When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

TOPIC: south korea

Society

What Does Santa Claus Look Like Around The World?

He's making a list, he's checking it twice... But he doesn't always wear a red suit. From Aruba to Finland and Liberia, here's what Christmas looks like around the world.

Across the globe, Santa Claus is recognized as the Christmas gift bearer. But he is not always known as a red-suited jolly man. The tradition of a man bringing gifts to children is traced to stories about the early Greek bishop St. Nicholas of Myra, a small city in modern-day Turkey.

Santa Claus today not only goes by different names, like Father Christmas and Old St. Nick, but is linked to different folktales and cultural practices. Here are lesser known variations of Santa, from the beaches of Aruba to the snow-capped mountains of Finland.

Watch Video Show less

Imran Khan Assassination Attempt, Ethiopia Truce, Hole-y Cheese

👋 Hai!*

Welcome to Thursday, where Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Imran Khan is out of danger after an assassination attempt at a protest march, inflation is getting out of hand in Turkey and Switzerland takes the crown for best cheese. Meanwhile, Ukrainian journalist Anna Akage looks at the relationship between Georgia and its problematic neighbor, Russia: Yes, it’s complicated.

[*Malay, Malaysia, Indonesia]

Keep reading... Show less

North Korea Fires 23 Missiles, Bibi’s Comeback, Lions On The Loose Down Under

👋 Ahoj!*

Welcome to Wednesday, where North Korea fires an unprecedented barrage of missiles, Benjamin Netanyahu looks set for a comeback in Israel, and Twitter’s coveted blue tick now comes at a price. Meanwhile, in Egyptian media Mada Masr, political scientist Fatemeh Sadeghi looks at the mass protests shaking Iran and their long-lasting effects on society.

[*Czech]

Keep reading... Show less

U.S. Warns About Putin’s Dangerous Doublespeak On Nuclear Threat

Vladimir Putin told the world yesterday "don't worry" about a nuclear attack, even as he's setting up a scenario that makes it more likely.

Vladimir Putin used his wide-ranging foreign policy speech Thursday to strike an overall threatening tone toward Ukraine and its Western partners, including a warning that the coming decade would be the “most dangerous and unpredictable” since World War II.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

Sign up to our free daily newsletter.

Putin did, however, try to allay one specific fear: that he might choose to use nuclear arms in the war in Ukraine. Putin said Russia “had never talked about using nuclear weapons" and that using them “made no political or military sense.”

Keep reading... Show less
Geopolitics
Alina Grytsenko

South Korea To South America, Putin’s Threats May Push New Countries To Go Nuclear

Beyond the already existing nuclear powers, at least eight countries could be poised to discard non-proliferation status quo and arm themselves with nuclear arsenals.

KYIV — Vladimir Putin's nuclear threats fundamentally undermine the basic principles of non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction developed in the post-War period. Indeed, signs show that several nations have recently been intensifying activities around acquiring a nuclear arsenal for national security.

As a non-nuclear power invaded by nuclear-armed Russia, Ukraine stands as an example to other countries around the world of the vulnerability inherent in not having an atomic arsenal.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

Sign up to our free daily newsletter.

But if Russia actually uses nuclear weapons, the risk of new countries seeking these weapons of mass destruction for the first time may quickly accelerate.

Watch Video Show less
In The News
Sophia Constantino, Laure Gautherin, Anne-Sophie Goninet and Bertrand Hauger

Thai Preschool Attack, OPEC To Cut Oil Production, French Literature Nobel

👋 ನಮಸ್ಕಾರ*

Welcome to Thursday, where at least 31 people, including 23 children, have been killed in an attack at a daycare center in Thailand, OPEC stuns the energy market and the Nobel Prize in literature goes to a French author. Meanwhile, for Paris-based daily Les Echos, Guillaume Ptak draws a parallel between the growing militarization of Ukrainian citizens and life in Israel.

[*Namaskar - Kannada, India]

Watch Video Show less
In The News
Sophia Constantino, Laure Gautherin, Anne-Sophie Goninet and Bertrand Hauger

Ukraine Gains & Putin Signs, Musk-Twitter Saga Back On, Chemistry Nobel

👋 Hei!*

Welcome to Wednesday, where Ukraine continues to advance on the ground while Putin officially signs annexation, Elon Musk’s Twitter bid is back on, and the Nobel in Chemistry goes to three “click chemistry” scientists. Meanwhile, Argentine writer Ignacio Pereyra has a different take on the meaning of Federer and Nadal’s recent PDA that the whole tennis world was gushing over.

