First Past the Post: December 20


East and South Asia

The internet in North Korea.

Votes are being counted in Gujarat‘s recent election.

A profile of Hu Chunhua, the incoming Chinese Communist Party chair of Guangdong province.

Malaysian elections seem likely to fall next spring.

North America

Former U.S. ambassador to China and Singapore and former Utah governor Jon Huntsman has some thoughts on the future of the U.S. Republican Party.

Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives hold a narrow lead against the NDP and the ruling Liberal Party (in third place) before what’s likely to be a spring provincial election.

Latin America / Caribbean

The incumbent advantage in Latin American elections.


How Algerians feel about French relations upon the state visit by French president François Hollande. [French]

Hollande’s not apologizing for France’s colonial history in Algeria.

Senegal will move to prosecute Chad’s former president, Hissène Habré.

An update on Sudan’s opposition.


Artur Mas will continue as the regional president of Catalunya.

Spiegel looks at the return of former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi.

Italy seems set to go to the polls on February 24, and technocratic prime minister Mario Monti seems likely to run.  [Italian]

The Dutch economy is expected to contract.

It’s not Christmas until Irish president Michael D. Higgins (pictured abovegives us his Christmas address.

Greece gets a credit rating upgrade for Christmas.

Russia’s Duma is considering a ban on adoptions by U.S. parents.

Middle East

Ahmet Davutoğlu, Turkey’s foreign minister, says the fall of Damascus is only a matter of time.

Tarek Masoud at Foreign Policy on the Egyptian referendum mess.


The story behind Australia’s 1996 gun control law.