Terrorism: A never-ending global problem.

Terrorism as defined by the Oxford dictionary is “the unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims” has been used to advance political aims of not just the recent Islamic Jihadists, but also of far left /right political organisations, as well as independence movements around the globe. The impacts of said terrorist acts throughout time have left many innocents dead, whether we speak of 9/11, the Paris shootings in 2015 or the constant terror attacks in nations such as Afghanistan.

One must understand that terrorism has an impact that goes far deeper than what the average person may initially sense. While many are consumed with grief, understandably so, terrorist acts have a devastating effect on the global political economy. An example of this was the Paris shootings in 2015. Paris saw a massive drop in tourism, “In the Paris area alone, tourism revenue is expected to plunge by 1.5 billion euros ($1.6 billion) this year.” (Doggett and Dolmadjian, 2016). We see that with each terrorist act carried out, particularly in the western world, but also nations such as Tunisia and Turkey, tourism drops immediately after. Whether we speak of Barcelona, London or Paris, all cities suffered in the tourist industry. This may cost millions if not billions to the state that may rely partly on tourism, on top of the initial cost of having to repair damaged areas, investigate potential connections and so on. This includes private businesses, however big or small that rely on tourism. These problems can then impact labour, as the tourism sector shrinks, so does employment. The only employment increase would be perhaps in the defence sector, but this does not make a profit overall, rather, the state must spend more money. To make matters worse, large cities tend to have a larger minority presence, taking into consideration these attacks on European soil, the terrorists were Muslim. This marginalises other Muslims and gives rise to more discrimination, as we saw after most terrorist attacks “Islamophobic hate crimes jumped five-fold in the wake of the London Bridge terror attack, new figures show.” (Batchelor, 2017) This divides the population and increases inequality between natives and those seen as foreigners, which in turn will give rise to more radicalisation, potentially on both sides. The problem therefore is made worse.

This is not the only problem however, states tend to change policy as well, which may impact the economy even further. The American response to 9/11 as we all know was to declare war on terrorism. This declaration of war on something that is not a straightforward matter cost the Americans trillions as they used the military to combat this threat. “The ‘War on Terror’ has cost US taxpayers at least $1.46 trillion since September 11, 2001, the Department of Defence’s cost of war report has revealed.” (RT International, 2017) The impact of this massive amount of spending is still felt today, and scrutinised as it did very little to curb actual terrorist threats. European reactions were similar in nature, but to a much lesser extent. What we saw with this war on terror was an incredible waste of money. This shift in policy meant that funding that could have gone to education, development, healthcare and other programmes that may have had an impact on reducing inequality, unemployment and poverty instead went to the military, which has no economic benefit, apart from perhaps increasing employment as long as the war lasts.

Some go further and argue that many of the conflicts in the middle east specifically were caused by neo-liberal policy makers. “But, then, how do you get oil prices to go up in a ‘world awash with oil,’ as the Economist of London put it? The answer is cruel but simple: conflict in the Middle East.” ( Bichler, Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan) But then again, why would the Americans spend over a trillion dollars to protect oil prices? They do after all have their own oil reserves and spending so much without profit is quite obviously a waste of resources. So was it simply a mistake of the policy makers to push for war in hope of economic profit? Or were the Americans truly attempting to destroy terrorism that they saw as a threat to their national security?

(Sabir Nazar 2013)

The impacts of terrorism are not just felt in the western world however. Terrorist acts in nations such as Nigeria, Afghanistan and even certain areas of Pakistan and India have a direct impact on the development of said areas. Certain regions that must be militarised to protect civilians and counter terrorists then have less money to improve the well being of people which at times is one of the causes of terrorism in the first place. (News.bbc.co.uk, 2002)

Overall, terrorism is a major problem in the world. Even if it doesn’t impact all directly, it will impact the economy, where states invest money and who is seen as a threat. This is a global problem that is not easily solvable.

M00556010 Ricardo Cabrinha



Oxford dictionary. Terrorism [online] Available at: https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/terrorism

Doggett, G. and Dolmadjian, K. (2016). How the 2015 Paris terror attacks have affected tourism. [online] Available at: https://www.thelocal.fr/20161111/paris-still-fighting-to-woo-back-tourists-one-year-after-attacks

Batchelor, T. (2017) Islamphobic hate crimes jump fivefold after London bridge attack. The Independent. [online] Available at: http://www.independent.co.uk/News/uk/crime/london-bridge-attack-latest-rise-islamophobic-hate-crimes-borough-market-stabbing-terror-police-a7777451.html

RT International. (2017). $250mn each day for 16yrs: The staggering cost of ‘War on Terror’ [online] Available at: https://www.rt.com/usa/408498-cost-war-on-terror/

Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan (2004): Differential Accumulation and Middle East Wars: Beyond Neo-Liberalism, In: Assassi, Libby Wigan, Duncan van der Pijl, Kees (Ed.): Global Regulation. Managing Crises After the Imperial Turn, Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, pp 55 [online] Available at: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/157977/1/bna-017_040931BN_Beyond_neoliberalism.pdf

Nazar, S. (2013) Barrack Obamas foreign policy. [online] Available at: https://www.memri.org/reports/liberal-pakistani-cartoonist-sabir-nazar-offers-satirical-insights-pakistani-mass

News.bbc.co.uk. (2002). BBC News | WORLD | Poverty ‘fuelling terrorism’. [online] Available at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/1886617.stm


Poverty’s Role in Global Political Economy by Arlind Krasniqi (M00537110)

Screen Shot 2017-12-14 at 16.16.44.png

Poverty, one word that has such substantial meaning. Hence why even author Ruth Lister (2004) claimed that ‘poverty remains one of the most urgent issues of our time.’ Because poverty is everywhere, like an atom. Defining poverty is simple; it is the state of being extremely poor. However, that seems too generic because, poverty can be inflicted through various ways. In terms of economics, population, politics and so on. It has been a major concern throughout history, and poverty has become much more important in the modern world, as our attempts to reduce poverty haven’t quite worked, due to a rise in technology and capitalism.

