United States, France, China, and Russia expressed their concerns for the political instability in Brunei and called for international humanitarian aid to protect the civilians in the country.

However, the scope of the power of UNSC remains unclear as the involvement of western powers in Brunei might be based on imperialistic intentions instead of genuine offers of humanitarian aid.

According to the delegation of China, “The UNSC should prioritize the protection of civilians as its most important task and respect the sovereignty of the Brunei government because Western Powers should leave the election of a potential new government to the people of Brunei instead of interfering its political affairs.”

It remains uncertain what measurements the UN Security Council will take and how effective they are going to be.

Delegations of France and the United States have aimed to facilitate nations involved in the conflict by intervening in the political affairs of Brunei and helping civilians come up with their own ways to defend their sovereignty, but has not issued any specific statements regarding the details for their plan of action.

“We started off the committee session debating about the territorial ownership in the South China Sea and we’ve somehow now expanded to the Arctic,” said the delegation of Russia.

How is the UNSC going to handle these crises in the South China Sea and the Arctic? The world may never know.


As striking warehouse workers serve Amazon another blow, the Executive Board begins to fracture

Written by Reuters

A new blow to Amazon hit as 50 percent of warehouse workers went on strike. The strike hit Amazon hard with stocks dropping 100 points and Prime’s two-day shipping reduced to four-day shipping.

The strike came after an anonymous memo released by one or more executive board members encouraged a strike and workers discovered new robots intended to replace workers in warehouses. While the company put automation in place and managed to convince a portion of workers to return to work, productivity is still down by 10 percent.

Division in the board became very clear as debate began on how to address the strike. Some board members were passionate about moving toward automation while others remained committed to current human workers.

Werner Vogels, who is the main proponent of automation stated that “now is the time for automation” and Tom Alberg claimed that “supporting our workers holds us back”. Other board members such as David Zapolsky believe that automation is the “completely wrong direction” and Jeffery Wilke noted concern that further automation would spur increased support for democratic socialist politicians such as Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.

Contributing to the division of the board is a lack of trust of other board members as a result of the memo released by one or more anonymous board members urging the strike. David Limp went as far to say that “there is a snake, or two, or three on the board!”

As the board considers launching internal investigations, an anonymous board member has told Reuters that they and two other board members know who the mole, even hinting that the mole is a board member that has been pushing for automation.

More updates to follow as this story develops.

Opinion: Attitude of RAIN bloc violates spirit of UNHCR

Opinion: Attitude of RAIN bloc violates spirit of UNHCR

Written by CNBC

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees met during the weekend of April 4-7, 2019 to discuss the climate refugee crisis and create legislation that addresses the problem, and thus far the RAIN block is failing to embrace a spirit of collaboration.

The committee has over 30 nations represented, each hoping to collaborate with other nations in an effort to get their ideas implemented, and all in an effort to improve human dignity and standards of living. Such a high minded pursuit is no easy task, and so it needs to be addressed with delicacy and a spirit of collaboration.

While some may view this editorial in poor-taste, the editorial board of CNBC stands by its decision to write it. We must hold our leaders and representatives accountable for not only their policies, but also for their behavior and attitude.

In recent years poise and respect have been in decline in the spheres of international and national politics especially. This is a trend that goes beyond being just harmful; it is downright dangerous. Human dignity is the most valuable asset we have, and it erodes when we refuse to treat one another with decency.

When our leaders lose respect for one another, it is reflected in their policies and hurts the most vulnerable among us.

The split in attitudes among the 5 voting blocks, (RAIN, RISE(ing) TIDE, DRRIP, Comrades, and TIER DROP) was plainly evident in debate. While a natural part of reaching solutions to complex problems is actively seeking out the best solution possible and criticizing more problematic solutions, this can be done without stomping on the solutions which are perceived as lesser.

During debate about various working papers and potential amendments to them, some delegates laid on criticism rather than congratulating one another their hard work. The delegate of Tanzania, from the RAIN block, began his speech with the rather harmless statement that,  “RAIN is the only comprehensive plan we have.” This claim is perfectly acceptable; delegates have every right to trumpet the merits of their working paper.

His speech, however, devolved into arrogance; he ended it with the rather pompous claim that his block’s working paper should be passed simply because it’s the obvious decision, implying that one would have to be intelligent not to support it by finishing his speech by stating, “C’mon. It’s RAIN, man.”

The delegate from Rwanda spoke directly after him, voicing the sentiments of the rest of the committee by saying, “This delegate would like to remind the committee that we can in fact pass more than one resolution.” This statement, while not very radical, is important in spirit.

Delegates do not need to put one another’s ideas down because they are seen as less than perfect. They can instead either pass multiple papers or work together to make the apparently lacking papers more comprehensive.

When asked for comment about accusations that the RAIN block has not acted in a collaborative spirit, the delegate of Tanzania said, “The RAIN block has been more exclusive in their implementation of who actually gets to contribute to their paper, given that they don’t want externalities to come in and essentially ruin it.” This very much contradicts a collaborative spirit in which everyone’s ideas are valued.

When told that some of the terms within their working paper were poorly defined, RAIN dismissed the constructive advice as simply political semantics rather than viewing it as what it was: a friendly offer of advice.

Regardless of which working paper is actually the best solution to the climate refugee problem, it is unacceptable for blocks to treat one another rudely: without the respect they would wish to receive themselves.

Delegates, particularly those of whom are members of the RAIN block, need to remind themselves of the spirit of international bodies such as this one. These exist not as a space in which to assert one’s dominance in a poor and tasteless attempt to seem superior to other nations. Delegates should instead work together, learning from one another, and collaborating to truly reach the most comprehensive and effective solutions.


Opinion: Humans vs. robots will be the ultimate fight

Opinion: Humans vs. robots will be the ultimate fight

Written by Al Jazeera

The recent proposal made within the Board of Directors to use robots to replace their human workers after a worker strike reflects the recently arisen sentiment of corporations to prioritize innovation over their employees and brings into focus society’s emphasis on technological innovation rather than human lives.

After the Amazon Board of Directors learned that their workers went on strike from Amazon warehouses Saturday morning due to negative sentiments surrounding worker conditions and employment benefits, a couple of board members focused the discussion on replacing human workers with robots, turning the debate into a more concerning direction.

When discussing this issue, Vice President and CTO Werner Vogels proposed using artificial intelligence and moving all of these jobs of the workers on strikes to automation as a solution, notably shifting the dialogue away from how to better cater to these workers' demands.

Additionally, while the general sentiment of the committee was that this wasn’t feasible at all, the fact that this was even brought up begs the question if technological innovation should be valued more than human lives.

The dialogue of machinery replacing human capital is not a new one, as the possibility that artificial intelligence and other cutting edge technologies creating unemployment has been a long-standing fear among domestic, particularly blue-collared, workers.

By replacing human muscle and effort at a much more accelerated speed, recently developed technologies have driven economic progress and business growth. However, this has created a population of millions of citizens who are simply unable to contribute to their society economically and has generated greater amounts of damage to an already declining middle class. Unfortunately, by looking at people simply by their economic value, we’ll be moving even further into a society with no regard for each other lives.

“If this is not the biggest example of success in innovation and automation, I don’t know what is”, stated Vogels triumphantly. Unfortunately, what many consider to be successes in innovation and automation is also killing our economy in terms of unemployment and rendering our fellow people as useless to our world.

If we prioritize progress in technology over human lives, where will we be going as a society? Will we ourselves turn into the very robots we’re replacing each other with? By going in the direction reflected by the discussion in the Amazon Board of Directors, it seems that we as a society are headed into a dangerous future where we only see each other as worthless machines, not people.