afghanistan

Countering Terrorism...With Racism?

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 16/07/2018 - 5:00pm in


Most terrorist actions in the country have been committed by white, U.S.-born extremists. But our focus on anti-terrorism has targeted muslims all over the world.

Fire in the Sky

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Wed, 04/07/2018 - 5:00pm in


How the sound of fireworks brings on some unpleasant reminders for veterans

Looting Libya

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 23/06/2018 - 3:30pm in

One of the biggest Western foreign policy adventures in recent years is something that is underreported in the media. So-called ‘intervention’ in Libya has created a failed state that is riven with extremists all vying for power. So we ask: was this really an epic foreign policy mistake? Or was destroying Libya just another day at the office for politicians, shortsighted bureaucrats, and vulture corporates who continually try to enforce global economic supremacy.

The post Looting Libya appeared first on Renegade Inc.

Inspiration for the future in Afghanistan

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 05/06/2018 - 10:58pm in

When Omar Joya joined the faculty at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF) in Kabul in 2017, he realised that the economics in the standard introductory textbooks he started to teach often had little to do with the lives of his students. “The textbooks I was teaching were a long way from reality in countries like Afghanistan. I had to contextualise the lessons, as the textbooks were primarily written for students in the US.”

To create a more relevant curriculum, he switched to teaching CORE’s The Economy as the source text for his students, who study in English for a bachelor’s degree in business administration. “At the moment it is working very well. The level of contextualisation I need to do now is much less. Unit 1, The Capitalist Revolution, in particular works well with our students because it gives them a background in economic history. In other textbooks you don’t get a sense of how countries have evolved, or how we came to have the institutions that economies need to develop.”

AUAF is the only private, not-for-profit, independent university chartered under the Afghan Constitution. The “American” in the title is not about ownership. It comes from the course structure, which echoes that of a US liberal arts college. It was founded in 2006, and aims to prepare its Afghan students “to be tomorrow’s leaders”. Currently just over 1,000 of them are taking degrees, including a large number of female students (there is a female dormitory too). Competition for places, some of which are subsidised by government grants, is fierce.

When he joined the faculty, Joya was already familiar with the country’s economy and culture. He had relocated to Washington DC after five years as the World Bank’s country economist for Afghanistan, a job in which he was working intimately with the government on policy issues and analysis. But he decided he could do more for the future of the country as a teacher than analyst. “Previously when working on policy reforms with the government and the challenges we observed in policy implementation, I sometimes lost my hope. But now I enjoy the teaching, and teaching makes me optimistic for the future of my country.”

Challenging assumptions

Joya studied in France, and the contrast with the classroom culture he found in Kabul surprised him. “In France, students were very quiet. You would only ask a question if it was relevant to the lecture, and you would leave out other questions to after the class. In Afghanistan I expected students to react the same way, but here they ask a lot of questions, which is a good thing.”

What sort of questions? Students would challenge the simplifying assumptions of traditional economic modelling, he says, for example the concept of a perfectly rational, selfish consumer. “They would ask ‘why do we assume this? We don’t see it in reality’. In our lives we consider ethics, altruism and many other factors, which are not taken into account in the standard economic models.” The switch to using The Economy meant that Joya could introduce concepts like inequality and fairness to his teaching –although he still likes to add local context to the examples to make them relevant for Kabul’s students.

His colleague Lutfi Rahimi agrees that more local context helps AUAF students. Rahimi teaches the microeconomics section to first and second years, says that it “covers all aspects that most traditional textbooks miss. All those who had taken beginners economics modules beforehand found the book easier to grasp.” But those who were new to economics found some of the material later in the course harder to understand. His feedback is the same as many of our teachers in developing countries: more localisation helps the students to understand and to learn. (We agree, and we’re working with local teachers in some regions to help develop this type of feature.)

Studying and working in Kabul often presents bigger challenges than the next lecture. “This is a country in conflict, and everyone is at risk,” Joya says. This was brought home to staff and students at the AUAF in August 2016, when suspected members of the Taliban stormed the campus and killed eight university students, three policemen, three security guards, and two university professors. “Life for our students can be difficult,” he admits, “but no one stays at home saying ‘I won’t go to university because of the risks’.”

Afghanistan needs more university education, and more teachers to deliver it. “Transferring my knowledge to others could make a positive impact on the economy,” Joya says, “The biggest challenge for Afghanistan is to have efficient institutions, and therefore we need to have well-educated people working in them. But I see the ambition our students have. It makes me feel inspired for the future.”

The post Inspiration for the future in Afghanistan appeared first on CORE.

Mo Shafiq on the Systematic Islamophobia in the Tory Party

This is another great clip from RT. In it, Polly Boiko talks to Mo Shafiq, the Chief Executive of the Ramadhan Foundation about the calls from the Muslim Council for an inquiry into the endemic racism within the Tory party. Shafiq states that it isn’t just the everyday racism, but that it also comes from the very top. Like Zac Goldsmith’s islamophobic campaign when he was running for mayor of London, when he tried to connect Sadiq Khan with terrorism; or with the islamophobic remarks from David Cameron and the Tory leadership. Such as Cameron’s comment that if Muslim women didn’t learn English, this would leave them more open to terrorist propaganda.

