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This week's editor

VM

Our guest editor, Valsamis Mitsilegas, director of the Criminal Justice Centre at Queen Mary University of London, introduces this week’s theme: Privacy and Surveillance in 2016.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Time to fight for disarmament

As national security becomes increasingly understood as the advancement of military technologies, the concept of disarmament has become little more than a Cold War relic. We must save it. 

Women and the xenophobia narrative in South Africa

Women who are victims of xenophobia are seen as betraying their ‘nation’ by not conforming to their roles: and South African women are complicit in this narrative.

Understanding Japan's collective trauma

The Japanese have been bound together by a collective experience of horror since Hiroshima and Nagasaki, an experience reawakened by the impact of the Fukushima disaster.

The new war for the Middle East

ISIS has stepped opportunistically into the vacuum created by the absence of state, loss of shared narrative and feeble leverage of powers. But there may be a way ahead. A NOREF report.

Cameron’s hypocrisy on Muslim radicalization

If Cameron was serious about countering extremism, what better person to allow into the UK than Jeenah, who has much to say about the contributions of the west to the problem?

The siren song of financial realism

Financial realism has enchanted European polities. It is a song the powerful love to hear. But a song that will destroy all that is good and humane about Europe.

Three myths behind the case for Grexit: a destructive analysis

Any hope of a radical change in the economic direction of Europe requires international solidarity, and that solidarity in turn requires the euro.

Jeremy Corbyn and British foreign policy

The anti-war movement, with all its errors and omissions, is central to Corbyn's popular appeal.

A world free of fear and violence

The forcefulness of the 2030 Agenda´s commitment to preventing and reducing violence is surprising even for those who campaigned for their inclusion.

Hungary’s refugee policy: fencing off the country

The rapidly increasing influx of asylum-seekers poses a huge challenge to Hungary. The government responds with a complete lack of solidarity, massive demagoguery and arm-twisting in Brussels. 

The false promise of Turkish democracy

In its first real test after the end of military control, Turkish democracy has failed. If democracy cannot keep its promise and bring peace, then what can?

Post-Suruc Turkey

“Today, it is from the collective efforts around the Kurdish movement that we are learning what a society made up of free individuals might look like in Turkey.”

The Syriza problem: radical democracy and left governmentality in Greece

Syriza’s extraordinary problem – which would not be faced by any other political party in government – was to alter internal institutional frameworks under conditions of external institutional assault. 

Will counter-radicalisation policies take the heat off Somalis in Kenya?

If Kenya’s new counter-radicalisation policies are to be successful, the first step must be in creating decent lives for Somalis living in the country.

Why is Turkey bombing the Kurds?

Given interlocking domestic, regional, and international developments, the AKP has launched attacks on ISIS and the PKK, the latter evidently being the main target, with four main objectives.

America's not so exceptional foreign policy

What can explain the myopia of US policy towards Sudan, when it knows Sudan has been facilitating ISIS in Libya, Syria and Iraq, and other terror groups?

In Japan: controversial US army base sparks outrage among local population

It is time activists across the globe extended solidarity to those protesting to prevent the construction of a new military base in Okinawa, who are haunted by their memories.

Against Letpadaung: copper mining in Myanmar and the struggle for human rights

Contention around a mine in Myanmar – especially police treatment of activists campaigning to close it – has grown into a challenge for the development of rule of law in that country.

Dreams of return find new meaning on Zaatari's third anniversary

The permanence of the Zaatari Syrian refugee camp in Jordan is not accepted by all, but is a truth that is transforming lives and attitudes inside the informal city.

Lebanon's refugees: resisting hegemony through culture

Seenaryo, a small independent theatre project that starts this week with Syrian and Palestinian children, seeks to foster an alternative political proposal in a situation where politics has emphatically failed. 

Iran’s nuclear deal reconsidered

Business delegations are flying in daily, making the most of this opportunity to establish themselves in Iran when Republican opposition to the deal is compromising US prospects at this critical early stage.

Turkey’s bombing campaign against the Kurds will affect domestic parliamentary politics

Strikingly, during the hastily convened NATO meeting on Tuesday, secretary general Jens Stoltenberg refrained from directly mentioning Kurdish militant groups.

The crushing of Syriza: an Aesopian fable

In 2010 the image of ‘ending up like Greece’ was that of a Dickensian debtors’ prison. In 2015 it is that of hell.

The Greek referendum: a peculiar situation and an infamous act

A close adviser to Greece’s former Finance Minister, Yanis Varoufakis, gives an insider view of the government negotiations with the Eurogroup. Interview by acTVism Munich. Deutsch.

A spectre is haunting Europe — the spectre of democracy

Since Greek voters rejected Troika rule by a landslide, the Hellenic citizenry presents a threat far greater than the government it elected. It must be punished.

Stabilizing Palestine with a better Gaza ceasefire: a new narrow opening

The US should allow a UN Security Council resolution that includes an end date for the Israeli occupation.

Varoufakis’ unspeakably shocking plan B

This Greek rule-bending ambition, from a position of weakness, violates the basic principles of financial realism.

Surreptitious symbiosis: the relationship between NGO’s and movement activists

For now, thanks to surreptitious symbiosis, it is possible to do sustained activism to bring about social change, without becoming part of a ‘civil society industry’.  From the Squares and Beyond partnership.

Renewing the Latin American connection

All the countries of those sitting around this table were born in genocide. In the case of Brazil, we were the world champion of slavery. So we are based on that! Sweet but violent. From the Squares and Beyond partnership.

Neoliberal realpolitik: choking others in our name

This lack of lived experience with the violence of our state entails an almost inevitable blindness to the deepening divide between those our states protect and those whose life it represses, expels, and humiliates.

A moron speaks...

According to a former adviser to Tony Blair, MPs who nominated Jeremy Corbyn for the Labour leadership are "morons". What does one of them have to say about a leading Corbyn policy, nuclear disarmament?

How the Turkish elections changed the foreign policy of Turkey

Governments with declining electoral success may use adventurous foreign policy choices or make radical shifts in their foreign policies to gain re-election.

Gaza's dark night

Palestinians want to leave. Nothing else. All Palestinians. Because there is not even drinking water anymore in Gaza. Even the Hamas guys in charge just want to leave.

The idea of India

This is a concept that operates not by concealing the actual conditions, but by creating its own 'reality': the reality of communalism as a deviation from secularism and the constitution.

Is counter-propaganda the only antidote to propaganda?

Russia Today is packed full of lies. But aren't there motes aplenty in our own eyes onto the world? Is media credibility shot, and can we hope to improve trust in news?  An academic conference this autumn in Prague aims to bring journalists and acdemics together to explore the problem

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