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Photo of the Day: Philippines Flood


Two boys look at a destroyed house in Iligan City, in southern island of Mindanao, Philippines on December 19, 2011. (TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images)

2011: A Return to Roots? Lessons From This Year's US Engagement in Asia

U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd R) applauds with Southeast Asian leaders, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (L), Philippines President Benigno Aquino (2nd L) and Brunei Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah (R), during a group photo session for the leaders of the East Asia Summit in Nusa Dua on Indonesia's resort island of Bali on November 19, 2011 following the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit. (Romeo Gacad/AFP/Getty Images)

This is part of a series of year-end posts on Asia Blog written by Asia Society experts and Associate Fellows looking back on noteworthy events in 2011. You can read the entire series here.

Poll: Who is Asia's Person of the Year?

Real-life persons of the year? Rescue workers carry someone believed to be contaminated with radiation to a treatment center in Nihonmatsu city in Japan's Fukushima prefecture on Mar. 13, 2011. (Jiji Press/AFP/Getty Images)

America's Time magazine has just named "The Protester" as its 2011 Person of the Year. But who would be the most prominent Asian of 2011?

Former Philippines President Gloria Arroyo Barred from Leaving Country

Former Philippines President and congresswoman Gloria Arroyo (C) arrives at the Manila International Airport in Manila on Nov. 15, 2011. (Noel Celis/AFP/Getty Images)

The November 15 photograph of former Philippines president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in a wheelchair and neck brace at the Manila International Airport became something of a media sensation last week as Arroyo is now appealing the government's decision to not let her fly out of the country for medical reasons.

The case, the latest in a long series of Philippines dynastic political battles, pits Arroyo against the government of President Benigno Aquino III.

Video: Philippines President Open-Minded on Gay Marriage, Unsure About Gay Adoption


Philippines President Benigno Aquino III expressed tolerance toward the prospect of legalized gay marriage in his country, saying that normally "adults should be able to do whatever you want so long as it doesn't hurt anybody else." Aquino's comments came in a question and answer session following his speech at the Asia Society in New York on Tuesday.

Video: In New York, Asian Leaders Link Economic and Social Development to Democracy


In the past, when talking about development issues, political leaders have generally referred to socio-economic development and democracy as separate issues. This week at Asia Society, however, leaders from Asian countries with very different historical backgrounds and political, social and economic systems spoke of freedom, justice, accountability and respect for human rights as being essentially linked to democracy.

Philippine Democracy, the Aquinos and Asia Society

Philippine President Benigno Aquino speaks during a press conference after a mass to commemorate the first anniversary of the death of late president Corazon Aquino, at the La Salle Gymnasium in Mandaluyong, in the eastern Manila suburbs on August 1, 2010. (Noel Celis/AFP/Getty Images)

On September 20, 2011 — just one day before the 39th anniversary of the start of the Ferdinand Marcos dictatorship in the Philippines — President Benigno Simeon Aquino III, popularly known as “PNoy” (a play of the term “Pinoy” which describes any Filipino), will speak before the Asia Society in New York.

Video: Asia Society Leaders Discuss Arrival of Philippines President Benigno S. Aquino III

Philippines President Benigno Aquino III

Asia Society President Vishakha Desai and Executive Vice President Jamie Metzl spoke recently to the Philippines Presidential Broadcast Staff about the imminent arrival of current Philippines president Benigno S. Aquino III, a charismatic new leader who says he is committed to rooting out government corruption in his country. Metzl also referenced Manila's key role as a U.S.

The 5 Biggest Chinese News Stories of Summer 2011

Workers clear wreckage on July 24, 2011 near the city of Wenzhou, in Zhejiang province, after a high-speed train collision a day before. The crash was China's worst rail accident since 2008. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)
Policy Jeffrey Wasserstrom and Evan Osnos assess Biden's visit, the high-speed train crash, and other top stories of the past three months.

Asian Nations Must Work Together to Fight Rising Sea Levels

Floating fishing village in Ha Long Bay, Vietnam. (A. Strakey/Flickr)

Recently, a report in Nature Geoscience revealed that polar ice may be melting faster than previously thought, leading to a more significant rise in sea levels throughout the course of the century. We asked our Sustainability Roundtable to discuss the implications of the warming of the oceans and the subsequent rise in sea levels. What will these phenomena mean for the future development of Asian countries? Are there opportunities for regional cooperation in dealing with the consequences of these environmental changes?