Boiko asks him if this isn’t actually rather political. The Labour party has been attacked for anti-Semitism, and now the Tories are being accused of islamophobia. Shafiq states that it’s quite right to attack anti-Semitism, as it has no place in our society. Neither should Islamophobia. But there as been a continuous stream of attacks on Muslims, stating that Islam is alien to Britain, and that it’s now got to the point where people are scared to go to the mosque or wear headscarves in public.

Boiko then asks him if the calls for an investigation into the Tories’ Islamophobia won’t actually make people more scared and fearful. Shafiq replies that there isn’t just a problem with the Tories, but also with wider society. However, he doesn’t agree that the problem is as large as the polls suggest. He then goes to talk about the way Muslims have been presented negatively in the press since 9/11, and talks about the way it has become fashionable to attack Muslims in the media and on-line. He mentions Melania Phillips, the Times journalist, who rages about anti-Semitism, but is also constantly attacking Muslims. He goes on to claim that now, if you want to get hits, all you have to do is write pieces attacking Muslims and put a hashtag on it #HateMuslims.

Shafiq is absolutely right to welcome the Muslim council’s demand into the Tories’ Islamophobia. Zach Goldsmith’s Islamophobic campaign and Cameron’s comments about Muslim women, who can’t speak English being more vulnerable to terrorist propaganda were remarked on and condemned at the time. But nothing has been done, and Baroness Warsi complained the other week that Islamophobic incidents now occur at least once a week within the party.

As for Melanie ‘Mad Mel’ Phillips, what can you say? She used to write for the Daily Heil, and her columns were full of vitriol about Muslims then. She’s also the author of a book, Londonistan, about how London became a haven for Muslim terrorists. Unfortunately, London and Britain did give sanctuary for Muslim terrorists. This was under Maggie Thatcher, he gave some of the truly vile butchers from the Taliban in Afghanistan asylum in Britain, because they were anti-Communist and so ‘one of us’. And many Muslims were shocked at the way these creatures were free to preach hatred and violence from their mosques. There were numerous complaints against them, but these were systematically ignored.

The Tories are not only riddled with Islamophobia, but they have actively aided the immigration to Britain of the murderers, who inspire it. They are absolute hypocrites on this issue.

Drugs: Threat to World and Factor of US Policy

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 24/05/2018 - 12:00am in

Oil, weapons and drugs are among the products with the largest turnover in the world. According to the International Energy Agency, the world demand for oil is between 94 million barrels per day with the United States being the largest oil consumer in the world, 11,500,000 barrels of oil per day. Likewise, according to the International Institute of Studies for Peace in Stockholm, the United States is the leading producer and exporter of weapons worldwide, controlling 31% of the international market.

Special Service’s Agent: Attack On Russia is Being Prepared

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sun, 20/05/2018 - 9:53am in

While the Pentagon accuses Russia of fomenting false fears of a Daesh/ISIS threat in Central Asia – see Sputnik’s article on this — new reports of an American push to attack Russia militarily via Uzbekistan and Tajikistan and are now emerging.  We’re reposting here Catehon’s May 19 article on this topic by Andrey Afanasyev. Sources in the Russian law enforcement agencies, citing data from closed communication channels with the Defense Ministries of China, Pakistan and Afghanistan, say that the operation to prepare a large-scale hybrid offensive against Russia through Tajikistan and Uzbekistan is in the final phase. Reports of this have been received earlier, in particular, this was mentioned at a recent security conference held in Tashkent. Then the head of the Tajik Foreign Ministry Sirodzhiddin Aslov openly announced the activation of terrorists in the region: The activation of terrorist groups, their advancement to the northern regions of Afghanistan, especially in the territories bordering Tajikistan, the increase in the number of ISIS supporters, as well as the participation of a certain number of citizens of …

On U.S. Imperialism, Capitalism and Fascism

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 17/05/2018 - 11:00am in

If you want to know the untold history of the U.S.A., then a good place to start is with the history of US imperialism in Asia from the mid-19th century until today. Not only will that reveal the history of the criminality of US foreign policy, but it will also reveal the true nature of U.S. capitalism, imperialism, fascism and U.S. wars of aggression: past, present and future.

Syria: neoliberalism vs sovereignty

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 12/05/2018 - 3:30pm in

The more we hear about Syria, the less we understand. The mixed messages that come from the media seem only to add more confusion. Having been hoodwinked into wars in the Middle East before, the British people are naturally skeptical. So beyond the headlines what's the real geopolitical play that's going on and why is it occurring? We travelled to Singapore to meet Professor Ali Kadri, a Middle Eastern economist who understands the geopolitical play and gives us an unvarnished look into what's at stake, the forces driving the Syrian conflict, and the wider problems across the Middle East.

The post Syria: neoliberalism vs sovereignty appeared first on Renegade Inc.

Syria: neoliberalism vs sovereignty

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 12/05/2018 - 3:30pm in

The more we hear about Syria, the less we understand. The mixed messages that come from the media seem only to add more confusion. Having been hoodwinked into wars in the Middle East before, the British people are naturally skeptical. So beyond the headlines what's the real geopolitical play that's going on and why is it occurring? We travelled to Singapore to meet Professor Ali Kadri, a Middle Eastern economist who understands the geopolitical play and gives us an unvarnished look into what's at stake, the forces driving the Syrian conflict, and the wider problems across the Middle East.

The post Syria: neoliberalism vs sovereignty appeared first on Renegade Inc.

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