This Week’s Under-reported News Summary – April 28, 2021

Compiled by Bob Nixon

  • German Green Party is center stage in Germany’s election
  • Kurdish autonomy remains dim across Middle East
  • Predatory nursing home financiers thriving in pandemic

• For the first time in its 40-year history, the German Green Party is center stage in Germany’s election set for late September. The Green’s Chancellor candidate, 40-year-old Annalena Baerbock, is the only woman in the race to succeed Angela Merkel, who is retiring after 16 years in power. Meanwhile, the dominant center-right coalition of the Christian Democrats and the Bavaria-based Christian Social Union is fractured and losing support.

(“Green on Black,” Economist, April 19, 2021; “Green Party’s Economic Plans,” DW, April 21, 2021)

• Thirty years after the rise of Kurdish nationalism across the Middle East, prospects for Kurdish autonomy remains dim. Four years ago, police arrested Selahattin Dimirtas, head of the People’s Democratic Party, the strongest political voice for Turkey’s Kurdish population. Like hundreds of other Kurdish politicians and activists, he remains behind bars on trumped up charges under Turkey’s authoritarian leader Recap Tayyip Erdogan.

(“The Kurdish Spring Did Not Happen,” Economist, April 10, 2021)

• The COVID pandemic has exposed the dark side of the nursing home industry, which has been pressured by private equity firms to slash costs and cut staffing, which led to the deaths of tens of thousands of senior citizens over the last year. Genesis HealthCare, the largest nursing home chain in America with 350 facilities, is now in the hands of New York financier Joel Landau, who has a history of conning his way into nursing home takeovers, then evicting the patients and flipping the real estate to luxury condo developers to make major profits.

(“Despite Pandemic Carnage, Predatory Nursing Home Financiers Keep Thriving,” American Prospect, April 14, 2021)

This week’s News Summary was narrated by Anna Manzo.

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