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If Ramadi Is What ‘Victory’ Against ISIS Looks Like, We’re in Trouble

Source: Tom Dispatch

City by city, state by state, the Middle East is being laid to waste — and then we’re bombing the rubble.

One of the charms of the future is its powerful element of unpredictability, its ability to ambush us in lovely ways or bite us unexpectedly in the ass.

Most of the futures I imagined as a boy have, for instance, come up deeply short, or else I would now be flying my individual jet pack through the spired cityscape of New York and vacationing on the moon. And who, honestly, could have imagined the Internet, no less social media and cyberspace (unless, of course, you had read William Gibson’s novel Neuromancer 30 years ago)? read more

Western Sahara’s Unsung Fight

Source: New Internationalist

Clyde Macfarlane catches up with Aziza Brahim as she releases her third album, Abbar el Hamada.

Photo: Western Saharan singer and refugee Aziza Brahim by Guillem Moreno

Anyone who has traced a finger down the coast of Morocco to stumble across the ambiguous, grey-shaded territory of Western Sahara will be surprised to discover that this is far from a barren no-man’s-land; small desert towns dot the main highway all the way down to Mauritania. Hardly restricted to these pockets of civilization, the Saharawi people have lived a nomadic life across the region for hundreds of years. A 1976 invasion by Morocco and Mauritania made the majority of Saharawis refugees, an identity which the singer, tabal drummer and activist Aziza Brahim sees as integral to her music. read more

Bad Blood: The First International and the Origins of the Anarchist Movement – A Book Review

The International Workingmen's Association -- sometimes called "The International," or "The First International," depending on your views concerning the legitimacy of its subsequent incarnations -- was formed in 1864 by representatives of numerous European socialist and workers' organizations, in order to coordinate strike activity and otherwise aid the working class in its struggle against capitalism. 

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The memory of the Egyptian revolution is the only weapon we have left

Source: The Guardian Unlimited

One of the Tahrir Square protesters looks back on how the country has changed, five years after the fall of Mubarak

I didn’t take my camera out with me the night Hosni Mubarak was overthrown. I stood in Tahrir Square among tens of thousands of Egyptians and told myself I would enjoy the moment, I would not divide myself from the night’s magical reality with a lens.

I had filmed up until then because it was my job, because history must be recorded, because an image can change the world, because everyone had to contribute somehow to the revolution. read more

Gaza Speaks: This Is What the Decade-Long Siege Has Done to Us

Whenever Mariam Aljamal’s children hear the sound of thunder at night, they wet their beds. Their reaction is almost instinctive, and is shared by a large number of children throughout the Gaza Strip.  Mariam’s three children – Jamal, Lina and Sarah - were all born a few years after the Gaza siege was first imposed in 2006, and all of them have experienced at least one Israeli war.