Yemen: humanitarian tragedy, global ignorance

Published May 11th, 2016 - 02:08 GMT
Yemeni children are displaced from their homes after a reported Saudi airstrike in the capital city Sana'a. (AFP/File)
Yemeni children are displaced from their homes after a reported Saudi airstrike in the capital city Sana'a. (AFP/File)

Yemen: still moving, still standing still 

In the past year, Human Rights Watch has documented 43 airstrikes, some of which may amount to war crimes, which have killed more than 670 civilians, as well as 15 attacks involving internationally banned cluster munitions.

The HRW report comes as MSF decided to withdraw from the World Humanitarian Summit due to a lack of confidence that the summit will address weaknesses in humanitarian action and emergency response in conflict zones including Yemen and Syria.

Continue reading on Middle East Revised   

 

Sadiq Khan and Trump 

The charismatic young mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is calling out Donald Trump for his bigotry toward Muslims. He says he plans to visit the United States this fall before the presidential election, because in case Trump wins, he won’t be able to.

He had told Time magazine earlier,

“If Donald Trump becomes the president I’ll be stopped from going there by virtue of my faith, which means I can’t engage with American mayors and swap ideas.” 

Trump responded that he might make an exception for Sadiq Khan: “There will always be exceptions,” he said.

Continue reading on Informed Comment 

 

Of bandits and popinjays  

My clothes were sticking to me; it had been one hell of a summer’s day. I can vaguely recall the hot, viscid bodies on the streets, draped in blue, and the kohl-rimmed eyes of gamelan singers obscured by the sun. In the back of a black taxicab, my feet felt as if they were about to burst out of all that smooth leather, and I sensed a familiar light, one of childhood years up north, seep in through the windows. Performance was playing that evening, in some stuffy hole in the wall; more hot, viscid bodies, more kohl-rimmed eyes. Let’s have a look! Through diaphanous tapestries I descried tumbling figures being kissed and bitten, to the ringing sounds of the santur and the language of the birds, naked alabaster flesh rubbing against the soft knots of Persian rugs, and frankincense smoke arising from behind a gilded Qajar-era mirror. From Jagger’s pouty lips debouched the tale of the Old Man of the Mountain, the gatekeeper of Paradise up high in the crags of Alamut, and from a little stereoscope, brightly-coloured images of Puhhshia. ‘But I don’t want to go to America,’ protested the gamine Lucy from beneath silken sheets, ‘I wish to be a bandit in Persia. If my linen shirt had thitherto been sticky, it was now wet. I never found out if Lucy, Pherber, and Turner eventually made it there; amongst the three, perhaps only Chas, the one on the run, attained the object of his desire. Gone to Persia, read the blue ink of the brusque note he tossed on his bed.

Continue reading on Reorient 

 

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