Saturday 16 Nov 2019 | 00:47 | SYDNEY
What's happening on
  • 15 Nov 2019 12:30

    Ayodhya verdict and unruly consequences

    India’s Supreme Court has delivered a ruling that will embolden the Hindu right and challenge the country’s secularism.

  • 15 Nov 2019 10:00

    Autocrats Anonymous

    A White House confessional reveals Donald Trump incapable of change – a kind of Marvel superhero, but less interesting.

  • 15 Nov 2019 06:00

    Book Review: The original corporate raiders

    Historian William Dalrymple looks at how a small trading company in London became a mighty army and conquered India.

Singapore

The backlash to “brownface” in Singapore

Singapore is often touted as a modern marvel, an Asian Tiger with an enviable economy and a post-independence history that has been free of racial and religious tensions. It is considered a multiracial success that should be emulated by other countries with diverse populations. Underneath the

Hong Kong’s political trouble is Singapore’s gain

China’s promise to treat Hong Kong as “one country, two systems” has been in the spotlight ever since the controversial extradition bill proposed by the Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam in June resulted in massive protests, not only against the bill but also over Beijing’s meddling in

The guessing game for Singapore’s elections

With a vote due to be called before 2021, the guessing game for when Singapore’s next general election will take place has begun. Everyone is squinting at the tea leaves, and many things can be taken as a sign. Is a recent tax rebate exercise a “red packet” designed to sweeten the ground?

Singapore steers the US-China extremes at Shangri-la

Midway through Lee Hsien Loong’s keynote speech at the Shangri-la Dialogue, I found myself turning to others on my table to register my surprise at how critical he seemed to be about China. Afterwards, talking to many of the Americans who had travelled from Washington for the annual Asian

Singapore: a fake news law which is actually very bad news

It’s been on the cards in Singapore for some time, but when the People’s Action Party (PAP) government tabled the “Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Bill” in Parliament on 1 April 2019 – funnily enough, a day on which it’s traditional to spread “fake news” as a prank

Singapore’s careful F-35 fighter aircraft purchase

Singapore has finally decided to acquire four F-35 aircraft with options for eight more, initially for evaluation purposes. The purchase appears cautious, well-timed, and cost-effective. Cautious, in that development remains ongoing with a full rate production decision not likely until late 2019.

Spats in the straits between Malaysia and Singapore

Australia has presented itself as a defender of the international “rules-based order” in response to rising challenges facing the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). In particular, Canberra has directed its concerns towards China’s actions in the South China Sea and

Singapore: data leaks in a “Smart Nation”

Medical advances have turned HIV into a manageable condition, allowing people living with HIV (PLHIV) to live as long and healthy as anyone else. But there is, unfortunately, no medication that can combat stigma and prejudice. It’s unsurprising, then, that many PLHIV choose to keep quiet about

Singapore: policing social media

My confidence in the Singapore judiciary is as limp as a flag on a windless day. This statement, written by a blogger in October 2013, is not considered in contempt of court. A judge said so herself. For a whole range of other statements about the judiciary, though, Singaporeans can’t be so

The last man executed in Singapore, until the next

“All death penalty will be abolished. Full stop. Since we are abolishing the sentence, all executions should not be carried out,” declared Malaysia’s de facto law minister Liew Vui Keong on 10 October, designated the World Day Against the Death Penalty. Abolitionists in Malaysia rejoiced

The fight to repeal anti-gay laws in Singapore

LGBT activists first launched a campaign to repeal an anti-gay law in Singapore in 2007. That campaign ultimately failed, but over a decade later, the LGBT community is giving it another shot. Section 377A of the Singapore Penal Code criminalises sex between men, regardless of whether it’s

The many ways to be Chinese Singaporean

About 76% of Singapore’s population are ethnically Chinese, making it the only majority-Chinese country outside of China, Taiwan, and the cities of Hong Kong and Macau. But as Amy Qin’s New York Times article on Chinese influence creeping into Singapore began circulating on social media,

Change in Malaysia, awkward questions for Singapore

In January this year, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong held a joint press conference with then prime minister of neighbouring Malaysia Najib Razak.  “I do not expect elections to change the nature of relations between our two countries,” Najib said in response to a question