Beijing issues second major smog alert

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First Thing with John Stupart

TGIF, 18th December

“Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says 'I'll try again tomorrow'.”
– Mary
Anne Radmacher

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While you were

Beijing has issued a second smog 'red alert'. Just one week after its first warning, the alert has very real consequences for
Chinese living in the city. From Saturday until a predicted lifting on Tuesday, commuter traffic will be banned from the streets and factories and similar manufacturing facilities will shut down. BBC
Enrique Marquez Jr. has been arrested in connection with aiding the San Bernardino shooters. Marquez purchased two assault rifles
for Syed Rizwan Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik. In addition to the weapons charges, Marquez is believed to have planned other shootings with Farook, aiming to hit two more targets in Southern California. WP
Daily Maverick's photo of the year sums up the past 11 months in one shot. Greg Nicolson's photograph of a chortling president Zuma on 12 February 2015 clearly show the
fractures in the ANC. Surrounded by a phalanx of personal and parliamentary 'goons', Zuma appeared content to sit back and laugh while all around him chaos reigned. DM
A large comet will be coming fairly close to the planet on Christmas Eve. The asteroid, named 2003 SD220, will pass us at a comfortable distance of 11 million km. The 3km large object appears to be no threat to anyone worried
about their Christmas being disturbed by a global apocalypse. JT
Chelsea manager José Mourinho was sacked because of a "palpable discord between manager and
players". A "discord" may be putting it lightly, judging from the post-Mourinho punditry. Former Arsenal defender, Martin Keown, noted that "the
respect had gone, and it's easier to change the manager than it is 22 players". At any rate, the real test now starts, with Chelsea just one point away from the league relegation zone. BBC
Financial Indicators:
Oil=$37.11 Gold=$1,051.87 Platinum=$844.66
R/$=15.18 R/€=16.43 R/£=22.62 $/€=1.08
JSE All Share=49,706.29 DJIA=17,617.91 FTSE 100=6,102.54: Source
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In Numbers

The cost in US$ of violence in South Africa thus far. This figure is calculated by Visions of Humanity.
Coming Up
Today is Steve Biko's birthday. The struggle hero was born on this day in 1946.
The second day of the Test between New Zealand and Sri Lanka continues today. This starts very late tonight.
Cricket fans who are already on holiday rejoice, the Sunfoil series has games for you to watch. Day two of the following Test matches are ongoing: Titans v Warriors played at SuperSport Park, Centurion, Cape Cobras v
Knights played at Newlands, Cape Town, and the Lions v Dolphins played at New Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg.
Fact of the day: Beverley Hills pet stores are
prohibited by law from selling any pets that are not from a shelter.
Bloemfontein: min: 19° max: 34°, cloudy
Cape Town: min: 16° max: 28°, sunny
Durban: min: 19° max: 37°, sunny
East London: min: 20° max: 34°, sunny
Johannesburg: min: 18° max: 32°, cloudy
Kimberley: min: 19° max: 36°, cloudy
Nelspruit: min: 16° max: 34°, sunny
Pietermaritzburg: min: 13° max: 39°, cloudy
Polokwane: min: 16° max: 32°, sunny
Port Elizabeth: min: 18° max: 30°, sunny
Pretoria: min: 18° max: 32°, cloudy
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Now on Daily Maverick

2015 Photo of the Year: President Jacob Zuma
As this year began, so shall it end. It started with mayhem in Parliament, and by July we were in the winter of discontent. Now as we careen
towards Christmas, we are in another season altogether, and it is ripe with chaos. By SISONKE MSIMANG.
Op-Ed: South Africa's most powerful man
We are talking about Pravin Gordhan, of course. If President Zuma removed him now, the financial consequences would be so much worse than his last
prank that his political life would be over, which it already almost is. Gordhan knows all this, of course. He is also a patriot with integrity, and a strategist. These are the exact qualities our leaders need, those of which Zuma is so woefully
ICG: The unbearable urgency of resuming Turkey/PKK peace

With a new government in place after the 1 November election, now is the time to reverse the spiral of mistrust between Ankara and the disparate
Kurdish movement, represented, at times interchangeably and without clear mandates, by the legal Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), now in the parliament, as well as the outlawed PKK and its jailed leader, Abdullah Öcalan. By the INTERNATIONAL CRISIS
Nicolette Naylor: We need to talk about the P word
As I attend yet another celebration of a “fabulous” year where we all did such “excellent” work in saving lives and doing good, I feel mildly
suffocated by all the Christmas cheer going around from New York to South Africa... So I want to reflect on the more sinister side of things, like, what does it mean to be associated with the “P” word? No, not that P word – the “P” for Philanthropy
word! I deliberately use the “P” word because philanthropy has become a somewhat contradictory word. Used to sometimes celebrate, exalt and glorify efforts but also used to insult, curse or denigrate efforts geared toward social
Floyd Shivambu: South Africa is under the management of