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(Map of North-South divide)

To identify poverty geographically and locate where most wealth and economic deficiency occurs. It will require a simple methodology of the ‘North-South Divide.’ With the most developed countries situated in the North, and the supreme developing countries positioned in the South. In terms of global political economy, it is important to understand how poverty is identified on a global scale, because it measures the extremities of destitution itself. Elizabeth Dowler (2005), claimed that ‘the … North-South trends’ have given a ‘structure’ to enable us to ‘now locate the contributions to’ the ‘volume’ of poverty. Meaning that, the North-South divide helps us understand and measure economic scarcity on a worldwide spectrum. This highlights the significance of poverty as an urgent issue in the modern world today, because, in order to combat poverty, we must measure it, and understand what resources are needed to be used to minimise this issue.

The UN categorized countries in the table of developed and developing economies in 2014. The statistics proved that there are only 37 developed economies around the world, that’s 37 out of 197 countries, that are developed, and what a coincidence that most of these developed economies are in the North of the world. Here’s the stats’ if you don’t believe me:

Screen Shot 2017-12-14 at 16.08.07.pngThese statistics are also supported by Peter Calvert (2014) who stated that ‘the real surprise is … how many ‘developing countries’ there are.’ He continued to say that ‘Only thirty of the world’s countries can really be classed as developed.’ Demonstrating that, poverty has become a universal issue, and thus affecting the study of the global political economy.

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(Picture of young boy protesting during The Great Depression of the 1930s)

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(Famous picture of Nazi Propaganda symbolising the fall of Weimar)

Here’s a quick history lesson, because throughout history, poverty has become a symbiotic organism that has feasted upon even the strongest economies. During the era of The Great Depression in the 1930s, ‘unemployment persisted at a high figure’ as stated by Robbins (2007). It was through these events that had led to a transition in Germany, from a democracy to a dictatorship with the rise of Hitler. Anyway, After the Second World War, we saw a revision of The Great Depression, by introducing global financial institutions that help keep countries in check with their economy, such as the IMF, WTO and the World Bank.  These institutions were initially set up by the Bretton Woods System. Yet, that still didn’t stop the banks from getting greedy and lose track of the market and enter into a financial crisis in 2008, which led to millions of people unemployed, as well as homeless. This is significant because it shows how we still have not learned ‘our lesson’ in controlling our economies, and providing financial stability to the citizens of each country, and these events is what leads to destrimental forms of poverty.

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However, there have been many methods and attempts to combat poverty and minimise its impact. Giving us hope that we do not go back to the Dark Ages. For instance, the international organisations have objectives to complete, in terms of combating poverty. For instance, without the IMF, Greece would suffer a lot more economically than they are now. Greece are currently suffering their own ‘Great Depression’, however, are looking for help and are receiving it with the IMF. The financial institutions offer economic backing, in exchange for certain policies that must be followed by the country. Been (2013) stated that the ‘IMF agreed to lend Greece €30 billion.’ Even though taking money from the IMF is like taking money from a loan shark who will come at your door if your late, it does help discipline the countries in taking control of their economy.

Overall, poverty can, on paper, end, if we take into consideration the fact that 100 of the world’s richest people can end poverty four times over. In addition, if we are unable to end poverty due to the competitve nature of capitalism, then we can sure minimise it with the help of SDGs and the financial institutions of the IMF, World Bank, WTO etc.


Alex van den Berg, C. P. H. R. C. P. S. F., 2017. Combating Poverty: Quebec’s Pursuit of a Distinctive Welfare State. University of Toronto Press. [Accessed 27th November 2017]

Been, M., 2013. The Politics of IMF Lending. Springer. [Accessed 27th November 2017]

Elizabeth Dowler, P. M., 2005. Poverty and Exclusion in North and South: Essays on Social Policy and Global Poverty Reduction. Routledge. [Accessed 25th November 2017]

Lister, R., 2004. Poverty. Polity. [Accessed 23rd November 2017]

Mommsen, H., 2017. The Rise and Fall of Weimar Democracy. UNC Press Books. [Accessed 20th November 2017]

Peter Calvert, S. C., 2014. Politics and Society in the Developing World. Routledge. [Accessed 20th November 2017

Robbins, L., 2007. The Great Depression. Ludwig von Mises Institute. [Accessed 18th November 2017]

United Nations, U. N. 2014, Statistics for Developed Economies: https://www.un.org/en/development/desa/policy/wesp/wesp_current/2014wesp_country_classification.pdf. [Accessed 25th November 2017]



The more you earn, the more you pay in taxes? Nah. – Valeriy Zhdanov


Have you ever asked yourself, why do we need to pay taxes, where are they going for, and why people try to avoid or evade it? I have just asked myself, and the conclusions are not that good. First of all, paying taxes is fair enough, as we are funding our countries and the services that we use. Second, tax systems are not perfect, that is why tax avoidance is so typical to happen.

What is tax and why we are paying it? Tax is the fee that is paid, usually deducted from our income. We are paying it because is required by law, and it is up to each government to raise or lower the taxes. In the UK’s case, taxpayers are funding public services such as NHS, education and welfare state, which all of us are entitled to. Moreover, it is used to finance public projects such as roads, rails and housing. Let us put it as Oliver Wendell Holmes, “Taxes are the price we pay for civilisation” (HMRC & Money Advice Service, 2017)  

So far, it seems fair that we are paying taxes, also for the reason that we are using public services. The central question here remains – do all people pay taxes? The answer to that is that most do. However, the tendency is that more income people have, more they try to avoid paying tax, and it is not right, not even legal. Although, as mentioned above, tax systems are not perfect, and there are several loopholes which makes avoidance legal. It is also necessary to say that companies inclusive TNC pay corporate taxes.

