Squiz Today / 25 July 2018

Squiz Today – Wednesday, 25 July


“When you’re hell-bent on one path you miss the turnoffs that lead you somewhere better.”

Emily Brooks is smart, agile and part of a new generation of journos. And she’s the editor of Future Women, a new club dedicated to the advancement of women. We’re proud to say The Squiz is their recommended news provider. But enough about us… Please welcome Emily to the Three Minute Squiz.


Pakistan goes to the polls today to elect a new government after PM Nawaz Sharif was ousted last year over corruption charges that saw him jailed earlier this month. Hundreds have been killed during the campaign in a number of terrorist attacks. And there have been accusations of censorship, intimidation (which is said to feature in Aussie politics this week…) poll rigging and interference by the military. Despite all that, it will be just the second time power has been transferred from one civilian government to another in Pakistan’s 70-year history.

This is an easy one.

Imran Khan – Yes, the former cricket player. And he’s the favourite to win with his PTI party running on an anti-corruption platform. Khan is also said to have the support of the military. But it hasn’t all been smooth sailing for Khan - an ex-wife last week said he’s a narcissist who can’t operate a microwave. (Wonder if those two things are linked?)

Shehbaz Sharif – Yes, the brother of the ousted PM. He's taken the reins of the PML-N party, and as chief minister for Punjab, Pakistan's most populated province, pundits say he cannot be written off.

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari – Yes, the son of former PM Benazir Bhutto who was assassinated in 2007. His PPP party is said to be “reasonably pragmatic, multilateralist and internationalist" (just nod). It's unlikely he will win, but if it's a tight finish, his party could be called upon as a coalition partner.

Security has been stepped up to make voting as safe as possible for the tens of millions who will visit a polling station today. And more women will vote. The result should be known soon after the polls close tomorrow night.


At least 74 people have been killed, and many more have been injured in the deadliest wildfires Greece has seen for decades. Hot and windy conditions helped fires rip through the seaside village of Mati forcing hundreds of people into the sea to be rescued by navy vessels, yachts and fishing boats. The government has asked for assistance from the EU. The pictures are scary.

And while we have you… The collapse of a dam in Attapeu, Laos has killed at least 20 people, and 100 more are missing. Water has flooded six villages leaving more than 6,000 people homeless. The dam was part of a hydroelectric power project being built by Laotian, Thai and South Korean companies.

The family of Justine Ruszczyk Damond, the Aussie woman killed by police in Minneapolis last year, are suing the city and several officers for violating her civil rights. The officer who shot her, Mohamed Noor, has been charged with her killing and is free on bail ahead of his trial. The lawsuit has been filed on behalf of Damond's father John Ruszczyk and seeks more than $67 million in damages.

Nine Aussies involved in the rescue of the Thai soccer kids and their coach have been honoured with awards of bravery. Dr Richard ‘Harry’ Harris and retired vet Craig Challen received the Star of Courage medal and the Medal of the Order of Australia for their pivotal roles in the rescue. And six divers from the Federal Police and one from the Navy were given the Bravery Medal. Harris said for all his cave diving and medical experience, the most frightening part of the week was sedating the kids for their trip out of the cave. “I’ve never done it in the back of a cave on malnourished, skinny, dehydrated Thai kids before.” Legends the lot of ‘em. Meanwhile, 11 of the 12 kids have been ordained as novices in a Buddhist ceremony.

We’re talking about first daughter Ivanka Trump’s jewellery and clothing line. The company line is it's become too hard to avoid conflicts with her job as a special adviser to her father US President Donald Trump and it has nothing to do with shoppers and retailers boycotting the brand. There were no tears (unlike for these Tour de France riders…). “My focus for the foreseeable future will be the work I am doing here in Washington, so making this decision now is the only fair outcome,” Trump said.

Aussie winemakers have had a champagne (or should we say sparkling?) year. A report released yesterday by industry body Wine Australia said the export market was worth $2.76 billion last financial year. Sales to America, our second biggest market, were down by 8%. But China, which overtook the US as our biggest wine export destination in 2016, was up 55% last year. Treasury Wine Estates, the makers of Penfolds, had a good day off the back of the news with its share price up 5.5% yesterday.

Dogs know when you’re upset. A new study says dogs are quick to offer a helping paw on hearing a human cry. Researchers said it’s impossible to know what the pooches were thinking, but there are indications of enough understanding of human emotional states to take action when their person is in distress. Yes, a pup-cuddle is nice. But the key application of the study is in the training of emergency dogs. Clever hounds.


12.30pm - Dr Tony Bartone, Australian Medical Association President, to address the National Press Club on 'Health Reform: Improving the Patient Journey' - Canberra

ABS Data Release - Consumer Price Index, June

Pakistan election

US President Donald Trump to meet with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström on EU/US trade relations

Louise Brown, the world’s first person to be born through IVF, turns 40yo

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