The wRap


Your World in 10 - November 15, 2012 Edition

Change

1. China's Congress ends, Xi Jinping takes over



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China, with its 1.3 billion people, completes its second orderly leadership transition in more than six decades of the Chinese Communist Party. On Thursday, Nov. 15, President Hu Jintao hands the reins of power to Xi Jinping, who will guide China in the next decade. The leadership transition begins with the unveiling of a new Politburo Standing Committee, the nation's top decision-making body Thursday. Xi will consolidate his position when he is named China's president by the rubber-stamp legislature next March, expected to be for 2 five-year terms. His main challenges include growing the economy during a period of uncertainty globally and dealing with corruption issues that have plagued China's leadership.


Read more on Rappler and the New York Times.




Lobby

2. Plagiarism, corruption or lobby: 4 columnists on sin tax bill



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An infographic showing 4 columns in competing newspapers makes the round on social media. Written by 4 different columnists on the sin tax bill, the tone and diction are similar and - in some instances - identical. Rappler takes the columns apart and gets the statements from the writers. Is this a case of media corruption, a not so sophisticated lobby or just a group of friends talking? Judge for yourself.


Read more on Rappler.




Plagiarism

3. Enrile changes his mind on plagiarism charge



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A day after downplaying charges of plagiarism against Sen. Tito Sotto, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile says he welcomes a senate investigation into plagiarism in the Senate. "We are not condoning the act of plagiarism in this Senate," said Enrile, "far from it. If there is anyone of us wittingly or unwittingly who commits this act, then I"m sure that member would be man enough or honorable enough to stand up and answer for it." Numerous charges of plagiarism have been deflected by Sen. Sotto, including an ethics charge filed by academics this week. Enrile has been one of his supporters, saying legally Sotto is protected, skirting deeper ramifications of condoning plagiarism at the Senate.


Read more on Rappler.




Fiscal Cliff

4. New Taxes to avoid US 'fiscal cliff,' Bono warns world's poor will be worst hit



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US President Barack Obama stands firm and tells Republicans they would have to accept tax increases for the rich if the US is to avoid going over the fiscal cliff, the term that refers to what will happen when the Bush tax cuts expire at the end of the year and a set of draconian spending cuts kick in. Obama opens talks with the House of Representatives with a proposal to raise $1.6 trillion in new tax revenue from the wealthy over the next decade. That's double the $800 billion that was on the table during discussions in the summer of 2011. Why should anyone outside the United States care? Because the spending cuts expected in January would "devastate programs to help the world's poor, leading to more than 60,000 deaths." That's according to Bono, the lead singer of Irish band U2, who was in Washington Tuesday to lobby leaders of both parties to protect anti-poverty programs.


Read more on Rappler and about Bono's views on the Wall Street Journal.




Euro Crisis

5. Euro nations protest have little effect



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Workers in Greece, Spain and Portugal protested in coordinated strikes against budget cuts encouraged by the European Union. Organizers said this was the widest, union-led challenge to euro crisis austerity measures since it began in 2008. The demonstration in Madrid, in particular, took a violent turn when police charged with billy clubs even as large factories shut down production in Spain. Are they effective? Not really, say analysts. After four years of economic woes, the leaders of the countries have grown used to these protests.


Read more on Rappler and the Wall Street Journal.




Scandal

6. FBI agent revealed, Kelley tried to stop probe



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The New York Times reveals more details about the investigation which led to the discovery of the extramarital affair between CIA director David Petraus and his biographer, Paula Broadwell. It reveals the name of the FBI agent who delved into the chain of email messages which eventually led to Petraus’ resignation. The agent, Frederick W. Humphries, II, 47, is described as a “’hard-charging’ veteran counterterrorism investigator who played a major role in the foiled millennium terrorist plot in 1999.” The Wall Street Journal says Jill Kelley, the woman who triggered Humphries' investigation tried "to get the FBI to drop the matter."


Read more about Humphries on the New York Times and about Kelley's role in the Wall Street Journal.





Amnesty

7. Myanmar prisoner amnesty before Obama visit



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Myanmar says it will release prisoners days before US President Barack Obama arrives on a visit seen to endorse democratic reforms in the nation once ruled with an iron first by a military junta. Myanmar said Wednesday it would announce the amnesty to 450 prisoners on Thursday, according to an official. The Obama visit is set for November 19.


Read more on Rappler.





Negotiator

8. Lord David Trimble: Negotiating Peace



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It took 30 years to negotiate the Good Friday agreement which began a journey to peace for Northern Ireland. The man facing off against Sinn Fein's Gerry Adams is Lord David Trimble, who received a Nobel Peace Prize for his work. He visits the Philippines as a new round of peace talks begin between the MILF and the Philippine government - the first after a historic framework agreement reframed the dialogue. Lord Trimble visits the Rappler office to talk about lessons he learned which may apply to the Philippines. Watch the livestream at 4pm Thursday Manila time at Rappler.com.


Read more here.





Attack

9. 'Gates of Hell' - Israeli airstrike kills top Hamas chief



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Israel killed a Hamas military chief in an air strike in Gaza on Wednesday, Nov. 14. Palestinian militants warned it had opened "the gates of hell." Egypt said it would recall its ambassador. Ahmed Jaabari and his bodyguard were killed when a strike hit the car they were riding in Gaza City. That was followed by more than 20 other air strikes that killed another 6 people and wounded 65, according to Hamas.


Read more on Rappler here and here.




Sexiest Man

10. Channing Tatum is 2012's sexiest man



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People Magazine names 32 year old former model Channing Tatum the world's sexiest man in 2012. Tatum appeared in "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra," "21 Jump Street," and "Magic Mike," among other films.


Read more on Rappler.