Chloe Zitsow

Chloe Zitsow

Political Tensions Rise Between U.S. and Iran

When running for the U.S. presidency in 2016, President Trump declared that when the Iranians “circle our beautiful destroyers with their little boats,” they would be “shot out of the water.” It appeared clear to many experts on Wednesday morning that he now wishes to follow through on his word. Directly following a successful satellite launch by Iran, Trump posted a tweet that stated he had instructed the US Navy to shoot down and destroy all Iranian gunboats that harass US ships, which some believe has reignited tensions between the two countries.

Unrest in Israel: How a Unity Government is Splitting the Nation

Like most nations around the world, Israel has been hit hard by COVID-19, with an estimated 13,713 confirmed cases as of April 20th. In an immediate response to the rising numbers of confirmed cases, Israel has instituted somewhat drastic measures to combat the virus, including shutting down the state on April 6th, and allowing the tracking of private cell phone data to enforce quarantine. While some have applauded the nation’s dedication to flattening the curve of infection, policies like that of the cell phone tracking have angered many, leading to protests in the thousands as recently as Sunday. Now adding to that unrest is the announcement of a “unity government” between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and political rival Benny Gantz.

Virus Won’t Stop Voting in South Korea

Although the COVID-19 pandemic is still raging on, voters in South Korea appeared undaunted Wednesday, as they materialized in droves to vote for their representatives in the National Assembly. South Korea became the first country to hold nationwide elections this year, and through careful procedures experienced a record high voter turnout, with 66.2% of all eligible voters casting their ballot. This virus-defying vote signaled a massive win for President Moon-Jae’s ruling party, with the Minjoo Party scoring 180 of the 300 available seats in the Assembly. The win did not come as a surprise to many, as Moon-Jae has received huge amounts of support as of late due to his swift and effective response to the coronavirus. With a combination of contact tracing, testing, and isolating cases, along with other physical distancing policies, places like South Korea have been able to reduce the size of its coronavirus outbreak and flatten the curve.