However, there is one question that remains to be understood. How and why people or corporations avoid to pay tax. Also, to what extent countries can fight against this issue. According to an article from The Guardian, it says that people cannot avoid paying taxes entirely, but instead of spending, let us say 40%, they pay 20%, in which case they are just lowering their bills. Also, they do so by directing all their incomes to one company, by paying themselves or by splitting their revenues with a partner so they will pay half less than they should have. The article also refers to charities, in which case you can gain tax-reliefs according to your donations or property leases or even investing money in offshores (Osborne, 2012)

The problem is that countries which seek to have big corporations, multinationals fixed within their borders, they play with taxes as it is one of the reasons TNC move in or move out. A TNC is “(…) a firm that owns and controls production […] facilities in two or more countries” (O’Brien and Williams, 2016, 128), which brings development, revenues and profit to the country it chose to be fixed in. Although, that could be a possible problem for a sovereign state, as these firms are the ones that decide whether to stay or leave. In which case, if the tax is high, they will move out, and the country will lose the advantages from it.

In the UK, “Multinationals avoid up to £5.8bn in UK tax, HMRC finds”, this number rose up 50% from previous calculations. What these multinationals do is what O’Brien and Williams call it, ‘transfer pricing’, which is transfers between companies rooted in the same multinational group. According to the article, UK is less aggressive with low tax practices than EU is, which promotes more companies like Apple and Google to fix in the UK. However, HMRC found out that by doing so, the UK is losing a significant amount of money, so now is trying to tackle down this issue (Marriage, 2017).

To sum up, it is not fair for low and middle classes to pay more for the tricks the wealthier people do with their incomes to fool tax systems. So this could be the reason why the gap between rich and poor is widening. Even if a low or middle-class person would want to do so, they do not have the means and information. TNC should be more regulated, and themselves should be aware that legally everyone should be equal. Even though states also provide ‘legally’ possible loopholes to avoid tax, they should change it and look for the common interest and not just of those wealthy. For this reason, leaks such as Paradise & Panama Papers, by ICIJ, are essential to check the balances and come up with some measures to tackle down this issue.


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Marriage, M. (2017). Multinationals avoid up to £5.8bn in UK tax, HMRC finds. Financial Times. [online] Available at: https://www.ft.com/content/00de4f00-b754-11e7-8c12-5661783e5589 [Accessed 20 Nov. 2017].

Money Advice Service. (2017). Income Tax and National Insurance. [online] Available at: https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/income-tax-and-national-insurance [Accessed 27 Nov. 2017].

Osborne, H. (2012). How the wealthy avoid paying tax. The Guardian. [online] Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/money/2012/apr/24/how-avoid-paying-tax-maximise-income [Accessed 25 Nov. 2017].

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“Make America Great Again_2”

President Trump’s America First agenda, to address his predecessors Policy failure that led to the declining of the U.S industrial and manufacturing might and glory of yesteryear. Synonyms to the nostalgically recalled “Make America Great Again”.

By Adebayo Adeshina, (M00609152), Mdx, London 28/11/2017


Donald J. Trump’s political ideology and strategic plan is isolationist with some Reformist principles. His recent trips to 12 Asian States for business deals amongst other matters is an evidence of his reformist agenda. Particularly his utterance of the 13th Nov 2017, during the trip is certainly a direct attack on Globalisation, and International Political Economy as we know it. Phrases such as “We cannot continue to allow China to rape our country and that’s what they are doing- Donald Trump”. Support this assertion. However, Jack Ma’s Brilliant response to same utterance, help re-enforce the facts that some of the key principles of Globalisation, and International Political Economy are partially responsible for the American’s declining industries and unemployment.   Jack Ma’s, 13th Nov 2017. Argued that “it was America Foreign and domestic policy for the past three decades that has raped the country”. The policy of outsourcing manufacturing and industrial work to China and Mexico etc. At the same period, U.S fight’s a total of 13 wars, spending 14.2 trillion dollars in the last 30 years on wars, as opposed to carrying-out infrastructural developments programme that would have created non-white collar Jobs for the middle & low-class citizens of United States, https://www.beingguru.com/2017/11/jack-mas-brilliant-response-to-donald-trump/ and https://www.graphicnews.com/en/pages/35927/POLITICS-Trump-tour-of-Asia#.Wgq5ou4CxpU.mailto

Furthermore, Thomas wright, also argued that Trump’s Protectionist ideology has three main under-pinning and fundamental principles, which are; firstly, his opposition to US Current Alliances, Secondly, his opposition to free trade; and thirdly his support for Authoritarianism. If these principles decrypted into policy by the current administration. This will finally lead to US forsaking the Liberal international tactics that President Trump’s predecessors have developed and practiced since after world war II, for the rebirth of a new World Order.  Thomas Wright further maintained and placed Trump’s foreign policy in an ideological and historical context purely on Trump’s fundamental principles, which are contrary to the past Republican president’s international affairs beliefs since the 1980s.   https://www.brookings.edu/program/foreign-policy/  With the above assertions, its seems like President Trump is strategically moving away from both parties and his forerunners Ideologies nonetheless maintaining certain concepts of the Republican party. Therefore, he is a Reformist with Isolationist conceptual perspective! According to “Perry, J & Perry, E (2009) A Reformist, aim to make incremental changes to existing society.

Image result for trade blocs map

For instance, the withdrawal of the United State from being one of the signatory to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Agreement, in favour of bi-lateral one-on-one deals (TPP). That’s President Trump’s America First agenda failed to take into considerations the International Institutions rationale for setting up Trade Blocs. These alliances, they claimed enable Businesses to gain, ensure, and promote comparative advantage amongst members states and that it helps facilitate more efficient political unit in globalized world. Whilst those against setting up a Trade Blocs like President Trump argued that trade Blocs, promote trade diversion rather than free trade. it’s is protectionist (or more so) than states and that it distorts world markets Albrow, M, Eade, J, Washbourne, N and Durrschmidt, J (1995).


