Jason McLure

Managing Editor/Host, Global Journalist

Jason McLure is the managing editor and host of Global Journalist. A New Hampshire native, he previously worked as a domestic correspondent for Reuters and as an Africa correspondent for Bloomberg News and Newsweek. His work has also appeared in The Economist, Legal Times, the Center for Public Integrity and the New York Times.

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via Wikimedia Commons (Ranjith66)

Climate change is already having big effects on southern Asia.

Deadly heat waves like one that killed 3,500 people in India and Pakistan in 2015 are becoming more frequent. The summer monsoon rains are changing, affecting farmers.  Rising sea levels are expected to flood low-lying settlements and higher ocean temperatures harm sea life.

The climate is already spurring other changes. Thailand and the Philippines have closed beaches as warming waters threaten coral. In other parts of the region, people are moving out of places where drought and natural disasters have made farming increasingly risky. Some argue that the changing climate is even fueling militancy. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at how climate change is shaping life in one of the world's most vulnerable regions.


AP Photo

For many, witch trials may seem like a relic of early colonial America.  But in fact witch-hunting is still a feature of rural life today in many some of the world.

One place where it's prevalent is India. On average, an Indian woman is killed every other day after being accused of witchcraft, according to government statistics. Many are tortured or publicly-humiliated before being burned, stabbed or beaten to death.

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at the practice of witch-hunts in India, and why the phenomenon isn't merely an outgrowth of superstition. 

UNICEF

Two months after a major earthquake devastated parts of Papua New Guinea’s highlands, one of the world’s most remote and diverse nations is still struggling to cope.

The quake left more than a half million people in need of aid, but many of those affected live in areas reachable only by air. Compounding the aid effort: more than 200 aftershocks over the past two months as well as a recent outbreak of tribal violence.

On this edition of Global Journalist, we discuss the response to the quake in the Pacific nation of 7.5 million.


European Press Agency

The imbalance between the supply of organs for transplant and the demand for them can be staggering.

There are about 75,000 people active on the U.S. waiting list for kidneys, livers and other transplantable organs. On average, 20 of them die each day.

And globally, the situation is much worse.

The international shortage of transplantable organs has lead to a booming underground industry known as the "Red Market,” where people illegally buy and sell human body parts to the highest bidder.

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at how the donor shortage has fueled a lucrative underground market, and how efforts to stifle it are shaping international policy.

AP Photo

The #MeToo movement has spread from the United States to other parts of the world as women have increasingly spoken out about sexual assault and sexual harassment.

One country where it has struggled is Japan, where discussions about sexual harassment and sexual assault remain highly taboo.

Japanese women are much less likely than their U.S. counterparts to describe non-consensual sex as rape. Further, women who publicly accuse their attackers often face significant public backlash. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at the conversation around the #MeToo movement in Japan, a country known for its technological and economic prowess but that lags behind many other industrialized countries in measures of gender equity.


WikiMedia Commons

China’s rapid economic growth over the past two decades been nothing short of remarkable.

Of course there’s been a dark side to this growth. As China has built more factories, power plants and cars, it also became one of the most polluted countries on earth.

But since President Xi Jinping declared a ‘war on pollution’ in 2014, China has also made big strides in tackling some of the problems. It’s become a global leader in renewable energy from solar and wind, has cut smog in big cities and is planning tens of billions of dollars worth of environmental projects. 

On this edition of Global Journalist: a look at China's war on pollution.


AP Photo

The use of orphanages fell out of favor in the U.S. around World War II, and the institutions were largely replaced by the foster care system.

But in parts of Asia and Africa, the number of orphanages has actually risen in recent decades – spurred in part by the death toll from conflict and HIV/AIDS. Many of these institutions are privately owned or run by non-profits and receive no government money. Instead, they are funded entirely by donations.

The growth has led to criticism by some child advocates. They argue that most children would be better off living with relatives or others. They also worry that in some countries the growth in orphanages has been spurred in part by adults looking to pad their own pockets by capitalizing on tourists willing to pay to volunteer at childrens’ homes.

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at the debate around institutional child care in developing countries and what might be perpetuating the problem of overseas orphanage scams.


For many people, the thought of spending your life next to the aquamarine waters of the Caribbean is an envious one.

