By Ben Anson
Caribbean News Now associate editor
Around this time each year, Anthony L Hall, a weekly op-ed columnist for Caribbean News Now, delivers a collection of his frequently outspoken and controversial thoughts and opinions concerning the preceding political year and this year is no exception, with the publication of “The iPINIONS Journal Volume XIII – Commentaries on the Global Events of 2017”.
As ever, Hall has weaved together a diverse list of themes, hugely varied and of the highest interest to anyone interested in global events and politics. Moving straight into it in his introduction, the author notes that he was tempted to focus almost entirely on US President Donald Trump – yet resisted.
He goes on to explain how Trump has been such a centrepiece within world politics over the last year and how, in turn, this one man can affect the entire globe.
Apart from his commentaries on Trump, Hall covers a truly extensive and varied set of topics covering all continents; his sections including Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Europe, the Caribbean and the Americas and, of course, a large part on the United States alone. This comes before he delves even further into The Globalsphere, Sports and Entertainment.
Within his sections and chapters, there is much weighty material to digest, he displays sound writing on topics such as the Kenyan elections, Saudi women, military coups in Zimbabwe, wars in Afghanistan, Jerusalem, the Venezuelan situation, North Korea, Myanmar’s persecuted ‘Robingyas’, Prince Charles, Obama, Black Lives Matter, Trump and US mass shootings.
In the Caribbean section, Hall looks at Obama ending the discriminatory wet foot, dry foot Cuba policy, also taking a close look at Cuba, focusing on what he describes as Trump’s hypocrisy on human rights – citing both Cuba and Qatar.
Venezuela is also featured and, once again, he brings Trump into play with criticism of the US president’s “threats towards a dying economy by imposing economic sanctions”.
Needless to say, it is certainly not material for any light reader as Anthony Hall displays his fine intellect and extensive knowledge on a seemingly endless stream of world issues.
He states at the end of his introduction:
“I hope that, for prosperity, this volume proves a reliable source for reflection on the most important and noteworthy events of 2017. And I hope these commentaries serve as a provocative, informative and entertaining antidote to social media postings. Never mind that no less a person than Donald Trump would have you believe that snarky tweets constituted informed public debate these days.”
Highly recommended reading for all those that wish to stay informed and knowledgeable on world events and politics.