The ‘West’ is a concept that flourished during the Cold War. Then it was West against East in the form of the Soviet empire. The East was evil against which all democratic countries – read West – were called on to fight.
The results of a survey
of what 3,500 young people between the ages of 18 and 24 – in all Arab countries except Syria – feel about the current situation in the Middle East and North Africa have just been released.
Pierre Claver Mbonimpa is not permitted to get close to an airport, train station or port without authorisation from a judge. He cannot travel outside of the capital of his native Burundi, Bujumbura. Whenever called upon, he must present himself before judicial authorities.
This month’s World Economic Outlook released
by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) only confirms that consequences of the collapse of the financial system, which started six years ago, are serious. And they are accentuated by the aging of the population, not only in Europe but also in Asia, the slowing of productivity and weak private investment.
Lobbying is an integral part of democracy, but multiple scandals throughout Europe demonstrate that a select number of voices with more money and insider contacts can come to dominate political decision-making – usually for their own benefit.
The United Kingdom has been accused
of “sleepwalking” into the Ukraine crisis – and the accusation comes from no less than the House of Lords, not usually considered a place of critical analysis.
For those of us interested in a vibrant civil society, it seems to be best of times and the worst of times.
The “surprise” re-election of incumbent Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Mar. 17 elections has been met with a flood of media comment on the implications for the region and the rest of the world.
For a long time, citizens of the United States have firmly believed that their country has an exceptional destiny, and continue to do so today even though their political system has become totally dysfunctional.
In the wake of last week’s attack on French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo
that left 12 people dead, a heated battle of opinion is being waged in France and several other countries on the issue of freedom of expression and the rights of both media and the public.
It is sad to see how a continent that was one cradle of civilisation is running blindly into a trap, the trap of a holy war with Islam – and that six Muslim terrorists were sufficient to bring that about.
“They are cowards who react to satire by going for their Kalashnikovs.” That was how renowned French cartoonist Plantu described the killers of 10 media workers and two policemen in Paris Wednesday.
A unique initiative – the Network Inclusion Leaders (NILE) project – has just held its second workshop here to set up a diversity and inclusion network for future leaders from among Germany’s ‘people of color’, or persons from different ‘non-white’ cultural backgrounds.
The Swedish Social Democrat government, which took office only two months ago, has just resigned. The far-right anti-immigrant Sweden Democrats sided with the four-party centre-right opposition alliance, and new elections will be held in March next year.
There is a new dimension to the issue of malnutrition – governments, civil society and the private sector have started to come together around a common nutrition agenda.