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  • The Hargeysa Cultural Center and community development in Somaliland

    Melissa Smyth

    Most maps made of the Horn of Africa today do not represent Somaliland on its northern limb, reflecting the subjectivity of a world that chooses to classify the twenty-five-year-old country, at most, as an autonomous region of Somalia. This omission, however, reflects some of the formative challenges of postcolonial and post-conflict development for Somalilanders.

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  • Yemeni Drone Victims Still Waiting for Accountability

    Sabrina Toppa

    On August 29, 2012, in Yemen’s eastern Hadhramaut province, a U.S. drone struck the village of Khashamir.

    The strike allegedly killed Waleed bin Ali Jaber, a 26-year-old policeman, and his brother-in-law Salem, a 43-year-old religious leader who delivered a sermon against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) the Friday before his death.

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  • Global Warming: Fuel Steam Ahead

    Max Ajl

    You have definitely heard this phrase or a close cousin: “We cannot say if any given weather event is the result of climate change. We can only say climate change makes extreme weather events more frequent.” From seventy-degree days in December in New York to droughts defying belief in the Syrian countryside, the climate is suddenly inescapably present. What are, for now, oddities in the core regions of the world can become acute stressors elsewhere. Such destabilization has led to war and will lead to more.

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  • Lord’s Resistance Army No More

    Sverker Finnström

    With the help of Erin Baines’s careful and knowledgeable editing and pertinent contextualization, Evelyn Amony has written a remarkable memoir entitled I Am Evelyn Amony: reclaiming my life from the Lord’s Resistance Army. Throughout the book there is a forceful narrative agency that is rare among works where outsiders present and edit the life histories of former child soldiers. The account is as painful as it is revealing. Amony’s story is one of “choiceless choices,” to borrow an illustrious phrase from Holocaust researcher Lawrence L.

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  • Colorism in the Black Community

    Melissa Rodriguez

    When I think of colorism I think of my freshman year of high school. “Wow, you got tan.” “You used to be light-skinned.” “Why are you so dark?” I found myself looking in the mirror to see if the color was starting to fade yet, comparing the darkness of my arm to the lightness of my friend’s, avoiding the sun at the beach by hiding under umbrellas, with the constant fear of getting too dark and never being considered light-skinned again.

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  • Talking with Vieux Farka Toure

    Adolf Alzuphar

    I was instructed by Vieux Farka Toure’s manager to call Vieux Farka Toure sometime before 6pm EST. He would be in Bamako when I was scheduled to speak to him, the capital city he had lived in all his adult life since moving there from a small village in Mali, Niafunke, to become a professional musician.  If he considered himself a Bamakoian, a poetic guitarist from a major metropolis, how was this reflected, if at all, in the music he made, I wondered.  

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  • "Next Time They'll Come to Count the Dead": A Conversation with Nick Turse

    Michael Busch

    In late 2013, South Sudan erupted into civil war. The fledgling government, which had taken power just two years earlier during the formal creation of the country, fractured from intrigue and infighting. Violence quickly consumed South Sudan, playing out largely along sectarian lines. Ethnic Dinka soldiers predominantly stuck with the government of President Salva Kiir, while those from the Nuer tribe tended to take up arms against the government under the leadership of former (and now current, again) Vice President Riek Machar. 

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  • Military Poetics: Three Poems

    Gordon Adams

    LA POÉSIE DE LA GUERRE

    Prologue
    Is war the ultimate test of manhood?
    Or is fighting just one hell of a hoot?
    Or is it both, and neither,
    And I don’t talk about it
    If you weren’t there.

    Act I
    How do we prepare a boy to kill?
    Still the repugnance,
    Erase his family, his politics.
    His vanities and habits
    The inattentions of boyhood.

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  • "Calais Jungle": Lives in Limbo

    Hassan Ghedi Santur

    It’s a cold, drizzly day in what has come to be known to the world as the “Calais Jungle”. I’ve spent much of the morning walking around the sprawling camp in the suburbs of the port town of Calais in Northern France. The camp is home to an estimated 5,000 thousand refugees and economic migrants, most of them from Africa, the Middle East and some as far away as Afghanistan.

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  • Rio Olympics evictions echo the 2014 World Cup

    Annabelle Orlando

    The displacement of locals to make way for major sporting events is becoming routine in Rio de Janeiro.

    To make way for renovations, new stadiums, hotels and residences for the 2014 FIFA World Cup that was held in Brazil, about 170,000 people were evicted, forcibly or otherwise.

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