But for many people in the tiny fishing village of Cajio Beach in western Cuba - it’s something they only want to escape. Life for them is a constant struggle and filled with disappointments. 

Few have hope for a better life in Cuba - and so the only promise for many is to board a raft or small boat in hopes of making the 90 mile journey to the United States alive. This glimpse into life in Communist Cuba 59 years after Fidel Castro’s revolution is depicted in a richly detailed new documentary called “Voices of the Sea.”  

Directed by the British-American filmmaker Kim Hopkins, the film screened in March at the True/False Film Festival in Columbia, Missouri and will air in the fall on PBS as part of its POV strand of documentaries.  

On this special edition of Global Journalist, an in-depth interview with Hopkins about the making of this remarkable film and life in modern Cuba.


via Wikimedia Commons

 Around the world, rates of teen pregnancy have been dropping for decades.

But in Latin America, rates of teenage motherhood remain stubbornly high. Today they’re about 36 percent higher than the global average.

One country where the problem is particularly acute is Venezuela - where teenagers account for nearly one in four births.
Venezuela's economic crisis has had a big effect on its public health system – including efforts to curtail teen pregnancy.

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at teen pregnancy in Latin America and the particular challenges faced by young Venezuelans.


King Rodriguez/PPD/via Wikimedia Commons

In recent days Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte announced that he would withdraw his country from the treaty governing the International Criminal Court. That move came just over a month after the ICC’s top prosecutor announced that she had opened a preliminary investigation into atrocities carried out as part of Duterte’s “War on Drugs.”

In the 20 months since Duterte took office promising to “slaughter” drug users and drug dealers, more than 12,000 people have been slain in extrajudicial killings in the southeast Asian nation. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at death squads in the Philippines and government efforts to quash reporting on them.

 


Wikimedia Commons/Kremlin.ru

Egypt will hold a presidential election at the end of this month. But there’s little drama about who will actually win.

President Abdel-Fatah el-Sissi, who led a 2013 coup against the country’s first democratically-elected leader, is expected to be handily re-elected.

That’s because el-Sissi’s government has arrested or intimidated all viable potential opponents. The president’s only opponent is virtually unknown – and was actually an outspoken supporter of el-Sissi until just hours before the candidate registration deadline. Yet despite a wave of repression, there are signs of divisions in the security forces that buttress el-Sissi's rule.

On this edition of Global Journalist a look at Egypt’s staged election, and what it may mean for its future and its status as a key U.S. ally in the Middle East.


IISG via Flickr

In 1979 China's Communist Party implemented the “One-Child Policy” to slow the country’s population growth.

The policy was lifted in 2015, yet the effects of 36 years of strict population control will be felt for years to come. Today there are about 7.6 workers for every person over 65 in China. By 2050, fully 40 percent of the population could be over that age and the country is projected to have 100 million people 80 and over.

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at the emerging consequences of China's mass population control experiment.


AP Photo

Most people probably know little about the tiny South American nation of Guyana. In the U.S., it made headlines back in the late 1970s after an American cult leader named Jim Jones took his followers there – and more than 900 died in a murder-suicide after drinking poisoned Kool-Aid.

But recently Guyana has been in the news for more positive reasons. That’s because ExxonMobil has made one of the most promising offshore oil discoveries there in decades.

Yet the sudden discovery of all this cash under its seabed holds a lot of risk for Guyana. In some oil-rich countries like Angola and Nigeria, most of the population has gotten no real benefit from their country’s petroleum wealth. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at Guyana’s big find - and whether it can avoid the so-called “resource curse.” 


Flickr/KurdishStruggle/Creative Commons

The Kurds have played a key role in the Syrian war. With U.S. military aid, a Kurdish militia called the YPG has done a large share of the ground fighting that has led to the near-defeat of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

Still it’s not clear that these military gains have brought the Kurds any closer to their dream of a Kurdish nation.

On this edition of Global Journalist, we look at the prospects and aspirations of the Kurds after the defeat of ISIS, and what may become of thousands of captured ISIS fighters.


Jeon Han / Korea Culture and Information Service

The Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea have kicked off with official luge, biathlon and ski jumping training sessions. But these games may be remembered for more than just who skied the fastest or skated most gracefully.

That’s because last month North and South Korea - two countries still technically at war - announced that they would march under a unified flag at the opening ceremonies. A total of 22 North Korean athletes will compete on joint Korean Olympic teams in women’s ice hockey as well skiing and speedskating.