Trump signing the executive orders, surrounded by men.        Adams Nager (July 1, 2015) Manufacturing: A Global Competitive Landscape….Can the US Keep up?http://cerasis.com/2015/07/01/manufacturing-labor-productivity/

Trump’s decision not to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was expected. As in his opinion the international trade deals, are responsible for US citizens job losses and focusing anger in the industrial heartland. Although TPP was never ratified by the Republican-controlled Congress, but several Asian leaders had invested substantial political capital in it. Their countries represent roughly 13.5% of the global economy, according to the World Bank. Similarly, on June 1, 2017 President Trump pulled the U.S. out of the non-binding Paris Climate Change Accord, hoping to begin re-negotiations to re-enter the agreement and make it “fair” to the U.S. the same situation with Iranian nuclear deal, demonstrating another contempt for International Institutions. Trump presents himself as a businessman and as an anti-politician. He emphasizes on America First and tries to create easy environment for states that heavily rely on traditional energy as an industry. Trump proposed the America First Energy Plan, in which he intends to re-stimulate the U.S. fossil energy industry.

  Image result for trade blocs map

Smith, Lisa. “Globalization: Progress Or Profiteering?” Investopedia. Investopedia, LLC., 28 Jan. 2007. Web. 28 May 2015. Lisa argued that Globalization enables inward and outward investment and helps businesses move money around the globe, ensuring access to different markets. This is how Globalisation has enable the industrialized nations to profit from cheap labour around the globe and this process is known as outsourcing. She claimed that Globalisation also ensures skills and technology advancement that may not get to the developing nations swiftly, thereby enable them to catch-up with 1st world in that regards.  Critics of globalization argued that outsourcing is like a double-edged sword, in that hiring a firm outside your company/country to perform work that are supposed to be performed in-house usually affect jobs and eventually the country economy on long-term.  https://www.investopedia.com/articles/07/globalization.asp#ixzz4z6JoAieZ

Image result for trade blocs map


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By Adebayo Adeshina, (M00609152), Mdx, London 28/11/2017

I grabbed her bum, what’s the big deal?

I grabbed her bum, what’s the big deal?
It only seems perfect due to the current exposure of several Hollywood moguls to discuss the sexual exploitation of women and young male aspiring actors, and how power buys silence and subsequently allows offenders to continue with their behaviour. ‘Operation Yewtree’ was arguably the biggest ‘sex scandal’ of this generation, outlining the abuse of up to 1,000 victims at the hands of well-known television personality, Jimmy Saville. The abuse spanned over decades, funded by his comedic charm and substantial charitable work, allowing him entry to some of the most private spaces such as hospital rooms with unsupervised visitation, for example one inquiry found that he was able to abuse 60 people at Stoke Mandeville hospital. Among those victims was a girl aged 9 whom Saville raped 10 times when she innocently visited the hospital where her relatives worked. What is even more disturbing is that at least 10 complaints were lodged against Saville, dating back to 1972, but no action was taken to investigate the claims, they were simply not acknowledged by NHS staff, and so were never raised to senior managers. How many do we think had been abused by Saville at this point and not reported it because others had already tried and failed? How many victims never got their justice because senior authority either didn’t believe them, or because they just weren’t as important as he was? Perhaps an example that even better illustrates the ability given to high paid powerful men, is the 1976 ‘Top Of The Pops’ appearance in which Saville gropes Sylvia Edwards, a girl who is standing next to him, so also directly in front of the camera…is there a need to elaborate on how obvious his sexual escapades were? Edwards in a 2016 interview states that she was not enjoying the experience and tried to get him to stop several times, and that she had complained to several people but nobody listened.
Another even more recent example, and this is just one of many in the last few months, is the demise of Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, who has assaulted at least 51 women, but the number is forever increasing. This situation isn’t dissimilar to that of Saville in the way that Weinstein’s behaviour was well-known by many, and again, by many people in positions of power. He was able to use his influence in the movie industry to ‘make or break’ careers, which undoubtedly in-sighted fear into the hearts of his victims, and consequently guaranteed their silence. Although, the emergence of these allegations are what they should be referred to…’allegations’ and not guilty verdicts, Rose McGowan an actress, proved she had a settlement between herself and Weinstein which is an “admission of guilt”, which allows for general assumption that at least some of the other allegations made against Weinstein are true too. Kevin Spacey is also in a similar situation…the list goes on. The resounding point here is, powerful positions buy silence, and in particular powerful men have created a sort of status quo, whereby it has become a ‘boys club’, allowing those members to do whatever they want without consequences.
One must make the logical connection that higher paid jobs, lead to greater power in terms of wealth, and influence, and even after the Equal Pay Act 1970, as we know men are still paid higher wages for the same professional roles as women, not only that, men are still the most dominant sex in most high paid industries. The ratio of male members of parliament to female members is still grossly less – 195 female compared to 650 male, which further illustrates that women are undervalued and under-represented in both the political sphere and professional, which as we know, is very much political. How do we expect men to respect women, when the government whom runs the country does not equally reflect both sexes? It is a reasonable assumption to say that the attitudes of young men and women growing up is shaped by our elders, whether that is through norms and values learned through their family, or through secondary socialisation like education, and the media. Secondary socialisation has in the last 5 decades become increasingly important, as children can become more personally involved with the lives of people in the public eye. If the perception created by those in powerful positions is mainly by men, then naturally this attitude will be reproduced through generations imploring us to view women as ‘lesser’. If we want instances of sexual assault to decrease, then we need to see more women in high paid industries, more women in parliament, and those men already in powerful positions to act in a respectful and simply human manor.


Click to access ukpga_19700041_en.pdf


Are sanctions a useful foreign policy tool?


Sanctions? What we know about them and how really they work? Are sanctions a useful foreign policy tool? According to the definition of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), sanctions are a system of non-military, economic measures, applied against a state that violates agreements on international security (O’Brien, Williams, 2017).

Sanctions are often expressed in the cessation of diplomatic relations, the boycott of sports and cultural events, and restrictions in international trade, financial transactions, movement of people, etc. (O’Brien, Williams, 2017)

The method of applying sanctions began to be used for a very long time ago. As the sanctions were applied, the question arose about their effectiveness, because in many cases they not only did not lead to the desired results, but also weakened the economy of the countries which imposed them.