We should never agree to be puppet-mastered as if there are no rules and principles that govern this country. We call on all South Africans to
stand up against the Gupta syndicate because we will soon be left with no country.
Shaun Dlanjwa: Fellow South Africans, we are our own

The signing of petitions online seems like such a cowardly thing to do because it allows us to claim to have done something to right the wrongs
that are being constantly visited upon this nation, without putting ourselves at the firing line of an increasingly brutal police force. We shirk our responsibility to come out to the streets and demonstrate with our numbers and voice the end of our
tolerance for the wilful destruction of the only home that most of our kids will ever know.
Xhanti Payi: Freedom under threat
The president, along with other leaders of our society, has a definite duty to explain the decisions he makes. We do not live in an autocracy. We
live in a democratic and open society, and should be free from arbitrary rule.
While you were sleeping: 17 December 2015
Trump glows orange in debate, mushroom clouds seen over Nkandla, and Chelsea is officially the worst football team in the
In case you
missed it
Pravin Gordhan vs Sunday Times: Press Ombudsman finds paper in breach,
delivers a damning judgment

Press Ombudsman Johan Retief found on Tuesday that reporting by the The Sunday Times on the SARS “rogue unit” had been “inaccurate and unfair”, is
in breach of several sections of the Press Code and that the paper should apologise unconditionally to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan. Gordhan has come out guns blazing since his reinstatement as Finance Minister after President Zuma scored an own
goal firing Gordhan's successor, Nhlanhla Nene. Gordhan's surprise visit to SARS this week also sent a strong signal that we can expect more drama and fallout in coming weeks and months. By MARIANNE THAMM.
SA Nine-Hour endurance race: Playing Guitar with Bob Dylan … en

The Team Africa Le Mans Ginetta G55 driven by South African racing legend Sarel van der Merwe, Le Mans 24-hour winner Jan Lammers and Dr Greg
Mills finished first GT car home, second overall and won the Index of Performance in the South African Nine-Hour race at Killarney race track on Saturday 12 December 2015. This is their story. By GREG MILLS.
2015: Africa for Optimists
There has been plenty to celebrate in Africa this year, from successful elections and brave new leaders, to winning the fight against Ebola. SIMON
ALLISON looks at the best stories from an eventful year.
2015: Africa for pessimists
Despite all the progress – and there is a lot of that – there are still plenty of bad African news stories. SIMON ALLISON looks at what has gone
wrong in 2015.
Press Ombudsman's rulings against Sunday Times vindicate Pillay and van

Three rulings by the Press Ombudsman that stories published by the Sunday Times with regard to a SARS “rogue unit” were “inaccurate, misleading
and unfair” vindicate former SARS acting commissioner Ivan Pillay and group executive Johan van Loggerenberg. The saga has tarnished the reputation of the country's biggest-selling newspaper which, it appears, was drawn into an elaborate
cloak-and-dagger campaign to discredit SARS. By MARIANNE THAMM.
ICG: New risks on Nigeria’s Shiite fault line
On 12 and 13 December, Nigerian government troops clashed with members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN). Their battle in the city of
Zaria, in north central Kaduna state, reportedly killed more than 100 people, including some senior movement members, and threatened wider violence. Crisis Group’s Senior Nigeria Analyst, NNAMDI OBASI, provides some insight into what happened, the
relationship of the Shiite group with the government and with Sunni radicals, and whether the Nigerian government risks a second Boko Haram-style insurgency. By the INTERNATIONAL CRISIS GROUP.
ICG: Iran after the Nuclear Deal
Tensions within the Islamic Republic stem in no small part from its blend of popular sovereignty and religious authority. Theocratic forces seek
to maintain the dominance of the supreme leader and other tutelary bodies, while republican forces advocate more clout for popularly-elected institutions. Each camp is further split between pragmatists who seek incremental political evolution, and
radicals who either resist any change or promote revolutionary transformation. By the INTERNATIONAL CRISIS GROUP.
Five years since the famine, Somali children are still stalked by the menace
of hunger

Since the 2011 famine, malnutrition in Somalia has decreased, to some extent. Among children under five years old it has fallen from 18% in the
2011 Gu (the rainy season in Somalia, which is the primary cropping season and runs from April to June) to 13% in the 2015 Gu. However, the improvement has not been enough to lift hundreds of thousands of children out of the fear – and the reality –
of hunger. By KUN LI for UNICEF.
Video: Evita's Free Speech - The Day of Reconciliation

Leading up to the 2016 South African Municipal Elections and the 20th year celebration of her theatre in Darling, Evita se Perron, Tannie Evita
has committed herself to broadcasting a Sunday recap of the week's news, with the accent on Free Speech. Here's The Day of Reconciliation special. By PIETER-DIRK UYS.
Onkgopotse JJ Tabane: Dear Comrade Zizi Goodenough Kodwa... Let’s Talk

I was totally flabbergasted by the media statement issued by the ANC’s NWC this week. I know that you are merely doing your work drafting
statements of this nature, but I spared a thought for you having to once again defend the indefensible.
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