Wednesday Global Blog Roundup

We're always looking for new ideas and good stories to write about. If you have a story or a blog post that you think would be a good fit for our daily roundups, email us with the link and a short blurb about what it's about!


Mike Tyukanov, from Stroke of Key, reports that a long-overdue statue of Tsar Alexander the Liberator has been unveiled in downtown Moscow. Mike notes that that while Alexander battled the Ottoman Empire, he also integrated Muslims into Russian civil society, and many Muslim soldiers served in his campaigns against the Turks.

East Asia

Japanpundit reports that the Japanese government will soon require all foreigners staying in the country for more than 90 days to carry government-issued IDs with smart chips in them.

ESWN translates an Eastweek article that suggests that the Ching Cheong arrest was really about Taiwan. However, as ESWN notes, Eastweek sometimes gets their exclusive scoops wrong…

Photo by John Frankenstein

South Asia

United We Blog! has a long story about the aftermath of a government-forced dispersion of an unofficial refugee camp from a park in Katmandu.

Central Asia

Registan brings us the remarkable story that the Uzbekistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs claims that there is no internet blocking or filtering in the country. This claim was apparently met with knowing skepticism from the foreign press corp.

South-East Asia

Singabloodypore looks at the velvet glove approach the Singapore government is using to suppress speech on-line and finds it vastly superior to the Chinese and Iranian implementations. However, he worries about the iron fist underneath the velvet glove…

At, Richard has posted a quick guide to cultural do’s-and-don’ts in Thailand. While it’s geared towards teachers, it’s useful for anyone travelling to the Land of Smiles.

In our last roundup, we noted a political scandal brewing in the Philippines revolving around two different versions of taped phone calls that implicated President Arroyo in electoral fraud. Well, as PCIJ points out, a third version of the tape has emerged; it’s substantially longer than the other two editions and has a number of conversations not on the other tapes. PCIJ has transcribed the missing minutes.

The irrepressible mr.brown points to a site that, at first blush, appears to be the blog of Yeo Cheow Tong, the Singaporean Minister of Transit… The moral of the story, is, of course, that not everything on the internet is what it appears to be.

More seriously, Brand New Malaysia points to the very real blog of Sharir Abdul Samad, a Malaysian MP. The MP’s blog is in Malaysian; while that’s a problem for us, since the Global Voices staff lacks a Malay speaker, it’s probably a net gain in communicating with his constituents.

Macam-Macam observes that the Sultan of Brunei has appointed a non-muslim to his cabinet, the first time that a non-muslim has ever held such a high rank in that government.

Latin America

VCrisis translates a blog post that reports a troubling trend in Venezuela: the Foreign Ministry is only accepting applications from “those who are engaged in the revolution.”


The Zimbabwean Pundit notes that the Zimbabwean opposition has called for a national mass job stay away for Thursday and Friday. I’m no expert, but I’m guessing that “mass job stay away” is pretty much the same thing as a general strike.

Sesotho, the language spoken in Lesotho, requires use of the “š” character to write properly. Sotho, the blog, explains how to write that character for web pages properly.

The Middle East

A new blogger, Eygptian Person, write about the Saudi tradition of “summer marriage”.

Abu Aardvark covers two disparate topics: first, what can America and Americans do about Arab anti-Americanism; second, can Syria’s campaign against the Arab media revolution succeed in the face of overwhelming popularity? For the latter, he provides a pictorial comparison…

Islamsists in Jordan are apparently calling for an end to co-ed university trips; Natasha of Mental Mayhem politely suggests that they perhaps should focus on more pressing matters.


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