Trump Acquitted, Myanmar Protests and Japan's Fukushima Earthquake

This article is part of the Making History This Week Series.


Former US President Donald Trump acquitted for the second time in impeachment trial.


On February 13, 2021, The US Senate has acquitted Donald Trump for a second time. Seven Republicans voted with the 50 Democrats calling Trump guilty, but it was not enough to reach the 67 votes required to convict Trump. Despite voting not guilty, Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell blamed Trump for his role in the January Capitol Hill riot.

"Former President Trump's actions that preceded the riot were a disgraceful, disgraceful dereliction of duty. Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day."

Trump is the first US president to be impeached twice, and he is already looking to become the first man to be impeached and then rise to power again. It appears that his bid for 2024 will continue to shape the direction that the Republican party will head towards.


See the list of heads of states that have been impeached here. You will be surprised to find that the list is dominated by only a few countries: Peru, the Philippines, Brazil, and the US. Then read more about a man who ran again for power after he was impeached as president here.

 

 

Myanmar protests ongoing despite gunfire and arrests of military critics.

 

It has been a week of ongoing protest in Myanmar, and the people remain on the streets despite clear evidence that the government has used live ammunition against the protesters. There has been at least one protester who was reported as "brain dead".


The military government had arrested several prominent pro-democracy activists, including some who have been kidnapped at night. A new law is being proposed which will allow authorities to arrest anyone who criticizes the government online. In a separate move, the military announced that more than 23,000 prisoners will be released on Union Day, but it is unclear who these prisoners are and what offenses they have committed.


U.S. President Joe Biden announced that he will impose sanctions on military leaders in Myanmar.


Meanwhile, the fight in Myanmar has re-energized the pro-democracy protests in Thailand. This week, hundreds of people protested against the royal insults law, punishable by 15 years in jail. Four activists have been charged for insulting Thailand's king. Of course, Thailand's military staged a coup in 2014, and democracy has yet to return. You can read about what happened after Thailand's coup here.

 

 

An earthquake hit Japan's Fukushima, ten years after the nuclear meltdown in the same region.


A 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit Japan on February 13, 2021, with at least 48 injuries reported so far. The epic center was about 74 km northeast of Namie, which stands about 100km away from Fukushima.


So far there have been no reports of tsunamis. Ten years ago, the largest earthquake ever recorded in Japan led to a nuclear meltdown at Fukushima, and the incident is considered as the second-worst nuclear disaster in history. More than 20,000 people died or disappeared. In 2018, Japan also confirmed the first Fukushima worker death from radiation.


You can read more here on the world's nuclear phaseout, as well as the challenges faced by Germany in its phaseout. In short, nuclear energy is expensive, but as of now, the infrastructure is not there to replace all nuclear power plants with other forms of renewables.


This article is part of the Making History This Week Series.

 

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