AP Photo

Back in January 2017, Brazil experienced a wave of massive and grisly prison riots. More than 130 inmates were killed in a few weeks in fighting between rival gangs. Many of the of the dead were decapitated or mutilated, and pictures of their bodies were posted on the internet by other inmates.

Now, two other deadly riots in the first few weeks of 2018 are raising fears of more mass-killings in Brazilian prisons. In some cases,  prisons have been all but abandoned by outnumbered prison guards and are operated as virtually independent fiefs of gangs that have morphed from prisoner rights' organizations into sophisticated criminal groups. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, we look at why Brazil's prison system is so violent and how its mismanagement is undermining Brazil's politics and governance. 


James Cridland/Creative Commons via Flickr

Overpopulation has been debated since British economist Thomas Malthus famously warned in 1798 that humans could reproduce far faster than they could increase their food supply.

But since Malthus's time, world population has grown from 800 million to 7.5 billion today. Yet worries about overpopulation are back. In part that's because lots more people are on the way, complicating efforts to deal with problems like climate change and water scarcity.

The UN forecasts that in the near future the world will add about 83 million people annually. By 2100, world population will grow to 11.2 billion.

On this edition of Global Journalist: a look at the growth of human population and the debate about its risks.


Yann Forget/Wikimedia Commons

In the next decade, India may pass China to become the world’s most populous country.

But there’s something odd about India’s population. 

At its last census in 2011, India had 36 million more men than women. As the population grows, the World Bank predicts there will be 51 million more men by 2031.

This is due in part to the widespread practice of sex-selective abortion and the gender-based neglect of young girls leading to higher mortality rates. In some cases, 'infanticide' of newborn girls is still practiced. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, we discuss what some activists call a 'gendercide' against women.


On this special edition of Global Journalist, we take a step back from international news to hear from Leonard Pitts Jr., a Pulitzer-winning syndicated columnist for the Miami Herald.

Pitts is well-known liberal critiques of the Trump administration as well as his columns covering race, gay rights, religion and other cultural issues. His column on Sept. 12, 2001 called “We’ll Go Forward From This Moment,” is particularly well-known for directly addressing the perpetrators of the Sept. 11 attacks. In addition to the Pulitzer, Pitts has won numerous journalism awards from groups like the National Association of Black Journalists and the Society for Professional Journalists - and most recently a 2017 honor medal from the Missouri School of Journalism.


AP Photo

North Korea has one of the worst human rights record in the world, but for women the situation is particularly acute. 

Sexual harassment and sexual assault are rarely punished, and many women who escape to neighboring China end up being trafficked into prostitution or sold as brides to Chinese men. 

Yet despite these challenges, North Korean women often have more economic freedoms than men. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at women's rights in North Korea. 


On this special edition of Global Journalist, host Jason McLure speaks with two distinguished journalists about their road to success.

MaryAnne Golon, the director of photography of the Washington Post, describes the chaotic days covering the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks and her career working for Time magazine and the Post.

In addition, writer Margaret Engel talks about becoming a playwright, television producer and author after a career in newspaper journalism. Both women are 2017 winners of the Missouri Honor Medal for their service to journalism.


Those who listened to NPR's coverage of the 2016 presidential campaign regularly heard the dispatches from political reporter Asma Khalid.

During the race, Khalid distinguished herself for her ability to blend voter interviews with the use of data to illustrate Americans shifting political views.

But as a Muslim woman who wears the hijab, or Islamic headscarf, the Indiana native was also tested by then-candidate Donald Trump's divisive rhetoric, and was mocked on Twitter as a "terrorist," "raghead," and "jihadi." On occasion, the reporting climate was so volatile Khalid says she felt the need to remove her head covering. 

On this special edition of Global Journalist, Khalid, now with Boston public radio station WBUR and a 2017 recipient of the Missouri School of Journalism's highest award, opens up about her experiences with guest host Joshua Kranzberg.


UNESCO

Conflict in the Middle East and elsewhere has fueled a booming trade in looted antiquities from archaeological sites and museums.

Millions of dollars worth of artifacts have disappeared, with some resurfacing for sale in Europe and the United States.

