Squiz Today / 15 May 2017
Squiz Today – Monday, 15 May
NORTH KOREA TESTS THE LIMITS OF RANGE AND PATIENCE
North Korea yesterday launched a missile test that flew almost 700km before falling to sea between North Korea and Japan. It’s the latest in a series of missile tests this year that has caused an escalation of tensions between North Korea and the US. The US pointed out that the missile landed closer to Russia than Japan, which US President Donald Trump said probably wouldn’t thrill Russia.
WHAT HAS THE WORLD SAID?
In a word, condemnation. Japan, the US, South Korea, Australia have all spoken out against the test. China, North Korea’s ally, again urged restraint. It’s the first missile test since South Korea elected new president Moon Jae-in last week. Moon campaigned on better engagement with North Korea. So how’s that working out? Not great so far. Moon condemned the attack and said they would engage with North Korea but only if they had a major ‘tude adjustment. Coincidently (or by design) China’s President Xi Jinping was hosting a trade conference in Beijing attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin when the missile took flight. Some experts say the test was something of a “hey, look at me” from North Korean directed at those powers. So, a successful test all round then.
WHAT’S DIFFERENT ABOUT THIS ONE?
North Korea has said its aim is to develop a nuclear missile that can strike US targets in the Pacific. Analysts are looking at it, but they say the missile that was tested has a longer range than its predecessors. One expert said he thought the missile had a range of about 4,500 km - not enough to get to Darwin, but enough to get to Indonesia. Another said he believed the test showed a capacity to get as far as Guam, which has a US Air Force Base. In that context, expect the US to not be as keen on restraint as China might hope. Isn’t that a cheery start to Monday!
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WANNACRY CYBER ATTACK – RESULTS AS ADVERTISED
It seems Australia has been lucky to so far avoid the major effects from the malware attack – correctly named ‘WannaCry’ - that swept the UK, Europe and the US over the weekend. The UK’s National Health Service, Russia's interior ministry, Spanish teleco Telefonica, Germany's rail network and US logistics business FedEx were all hit. Reports last night said that 200,000 users from more than 145 countries were affected, and that number is expected to grow as people return to work today. The hero of the story is an anonymous tech hobbyist who lives at home with their parents. True story. He/she found a way to stop it but says it will be easy for the attackers to reboot the attack today. The virus gets in through via Microsoft Windows – similar-ish to the attack Australia experienced a few weeks ago. Microsoft have issued another patch so if you didn’t update your software last time, do it today. And you might like to acquaint yourself with some basic cyber-security techniques. And don’t open emails or attachments sent to you from addresses you don’t recognise. Sorry for being bossy, we're just looking out for you.
DUELING POLLS ON TURNBULL’S BUDGET
Fairfax this morning reports a two-point poll bump for the Coalition government following last week’s budget (but they still trail Labor 47:53 on a two-party preferred basis). The poll also shows good support for the major announcements of a bank levy, schools funding, infrastructure spending and an increase in the Medicare levy to fund the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
However, The Australian’s Newspoll also has the Coalition trailing Labor 47:53, with support for the Coalition going backwards from 48 in their last poll. Turnbull scored a two-point bump in the 'better PM' stakes to lead Bill Shorten 44:31. Interestingly, Newspoll shows the same level of support for the bank levy as Fairfax’s poll at 68%.
PRESIDENT MACRON INAUGURATED
France’s new President Emmanuel Macron has been inaugurated in Paris promising a “reformed and relaunched” European Union, to bring solidarity, and he will address the high level of unemployment. Macron has a busy first week ahead – he's expected to announce a new Prime Minister on Monday, and he's off to Germany to see Chancellor Angela Merkel about the EU. He's also had his hands full identifying En Marche candidates for June’s parliamentary election – remember Macron created the party just last year. But enough with the fluff - what did Brigitte Macron wear? She went light blue in a Vuitton outfit – a similar shade to Melania Trump’s inauguration outfit we thought. What does that mean? Probably absolutely nothing.
SPEAKING OF A REBRAND…
BHP (formerly known as BHP Billiton) have unveiled their new brand identity. They’ve got rid of the blobs and dropped Billiton from their name, a legacy of their merger in 2001. See, everyone’s doing it!
ISAIAH TAKES AUSTRALIA TO A TOP TEN EUROVISION FINISH
The alternative headline for this story is “Ukraine arse pretends to be an Aussie", but we thought that might be a bit crass. So first things first: Aussie representative Isaiah Firebrace delivered a top ten finish at the geographically-confused singing competition, Eurovision. Portugal’s Salvador Sobral won the night and said; “I think this could be a victory for music with people that make music that actually means something.” Clearly he’s never watched Eurovision before. Now, to the nudity. A Ukrainian streaker draped in an Australian flag took to the stage. How he was mistaken for an actual Aussie male we don’t know. He danced and wiggled in a far more coordinated manner than any bloke we know.
AUSTRALIAN PLAYERS COULD MISS THE ASHES OVER PAY DISPUTE
A few weeks ago, Cricket Australia put a new pay deal on the table for Australia’s male and female cricketers. At the time, it was reported as being a dramatic improvement for our female players, but changes to the way the men are paid were expected to cause heartache. The players officially rejected the offer in late April and reports over the weekend say Cricket Australia emailed players and threatened them with unemployment if they do not sign the deal by 30 June. So how is this fixed? If you're a disaffected player, you take to social media with a snappy hashtag. Check your Twitter for #fairshare from some of our leading wielders of the willow.
DIANA’S EX SUFFERS STROKE AND HEART ATTACK
James Hewitt, the dashing ex-Army Captain or dastardly cad (depending on which side of the royal fence you sit) who had a five-year affair with Princess Diana, has suffered a heart attack and stroke. He’s the one many thought could be Prince Harry’s father – something all involved have denied. Once a bit of a high flyer, Hewitt’s fortunes faded not long after he sold the love letters Diana sent him to a UK tabloid. Hashtag classy. He has reportedly been living in a two-bedroom flat with his mother.
“My mum and sister haven’t told me anything of what they’re doing… It’s my story. They need to get permission from me to sell my story.”
Home-grown Colombian jailbird Cassie Sainsbury (in custody for allegedly attempting to smuggle 5.8kg of cocaine from the country) says her family have sold her story to Channel Nine’s 60 Minutes without talking to her. And she’s none too pleased. Reports say her family asked Nine for about $1 million. And while the final amount has not been confirmed, it's said to be a lot of dosh. The problem is her fiancé Scott Broadbridge sold his version of events to Channel Seven’s Sunday Night. Sainsbury said she wants to talk to Broadbridge about what to do next. We’ll watch one and record the other. Can’t wait.
SQUIZ THE DAY
ABS Data Releases - Housing Finance and Building Approvals for March
Sara Connor, the Australian mother jailed in Bali in relation to the killing of a local policeman, finds out today if her sentence will be increased
UN International Day of Families
Lisa Curry (legendary Australian swimmer) turns 55yo
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