News from North Korea, Japan and United Arab Emirates

Tuesday's World Events - March 11, 2014

Questions

1. For each of the 3 countries, provide the following information:

a) capital:

b) location/the countries that share its borders:

c) the religious breakdown of the population:

d) the type of government:

e) the chief of state (and head of government if different) [If monarch or dictator, since what date has he/she ruled? - include name of heir apparent for monarch]:

f) the population:

[Find the answers at the CIA World FactBook website. For each country, answers can be found under the "Geography" "People" and "Government" headings.  Go to worldatlas.com for maps and a list of continents.]

NOTE: Before answering the questions below, read the info under “Background” and watch the videos under “Resources.”

2. For NORTH KOREA:
a) list the who, what, where and when of the news item
b) How were observers able to predict that every candidate running would win their race, win it with 100% of the vote and that 100% of eligible voters would take part in the election?
c) In comparison, what percent of the U.S. voting-eligible population actually cast a ballot in the 2012 presidential election?

3. For JAPAN:
a) list the who, what, where and when of the news item
b) How many people died in Japan's 2011 tsunami?
c) How many people were never found/remain "missing"?
d) Three years later, how often do Japanese authorities look for the missing?
e) Read the information under "Background." What is your reaction to Mr. Takamatsu's attempts to find his wife's remains? (What 2 adjectives would you use to describe him?)

4. For UNITED ARAB EMIRATES (UAE):
a) list the who, what, where and when of the news item
b) What do U.S. taxpayers fund for UAE residents (whose wealthy government could pay the bill themselves) but for no other country? Be specific.
c) Why should or shouldn't the UAE should get this special privilege?
d) In addition to refusing to even acknowledge Israel's existence (a fellow member-state of the United Nations), how else does the UAE discriminate against Jewish people?
e) Israel is our ally. The UAE is one of the 34 countries with no diplomatic relations with Israel. U.S. State Department rep Peter Boogaard said, “DHS doesn’t condone discrimination of any kind, and a pre-clearance agreement in no way suggests support for any specific airline or policy.”
Is the State Department's response reasonable? Explain your answer.