This week we focus on the political turmoil and surprise cabinet reshuffling in the UK government.
In other news, Israel agrees to regular daily four-hour combat pauses for civilians to flee, Biden and Xi prepare for a meeting on Wednesday, and Spain’s Sánchez set to stay as PM after controversial amnesty with Catalan separatists.
All this in our newest issue, plus an in-depth summary of the events taking in place on our campus this week as part of the Diversity, Inclusion, and Sustainability Week. Have a read to start your week well informed!
Spotlight: The stumbling conservatives of Europe.
Or maybe not exactly Europe anymore. It would be fair to say that Sunak and his top team of ministers started off the week with a greater case of the Monday blues than most of us would have experienced on waking this morning. The Conservative-led government is, as we speak, undergoing a cabinet reshuffling, that many analysts believe to be the last big attempt by Sunak to regain the Conservative party leadership before the next general election (expected to be next year). It is by now widely acknowledged that the current conservative government in the UK has been undergoing a kind of spectacular decline in public opinion. With the arrival of Sunak as PM, perhaps some would have thought gone the days of the sensational political scandals surfacing under Boris Johnson. Among these is most notably the “Partygate” scandal that resulted in the police issuing 126 fixed penalty notices to individuals, including both Johnson and Sunak, given they had attended gatherings at 10 Downing Street that had unequivocally violated Covid-19 lockdown restrictions (which Johnson himself had put in place).
Yet, over the past week, another such “scandal” graced newspapers’ pages as the (now former) Home Secretary Suella Braverman defied Sunak’s authority by publishing an op-ed article in The Times newspaper. The article distinctly criticized the Metropolitan police for having exhibited, in her opinion, a “double-standard” in favor of demonstrations championing more left-leaning causes compared to right-leaning – she makes the case for the recent pro-Palestinian marches held in London. Sunak has so far and to a large extent covered for Braverman’s “idiosyncrasies” – she had recently suggested in a statement that rough sleeping was for some only a “lifestyle choice” – and for more substantial and problematic moves such as the Rwanda Plan. The Rwanda Plan scheme, championed by Braverman, proposed to deport to Rwanda groups of asylum seekers who had entered the UK through “illegal means”. The plan has already been ruled unlawful following an appeal by asylum seekers selected for the deportation, backed by the UN Refugee Agency. On Wednesday it awaits a further ruling from the Supreme Court, the outcome of which could have even more drastically challenged Braverman’s position. It is perhaps the result of this hazardous mix, ushered by the problematic views expressed on The Times’ op-ed, that Braverman was asked by Sunak to leave the government as of this morning. What followed is the now ongoing cabinet reshuffling that has seen the surprising resurgence of David Cameron, the PM who notably opened the door for Brexit, who today was appointed the UK’s next foreign secretary (as well as becoming a Lord in the House of Lords).
In brief, the only unsurprising element of the story is the Labor party’s gradual resurgence after 13 years in opposition. According to the FT, it is now leading the Conservatives by 20 points in opinion polls. Again, competition seemingly isn’t so tough.
Around the World
Israel agrees to regular daily four-hour combat pauses for civilians to flee, the White House said. While Netanyahu maintains that there will be no ceasefire until Hamas releases its hostages, the White House has announced that there will be 4-hours long pauses of Israeli military operations in the North of Gaza to allow civilians to flee to the South and facilitate the arrival of humanitarian aid. The National Security Council spokesman has declared that Israel will announce the timing of the pauses three hours in advance. Biden claimed that he had been asking Israel to allow for these pauses for a while and that he even asked for longer ones. He also remarked that a second passage has been opened for civilians seeking to flee. Nevertheless, the path towards the South has been proven difficult in a situation where there is no cars or gasoline, and water and food are scarce.
Biden to meet Xi on Wednesday in San Francisco Bay area, US says. The White House has announced that the first meeting since last November will take place next Wednesday between the US and the Chinese President in San Francisco Bay Area where the summit on the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation is being held. The diplomatic meeting aims at repairing the countries’ relations after last February’s episode of the suspected Chinese spy balloon on US territory that led to the cancellation of an official meeting. Nevertheless, a progress in the countries’ relations will be hard, amid their increasing tendency towards a direct competition. In fact, the two countries aim at fostering their international economic ties at the detriment of the other. Furthermore, the recent tendency of China to talk with the Talibans and the opposite placements of the countries with respect to the Israeli and Ukrainian conflicts aggravate the geopolitical tensions already present for the international disputed areas of the the Taiwan Strait, South China Sea and East China Sea.
