Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Quiz on World Affairs

With the end of the Cold War, a Communist country, which had been organized along federal lines into constituent republics, dissolves into those republics, with each becoming a sovereign nation. In one of those republics, there is a province in which (partly due to population shifts during and just before the Communist era) the majority of the population is ethnically distinct from the now-independent republic. In that province there is a strong separatist movement engaged in an armed insurrection that has taken effective control of much of the province. As a result, the province has not participated in the parliamentary elections that elected the national government of the republic.

The premier of the republic orders military action to retake control of the province, which is, under international law, a part of the now-sovereign republic. In the press of a great military power (which, incidentally, has unfriendly relations with the democratically elected government of the republic due to its close ties to another great military power), there are breathless (false) reports of genocide being carried out as part of the attempt to reassert sovereignty over the province. The great power, without U.N. sanction and without taking care to avoid targetting civilian targets, launches a military campaign which strikes target throughout the republic, and is which it describes as a ‘humanitarian intervention’. The other great power, which was friendly to the government of the republic, protests and sends logistical support to the futile resistance by the republic’s government.

1. The great power launching the military strike on behalf of the separatists is

A. The United States
B. Russia
C. not enough information is provided

2. The republic fighting the separatists is

A. Georgia
B. Serbia
C. not enough information is provided

3. The separatists are

A. mostly Christian Ossetians
B. mostly Muslim Albanians
C. not enough information is provided

4. The year when this takes place is

A. 1999
B. 2008
C. not enough information is provided

The correct answer in each case is, of course, C.


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