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Monday, February 17, 2020

Explained Snippets | Trade among nations: China, US & the rest in export, import

India was the world’s 20th largest exporter ($298 bn) and 11th largest importer ($447bn) in 2017.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Updated: July 9, 2018 4:45:19 am
Figures in $billion. India was the world’s 20th largest exporter (8 bn) and 11th largest importer (7bn) in 2017. (Source: World Trade Organization)

The charts above, based on World Trade Organization data, show the world’s leading exporters and importers at a time when concerns are being raised over the impact of the tariff war between China and the United States on world trade. These two countries are the world’s largest exporters and importers, with China heading one list and the US the other.


It’s coming home: Why are England fans chanting this?

Why are England fans chanting this?

In match after England match at the World Cup, fans are chanting “It’s Coming Home”. Part of the 1996 hit single Three Lions written by the band Lightning Seeds and Frank Skinner and David Baddiel, the phrase has become a trend on social media too, from @KensingtonRoyal’s “You wanted to make history @England and you are doing just that. This has been an incredible #WorldCup run and we’ve enjoyed every minute.

You deserve this moment — Football’s Coming Home!” and British Airways’ simple “It’s coming home…” What is “home”? FIFA recognises England as the birthplace of modern football, with the creation of the Football Association in England in 1863. But in the song, “It’s coming home” is actually a reference to England hosting UEFA Euro 1996. “But the snippet has evolved to refer to both England’s hopes of bringing home the World Cup trophy but also the disputed spiritual home of football,” The Guardian notes.

n a tweet, US-based British sociologist Ben Carrington has questioned the notion of “home”,with a screen grab of what he had written 20 years ago: “ ‘Football’s coming home’ is, then, essentially about trying to reconstruct an imperial Britain, with the assumption that, no matter what others may say about football being a world game, England somehow has inalienable rights to the game…” England have won the World Cup only once — in 1966 — and their performance has been very mixed. They skipped the first three editions, started playing since 1950, failed to qualify for the event in 1974, 1978 and 1994, and exited from the group stages in 1950, 1958 and 2014. They are now in the semifinals, for the first time since 1990.


Tip for Reading List: A US insider in Putin’s Russia

Michael McFaul, a political science professor at Stanford University and Barack Obama’s advisor in the 2008 US presidential election, is a Russia specialist. After studying as an undergraduate in Leningrad, participating in pro-democracy activism in Russia in the 1990s and becoming an architect of Obama’s “Russia reset” policy (with then President Dmitri Medvedev) as a senior advisor in the Obama administration, McFaul went on to serve as US Ambassador to Russia during 2012-14.

In his new book, From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin’s Russia, McFaul describes how President Vladimir Putin began dismantling the deals between Obama and Medvedev and how his regime targeted the new Ambassador. “Putin despised McFaul, whom he had long suspected of being a CIA agent, and seems to have directed the media to slander the new ambassador,” writes the Christian Science Monitor in its review, while The New York Times writes that “even his children were obtrusively tailed by the Russian security services”. “I also felt betrayed personally by being portrayed as an enemy of Russia. I loved Russia,” McFaul writes in the book, which is both a memoir and a historical account of US-Russian relations over the last four decades, described in the NYT review as “a fascinating and timely account of the current crisis in the relationship between Russia and the US”. Starting from Mikhail Gorbachev’s time, it closes with an epilogue on the present with Donald Trump and Putin. “Suffice to say, it’s a dark and downward trajectory,” The Guardian notes in its review.

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