“What In The World? Weekly Quiz” – May 18-24, 2020

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Himanshu Manchanda, Nashville, TN
Mark Brinkley, Nashville, TN
Charles Bowers, Nashville, TN
Pat Miletich, Nashville, TN
David Hillinck, Huntsville, AL
Thmomas Strouse, Oslo, Norway
Yezzie Dospil, Nashville, TN
Campbell Lahman, Nolensville, TN

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May 2020 Monthly Prize

The World: A Brief Introduction

Richard Haass

President, Council on Foreign Relations

An invaluable primer from Richard Haass, President of the Council on Foreign Relations, that will help anyone, expert and non-expert alike, navigate a time in which many of our biggest challenges come from the world beyond our borders.

Like it or not, we live in a global era, in which what happens thousands of miles away has the ability to affect our lives. This time, it is a Coronavirus known as Covid-19, which originated in a Chinese city many had never heard of but has spread to the corners of the earth. Next time it could well be another infectious disease from somewhere else. Twenty years ago it was a group of terrorists trained in Afghanistan and armed with box-cutters who commandeered four airplanes and flew them into buildings (and in one case a field) and claimed nearly three thousand lives. Next time it could be terrorists who use a truck bomb or gain access to a weapon of mass destruction. In 2016 hackers in a nondescript office building in Russia traveled virtually in cyberspace to manipulate America’s elections. Now they have burrowed into our political life. In recent years, severe hurricanes and large fires linked to climate change have ravaged parts of the earth; in the future we can anticipate even more serious natural disasters. In 2008, it was a global financial crisis caused by mortgage-backed securities in America, but one day it could well be a financial contagion originating in Europe, Asia, or Africa. This is the new normal of the 21st century.

The World is designed to provide readers of any age and experience with the essential background and building blocks they need to make sense of this complicated and interconnected world. It will empower them to manage the flood of daily news. Readers will become more informed, discerning citizens, better able to arrive at sound, independent judgments. While it is impossible to predict what the next crisis will be or where it will originate, those who read The World will have what they need to understand its basics and the principal choices for how to respond.

In short, this book will make readers more globally literate and put them in a position to make sense of this era. Global literacy–knowing how the world works–is a must, as what goes on outside a country matters enormously to what happens inside. Although the United States is bordered by two oceans, those oceans are not moats. And the so-called Vegas rule–what happens there stays there–does not apply in today’s world to anyone anywhere. U.S. foreign policy is uniquely American, but the world Americans seek to shape is not. Globalization can be both good and bad, but it is not something that individuals or countries can opt out of. Even if we want to ignore the world, it will not ignore us. The choice we face is how to respond.

We are connected to this world in all sorts of ways. We need to better understand it, both its promise and its threats, in order to make informed choices, be it as students, citizens, voters, parents, employees, or investors. To help readers do just that, The World focuses on essential history, what makes each region of the world tick, the many challenges globalization presents, and the most influential countries, events, and ideas. Explaining complex ideas with wisdom and clarity, Richard Haass’s The World is an evergreen book that will remain relevant and useful as history continues to unfold.

Here’s last week’s questions and answers:


WEEK OF MAY 11-17, 2020

1. Global Covid-19 cases have passed the four million mark with this country leading in the number of deaths.

A. China
B. Italy
C. United States
D. Russia

Correct Response: C. United States

2. China’s Foreign Ministry fighting back over what it calls 24 “lies” by U.S. officials over the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. It posted a 11,000-word article on its website that backed up the rebuttals being made in press conferences. The article began with THIS famous U.S. presidential quote.

A. “Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.”
B. “This world of ours… must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be, instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.”
C. “You can fool some of the people all the time and fool all the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”
D. “No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar.”

Correct Response: C. “You can fool some of the people all the time and fool all the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”

3. A plot to overthrow the president of THIS COUNTRY was said to be foiled as the government claimed to arrest alleged mercenaries, killing some and arresting two Americans. The government blamed Washington for the plot.