The black market trade provided tens of millions of dollars of funding for the Islamic State, one of the largest groups involved in the business. With ISIS nearing defeat, archaeologists are looking for ways to halt the trade in looted artifacts from Syria, Iraq and other conflict zones.

On this edition of Global Journalist, we discuss the trade in stolen cultural artifacts.


Mark Danielson/Creative Commons via Flickr

Recently an international cricket match in the Indian city of Delhi had to be temporarily halted in the middle of the game for an unusual reason. The cause: air pollution levels so high that a top player for India's opponent, Sri Lanka, began vomiting on the field. 

India has had pollution problems for years, but recently it has gotten significantly worse. Smog was so bad in New Delhi last month the government ordered thousands of schools closed and banned trucks from the road for a week. 

But India’s problem goes far beyond New Delhi. According to the World Health Organization, the country has 13 of the world’s 25 most polluted cities. And in 2015, the British medical journal The Lancet reported that 1.1 million Indians died prematurely from diseases caused by air pollution.

On this edition of Global Journalist, we take an in-depth look at India's pollution crisis. 


Massive multiplayer online role playing games like "World of Warcraft" and "League of Legends" are wildly popular in China. 

But the popularity of online games has given rise to fears that the country has raised a generation of "internet addicts." One 2009 survey estimated there are 24 million young people addicted to the internet in the country. 

The concern spurred the opening of more than 300 internet addiction treatment centers - many of which resemble boot camps that use controversial techniques to try to cure patients. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at internet addiction in China. 


European Press Agency

Two figures have dominated the politics of southern Africa in recent years. One is Zimbabwe’s 93-year-old President Robert Mugabe. The other is South Africa’s 75-year-old President Jacob Zuma.

Now Mugabe is in military custody after an apparent coup d’etat brought an end to his 37-year rule. Meanwhile Zuma is set to be replaced as the leader of the ruling African National Congress next month, and may be forced to step down from his eight-year-old presidency before the end of his term in 2019. On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at southern Africa in transition.


AP Photo

Since the start of the Syrian war, a remarkable 100,000 people have gone missing - a distinct figure from the estimated 400,000 confirmed killed.

Of the missing, some may be alive and held secretly in prisons controlled by Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Most are probably dead, and their bodies are often buried in unmarked mass graves in territory controlled by Assad or until recently, the Islamic State.

But with the Islamic State nearing defeat in Syria and Iraq, investigators are gaining access to more and more of these graves. That raises the prospect that the massive task of identifying the thousands of bodies of they contain will soon start.

This is important work as it not only gives resolution to families of the missing, but can also provide important evidence of war crimes.

On this edition of Global Journalist: a close look at the challenges of finding and identifying Syria’s disappeared.


Kremlin.ru

There has been broad fallout from Russian efforts to hack the 2016 U.S. election, including sanctions, worsening relations between the two countries and a continued cloud over Donald Trump’s presidency.

But in Europe such attacks are hardly new. The first “political” cyberattack thought to have been carried out by Russia in Europe was in 2007 in Estonia.

Since then, other Russia-linked targets have included Ukraine’s election commission, the German parliament, and the campaign of French President Emmanuel Macron.

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at Russia’s hacking strategy and European efforts to head off the Kremlin’s use of technology to influence foreign elections.


(U.S. Pacific Command/Creative Commons)

After World War II, Japan adopted a constitution that formally renounced war or maintaining military forces.

Now Prime Minister Shinzo Abe wants to change that. Bolstered by his party’s big win in recent elections, Abe wants to purge the pacifist clause in Japan’s constitution. The move could lead the country into future wars and is reopening a debate in Japan on the country’s role in the world. 

On this edition of Global Journalist, we look at Japan’s post-World War II pacifism and what a change of course would mean for relations with its Asian neighbors and the U.S.


Crystal Davis/World Resources Institute / Flickr

Overpopulation has been debated since British economist Thomas Malthus famously warned in 1798 that humans could reproduce far faster than they could increase their food supply.

But since Malthus's time, world population has grown from 800 million to 7.5 billion today. Yet worries about overpopulation are back. In part that's because lots more people are on the way, complicating efforts to deal with problems like climate change and water scarcity.

The UN forecasts that in the near future the world will add about 83 million people annually. By 2100, world population will grow to 11.2 billion.

On this edition of Global Journalist: a look at the growth of human population and the debate about its risks.


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