Brazil: Lula deploys troops to ports and airports in organized crime crackdown. In an effort to fight organized crime in Brazil, President Luis Inácio (Lula) da Silva has deployed military personnel to airports and routes in the countries western border. The actions aim “asphyxiate” the trafficking and mafia groups in both São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, cutting off drug routes and reducing the supply of cocaine, the groups’ main source of income, to the big cities. Experts have claimed the spike in crime rate in Rio comes due to the fragmentation of the criminal territory after the murder of a major mafia boss in 2021, leading to an increased turf war which has reached a boiling point in recent months. Just last month, bus burnings stopped the city in an attempt to halt the arrest of one of its crimes bosses, while three doctors were shot outside a five-star hotel as assassins mistook them for their target – another crime boss allegedly staying around the area.
Economists warn electing far-right Milei would spell ‘devastation’ for Argentina. Four in every ten people in Argentina live in poverty according to estimates and an annual inflation of 140% does not appear to combat that issue. Hence, the ongoing election between radical right wing econommist Javier Milei and current Finance Minister Sergio Massa has not seemed to be a fair one. Milei proposes a dollarization of the economy and has branded a chainsaw as his campaign icon, symbolizing his desrie to slash subsidies and reduce state expenditure. In an open letter cosigned by over 100 economists, they claim his approach while portrayed as a “radical departure from traditional way of thinking” the roots of his idea are based on laissez-faire economic and are bound to entice more future doom for the country’s already failing economy.
A turning point in Myanmar as army suffers big losses. Myanmar has now been devastated by the consequences of a military coup for two-and-half years. After the coup in 2021, ethnic groups called for an armed uprising afterAfter the coup in 2021, activists whose peaceful protests against the junta had been repressed in blood called for a nationwide armed uprising. The already organized ethnic groups at the national borders trained and gave weapons to the insurgents. The elected administration deposed by the coup allied with established ethnic insurgents forming the National Unity Government, while groups in the lawless region of the Shan State remained independent. Three out of four, backed by China, which is concerned about its border, agreed to join peace talks with the military but on October 27 a military operation has been launched against the military leading entire units to surrender. NUG forces has applauded the Shan insurgents and have launched their own attacks in neighboring areas to take advantage of the military’s apparent weakness. The general appointed by the coup has declared that this is the most serious setback faced by the junta and has expressed his fear that the country could break apart.
Spain: Sánchez set to stay PM after controversial amnesty with Catalan separatists. Spain’s interim Prime Minister, Pedro Sánchez, is on the brink of securing another term with the backing of Catalan separatists, in return for their support he has offered the amnesty to those involved in the 2017 illegal push for Catalan independence. The deal with Junts has prompted protests and criticism from conservatives, who accuse Sánchez of power-driven betrayal. The amnesty proposal spurred protests which saw more than 200,000 people take part in Madrid and Barcelona. The support for Catalan independence has been falling over recent years, with a majority in the country now opposing it.
Il testo del protocollo d’intesa tra Italia e Albania sui centri per migranti. Il primo ministro albanese Edi Rama e la premier Giorgia Meloni hanno firmato un nuovo protocollo bilaterale per la gestione dei flussi migratori. L’Albania fornirà all’Italia gratuitamente gli spazi per la creazione di due centri per la gestione dei migranti, dove si stima potranno alloggiare seimila rifugiati. Le strutture, finanziate e gestite dall’Italia, saranno costruite nei prossimi mesi nel porto di Shengjin e nella città di Gjader. Sorvolando sui problemi logistici che questa nuova decisione crea, alcuni osservatori hanno fatto notare come lo spostamento di richiedenti asilo in un paese non comunitario potrebbe costituire una violazione della convenzione di Dublino.
Covid, sì del Senato alla commissione d’inchiesta. È stata approvata la Commissione parlamentare d’inchiesta riguardo l’organizzazione dell’emergenza sanitaria e delle misure di prevenzione dalla diffusione del virus SARS-CoV-2. Tuttavia, il provvedimento dovrà ripassare per Montecitorio, causa alcune modifiche nella commissione Affari Sociali. Giuseppe Conte afferma di non aver nulla da nascondere al riguardo, anzi, l’unico obbiettivo è quello avere una commissione in grado di spiegare il motivo per cui la pandemia ha colpito così duramente un’Italia, vittima di governi che per anni hanno tagliato la spesa sanitaria.
