Your Virtual Front Page, Friday, March 25, 2011

At the end of this first week of spring, here are our top stories:

  1. Protesters shot as protests expand across Syria (WashPost) — The quick summary: “A day after President Bashar al-Assad’s government pledged to consider political reforms, security forces open fire on demonstrators.”
  2. NATO Set to Take Full Command of Libyan Campaign (NYT) — I had told you already this would likely happen, but it’s more certain now.
  3. Libyan leader ‘arming volunteers’ (BBC) — The BBC is leading with this at the moment. I’m not sure it’s worth that. But it’s interesting to set it alongside this NPR story, “Official: Allies Discussing Ways To Arm Libyan Rebels.”
  4. Japan expands evacuation zone (WashPost) — Residents within 19 miles of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant urged to get out.
  5. Canada’s Government Falls (WSJ) — You say you didn’t know there was a revolutionary movement going on there? Well, there isn’t. This is one of those things that happens in parliamentary systems. Still, it involves a historic parliamentary finding of contempt, so that’s something. And this will be the country’s fourth national election in seven years, if you’re keeping score. Which you probably weren’t. Which is why I’m putting this on my front. Because I feel vaguely guilty that we never pay attention to Canada. They’re just, you know, so CALM up there. Take off, eh…
  6. Crisis-Era Props Are Falling Away (WSJ) — I was really, really trying to get something local on the front, but I thought you needed to be aware of this important trend story: “Bit by bit, Uncle Sam is preparing to remove the training wheels from the economy and financial markets. In recent days, U.S. policy makers have taken a series of small steps to remove their extraordinary, crisis-era support…” At least this one was from inside this country — so that’s kinda local.

In my effort to give you a good overview from around the world, I didn’t have separate headlines on the remarkable developments in Yemen or Jordan or other parts of the region. So… you might want to read this NPR overview, “Protests, Violence Spread Across The Arab World.”
Then there’s this, on the other side of Africa: “Ivory Coast: ‘A million’ refugees.”

And why didn’t I have anything local? Well, this came the closest: “ (The State). Yeah, see, kinda weak, compared to other stuff we’ve learned about our gov in recent days. And it was in the paper way back this morning.