What in the World?” (Part Two)


1. As you know from the previous Discussion Set, the US gets more of its foreign oil from Canada than from
any other country. Additionally, except for Saudi Arabia, you now know that most other US imported oil comes
from countries not in the Middle East. Does this suggest that, strictly from an economic standpoint, the US
should be less concerned about interruptions of oil flow from the Middle East?
2. Who was Norman E. Borlaug (1914–2009)? There are credible claims that he saved a billion lives–some
say by neutralizing a bomb! What bomb? How might he have done this? Evaluate Borlaug’s contribution to the
human condition.
3. What is Apartheid? In what country was Apartheid most notoriously practiced? Has it ever been practiced in
the United States? Might it have an effect on economic development and growth?
4. What country in Africa was colonized by freed American slaves who, given the option, chose to go back to
Africa? This country has a capital named after a US president and a flag that looks like that of the US.
Historically, how have the descendents of the repatriated former slaves gotten along with the indigenous
people of this country?
5. Political candidates, and in fact one US president, have struggled with this: What is the difference, if any,
between Slovakia and Slovenia? Does either have a relationship with Yugoslavia? Czechoslovakia? Is there
anything compelling that one might say about the status of Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia today?
6. Of the ten most populated countries in the world today, two once were a single country until the early 1970s.
Why did they split? Was the split friendly or contested? Had they not split, where would the two combined rank
today among the most populated countries? Was a third country actively interested in the split-up?
7. What two Central American countries (the seven countries between Mexico and Columbia) have not been
ruled by a military dictatorship in the last 50 years? Has either of these abolished its military? Compared to
other Central American countries, how have these two countries advanced economically?
8. Rice is a major food source for more than one-half of the world’s population. Compared to other countries of
the world, is the US a major producer of rice? How about the US as a major exporter of rice? What state in the
US produces more than double the amount of rice produced by any other state? Locate and briefly describe
the rice production region in this state. Why might it be a good place to grow rice?
9. Where is the Sea of Marmara? Is it partly or mostly contained within a single country? Might Russia care
about what goes on in and around the Sea of Marmara? Might Russia’s forceful annexation of the Crimean
peninsula (locate on map maybe) in 2014 have anything to do with Russian interest in the Sea of Marmara?





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