“What In The World? Weekly Quiz” – May 25-31, 2020

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Pat Miletich, Nashville, TN
Himanshu Manchanda, Nashville, TN
Charles Bowers, Nashville, TN
Thomas Strouse, Oslo, Norway
Seth Emerson, Knoxville, TN
Pete Griffin, Nashville, TN
James Pruss, Houston, TX
Mark Brinkley, Nashville, TN

Well done!

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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.

Last week’s questions and answers:


1. The United States circulated a draft UN resolution calling for indefinite extension of an arms embargo on Iran which drew this response from Russian UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia, “It expires in October. … And for us that’s clear, that’s clear. I do not see any reason why an arms embargo should be imposed on Iran.” The current embargo was a provision of THIS agreement.

A. The Comprehensive Middle East Arms Control Treaty (CMEACT)
B. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)
C. The United Nations Security Council Resolution 9250 of 2015 (Agreement Limiting Weapons Proliferations in the Persian Gulf Littoral)
D. The Paris Agreement on Termination of the Iran-Iraq War

Correct Response: B. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)

2. The Department of Justice’s move to drop prosecution of General Michael Flynn over his charges of lying to the FBI was in the news last week. Flynn pleaded guilty to lying about his interactions with THIS person.

A. Turkish Foreign Minister Çavuşoğlu
B. Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak
C. Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai
D. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov

Correct Response: B. Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak

3. An anti-ship missile struck a ship of THIS Persian Gulf nation’s navy in an accident that claimed 19 sailors, wounding 15 more. The country was condemned in January over the accidental downing of a Ukrainian airliner by a surface-to-air missile battery near Tehran.

A. Kuwait
B. Qatar
C. Iran
D. Oman

Correct Response: C. Iran

4. A “unity government” has been approved by parliament in Israel with Benjamin Netanyahu serving as prime minister in a power sharing role with an “alternate prime minister,” a role filled by THIS politician.

A. Yamina party leader Naftali Bennett
B. Yisrael Beiteinu party leader Avigdor Lieberman
C. Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz
D. Labor party leader Amir Peretz

Correct Response: C. Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz

5. The war of words between Beijing and Washington added another skirmish May 17th as U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned China about THIS, which he summed up saying, “Any decision impinging on Hong Kong’s autonomy and freedoms as guaranteed under the Sino-British Joint Declaration and the Basic Law would inevitably impact our assessment of One Country, Two Systems and the status of the territory.”

A. Abrogation of the 1997 agreement with the UK over transition of Hong Kong.
B. Interference with American journalists reporting from Hong Kong.
C. Jailing of protestors without the filing of charges.
D. Permanent cancellation of U.S. Navy ship visits.

Correct Response: B. Interference with American journalists reporting from Hong Kong.

6. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo released a statement on May 15th threatening to “exact consequences” against THIS organization, created by the “Rome Statute,” over Palestinians qualification as a sovereign state and jurisdiction over the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.

A. International Criminal Court
B. World Court at the Hague
C. United Nations Security Council
D. The Rome Tribunal

Correct Response: A. International Criminal Court

7. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said the world would use 9.1% less oil this year, or 9.07 million barrels a day less. Which of THESE countries is not an OPEC member?

A. Angola
B. Ecuador
C. Gabon
D. Mexico

Correct Response: D. Mexico

8. President Trump was said to be ready to resume U.S. support to THIS international organization that was the subject of a controversial aid freeze last month. However, press reports indicate Trump’s position on aid has hardened after two Fox News hosts who learned a resumption was possible castigated THIS organization over the weekend.

A. Agency for International Development (AID)
B. United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA)
C. World Health Organization (WHO)
D. United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

Correct Response: C. World Health Organization (WHO)

9. “If the United States, just like pirates, intends to create insecurity on international waterways, it would be taking a dangerous risk and that will certainly not go without repercussion,” according to an Iranian news agency release that addressed American threats over shipments of oil to THIS beleaguered, pariah country.

A. Cuba
B. North Korea
C. China
D. Venezuela

Correct Response: D. Venezuela

10. Genocide suspect Felicien Kabuga was arrested in France on May 16th. He had a $5 million bounty on him for 26 years from THIS country where he was charged with funding militias in the massacre of 800,000 people.

A. Rwanda
B. Bosnia
C. Myanmar
D. Sudan

Correct Response: A. Rwanda


Copyright: 2020 Tennessee World Affairs Council

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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.

THE VISION of  the Tennessee World Affairs Council is a well-informed community that thinks critically about the world and the impact of global events.   

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