A. Guatemala
B. Venezuela
C. Colombia
D. Ecuador

Correct Response: B. Venezuela

4. The response to increasing Covid-19 infections rates in THIS COUNTRY, the newest pandemic hotspot in South America, has been chaotic and erratic with the government equivocating in favor of handing responsibility to municipalities largest due to indifference from President Jair Bolsonaro.

A. Argentina
B. Brazil
C. Venezuela
D. Ecuador

Correct Response: B. Brazil

5. Parades and street parties in numerous cities in Europe and Allied nations were stifled due to the pandemic preventing a full-throttle celebration of this anniversary last week.

A. 50th anniversary of the Schengen Agreement lowering European borders.
B. 500th birthday of William Shakespeare
C. 75th anniversary of VE Day marking the victory of Nazi Germany.
D. 250th anniversary of the birth of composer Ludwig von Beethoven.

Correct Response: C. 75th anniversary of VE Day marking the victory of Nazi Germany.

6. The United States has been a reluctant participant in cooperation in the battle against Covid-19 as demonstrated by THIS.

A. Abstaining from an international conference on funding research of Covid-19 vaccines and treatments.
B. Holding up UN Security Council backing of the Secretary General’s March 23rd call for a global ceasefire during the pandemic due to bickering over the wording.
C. Sitting out a conference in April to discuss future distribution of Covid-19 vaccines in an equitable way.
D. All of the above

Correct Response: D. All of the above

7. Iraq has a new prime minister after half a year of contentious political disputes over the country’s leadership. THIS official enjoyed a good relationship with the United States especially during his tenure as Director of the National Intelligence Service during the battles with ISIS, which may be helpful as Washington navigates the footprint and role of U.S. troops in Iraq.

A. Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi
B. Prime Minister Barham Salih
C. Prime Minister Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi
D. Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi

Correct Response: D. Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi

8. American military forces – including four Patriot SAM batteries, fighter jets, U.S. Navy ships and the associated military personnel — are being withdrawn from Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf. The draw down is said to reflect the reduction of the threat from Iran and may be a response from Washington following irritation on harmful Saudi oil production moves. The forces were deployed to the Kingdom and the Gulf following THIS.

A. Iranian cruise missile and drone strikes against key Saudi Arabian oil facilities at Abqaiq in September.
B. Iranian surface to surface missile strikes against Ayn al-Assad and Erbil airbases in January.
C. Iranian threats to retaliate against Saudi Arabia and other U.S. allies in the region following the killing of Qassem Soleimani.
D. Iranian surface to air missile attacks against U.S. drones flying over the Persian Gulf.

Correct Response: A. Iranian cruise missile and drone strikes against key Saudi Arabian oil facilities at Abqaiq in September.

9. An Iranian government spokesman said Tehran was ready for a prisoner swap without precondition but the United States had yet to respond. American and Iranian officials had started up contacts during the negotiations around Tehran’s nuclear program, but the two countries have not had diplomatic relations SINCE THIS period.

A. As a result of U.S. involvement in the 1952 coup that deposed Iranian Prime Minister Mossaddegh.
B. In the aftermath of the 1988 U.S. Navy shootdown of an Iranian airliner over the Persian Gulf.
C. In the aftermath of the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
D. None of the above.

Correct Response: C. In the aftermath of the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

10. Troops from India were involved in a brief confrontation with troops from THIS country in Sikkim Province along its northeastern border. Eleven soldiers were injured when troops from the two sides – which fought a brief war in 1962 – were involved in a skirmish.

A. Pakistan
B. China
C. Nepal
D. Bangladesh

Correct Response: B. China

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THE MISSION of the nonprofit, nonpartisan Tennessee World Affairs Council is to promote international awareness, understanding and connections to enhance the region’s global stature and to prepare Tennesseans to thrive in our increasingly complex and connected world.

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