Tag Archives: Syria

Trump, CNN and the irony of media hysteria

The President of the United States, during a “campaign rally”, refers to a terror incident in Sweden which never took place. He bases his reference, and subsequently his policy approach, on a FoxNews interview with a fringe documentary filmmaker. The story of the Trump-fib hits the news cycle and goes around the world. Finally, CNN…

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Turning human suffering into refugee chic

There are currently more than 65-million refugees and displaced persons in the world. It is one of the biggest human rights crises of our time, and deserves as much media attention as possible. But what refugees don’t need is to have their plight reduced to a fashion statement. “Refugee chic.” On Friday, there was a…

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Dear Aylan and Galip, drowned Syrian children, what’s become of us?

Dear Aylan and Galip Was the world ever not a frightening place for you? Did you ever see your mom and dad smile? Or was it all just terror and hell, nothing worth living for? Here I am, past the age of 50 and I am the one with all the questions for both of…

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Isis and the end of history

In 1989 Francis Fukuyama proudly proclaimed that the world had reached the “end of history”. As the USSR fell into disarray and the Iron Curtain came tumbling down, the world was catapulted towards the acceptance of a liberal democratic political model and the neoliberal economics of Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan. It is of course…

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The Arab first lady’s burden

The woman, yet again, has become a political football in Middle-Eastern politics. One wishes the area experts would make up their minds: just yesterday we were being told the Muslim wife was a voiceless, pitiable creature walking five steps behind her husband … Now she’s an assistant secretary of state — directing and manipulating her…

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Keeping shtum*

When I was a young woman just out of school and during a state of emergency, while on a visit to my beautiful Boba, we were talking politics and I told her I was in despair and hoping for the Messiah. She said I could put out my cigarette for starters. Let me say this…

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Egypt needs a Mandela

The tumultuous tides of human protesters on the streets, bridges and squares of Cairo and Istanbul, speak of frustration with the world as it is and a yearning for a better life. A clear and precise vision of that better life as articulated in the Freedom Charter by our visionary Nelson Mandela is what contributed…

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Brics can unlock deadly stalemate, bring humanitarian relief to Syrians

By Jonathan Whittall On one of my first visits into Syria with MSF, I arrived on a cold night in a city with no electricity and shortages of food. A community under siege hosted me while they lived in fear, huddled into basements in an attempt to escape the continuous bombing. I saw field hospitals…

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Have we forgotten Mohamed Bouazizi?

Two years ago last Friday, a young man from Tunisia named Mohamed Bouazizi died of burn wounds after literally igniting what the world has come to know as the Arab Spring. Bouazizi, a fruit and vegetable vendor immolated himself after suffering humiliation at the hands of a police officer who confiscated his goods, ostensibly because…

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Syria a geopolitical minefield

Emerging from the widely hailed Arab Spring revolutions is a new threat to world stability and security. The very breadth of the scale of the uprising, stretching across the whole of North Africa and into the Middle East, has ramifications well beyond the region. Traditional world powers like Russia and the US have suffered a…

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