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Leonard Cohen managed that rare thing: to talk with clarity about death

The songwriter’s letter to Marianne Ihlen in her last hours was beautiful, poetic and to the point. Yet so often we deal with death in an inane, mawkish way Suzanne Moore Α short goodbye. A few sentences. But words of such clarity, simplicity and beauty. Many of us have by now read Leonard Cohen’s letter to a… Source: Leonard Cohen managed that rare thing: to talk with clarity about death | Suzanne Moore | Opinion | The Guardian Read More »

I won’t be giving my name to census: Xenophon

Senate crossbencher Nick Xenophon will defy the requirement to provide his name when he fills out Tuesday’s census. With controversy surrounding the extension of the retention of names from 18 months to four years, Xenophon wants to prompt a test case on the validity of the requirement. He faces prosecution and a cumulative fine of A$180 a… Source: I won’t be giving my name to census: Xenophon Read More »

No more ‘Pokemon Go’ at Hiroshima atomic bomb memorial

It was a bit touch and go for Hiroshima officials, but the atomic bomb memorial park in the western Japanese city is now Pokemon No.. The city had asked the developer of the popular “Pokemon Go” smartphone game to remove the creatures and sites that appeared in the park by last weekend, when a… Source: No more ‘Pokemon Go’ at Hiroshima atomic bomb memorial – ASIA Read More »

Fight or Flight: The Desperate Plight of Iraq’s “Generation 2000”

Iraqi youth who came of age during the post-2003 turmoil share a sense of hopelessness and disempowerment. Across the political spectrum, they feel trapped: join a protest movement or militia, or emigrate. Even amid the severe challenges the government and its partners face, this generation must be prioritised, lest Iraq’s most important resource… Source: Fight or Flight: The Desperate Plight of Iraq’s “Generation 2000” | International Crisis Group Read More »

Scores killed in Ethiopia protest crackdown

Security forces accused of shooting dead people in Oromia and Amhara regions in attempt to suppress wave of protests.. Scores of people were killed across Ethiopia’s Oromia and Amhara regions at the weekend as the security forces brutally suppressed a new wave of anti-government protests in two key regions… Source: Scores killed in Ethiopia protest crackdown – News from Al Jazeera Read More »

Free speech: would removing Section 18C really give us the right to be bigots?

Despite previously saying we all have the right to be bigots, Attorney-General George Brandis now says reform of Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act is no longer on the government’s agenda. However, there are several senators – some new, some returning – who beg to differ. David Leyonhjelm, Bob Day, Derryn Hinch and One… Source: Free speech: would removing Section 18C really give us the right to be bigots? Read More »

Museveni’s Post-election Politics: Keeping a Lid on Uganda’s Opposition

Six months after its February general election the political atmosphere in Uganda is unsettled, securitised and paranoid. Opposition leaders and some supporters – seeking to rally a popular movement against the regime – are regularly harassed, accused of treason and temporarily detained. The ruling elite is clearly concerned about the opposition’s growing support. Its hard-fisted approach to the problem, alongside a… Source: Museveni’s Post-election Politics: Keeping a Lid on Uganda’s Opposition | International Crisis Group Read More »

The breaking down of the European Convention on Human Rights, and the UK’s responsibility

Numerous members of the new Government have stated that they want a greater role in the world for a post-Brexit UK, rather than a diminished one. George Stafford If the Government is to be diplomatically resurgent, what sort of challenges might it wish to confront? It could do far worse than face up to the… The breaking down… Read More »

Asylum seekers: Australia’s silence over ‘on-water matters’ faces legal test

Freedom of information case pursued by Guardian Australia journalist Paul Farrell to be heard in administrative appeals tribunal A landmark freedom of information case set to be heard on Monday will test whether the Australian government can hide details of asylum seeker boat… Source: Asylum seekers: Australia’s silence over ‘on-water matters’ faces legal test | Australia news | The Guardian Read More »

Capitalism and Democracy [part 3]

Signs of our troubled times: in a southern hemisphere democracy, where the wealthiest 20% of households are now 70 times richer than the bottom 20%, a prime minister gets back into office with the help of a million dollars from his own pocket. In the northern hemisphere, in the heartlands of the European Union, an avowedly socialist party governs a… Source: Capitalism and Democracy [part 3] Read More »

Turkey’s purge marks endgame in Islamist civil war

ISTANBUL — Last month’s failed coup brought into relief a bitter struggle at the heart of Turkish politics. By Ishaan Tharoor From his humble childhood in a working-class neighborhood of Istanbul, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has steadily transformed the… Source: Turkey’s purge marks endgame in Islamist civil war – The Washington Post Read More »

Yusra Mardini delights with butterfly heat win for Refugee Olympic Team

There will be plenty of inspiring swims in the Rio pool this week but few to match the personal odyssey completed by Yusra Mardini on the opening day of competition. Last year the Syrian teenager was battling in the sea for survival with fellow asylum seekers while trying to reach the Greek island of Lesbos. To go from there to winning the opening heat of the 100m butterfly at the Olympic Games is the ultimate illustration of drawing strength from ... Read More »