[*Finnish]

Watch Video Show less
In The News
Lisa Berdet, Chloé Touchard, Lila Paulou and Bertrand Hauger

U.S. To Ramp Up Ukraine Military Aid, Deadly Storms Across Europe, LeBron’s Record Contract

👋 Sawubona!*

Welcome to Friday, where the U.S. is expected to pledge an additional $800 million in military aid to Ukraine, severe storms kill 12 across Europe, and NBA superstar LeBron James scores a record contract. Meanwhile, for Global Press Journal, Apophia Agiresaasi reports on the near-impossibility for Ugandan schoolchildren to go back to school.

[*Zulu - sah-woo-boh-nah]

Watch Video Show less
Geopolitics
Lee Yee On

Far Out, Far East: Meet North Korea's Biggest Booster In Taiwan

"Taiwanese would laugh at the leader worship of the North Koreans, but wasn't that what we did in the days of Chiang Kai-shek?"

TAIPEI — On the evening of April 15, a crowd of nearly 100 people eagerly swarmed inside an ordinary building in Taipei's Ximending neighborhood. The occasion? The "Sun Festival", which commemorates the birthday of the first leader of North Korea, Kim Il Sung, and one of the most important holidays each year.

The venue was decorated in a North Korean style, with DPRK flags and photos of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il visible all around, while the tables displayed North Korean-made noodles, biscuits, tins, soaps, cigarettes and toy rifles.

Most attendees were in their 20s and 30s, with males outnumbering females by about 2-to-1. There were couples, friends and even a family with children. Everyone who attended received a small North Korean flag, two slices of Korean fried green bean cake on a paper plate and a portion of Korean seaweed rice rolls.

In addition to the "North Korean Lifestyle Exhibition" as a selling point, the event also featured a speaker recounting his travels to the country. And just before the talk began, the speaker invited all participants to stand up, played the North Korean national anthem and then led them in a bow to the statue of Kim Il Sung.

Hung Hao, the organizer for this event, is also the manager of the Facebook page "DPRK Business News." The page now has more than 33,000 followers, but Hung's business is more than that: on his bilingual business cards, he details the other services that include investment opportunities in the DPRK, business missions and contacts, business information and consultation, the import and export of DPRK goods from Taiwan.

Watch Video Show less
In The News
Lila Paulou, Lisa Berdet, McKenna Johnson and Anne-Sophie Goninet

Putin In Tehran, Record Heat Across Europe, Dinosaurs In The City

👋 Demat!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where Vladimir Putin heads to Tehran to meet with the Iranian and Turkish leaders for his first trip abroad since the start of the Ukraine war, the UK records all-time-high temperatures and dinosaur footprints are found in a Chinese restaurant courtyard. Meanwhile, a Japanese ice-skating legend retires and a new Australian report quantifies the dire state of the environment.

[*Breton, France]

Watch Video Show less
In The News
Joel Silvestri, McKenna Johnson, Lila Paulou, Lisa Berdet and Anne-Sophie Goninet

Putin Declares Victory In Luhansk, July 4 Shooting, Dry Italy

👋 નમસ્તે!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where Putin declares victory in Luhansk, a 22-year-old man is arrested in connection with the July 4 Parade shooting that killed six north of Chicago, and New Zealand is batting for equal pay. Meanwhile, from Dijon mustard to potatoes by way of pasta, we look at food shortages around the world.

[*Namaste - Gujarati, India]

Watch Video Show less
Future
Rozena Crossman

K-Pop To Catalonia: How The Metaverse Can Turn Local Culture Global

Glitchy online museum tours are a thing of the past. From Barcelona to Bollywood, the metaverse is bringing immersive cultural experiences right into our homes.

Between environmental costs, COVID and criticisms of digital nomads hurting local economies, the world is questioning the magic of travel — and increasing the time spent in front of screens. Although the meager form the metaverse has taken today can’t replace the smells, tastes, or exact luminescence that make discovering new corners of the world so thrilling, it may soon be dropping local adventures from far away lands into our living rooms.

While the guided tours of museums and online concerts that we all tested out during lockdowns were often glitchy and underwhelming, the beginning of 2022 has seen regional cultural initiatives from around the world flocking to the metaverse, a virtual reality world where people can interact and have experiences as they do in the real world.

Watch Video Show less