There Can Be No Peace in Syria Until There Is Justice

Whilst the world’s major powers collectively pat themselves on the back for brokering a ceasefire in Syria, they fail to notice that the war, though diluted in its violence, is yet to stop.

Despite the widely reported truce between Regime forces and those opposed to Bashar al-Assad, the death toll continues to rise in Syria. The oft-quoted figure of 250,000 dead has sat unchanged for at least 18-months and is in all likelihood so far from the truth that it should be ignored outright.

Since the ceasefire has come into force, the monthly casualties have dropped substantially, but soldiers, and more worryingly, civilians continue to die en masse.

Continue reading “There Can Be No Peace in Syria Until There Is Justice”

Tariq Ali’s Don’t Bomb Syria Speech: Confused, Misinformed, or Simply Untrue?

On Saturday 28th November, thousands of protesters gathered in Whitehall to oppose the UK government’s plans to bomb ISIS in Syria.

Stop the War Coalition led proceedings, and though I was not there in person, I have been able to watch numerous videos of the days events.

One video which stands out from the crowd is that showing Tariq Ali’s speech – or at least 15-minutes of it – at the end of the demonstration.

Continue reading “Tariq Ali’s Don’t Bomb Syria Speech: Confused, Misinformed, or Simply Untrue?”

WWE: Stereotypes, Racism and International Politics

In my youth I was an avid fan of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), or World Wrestling Federation (WWF) as it was known back then. The characters, the action, the storylines, the glitz and the glamour, the shocks and surprises, the backstabbing and betrayal, everything about it was designed to connect with an audience, and it had me hooked. It is no wonder that “Entertainment” was chosen as the new brand once the WWF title had become impossible to continue. (For those that don’t know, this was because of a dispute with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) who legally forced a name change).

It is not until you mature, or actually begin to look beneath the surface though, that you actually see the reality of what WWE does, and how it conducts its business.

Continue reading “WWE: Stereotypes, Racism and International Politics”

Solzhenitsyn’s Third Way

From what little I have read of, and from, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, he appears a highly acclaimed yet highly divisive character. He reminds me somewhat of Slavoj Zizek in the way that he cannot be pigeon-holed into one political school, and attacks aspects of both the left and the right within politics itself.

Solzhenitsyn’s masterpiece Cancer Ward is a wonderfully poetic critique of the Communist Soviet Union. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it, and the further I progressed into the book, the deeper my appreciation grew for it.

One of the joys of reading great books are the different meanings and interpretations an individual can take from the text. What the book says to one person, may not reach the ears of another. Truly great books do not just tell a story through the words, and on the written lines, but they tell a story between the lines. The interpretation of words and phrases, the literary techniques in certain passages, the decision for the author to use a certain manner of speaking. There is a story within the story.

Continue reading “Solzhenitsyn’s Third Way”