Sanctions are a very attractive instrument of foreign policy, since, instead of the war, they can resolve international conflicts and disagreements without any costs and human sacrifice. But if we look at the global politics over the last twenty years are sanctions really resolving problems?

Firstly, sanctions impact both on the economy of the country of their application and that their initiator. In this case, an illustrative example of the EU countries, which often introduces sanctions under the pressure of another state’s political will.

Secondly, using of sanctions demonstrates the inability to have normal political dialogue and negotiation, and the use force against the opponent.

Thirdly, as a consequence of the previous statement, the sanctions did not contribute to the elimination of initial causes. They only exacerbate the contradictions and aggravate the relationship between the countries.

Fourth, sanctions as a tool are very subjective. The country that has the capability to apply them, as a rule, uses them in its own interests, and not the interests of the world community or international law.

Last but not least…

Let’s compare the example of the using of sanctions in recent years. Following the Iranian Revolution of 1979, the United States imposed economic sanctions against Iran and expanded them in 1995 to include firms dealing with the Iranian government. In 2006, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 1696 and imposed sanctions after Iran refused to suspend its uranium enrichment program. (Wikipedia). But Iran’s uranium enrichment program, which Western governments fear is intended for developing the capability to produce nuclear weapons still hasn’t been cancelled by government of Iran. i.e. sanctions were unsuccessful and their purpose wasn’t achieve. In the modern world frequently sanctions has used as a means of confinement of the states. The second example is Russia.

EU sanctions against Russia over Ukraine crisis

How far do EU-US sanctions on Russia go?(Europa, 2014). The EU sanctions announced in 2014 targeted Russia’s state finances, energy and arms sectors.  The sanctions and trade controls to include approach to: asset freezes; controls on nancing directed at the oil, gas, energy, and defense industries; restrictions on access to capital markets (Reed Smith, 2014)

However, in 2016 the country’s oil industry showed a record growth of production of raw materials.  In 2016 daily oil production is reached 11 million barrels per a day (Statista, 2016). This is the highest level of oil production over the last decade. Accordingly, sanctions again has showed its ineffectiveness.

It also is worth considering that sanctions have impact on the country that apply them. So, in addition to receiving retaliatory sanctions and the deteriorating political image, the state’s economy suffers losses.

Despite the fact that many politicians support the idea of using sanctions as an instrument of politics, they believe sanctions are a more human way of conducting foreign policy than war. However, the experience of the implementation of economic sanctions against Iraq. According to UNICEF, Iraq has led to an increase in mortality among children under 5 years of age. These deaths have more than doubled, and in total caused the death of more than 500,000 children between 1991 and 1998 from malnutrition, lack of medicine, clean water.( Pigler, J. Even, 2004)

The concept of sanctions is the idea of causing suffering to the people (citizens) so that they can influence their government. The citizens of the country where sanctions are applied, are used as a means of achieving the goals of the state, declaring sanctions.

Therefore, sanctions are not an effective means of resolving international conflicts neither in economic nor in political concepts. Using sanctions can be explained by the desire for the head of state to raise their credibility, achieve international recognition of the state in the international arena, as well as worsen the political situation and destabilize the state affected by sanctions. The main purpose of sanctions are to make a state change its behavior but likely won’t be achieved.

By Irina Andreeva


O’Brien, Williams, R., 2017. Evolutions & Dynamics. 5th ed. London: PALGRAVE p.288.

Europa, EU sanctions against Russia over Ukraine crisis  [online] Available at:(https://europa.eu/newsroom/highlights/special-coverage/eu-sanctions-against-russia-over-ukraine-crisis_en).  [Accessed 25 Nov. 2017].

Reed Smith, Michael J. Lowell, Overview of the U.S. and EU Sanctions on Russia, October 2014.

Statista, Russia – Statistics & Facts 2016 Available at: https://www.statista.com/topics/2675/russia/  Russia – Statistics & Facts 2016.  [Accessed 25 Nov. 2017].

Pigler, J. Even, Before the 200 War, We Were Attacking Iraqi Civilians with our Inhumane Economic Sanctions. Statesman, 2004.




If the ‘irregular migrants’ can’t seek refuge in Europe, then where will they run to?

Let’s ditch the negative connotations that are associated with the word ‘refugees’, and focus on the facts.

Figure 1: Political cartoon showing EU (saviors) rejecting the refugees (those who need saving) (Chappatte, 2015).


“Refugees are a threat to our safety and security… they could be terrorists… our economy will collapse… this… that… ad nauseam”.

65.3 million.

The number you are looking at makes up the number of the internally displaced, refugees and asylum seekers.

According to the UNHCR (2015 as cited in Mckirdy, 2016) report, this number exceeds the number of those displaced after WW2.

The refugee crisis topic should be prioritized and the most discussed. It is a test to see whether we will fulfill our moral obligations. However, Europe is failing quite horrendously in this test.

In early 2016, up to 4000 people arrived in Greece each day alone (Withnall, 2016).

Countries of the EU and Turkey were concocting on an agreement, which came into effect, to stop the influx of refugees into the EU (Withnall, 2016), and redirect them to Turkey in exchange for €6 billion. The money was one of the terms agreed on, supposedly needed to manage the refugees, along with other appalling demands (Gogou, 2017). One of which was to explore a way for the Turkish to travel to European countries without procuring a visa (Cendrowicz, 2016). A classic case of political tit for tat!

It might come as a relief to you that at least Turkey is hosting these desperate people.

However, in reality, Turkey can only provide housing for 200,000 when it is accommodating 2.5 million refugees. Many of those don’t have access to basic amenities.

Figure 2: Congested camps where refugees are supposed to stay in (Moschopoulos as cited in Broomfield , 2016).


Furthermore, refugees arriving in Turkey are greeted with unhygienic and congested shelters, where they have to share with others. Others are left to sleep on the streets of Ankara and Istanbul. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported that 13 refugees and 3 children were killed by gunshots. Around 80% of the children are not enrolled in schools.

