In Africa. The journey here was long and I am exhausted. Be careful what you wish for: in May of this year I’ve flown nine times for work, a funeral, a graduation, and now work again. A blessing, to be sure, to be part of an engaging and important project, see both sides of my family in celebration of a well-lived life and higher education, and to be able to afford to realize my dreams here at the northern edge [...]
Adel Khedhri climbed the white marble steps of the Municipal Theater in downtown Tunis covered in gasoline. Blaming an economy wracked by the legacies of neoliberal authoritarianism and post-revolutionary instability, the 27-year-old fruit vendor came to follow the fiery example of Mohamed Bouazizi. “This is a young man who sells cigarettes because of unemployment—this is Tunisia, this is unemployment,” he shouted March 13 before igniting himself. Police rushed to his engulfed body on the steps of the enormous white marble Francophone building in the middle [...]
As part of the SISMEC Presents interview series, I sat down with Mariwan Hama as he shares his experience investigating human rights abuses in the Gulf kingdom of Bahrain, touching on nation’s security complex, geopolitical context, changing ethnic configuration, and current political events. Hama spent five days earlier in the year visiting Bahrain for HRW, documenting the ongoing struggle for democracy in a repressive regime successfully tempering their Arab Spring. For more information, read the report from the HWR team’s investigations including [...]
My friends Muhammed Al-Khudair, Charlie Mink and I did some work for VICE magazine in the fall, crafting a survey of Free Syrian Army and translating some video and audio interviews. The result was basically fact-checking, quote-grabbing and contextualizing for a feature about the legendary war photographer Robert King’s second foray into Syria’s conflict. At the end of the article there are a series of vignettes that Muhammad and I put together of FSA members.
Check out photographs from along the U.S./Mexico border on the New York Times’ website. Contributions from myself and colleagues, including an award-winning shot taken by collaborator Murphy Woodhouse. Most of mine are from my Instagram feed, which you can see now on the left-hand side of my blog.
In early 2003, Saddam Hussein’s regional and international allies were all warning him that an American invasion was imminent. Hussein’s reply was basically, “I know Washington’s tone is getting aggressive, but they aren’t going to try to remove me. I’m the only one in the region who is really taking the fight to the terrorists and fundamentalists. I’m the only one in the region putting real pressure on Iran. Despite our differences, they aren’t crazy! There is no way the United States [...]
Originally published on Truth-out The US is breaking deportation records, despite cost overruns, judicial inefficiency, due process and human rights violations and a Democrat in the White House. Will four more years of Obama change the immigration system built to jail or deport first, ask questions never? Rivas Aguilar stood in the federal courthouse in Tucson, Arizona, hands and feet shackled to waist, his belt and shoelaces confiscated. “With all due respect, your honor,” he said, “I don’t know where to [...]
Originally published on YourMiddleEast By Musa al-Gharbi & ST McNeil We are seeing a new phase of the Arab Spring uprisings, where protesters target monarchs instead of dictators. The dynamics in the region are against the kings and emirs, write Musa al-Gharbi and ST McNeil in this analysis. Insofar as it is helpful or accurate to understand the “Arab Spring” as a meta-movement which began with the December 17, 2010 self-immolation of Mohammad Bouazizi, we can break it into a [...]
People do not fit into neat categories, individuals defy stereotypes, and lines in the sand have proved both destructive and inane. Boundaries and borders wreak havoc. Yet, most importantly, we have seen systems of power transcend time, continually adapting to conditions on the ground and the sea by drawing political, economic, social and cultural borders in their interests alone. What classes profited from the enclaves and capitalist entrepôts like the vineyards of Pera or other Eschelles? What class is dispossessed [...]