August 2005

2005 08 31
Darfur: The Ambiguous Genocide, by Gerard Prunier


Posted by in: Books, Political issues, Sudan

Now this looks interesting. Prunier’s book on Rwanda was great (as far as this non-expert could tell). Here’s the publisher’s blurb:

In mid-2004 the Darfur crisis in Western Sudan forced itself onto the center stage of world affairs. Arab Janjaweed militias, who support the Khartoum government, have engaged in a campaign of violence against the residents of Western Sudan. A formerly obscure �tribal conflict� in the heart of Africa has escalated into the first genocide of the twenty-first century. In sharp contrast to official reaction to the Rwandan massacres, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell called the situation in Darfur a �genocide� in September 2004. Its characteristics�Arabism, Islamism, famine as a weapon of war, mass rape, international obfuscation, and a refusal to look evil squarely in the face�reflect many of the problems of the global South in general and of Africa in particular.

Journalistic explanations of the unfolding humanitarian catastrophe have been given to hurried generalizations and inaccuracies: the genocide has been portrayed as an ethnic clash marked by Arab-on-African violence, with the Janjaweed militias under strict government control, but neither of these impressions is strictly true. Darfur: The Ambiguous Genocide explains what lies behind the conflict, how it came about, why it should not be oversimplified, and why it is so relevant to the future of the continent.

G�rard Prunier sets out the ethnopolitical makeup of the Sudan and explains why the Darfur rebellion is regarded as a key threat to Arab power in the country�much more so than secessionism in the Christian South. This, he argues, accounts for the government�s deployment of �exemplary violence� by the Janjaweed militias in order to intimidate other African Muslims into subservience. As the world watches; governments decide if, when, and how to intervene; and international organizations struggle to distribute aid, the knowledge in Prunier�s book will provide crucial assistance.


Howls of outrage (6)

2005 08 30
Just like E.E. Cummings


Posted by in: Odds and ends

Oh, give me a break:

The traditional definition of adultery, which dates back to church-based courts in England, is “penetrative sexual contact between a man and a woman not married to each other and one of whom is married to someone else,” notes Ms. Pickering’s lawyer, barbara findlay (who spells her name in lower-case letters).


Howls of outrage (5)

2005 08 29
Back


Oh sweet, sweet internet! Oh sweet, blessed internet! How I missed you!

So we’re moved, and I finally got an internet connection set up this afternoon. I’m very happy with the new place, but very busy.

Actual blogging to resume . . . when I feel like it.


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2005 08 29
Hurricane Katrina


Posted by in: Katrina

If any of you are in New Orleans or within a few hundred miles of the US Gulf Coast, I am thinking of you.

Teresa at Making Light has an excellent continuously-updated roundup of things worth reading on this. (Bonus for those who live in NYC: a link to a hurricane zone map of NYC, showing which areas face destruction in a big storm.)

This page has the best images I’ve been able to find, to illustrate how much of New Orleans is below sea level, and to get a good cross-section of the “soup-bowl”.


A single voice crying in the wilderness (1)

2005 08 25
Busy


I’m not dead. I’m just moving. Internet connection, and perhaps even light blogging, resumes some time next week.

This hurts me more than it hurts you, I’m sure.


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2005 08 20
Lying about the de Menezes killing


Posted by in: Political issues

The reaction of Mark Kleiman’s friend explains an awful lot about why the authorities so often lie about foul-ups. Often the initial public impression of an incident is the only thing that really sticks in people’s minds.


Howls of outrage (2)

2005 08 20
Hilzoy on permanent bases in Iraq


Here.


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2005 08 20
Cheaper solar energy on the way?


Posted by in: Environmental issues

Ohhh, possibly very good news.


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2005 08 19
Hates horses


Posted by in: Odds and ends

This guy does.

via


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2005 08 19
Bradford Plumer makes a case against withdrawal from Iraq


This doesn’t seem right to me, but it’s interesting nonetheless.


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2005 08 18
“There is no escape from the pie.”


Posted by in: Political issues

No kidding.


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2005 08 18
How Radical


I’m a big fan of Russ Feingold’s, ever since he was the only sentator to vote against the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001–even Wellstone (whose shirt I’m wearing today) voted Yea.

Now Feingold has charged other Democrats with being “too ‘timid’ in challenging the Bush administration’s war policy.” So what is Feingold’s bold suggestion?: GET OUT OF IRAQ![1]

[1]…by Dec. 31, 2006. What do we want?! Justice!! When do we want it?! Sixteen months from now!


Howls of outrage (5)

2005 08 18
Jonathan Ames . . .


Posted by in: Odds and ends

. . . is falling apart.


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2005 08 17
Roberts’s conflict of interest


Holy crap.


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2005 08 17
Andrew Arato on the Iraqi Constitution


Interesting.


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