Additionally, the government is also reportedly illegally repatriating refugees without processing their documents (Broomfield, 2016), all which goes against their promise to the EU to provide a ‘safe’ area.

This poses the question of if not the EU, then where can these refugees seek refuge? Turkey can only cope with so much.

Figure 3: This cartoon symbolizes how refugees are hopelessly stuck, as there has not been a proper solution that refugees can resort to, to escape to safety (Beeler, 2015).

Why Europe?

Smilov (2015) conveys in his article that Europe is very capable and has more than enough resources as a whole to deal with the refugee crisis. He suggests setting up a quota system which would be in proportion to the EU countries’ size and capabilities; this way the refugee crisis could be alleviated. If borders don’t open up now, human trafficking is more likely to increase as it is their only resort (Withnall, 2016).

In addition, neighboring countries are already swamped with refugees. For example, Lebanon has a total of 1,001,051 refugees (UNHCR as cited in Inter-Agency Coordination, 2017). Jordan is inundated with 736,396 seeking refuge (ReliefWeb, 2017). The burden needs to be shared.

Security Risks?

Security risks are inevitable all over the world. However, none of these are a valid reason to reject people in desperate need of help.

Smilov (2015) acknowledges that the mass movement may create security problems and recommended “certain temporary restrictions of liberties, closer scrutiny of new comers and others”. Closing the borders is actually a greater risk.

Figure 4: “A Danish police officer plays with a refugee girl at the E45 freeway north of Padborg, Sept. 9, 2015.” (Reuters, 2015).

Good for the Economy?

 To clear up the misconceptions about refugees straining the economy, La Corte (2016) provided enough evidence that proves otherwise.

  • IMF studies illustrate that investment in the refugees settling in Europe will boost the economy in the long run. Once refugees join the workforce, they will be able to generate more than the initial cost of resettlement.
  • It is a slight addition to Europe’s population and could actually repair the common issue of aging population, and won’t cause harm to the locals.
  • Many of them have valuable qualifications that should be seen as assets, therefore, they shouldn’t be considered as dead weight.

I’d like to end with the thought that refugees should be thought of as people who are seeking refuge. It is sad that the discourse on refugees has changed and they are thought of as a threat.

Let’s change it back to what it really means.

Sherwet Mohamed


Middlesex University Dubai


Beeler, N. (2015). A political cartoon conveying how refugees are stuck. [image] Available at: http://thecomicnews.com/edtoons/2015/1125/refugees/06.php [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Broomfield, M. (2016). Pictures of life for Turkey’s 2.5 million Syrian refugees. The Independent. [online] Available at: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/pictures-of-life-for-turkeys-25-million-syrian-refugees-crisis-migrant-a6969551.html [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Cendrowicz, L. (2016). EU and Turkey reach migrant deal – but delay final decision until next summit. The Independent. [online] Available at: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/refugee-crisis-migrant-summit-eu-turkey-syria-extra-3bn-euros-a6917961.html [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Global Trends Forced Displacement in 2015. (2015). [ebook] UNHCR The UN Refugee Agency. Available at: http://www.unhcr.org/576408cd7 [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Gogou, K. (2017). The EU-Turkey deal: Europe’s year of shame. Amnesty International. [online] Available at: https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2017/03/the-eu-turkey-deal-europes-year-of-shame/ [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Inter-Agency Coordination. (2017). UNHCR Syria Regional Refugee Response. [online] Available at: http://data.unhcr.org/syrianrefugees/country.php?id=122 [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

La Corte, M. (2016). The Economic Case for Admitting Refugees Is (Again) Strengthened. [Blog] Huffpost. Available at: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/matthew-la-corte/the-economic-case-for-admitting_b_10341134.html [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

McKirdy, E. (2016). UNHCR report: More displaced now than after WWII. CNN. [online] Available at: http://edition.cnn.com/2016/06/20/world/unhcr-displaced-peoples-report/index.html [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

ReliefWeb. (2017). UNHCR Jordan Factsheet – June 2017. [online] Available at: https://reliefweb.int/report/jordan/unhcr-jordan-factsheet-june-2017 [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Reuters (2015). A Danish police officer plays with a refugee girl at the E45 freeway north of Padborg, Sept. 9, 2015.. [image] Available at: https://www.buzzfeed.com/lynzybilling/these-are-the-most-powerful-photographs-of-the-syrian-refuge?utm_term=.cspPPoMNvv#.af9dd6wRkk [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Smilov, D. (2015). The argument against compassion: Europe and the refugees. Open Democracy. [online] Available at: https://www.opendemocracy.net/can-europe-make-it/daniel-smilov/argument-against-compassion-europe-and-refugees [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

UNHCR The UN Refugee Agency. (2017). UNHCR and partners warn in Syria report of growing poverty, refugee needs. [online] Available at: http://www.unhcr.org/news/press/2016/7/577b717a4/unhcr-partners-warn-syria-report-growing-poverty-refugee-needs.html [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].

Withnall, A. (2016). If Europe turns its backs on its refugees, where on Earth will they go next?. The Independent. [online] Available at: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/refugee-crisis-eu-turkey-big-question-if-not-europe-then-where-a6919136.html [Accessed 6 Nov. 2017].






[kap-i-tl-iz-uh m]


  • a cause of poverty.

When referring to poverty, we define it as a position of “being poor” and the condition of one who “lacks a usual or socially acceptable amount of money”, (Merriam-Webster, 1828). The World Bank measures poverty in terms of income. An individual is deemed poor if their income level falls below the minimum level required to meet fundamental necessities; the ‘poverty line’, (Foster; Seth; Lokshin; Sajaia; 2013, pg. xii). Measuring poverty is an imperative tool, to ascertain who the poor are and detect where they are located. The measurements can help us form a picture of the enormity of the problem in different areas of the world and help us understand the way it varies over time. We can use such information to “identify programs that will work well in addressing poverty”, (Foster; Seth; Lokshin; Sajaia; 2013, pg. 2).

