Discover the World News Forecast . . . FIRST in Foresight Journalism

Archive for December 2011

Bombing trial of infamous Carlos the Jackal due to end

December 16, 2011 - PARIS

Accused of killing 11 people in four bombings in 1980s France, Carlos Ilich Ramirez Sanchez, better known as Carlos the Jackal, went on trial in November in Paris. The trial is expected to end on Dec 16. The accused, who masterminded a wave of terror attacks in Europe and the Middle East in the 1970s and 1980s, denies the charges. He faces a second life sentence in prison if convicted. He was sentenced to life in 1997 by a French court for killing two police officers and an informant in 1975.

Read More

Margaret Thatcher movie released

December 16, 2011 - MOVIES

The Iron Lady, Phyllida Lloyd’s biographic film of Britain’s first and only female prime minister, is due for limited release in the United States. The release will be just in time for the film to qualify as an Academy Award contender. If Meryl Streep’s portrayal of this notable Briton measures up to Helen Mirren’s 2006 portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II, the movie about the woman whose nicknames included the Iron Lady and the Fighting Lady could sweep up an Oscar or two in February.

Read More

Memorabilia from two Hollywood icons auctioned

December 15, 2011 - UNITED STATES

Marilyn Monroe’s wedding ring and Judy Garland’s ruby slippers from The Wizard of Oz are among items auctioned by Profiles In History for its Icons of Hollywood auction. The wedding band is the one given to the star by baseball legend, Joe DiMaggio. They were married only one year. Now missing a diamond, the wedding band is not expected to fetch the US $800,000 it brought in at auction in 1999. The ruby slippers could fetch US $2-3 million.

Read More

WTO meets at ministerial level

December 15, 2011 - GENEVA

Hopes appear to be dead for finalizing the Doha Round of negotiations when the finance ministers of World Trade Organization nations meet in December. A failure to reconcile rich and emerging nations on tearing down trade barriers is blamed. The 153-nation body deals with trade rules between nations. Russia’s accession after 18 years of seeking admittance could provide the drama at the meeting. Samoa and Montenegro will also become members at the meeting.

Read More

OPEC oil ministers meet for 160th (ordinary) meeting

December 14, 2011 - VIENNA

Oil ministers of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries meet to decide on production quotas. Libya, which, in 2012 marks its 50th anniversary of joining OPEC, could occupy a significant part of the debate. Oil production in Libya might recover quickly following the country’s civil war, with big implications for the other OPEC producers. The situation amounts to another test for the Long Term Strategy (LTE) of the 12-country cartel, which produces some 40 per cent of the world’s oil.

Read More

Norwegian polar explorer made history 100 years ago

December 14, 2011 - ANTARCTICA

Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen arrived at the South Pole with his team on 14 Dec 1911, beating a rival expedition to the honor of being first by just over a month. The team of Captain Robert Falcon Scott, an Englishman, arrived on 17 Jan 1912. Events marking the feat include a re-enactment, an extreme race and a cartographic salute to the ponies and dogs of the treks. Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg is visiting Antarctica as a guest of the US Antarctic Programme for the centenary celebrations.

Read More

Elected king takes throne for five years

December 13, 2011 - MALAYSIA

Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shar starts a five-year term as king of Malaysia on 13 Dec, replacing the 13th king, Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin. Kings are elected for a fixed term for and by the hereditary rulers of nine of Malaysia’s states. The system is anomalous among monarchies. The orderly succession of kings highlights Malaysia’s remarkable stability, and begs the question of whether the system might help a country that has started to simmer from coming to the boil.

Read More

Elizabeth Taylor’s spectacular jewel collection auctioned

December 13, 2011 - NEW YORK

Christie’s auctions the jewels of Elizabeth Taylor, described by the auction house as one of the greatest private collections ever assembled. It includes her iconic diamonds, gemstones, historic jewels, one-of-a-kind creations, gifts, memorabilia and her couture. The actress died in March. Christie’s expects the jewels alone to realize more than US $30 million.

Read More

International Criminal Court holds 10th Session, elects judges

December 12, 2011 - NEW YORK

The 10th Session of the Assembly of the State Parties to the International Criminal Court will review its case load and elect six judges and a new prosecutor. The replacement for Chief Prosecutor Luis Morneo-Ocampo, who won’t be missed, could be an African. ICC deputy prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, a Gambian, is expected to get the job. There were hopes that the holdout countries, such the United States, Russia, China and Israel, would join so they could participate in the milestone 10th Session as state parties.

Read More

Egyptian Nobel laureate Naguib Mahfouz born 100 years ago

December 11, 2011 - EGYPT

Naguib Mahfouz, the Nobel laureate who brought Arabic fiction to the western world, was born on 11 Dec 1911, and died in 2006. Had he lived a little longer, he would have seen the Egyptian uprising. His fiction suggests it would not have surprised him. Many works dissect the daily lives of ordinary Egyptians, detailing conditions that ripened Egypt for revolution. His works will be reprinted for the centenary, and the special events include a new opera based on a Mahfouz story.

Read More

King Edward VIII abdicated English throne 75 years ago

December 10, 2011 - LONDON

The 75th anniversary on Dec 10 of the abdication of King Edward VIII, the only British sovereign to voluntarily resign the crown, offers historians a convenient date to set the story straight again. Many criticized the recent The King’s Speech — a film about younger brother Albert, afterwards George VI — for portraying Edward as merely vapid and lovelorn, without reference to his Nazi ties. A second 2011 film about Edward invites a new round of criticism.Parliament endorsed the instrument of abdication on 11 Dec 1936.

Read More

Painters ending Forth Rail Bridge job – at last

December 9, 2011 - UNITED KINGDOM

Some 200 painters at Scotland’s Forth Bridge will make history on Dec 9 by putting down their brushes. The 1710-foot rail bridge, the longest span in the world when it was built in 1890, has never been without its painters. This time round, improved paint and techniques mean the painters won’t need to come back for 25 years — or more. Previously, every paint job merged without interruption into the next, and painting the bridge had become a popular metaphor for a endless job.

Read More