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This week's editor

En Liang Khong

En Liang Khong is submissions editor at openDemocracy.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Smart meters: criminalising landlords, ripping off consumers

Why is the government rolling out smart meters that have been repeatedly exposed as expensive, poorly tested and potential threats to our privacy?

European values and the Arab world

Maged Mandour

EU politicians can promote 'European' values by stopping their support for autocratic regimes, and by starting to ask tough questions about radicalisation.

Rambo-style urban management

Evictions in Accra have rendered a vulnerable population homeless and without a source of income. What has happened to the possibility of reconciling development with human rights?

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?

Open up your eyes to 'Devo-Manc'

'Devo-manc' is part of the government's austerity agenda and its wider attack on the NHS.

Alternative democracy

Parliament, initiated in the 13th Century when the population was ill-educated, is now a self-perpetuating anachronism. What are the alternatives?

Objectivity, neutrality and the call for virtuous anger in academe

The problem with this perception of academic research as objective, dispassionate and free from emotion runs deeper. Neutrality, especially in social sciences does not exist.

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.”

Persecution lurks for converts from Islam in Egypt

The story of Bishoy Armeya stands in stark contrast to the Egyptian regime’s public discourse on religious unity, and to the "absolute" freedom of religion guaranteed by the constitution.

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. 

America's Hiroshima and Nagasaki 70 years later

Will an American president ever offer a formal apology? Will our country ever regret the dropping of “Little Boy” and “Fat Man,” those two bombs that burned hotter than the sun?

Oil and accountability in Tunisia: “Winou el pétrole?"

After elections that saw observers laud Tunisia as the Arab Spring’s solitary success story, Tunisians are demanding to know what happens to their country’s natural resources.

In the name of deterrence

The UK government has adopted the TINA (there is no alternative) principle to the non-payment of ransoms. But is it actually effective?

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.

They are just like us

As Samos islanders stand in solidarity with the refugees arriving at their ports, again and again we hear locals saying: “they are just like us”.

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.

The art of self-reliance: stories from the refugees who stay

Ending the 'migration crisis' means creating decent and liveable lives. The ability to become self-reliant in even the most disadvantaged of circumstances is worthy of illumination and support.

The rise of Brazil's 'free journalists'

By disrupting common-sense narratives, Brazil’s alternative media is raising issues on behalf of a silent majority. But remaining independent is a challenge.

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.

A hotchpotch of hope

The Labour Party machinery has long been prone to imagining outcomes within the narrowest, safest, and statistically verifiable ranges of business as usual. No wonder it’s panicking over the ‘Corbyn surge’.  

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.

Australia's cruel treatment of gay asylum-seekers

Australia continues to resettle homosexual refugees in homophobic Papua New Guinea. Gay men seeking asylum are both required yet unable to declare their sexuality for fear of persecution.

Should western countries support Tunisia and if so how?

The new Tunisian leaders would prefer that westerners invest in Tunisia by building factories and processing plants, creating thousands of jobs for Tunisians at home and quality goods at fair prices.

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.

Apologists for terror or defenders of human rights? The Cage controversy in context

The attack on Cage is part of the more general assault on politically active Muslims and an attempt to push Muslim organisations to the margins of public life.

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.

Review - 'Benign Violence: Education in and beyond the Age of Reason'

Ansgar Allen's book traces our obsession with assessment, standards and measurement in modern education. It is both an unsettling history and a provocative call for resistance.

Architects for Social Housing: fighting a political 'crisis'

London’s housing ‘crisis’ is not a result of faceless economic forces: it has been carefully prepared and legislated over a number of years to serve the interests of those who benefit from it.

India hangs another despite pleas from eminent people

Possible innocence, the fact that guilt was never proven beyond reasonable doubt and that many impoverished accused are poorly represented - just a few of the reasons anti-death penalty campaigners cite.

New Labour is 'unelectable'

Anything other than a Jeremy Corbyn victory will signal a disaster for Labour, who will be tripping over themselves to superficially differentiate themselves from the Tories.

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.

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