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'Small footprint, high payoff': US Marine team trains Ugandan forces to face al-Shabaab

Kony 2016: Ugandan Pullout A Big Win For LRA

In 2012 a 30 minute documentary about a rebel leader in Uganda set the internet alight. KONY 2012 brought to the public view the gruesome activities of Lord’s Resistance Army leader Joseph Kony and his kidnapping of young children. While the campaign itself was short lived, the Bush and later Obama administrations had already pledged […]

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Posted in Africa, Conflict, UN, World

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From Brexit to Breakup: a Scottish View on the EU Referendum

CC Image courtesy of Rareclass This piece was also published in Huffington Post on 23rd June 2016 Something we in Scotland learned the hard way in 2014 is that referendum questions are dangerous because they make both choices on the ballot paper seem equally plausible. By giving the people a choice we somehow assume that […]

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Posted in Europe, European Union, Germany, Global Economy, Refugees, Scottish Independence, UK News, World

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Britain’s EU Referendum Demonstrates the Volatility of Populist Politics. Is the US Listening?

In trying to puzzle through the populism animating the right and left after the 2008 global financial crisis and the 2015 European migrant crisis, we can draw a worrying parallel between the UK referenda and social and economic populism in the US. As in the US presidential race, the UK’s Remain/Leave debate is complex: it […]

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Posted in Europe, UK News, US, World

Image by Abegum

The ‘Pure Wind’ of the Leave Campaign Shows Contempt for UK Voters

George Orwell famously wrote that “Political language … is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” Having lived through the Scottish independence referendum, it is hard to believe that less than two years on from that experience the people of the UK are […]

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Posted in Europe, European Union, UK News, World

Image by Alec Ross (Alecross.com) [CC BY 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Exclusive: Hillary Clinton’s Former Tech Guru on Cyber Threats and Trump ‘The Monster’

There are few people who can lay claim to having shaped how the world’s only superpower uses modern technology, but Alec Ross is one of those few. Having played a critical role in developing then Senator Barack Obama’s technology and innovation plan during the 2008 presidential campaign, Ross went on to serve as senior innovation advisor to […]

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Posted in Cyber Threats, Technology, US, World

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Crowdfunding: the Way to Grassroots Climate Governance

Modern crowdfunding—the idea of grassroots fundraising via the internet—officially began in 1997 when the British rock band, Marillion, ran a successful internet fundraising campaign with their adoring fans to finance the band’s North American tour. Since then crowdfunding sites have burgeoned, utilizing dedicated internet platforms to connect entrepreneurs and social-movement-mobilizers with crowds of netizen-investors and supporters to […]

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Posted in UN, World

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The Renaissance of Right-Wing Populism – Learning from the Case of Austria

Many parts of Europe currently face a renaissance of the xenophobic political right. Thus, it is certainly no coincidence that in a recent issue of the “New Statesman” Rowan Williams reminds us that “the toxic brew of paranoia and populism that brought Hitler to power” may not be so far away from liberal democracies as […]

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Posted in Europe, European Union, World

Image by DonkeyHotey

Why Bernie Supporters Might Embrace the Donald

As a very active supporter of Senator Bernie Sanders, I have for the past nine months lived in fear of the day when the strong economy, and the Democratic Party machine’s systematic opposition would finally see off our campaign. The fear was never so much that we wouldn’t get Mr. Sanders, although I am a […]

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Posted in US, World

Image by European Parliament

The EU: Democratise or Disintegrate

On 9th February 2016, Yanis Varoufakis, the unofficial leader of the ‘Democracy in Europe Movement 2025’, and a coalition of activists gathered together in Berlin to launch the ‘DiEM25’ manifesto.  They declared: ‘The EU will be democratised. Or it will disintegrate!’ The former Greek finance minister believes the European Union to be a beautiful conception, […]

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Posted in Europe, European Union, World

Image by US Government Work

Interview: A Diplomatic View – From the Middle East to Obama’s U.K. Trip

I sat down with the U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission for the U.K., Minister Elizabeth Dibble, to discuss the Obama visit, the Middle East and the complex Iran-Saudi relationship. The Obama Visit to the U.K. D.M.: You touched on President Obama’s visit in your talk and what he said about the EU referendum. What for […]

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Posted in Conflict, Interviews, Iran, Israel, Israeli Palestinian Conflict, Middle East, Political Security, Saudi Arabia, Security Issues, Syria, US, World, Yemen

Secure fencing surrounds the Detention Center on Christmas Island, Australia. In 2015 some 150 male asylum seekers to Australia were being held here.

Out of Sight, Out of Mind: On the History and Legality of Detention Centres

It’s official: Australia’s “Stop the Boats” campaign is a success. Or so the government claims. Back in 2013, former Prime Minister Tony Abbott ascended to his post in part because of his pledge to “stop the boats,” or, in less catchy rhetoric, to prevent asylum seekers – mostly arriving by sea from the Middle East […]

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Posted in Africa, Asia, Australia, Conflict, Europe, Iran, Political Security, Refugees, Syria, UN, World

A memorial to the slain opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, who was assassinated here 27 February 2015 outside the walls of the Kremlin. Image by Marco Fieber.

Repression, It’s the Law

  Vladimir Putin’s Russia has, especially in recent years, come under heavy criticism from many in the West. Much of this criticism, however, deals with Russian aggression toward Ukraine, the extrajudicial killings of critics of the Putin regime such as Alexander Litvinenko, or accusations of widespread corruption. All of these issues are clearly in violation […]

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Posted in Europe, Political Security, Russia, Security Issues, World

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Aid or Trade? Problems with the UN’s Human Development Figures

  By Amanda Beal and Maria Sofia This past September, many of the world’s leaders gathered in New York to sign the United Nations (UN) new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Numerous man-hours and unspeakable amounts of money have been used to promote this transition and enhance the global partnership for development. However, no one yet […]

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Posted in Africa, Asia, Economics, Global Economy, Humanitarian Intervention, Latin America, UN, World

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The Panama Papers: Reimainging the Moral Force of Law

This piece was originally published by the Centre for Global Constitutionalism The release of over 11.5 million documents from Mossack Fonseca, a Panamanian based law firm, has revealed the lengths to which individuals and companies will go to avoid their national tax obligations. When asked about the problem of tax avoidance, President Barack Obama acknowledged that those […]

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Posted in Economics, Global Economy, World

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