The past fortnight has seen a sharp increase in tension between the US and Pakistan. Relations were already at a low during a year in which a CIA operative shot dead two men in Lahore and US special forces flew into Pakistan to kill Osama bin Laden, without asking permission from Islamabad. Then, two weeks … More Is Pakistan a State Sponsor of Terrorism?
Interesting addition this week of all weeks to the latest, six-monthly edition of Barack Obama’s Fact Sheet: Advancing U.S. Interests at the United Nations. There is a new section entitled “Defending Israel”… When an effort was made to insert the Security Council into matters that should be resolved through direct negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians, … More Defending Israeli Interests at the United Nations
Thoroughly enjoyed Sam Kean’s The Disappearing Spoon: And Other Tall Tales from the Periodic Table, but the following on how coltan is killing gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo rather pulled me up short In just hours, a farmer could earn twenty times what his neighbour did all year, and as profits swelled, men … More Coltan and Gorillas
Above is a pic I did a few months ago of the kit I was taking on the road for a particular trip. This time I forgot a load of things: Prescription sunglasses – brilliant because it means that you don’t have to mess around with contact lenses in hot, dry, dusty conditions. This time … More The Stuff I Forgot
I was for intervention in Iraq. Opposed to intervening in Darfur. In favour of getting involved in Libya. But Syria doesn’t seem such a good idea. Watching from the ground as Nato has bombed Gaddafi from power has crystallised for me exactly when humanitarian intervention is a good idea – and when it might cause … More Some More Thoughts on Humanitarian Intervention
Back on the road today. The deadline for negotiations on Sirte is Saturday so it’s time to take a look and gauge the temperature at the front line. That means about a five-hour drive. The only problem is that my driver-cum-fixer Tam and I share rather different tastes in music. So today’s soundtrack has a … More Safari Soundtrack: The Road to Sirte
Four weeks ago I headed off from my base in Islamabad to Turkey on assignment. In my bag was sufficient reading matter for the week or so I thought I’d be away: Ed: The Milibands and the Making of a Modern Leader Cables from Kabul: The Inside Story of the West’s Afghanistan Campaign Moth Smoke … More Kindle: Great App for Journos on the Road