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This week's editor

NSS, editor

Niki Seth-Smith is a freelance journalist and contributing editor to 50.50.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

The thinking behind a mental health workers pledge for Palestine

Concerned professionals may need to move beyond their accustomed professional roles to support a genuine transformation in Israel and occupied Palestine that respects the human needs and rights of all who live there.

Saludcoop: Colombian-style confusion

After allegations were made that funds had been diverted, the government took control of the main healthcare provider in Colombia. The full story, involving corruption and public health, is Kafkaesque. Español. Português.

Three realities of the Isis conflict

The west must prioritise civilian wellbeing in any intervention. What might help?

Libya, the Fezzan, egoism and the danger of self-interest

The survival of Libya depends very much on the fate of the Fezzan region and on Libyans’ willingness to dialogue and cooperate among themselves.

Macri and the Latin American pendulum

In Latin America, due to the growing disconnection between a changing demos, with a variety of demands, and a cratos, with a very low responsiveness, we are in a state of confusion. Español. Português.

Paris as a test case for the west

One effective way for western governments to keep their people safe is to press for fundamental reforms in countries where armed extremists thrive, rather than subverting democracy at home.

Macri e o pêndulo latino-americano

A América Latina encontra-se num estado de confusão que se deve à crescente desconexão entre um demos em transformação, com uma diversidade de exigências, e um cratos com pouca porosidade para dar respostas. English. Español

Macri y el péndulo latinoamericano

América Latina se encuentra en un estado de confusión que se debe a la creciente desconexión entre un demos en transformación, con una diversidad de demandas, y un cratos con poca porosidad para dar respuestas. English. Português.

La pobreza mundial: los errores del Nobel de Economía

La pobreza no es un problema individual de falta de recursos que puede resolverse a través de la educación, como defienden Angus Deaton y el Banco Mundial. El problema es la forma en que se distribuyen los recursos. English.

Russia’s policy in the Middle East imperilled by the Syrian intervention

This risky experiment in power projection continues traditional Russian policy in the region, but also departs from the careful manoeuvring aimed at exploiting confusion in US and European policies.  

من بيروت إلى باريس، الحزن الانتقائي: "كلّنا يعني كلّنا" مذنبون

في كشفنا الحزن الانتقائي للآخرين، يبرز حزننا الانتقائي. علينا أن نعترف بعدم كفاءتنا في التعامل مع مصائب وعذابات الناس وأن نظهر التضامن بالفعل وبالقول مع جميع ضحايا الإرهاب والقمع English

The Turkish stadium scandal: why we should be concerned about the decision to not grieve for Paris

That the AKP election victory comes in the aftermath of a tumultuous summer is disconcerting, for it makes fear and violence not only an acceptable, but also a rewarding tactic.

Aerial bombing against Isis is counterproductive

The few politicians in Europe resisting the pull of air strikes, such as Jeremy Corbyn and Matteo Renzi, appear intimidated. They should be strongly supported with activism and intellectual argument.

Why we should oppose British air strikes against ISIL in Syria

Britain’s Prime Minister says we should not undertake air strikes lightly – he is right: we need to think about legitimate state building, not replying to terror with terror.

¿Hay discordias entre manifestantes y organizadores de protestas antigubernamentales en Brasil?

Los manifestantes reconocen que tanto el gobierno como la oposición son culpables de corrupción, a pesar del discurso selectivo de los coordinadores de las manifestaciones. English. Português.

Another ‘Dodgy Dossier’ for war

Undeterred by the disastrous results of ‘regime change’ in Iraq and Libya, western powers have for four years been determinedly trying to help regime change in Syria along.

Playing with people’s emotions

'Every time the western media decides what to air, and who to call a terrorist, they generate a lot of debate in our country.' A leading Pakistani digital rights activist on the politics of counter-terror and surveillance.

A discord between demonstrators and the organizers of antigovernment protests in Brazil?

Demonstrators in Brazil recognize that both the government and the opposition are guilty of corruption, despite the selective discourse of the groups coordinating the demonstrations. Português. Español. 

Um desacordo entre manifestantes e os convocantes dos protestos?

Manifestantes percebem a corrupção afetando tanto Governo como oposição, a despeito do discurso seletivo dos grupos que tem chamado as manifestações. Também defendem serviços públicos universais e gratuitos como saúde e educação. English. Español.

Post-democracy in Armenia? How the new Constitution will depoliticize Armenian society

Is the new constitution an attempt by Armenian capital and oligarchs to signal to EU elites and European capital that they are determined to fulfil transnational capital’s wildest dreams? A conversation.

Mourning Paris, Beirut and Kabul

Most western commentators describe ‘the events’ in Paris as entirely different, an attack on our way of life. Which ‘way of life’ is under attack in Kabul and Beirut? 

Why the west cannot defeat ISIS

Maged Mandour

ISIS has emerged from the wounds of the Arab world—for which the west is to a large extent responsibleand current airstrikes are pouring salt into these wounds.

The aid crisis for Syrian refugees

As the war is prolonged, families are exhausting their savings. Without a massive re-thinking of how aid is delivered and distributed, refugees in the region are going to look for ways to leave.

Fictiocracy: democracy as an illusion

Latin America is the domain of democracy as an illusion. An illusion that is maintained by its governments’ narratives, and a democracy that is corrupted by crime. Español. Português.

Ficciocracia: la democracia como ilusión

Latinoamérica, con sus dificultades para consolidar el estado de derecho, es la región de la democracia como ilusión. Ilusión que relatan los gobiernos y democracia capturada por la corrupción y el delito. English. Português

“Ficçocracia”: a democracia como ilusão

A América Latina conta com democracias plenas em muito poucas nações que conseguiram consolidar um estado de direito. Na maioria dos casos, só existem condições para viver a ilusão da democracia. Español. English.

After Paris, be careful what you ask for: an interview with Thomas Drake

NSA whistleblower Drake wanted to defend the US constitution. So they prosecuted him under the Espionage Act.

Israel, ISIS and the Paris attacks

The recent spate of terror attacks around the world have given Israel an opportunity to showcase its military and intelligence capabilities—and to further crack down on Palestinians.

International community neglects to act on Yazidi genocide

Mass murder, rape, slavery, and kidnapping; the situation for the Yazidi community is dire and the international community's reponse has been wholly inadequate.

América Latina busca papel decisivo na COP de Paris

Aproximadamente 25% das terras cultiváveis, 22% das selvas e 31% da agua doce do planeta estão na América Latina. A sustentabilidade do desenvolvimento na região determinará o futuro de todos. Español. English.

América Latina busca tener un papel decisivo en la COP de París

Cerca del 25% de las tierras cultivables, el 22% de las selvas y el 31% del agua dulce del planeta están en Latinoamérica. La sostenibilidad del desarrollo en la región determinará el futuro de todos. English. Português.

Latin America seeks decisive role at COP21 in Paris

About 25% of the world’s farmable land, 22% of its forests, and 31% of fresh water are found in Latin America. The sustainability of development in the region will determine the future of all of us. Español. Português.

The hard dilemma: counterterrorism and/or shallow freedom

How do we limit the freedom of individual terrorists, terrorist groups and support networks to operate unimpeded in a relatively unregulated environment, whilst maintaining individual freedoms, democracy and human rights?

Violence comes home: an interview with Arun Kundnani

ISIS’s recruits are not corrupted by ideology but by the end of ideology. More radicalisation, in the genuine sense of the word, is the solution, not the problem.

Yemen is not Paris: western media’s cold shoulder

Yemen is a failed state devastated by fighting, with thousands of civilians killed by a strong jihadist presence and widespread suffering. It has made very few headlines.  

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