Gold surged again this week when the US Federal Reserve announced it would try and boot the US economy along by buying billions of dollars worth of securities. This plan immediately sent investors and speculators scurrying to buy gold, the age-old safe haven in uncertain times.
If nothing else, the torrent of revelations released on the WikiLeaks whistle-blower website has changed our understanding of how the world works. It has also landed key WikiLeaks figures in an ocean of trouble.
Condoms, like food and medicine, are largely impervious to the deflation of economic bubbles. So Malaysia’s largest condom manufacturer, Karex, will blithely ignore depressing global financial trends and launch an initial public offering sometime in the near future. Beyond confirming the impending float, Karex this week shyly declined to reveal any further details, but chief …read more
SITTING smack on the shores of a bustling harbour, in the heart of an international city, looking across the water to skyscrapers, and flanked by trees and lawns: the parallels with the Sydney Opera House are manifest. Or at least they will be. Hong Kong’s M+ museum of visual culture hasn’t actually been built yet, …read more
Musaab Naji Al-Wakil is an ordinary, middle-class Iraqi who has been stuck in Malaysia with his wife and four children for five years, and he too has felt the pull of the boats.
Hemmed in by the towering piles of books dominating his Kuala Lumpur living room, Malaysia’s eminent poet-activist snorts with derision. “This government isn’t fair, it isn’t just,” said 77-year-old A. Samad Said. “They use racial tension.”
One small family of Burmese refugees living in a dingy tenement on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur has slipped right through the cracks of asylum officialdom, it seems mostly because they wouldn’t abandon their adopted sons in Burma.
On the beautiful, scalloped coast of southern Java, a battle is raging between determined people-smugglers and a poorly-resourced local police force. It seems the people-smugglers are mostly winning and the police are frustrated.
A massive people-smuggling syndicate in Indonesia could soon be cracked wide open, after police seized two satellite phones, a laptop and financial records belonging to a teenage people-smuggler arrested in Jakarta.
A semi-literate Indonesian hired hand started thumbing the tears from his cheeks in the dock of courtroom LG2 in Sydney’s Downing Centre last April. He faced a roomful of imposing figures: two defence barristers and a crown prosecutor in black gowns, a judge resplendent in black, scarlet and lilac, an Australian Federal Police officer, two …read more