However, while it is all good exploring how poverty should be measured and discussing how to provide aid to those in need that will benefit and help them, there needs to be a deeper conversation about what the root cause of poverty actually is. There is always an ongoing conversation about what aid relief programs to put on, but for how long can we keep getting officials to stand in front of us and tell us what we need to do to help and how we have a duty to help, when the conversation around poverty and economic crises extends beyond aid.

When there is talk about countries that are less developed or nations that are developing, facing poverty, Western countries are ready to easily point the finger at the fact that these countries have not accepted this combination of capitalism and free market economics that is dominant in most of the Western world. However, there is a growing discontentment surrounding capitalism as a concept that makes ‘the world turn’. In 2016, the US Census Bureau reported that there was “43.1 million people in poverty” in 2015. People who work full time, on minimum wage, not being able to make ends meet.

Capitalism is described as “a system of generalized commodity production in which wealth is private and economic life is organised according to market principles”, (Heywood, 2014, pg. 87). So in simple terms, it refers to a free market economy. What does that mean? Well, it means that markets control themselves and are driven by forces of demand and supply and there is no nosiness or guidelines from the state.

What a concept.

Except that is not always the case.

After the war (WW2), there was a collective willingness from everyone to not return to the economic instability that plagued everyone, and rightly so. Due to this the ‘Bretton Woods System’ was created with two bodies that were set up to help the developing world; the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and The World Bank. The IMF concentrated more on lending to the developing world during the 1970s and onwards, (Heywood, 2014, pg. 473) and the World Bank, is now the “leading development organisation, working for growth and poverty reduction, (BBC, 2012). However, both organisations work under reformations and conditions, so if you want a loan from the IMF you have to do what they want, and the Bank will only give you the loan if the IMF says.

Countries, like Ghana, thus, had to carry out policies such as the ‘Structural Adjustment Programmes’ (SAP) to get a loan. SAP’s are economic policies which focus on “free-market policies” and aim to “reduce government spending by cutting welfare provisions, reducing or removing state subsidies, and revoking trade tariffs on the import/export of goods, (Heywood (2014, pg. 378). Both bodies believe that market reform is essential for economic growth and poverty reduction. This highlights the problem with international organisations. While they claim they want to increase economic growth, their policies are constructed on the “myth of free-market development”, (Heywood, 2014, pg. 51).  So, Ghana was told to open up their markets and were made to understand clearly that subsidies given to rice farmers from the government had to be stopped. And this then resulted in “cheap imported rice flooding the market”, (The Guardian, 2005). These policies were damaging to rice farmers in Ghana. In 2003, the “US paid 1.3 billion in rice subsidises to its farmers and sold the crop for 1.7 billion”, (The Guardian, 2005). Emphasising how these organisations serve the purpose of rich states, by exploiting poor and developing states.

With open economies, which is accomplished by third world and developing nations opening up their markets, richer states are able to exploit poorer ones. With no restrictions and no trade tariffs, imported goods that flood the market of developing countries has ruined the livelihoods of workers in developing nations as well as putting the global economy on a track of greater inequality. Not only do these process induce increased poverty but they also reduce opportunities for states to develop.

Pope Francis regarded capitalism as an “intolerable system”, and the “dung of the devil” . He claimed that “farm workers, labourers, communities, peoples, the earth, find it intolerable” during a speech in Bolivia in 2015, (The Guardian). When even the Pope regards the socio-economic system that runs the world, as “intolerable”, can we really keep saying that it is not capitalism that causes poverty, but, that as capitalism develops it will eventually eliminate poverty?



BBC News. (2012). ‘Profile: IMF and World Bank’. [online]. news.bbc.co.uk. Available at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/country_profiles/3670465.stm#blq-main [Accessed 7 November 2017].

Foster, J., Seth, S., Lokshin, M. and Sajaia, Z. (2013). ‘A Unified Approach to Measuring Poverty and Inequality: Theory and Practise’. Washington: World Bank Publications, Pages (xii, 2).

Heywood, A. (2014). ‘Global Politics’. Second Edition. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, Pages (87, 473, 378).

The Guardian. (2005). World News – ‘Ghana Pays Price for West’s Rice Subsidies’. [online]. theguardian.com. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2005/apr/11/hearafrica05.development [Accessed 7 November 2017].

The Guardian. (2015). World News – ‘Unbridled Capitalism is the ‘dung of the devil’, says Pope Francis’. [online]. theguardian.com. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/10/poor-must-change-new-colonialism-of-economic-order-says-pope-francis [Accessed 7 November 2017].

United States Census Bureau. (2016). ‘Income and Poverty in the United States: 2015’. [online]. census.gov. Available at: https://www.census.gov/library/publications/2016/demo/p60-256.html [Accessed 7 November 2017].

Webster. M. (1828). ‘Poverty | Definition of Poverty’. [online]. merriam-webster.com. Available at: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/poverty [Accessed 7 November 2017].


Farhana Kadir, M00571384

24/7 work schedule told to come in overtime (SWEATSHOP Workers)


Sweatshops are one of the major labor problems for some countries and the unacceptably difficult or dangerous working conditions are challenging. A sweatshop is described by the US Department of Labor as a factory that violates 2 or more labor laws (Dosomething.org, 2017).  America has stronger labor laws than most of the developed countries, but it is not free of sweatshop conditions. Many labor violations slip under the radar of the US Department of Labor, and there are still many factories in the United States that have worse working conditions for labor and workers get paid less than the usual wage.

Sweatshops make employees work long hours with low pay regardless of what they do, also known as unfair wages and lack of benefits for workers. Clothing factories especially have the most difficult work conditions. Sweatshops are sometimes involved with human trafficking when workers have been tricked into starting work without being fully informed of their roles or when workers are kept at work through debt repression or mental force, all of which are more likely if the workforce is drawn from children or from uneducated and poor people because they often exist in places without effective workplace safety or environmental laws.


