GZERO Media logo

What We're Watching – A Sea Goddess and Iranian Female Fighter

Taiwan's Sea Goddess Candidate – Terry Gou, a self-made billionaire and founder of electronics-maker Foxconn (a major manufacturer of iPhones), is running for president of Taiwan. (The election is scheduled for January 2020.) In contrast to current President Tsai Ing-Wen, the party Mr. Gou wants to lead, the Kuomintang, wants warmer ties with Beijing. Gou himself has strong ties to mainland China, where many of Foxconn's factories are located. Gou (pronounced "Gwor") just might win. The current president is unpopular, and Gou claims he was ordered to run by Mazu, a powerful sea goddess, who appeared to him in a dream.

An Iranian Female Boxer – Sadaf Khadem, the first Iranian woman to compete in an official international boxing match, cancelled plans to return home to Iran from Paris this week because, she says, Iranian authorities have issued a warrant for her arrest. The charge? Khadem says she's accused of violating the country's female dress code by competing in shorts and a t-shirt. (In Iran, girls as young as nine can go to prison for appearing in public without a headscarf). Having defeated her French opponent, we think that anyone who wants to arrest Sadaf Khadem should first meet her in the ring. #FloatLikeAButterfly

What We're Ignoring – Bashir behind Bars and Trump Gets a Rival

Bashir Behind Bars – Omar Bashir, Sudan's recently toppled tyrant, is now officially in jail. Last week, his military ousted him from power after months of protests against his oppressive regime. But we're ignoring Bashir's transfer to the slammer, because the protesters, still on the streets, appear unmoved. They're surely glad to see Bashir in jail, but want his military men, who continue to run the country, to pass power to a civilian government.

William Weld – Former Massachusetts Governor and 2016 Libertarian Party vice presidential candidate William Weld announced his candidacy for president this week as a Republican. President Trump has an approval rating with Republican voters that's well above 80 percent. Weld's chances of denying Trump the Republican Party nomination are about the same as your Friday author's odds of hitting the moon with a rock.

Khant Thaw Htoo is a young engineer who works in Eni's Sakura Tower office in the heart of Yangon. As an HSE engineer, he monitors the safety and environmental impact of onshore and offshore operations. He also looks out for his parents' well-being, in keeping with Myanmar's traditions.

Learn more about Khant in the final episode of the Faces of Eni series, which focuses on Eni's employees around the world.

Over the weekend, some 40,000 Russians braved subzero temperatures to turn out in the streets in support of imprisoned Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny. More than 3,000 protesters were arrested, and Navalny called on his followers to prepare for more action in the coming weeks.

But just who is Alexei Navalny, and how significant is the threat that he may pose to Vladimir Putin's stranglehold on power in Russia?

More Show less

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take (part 1):

Ian Bremmer here, happy Monday. And have your Quick Take to start off the week.

Maybe start off with Biden because now President Biden has had a week, almost a week, right? How was it? How's he doing? Well, for the first week, I would say pretty good. Not exceptional, but not bad, not bad. Normal. I know everyone's excited that there's normalcy. We will not be excited there's normalcy when crises start hitting and when life gets harder and we are still in the middle of a horrible pandemic and he has to respond to it. But for the first week, it was okay.

More Show less

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take:

Russian opposition leader Navalny in jail. Hundreds of thousands demonstrating across the country in Russia over well over 100 cities, well over 3000 arrested. And Putin responding by saying that this video that was put out that showed what Navalny said was Putin's palace that costs well over a billion dollars to create and Putin, I got to say, usually he doesn't respond to this stuff very quickly. Looked a little defensive, said didn't really watch it, saw some of it, but it definitely wasn't owned by him or owned by his relatives.

More Show less

Even as vaccines roll out around the world, COVID-19 is continuing to spread like wildfire in many places, dashing hopes of a return to normal life any time soon. Some countries, like Israel and the UK for instance, have been praised for their inoculation drives, while still recording a high number of new cases. It's clear that while inoculations are cause for hope, the pace of rollouts cannot keep up with the fast-moving virus. Here's a look at the countries that have vaccinated the largest percentages of their populations so far – and a snapshot of their daily COVID caseloads (7-day rolling average) in recent weeks.

The GZERO World Podcast with Ian Bremmer. Listen now.

GZEROMEDIA

Subscribe to GZERO Media's Newsletter: Signal