Taxi, arriva la circolare sblocca-licenze: regole più semplici. La scarsità di taxi nelle grandi città italiane è un fenomeno che tutti abbiamo provato sulla nostra pelle. Il governo Meloni cerca con questo provvedimento di sanare la situazione, permettendo un aumento del 20% delle licenze nelle grandi città e nelle regioni aeroportuali. Le nuove licenze avranno una durata di dodici mesi, prolungabili di altri 12 a discrezione del comune di rilascio. La misura arriva grazie alle richieste dei sindaci di Milano e Roma, Sala e Gualtieri, e nonostante le rumorose proteste che le associazioni di categoria hanno sollevato negli ultimi mesi.
Airbnb, maxi sequestro da 779 milioni di euro per evasione fiscale.La procura di Milano ha avviato un’inchiesta contro la compagnia di affitti brevi più famosa del mondo, Airbnb. Il colosso digitale, secondo gli inquirenti, non avrebbe versato all’erario italiano oltre 779 milioni di euro. L’azienda americana si è infatti rifiutata, dal 2017 in poi, di versare al fisco la cedolare fissa, una tassa del 21% su tutti gli affitti di breve durata. Il sequestro dell’ammontare non pagato è avvenuto a seguito di una sentenza del Consiglio di Stato, che è arrivato alla sentenza lo scorso 24 Ottobre.
Bocconi University is gearing up for a diverse week filled with inclusive events, from drinking coffee in the dark to exploring neurodiversity. Under the leadership of Dean Paola Profeta in Diversity, Inclusion, and Sustainability, the university has undergone a remarkable transformation, embracing diversity wholeheartedly.
Mark your agenda for these interesting events:
- BOCCONI4BOOKCITY: from November 13-18, Bocconi explores the theme of the “time of dreams” at Libreria Egea in BookCity Milano.
- Coffee in the Dark: don’t miss a 30-minute journey in total darkness at Via Röntgen 1, floor – 2, and conclude the experience with coffee and a dialogue with a visually impaired guide. Dates: 13-14-15 November | Time: 1:00-6:00 PM.
- Social Aspects of Neurodiversity: understand the intriguing field of neurodiversity in educational, work, and family contexts at Aula Franceschi, Via Sarfatti 25. Date: 14 November | Time: 1:00-2:30 PM.
- Inclusion in Sports: discover the world of Paralympic sports at Bocconi Sport Center, Via Sarfatti 10. Date: 14 November | Time: 5:00-8:00 PM.
- Biases in a Multicultural Environment: break down your prejudices! At Aula Franceschi, Via Sarfatti 25. Date: 14 November | Time: 6:15-7:45 PM.
- The Power of Inclusive Language: with Vera Gheno, investigate the evolution of language, a hot topic in these days, at Aula Franceschi, Via Sarfatti 25. Date: 15 November | Time: 6:15-7:45 PM.
- Meditation and Inclusivity: led by Robert Grant from Bocconi University, explore two types of meditation at Campus Life Space Mindfulness Area, Via Bocconi 12. Date: 16 November | Time: 1:00-2:30 PM.
- Diversity in Spiritual Connections: Join representatives from different religions for a moment of spiritual connection at Campus Life Space Mindfulness Area, Via Bocconi 12. Date: 16 November | Time: 5:00-5:45 PM.
- Disability Hiring Quotas: if you don’t get why quotas can be fundamental, join this discussion with speaker Christiane Szerman on the implications of enforcing disability hiring quotas, at Aula Franceschi, Via Sarfatti 25. Date: 16 November | Time: 6:15-7:45 PM.
- LGBTI+ and Minorities: With Marie-Anne Valfort from OECD, explore the life situation and challenges faced by LGBTI+ people and racial/ethnic minorities at Aula Franceschi, Via Sarfatti 25. Date: 17 November | Time: 1:00-2:30 PM.
- Don’t forget that every Friday, you can take advantage of Let’s Talk — Walk: Casual Counseling Sessions from 12:00 to 13:00 in Spazio Campus Life (Room 1, 2) | Via Bocconi, 12. In this casual counseling setting, students can engage in discussions without appointments.
- Also, notice that Photo and Videos of the September 2023 Graduation are available on Youatb, from 8 November 2023 to 31 January 2024.
Memories, empathy, and deep personal development characterise this week. Don’t miss these amazing opportunities.