In China approximately around 482 million people ‘live on under $2 a day’, according to a research carried out by War on Want (TheRichest, 2017). For a significant number of these people, employment in sweatshop industries is their only option. They are forced to work under tremendous conditions posing heavy health risks.

People now a days do not really pay attention or sometimes even care where their product comes from and how it is made, the only they think about is the quality and brand. If we look into some of these products’ manufacturing process, laborers have actually been forced to work in industries where they get paid less than what they deserve. For example, in developing countries; mostly in Asia, the Pacific, and Sub-Saharan Africa, approximately more than 168 million children ages 5 to 14 are forced to work and most of them are under companies and TNC’s like: Apple, Nike, and H&M etc. and so many more. Child labor is particularly common in agriculture where about 98 million, or 59% of child laborers work, followed by services; 54 million, and industry; 12 million (Dosomething.org, 2017).

s1 (pinterest, 2017)

But something has to change because this is not an acceptable way for human beings to live and to be treated. Sweatshops are basically like a vehicle for profit with no concern for health or fair wages. I’m sure we buy many products made through the suffering of these people in other countries. People cannot really research and find out if the factory where a skirt was made is up to code, or if the wages paid were fair, but companies can, as they directly commission the work. Factories should be monitored by the government, and owners and managers should get punished by the law no matter what it costs them. With the advancement of technology now, more factories should be looking to use machines and the use of technology rather than making people work with their hands for long hours as that is very challenging and demotivating for individual that adds stress to their life.


Anon, (2017). [image] Available at: http://danzigercartoons.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/danzcolor4586/%5BAccessed 23 Nov. 2017].

Dosomething.org. (2017). 11 Facts About Sweatshops | DoSomething.org | Volunteer for Social Change. [online] Available at: https://www.dosomething.org/us/facts/11-facts-about-sweatshops [Accessed 23 Nov. 2017].

TheRichest. (2017). 7 Countries With Horrific Sweatshop Situations. [online] Available at: https://www.therichest.com/rich-list/most-shocking/7-countries-with-horrific-sweatshop-situations/ [Accessed 23 Nov. 2017].

pinterest (2017). [image] Available at: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/550916966889132597/ [Accessed 23 Nov. 2017].










How Racism influence wage difference become a global phenomenon?

Chun Bong Lam  M00647532

The universal values of the present are equal to equality. Previous inequalities and prejudices have not been seen in modern society, and some of the previously considered views are now being gradually discussed.  Racism would be one of the issue. Although Racism in 21st century had weaken than before, it could still be found and reflected from the economic market. It brings us some issue in economic market and it happens globally. While in a liberal era, we should have a equal economic market for every races among us.

Discrimination Economy

One source of wage differentials is discrimination. Discrimination occurs when the market offers different opportunities to similar individuals who differ only in race, religion, gender, age or other personal characteristics. Discrimination reflects some people’s prejudices against a social group. Although discrimination is an emotional topic that often leads to heated debates, economists seek to objectively study the subject in order to separate the illusion from reality.

How does discrimination in the labor market affect the income of different groups of workers? This question is important, but not easy to answer. It seems natural to determine the amount of discrimination in the labor market by observing the average wage of different groups. For example, the average American black worker’s wages in recent years have been about 20% below the average wage of white workers. Wage differentials are sometimes used as evidence in many political debates that many employers discriminate against blacks.

However, this method has a clear problem. Even in a labor market without discrimination, different people are having different wages. The amount of human capital that people have, and the kinds of jobs they can and do, are different. The wage differentials we observe in the economy are due in large part to the determinants of the equilibrium wage we discussed in the previous section. A simple observation of the differences in pay between different groups – white and black, men and women – does not explain the universality of discrimination. Take the role of human capital as an example. About 80% of white male workers have a high school diploma and 25% have a college degree. In contrast, only 67% of black male workers have a high school diploma and 12% have a college degree. Therefore, at least some differences between black wages and white wages can be traced back to differences in educational attainment.In fact, human capital may be more important than the ones explained above when explaining wage differentials. For many years, the quality of public schools in major black districts, measured by funding, class size, etc., has been consistently below that of the major white districts.

Of course, the differences in human capital between different groups of workers may themselves reflect discrimination. For example, the historically poor quality of black school students goes back to the prejudices of city councils and school boards. However, such discrimination has taken place long before workers enter the labor market. In this case, the illness is political even if the performance is economic.

If there are two ethnic groups, white and black, in society, there are only two productive elements, capital and labor, in which the whites share more capital than the blacks, but the blacks are more abundant than whites. If society discriminates against black workers and restricts blacks from entering the labor market, the value of white workers’ labor will rise because of supply and demand. However, the rise is actually based on the inability of black workers to use it freely. To the society, whites naturally take a favorable position because whites have higher returns on capital and labor, while blacks can not play their labor force because of racial discrimination. As a result, society can not effectively use resources and blacks Become a victim of racial discrimination.

From an economic point of view, racial discrimination benefits only part of the race, but it has consequences for the entire society. Therefore, in addition to its political and moral abilities, the elimination of racial discrimination actually involves economic considerations.

Racial discrimination, however, seems to be a lingering ghost. Even today, with the singing of affirmative rights, many people seem enlightened on the issue of racial discrimination, but in reality racial discrimination still exists. Quite a few voter statistics also record the voting decisions of voters. Often they are affected by the ethnicity of the candidates. When people face some concepts, it is really difficult to achieve full economic rationality.



BBC News, Working against racism. (1999, February 24). Retrieved November 21, 2017, from http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/284916.stm

Becker, G. S. (2008). The economic approach to human behavior. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press.

Randolph B. Persaud (2003) ‘Power Production and Racialisation in Global Lbour Recruitment and Supply’ in Isabella Bakker and Stephen Gill Power, Production and Social Reproduction (Palgrave), pp. 124 – 145.

Joseph Stiglitz (2009)  ‘The global crisis, social protection and jobs’ International Labour Review 148(1-2) pp. 1 – 13.