Planet News Views

Thursday, January 05, 2006

World News Analysis

By Scott McLean

World news never takes a holiday. In just a few short days since the New Year's celebration, several stories have depicted devastation of lives while others have made us aware of political peril.

With the stroke suffered by Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon leaving him incapacitated, the next leader of Israel will soon be chosen it appears. While the former Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, is the frontrunner, nothing seems certain.

At a time when the Middle East appears to be reaching an even more dangerous threshold than previously, many argue that Israel must have strong leadership to retain the balance in that region.

On a completely different story gaining national attention, the reversal of a report by many large media sources about the fate of 13 miners, 12 of whom were said to be alive when in fact they had been killed, showed that journalists are quite capable of error.

The story behind the story that isn't being reported is the competition for these big stories by journalists, and that they all want to be the ones to break the story, meaning the first ones to carry the story.

Ukraine and Turkey, countries separated by the Black Sea, are both grappling with cases of bird flu according to many credible news agencies. Bird flu at this point is only transmitted directly from birds to human beings, and from my understanding only people who work closely with birds are at risk right now.

Still, it could be an outdated assessment, as at any moment the bird flu could mutate into a different strain that could be transmitted from human to human, which has health experts worried.

The word pandemic keeps coming up with these lesser understood diseases, and it was SAR's a few years ago that caused the scare.

Whether it's legitimate concern or not, or it's just a matter of these health care professionals figuring sometime our luck will run out, is anyone's guess.

These are but a few of this new year's big stories.

More analysis on the way...

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