No charm offensive by US-UK coalition forces can persuade Arab public opinion that the war in Iraq is just. A study of the Arab media during the period of conflict illustrates how deep is the inner resistance of Arab minds to the seductions of western propaganda.
The vast movement and mingling of peoples is a defining feature of societies in the age of globalisation. It poses huge long-term challenges. How can European policy-makers respond creatively? For a start they need ideas that look well ahead, are grounded in current realities and are tested in healthy debate. This is the aim of a collaboration between the think tank Demos, a senior and experienced Dutch civil servant Theo Veenkamp, and openDemocracy. Tom Bentley of Demos introduces the agenda that will shape our project.
The period of crisis in international institutions and political order inaugurated on 11 September 2001 has left intact public trust in the United Nations itself. The organisation should seize the moment for a bold, imaginative reform of its institutional architecture one that will help establish a global public contract able to address the problems of democracy, peace, sustainability and the network society that will define the new century.
Old Europe acts tough, Diamonds lose their sparkle, Gilgamesh rivals Garner.
The lack of foreign language translations in the United States reflects a damaging complacency in its literary and public culture, says KA Dilday.
Does migration erode or enhance national culture? This question is highly sensitive in many European countries. The problem with the existing European approach to migration is that official distinctions between categories of migrants do not match reality. We need a new, sustainable model that recognises the evolving complexity of human mobility. In our People Flow pamphlet, openDemocracy and Demos have proposed such a model to open up debate.
The argument of the People Flow report that mass immigration is normal, irreversible and beneficial to host societies is a damaging illusion. Rather, the current experience of developed western countries, faced with huge inflows of people refugees, asylum-seekers, economic migrants from poorer parts of the world, is unprecedented and damaging. The process can and should be stopped, in the interests of the rich diversity of nations it will otherwise crush.
The world urgently needs effective, generous and humane ways of managing the vast movements of people across borders that is a defining feature of globalisation. A World Migration Organisation would be a crucial step in the process.
Nomads, immigrants, migrants, refugees People Flow, the concept pioneered in a new openDemocracy debate, offers imaginative ways for the movement of people to be understood.
A triumphal tour of the Middle East by the US defence secretary is in marked contrast with the violence and insecurity that continues across Iraq. As the USs bitter diplomatic fallout with France continues, and its forces prepare to relocate from Saudi Arabia, the shadows on the victory sun are enlarging.
The media caravanserai has moved on: after the Iraq war, the Sars race. But what else is new? A cosmonaut of inner space wields machete, butterfly-net, and surreal grasp of geopolitics to pin down the untold stories of a spinning world.
Having fled to Cairo from Liberias civil war, ON was plucked from the mass of waiting African refugees and thrown in jail. Why, he did not know.
Globolog descends from the verdant Washington spring to take the measure of the World Bank and IMFs seasonal meeting. Does it offer any long-term hope to the worlds poorest countries?
The Iraq war found the Czech Republic torn between traditional loyalties to the US and UK and its ties to old Europe. As the country prepares for its referendum on membership of the EU, the Prague-based director of the Institute for European Policy asks whether the Czechs can continue this uncomfortable balancing act.
From pre-historic bog-people to big hair; virgin martyrs to dresses spun from lost souls, to the hairy Devil himself, the author of The Beast to the Blonde takes us on a final grand tour of openDemocracys virtual museum.
In his third report from northern Iraq, the journalist and guide Ayub Nuri reflects on the complex tribal, religious and ethnic relations that war and liberation have brought to the surface. The intoxicating new freedoms are testing Iraqis patience and trust in their new rulers; the US needs urgently to prepare the ground for a democracy in which all the countrys peoples will be secure.
In the deluge of instant imagery and flaky symbolism that surrounds us today, what other people think simply adds to the confusion. Is it possible to act at all? Over a number of years and different episodes in his life, this writer moves towards a tentative conclusion .
John Lloyds article for openDemocracy represents a sharing of a common ground of value in serious, responsible debate across divisions of left and right.
What was the war in Iraq all about and what does it mean for international relations? First, you have to look beyond the surface explanation to what was an ambitious plan for the Middle East. Secondly, you have to subject the perceived threats and their solution to the rigours of just war theory. Only then can you begin to assess both the true nature of the conflict so far and the extent of damage which the world order could suffer as a result.
A refugee officer with Amnesty international assesses the impact of new British proposals to send asylum seekers back to be processed in Regional Protection Zones which may well set the agenda for a global rethink of refugee and asylum law.
This week's editor
Heather McRobie is a regular contributor to 50.50
Heather McRobie is a regular contributor to 50.50