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Nicholas Kristof



Dec 29, 2013

Opinion

South Sudan: how we all fell for the ‘big lie’

The title paraphrases an article by Daniel Howden published on The Guardian: How Hollywood cloaked South Sudan in celebrity and fell for the ‘big lie’. Since the  crisis in South Sudan started two weeks ago, I’ve read a lot of things on the whys and hows of the situation. And, unsurprisingly, I’ve read a lot of ineptness, misreading, ignorance and snap judgements. And, unfortunately, unlike Howden (could he have used them as a click-bait?!), I don’t think Hollywood stars are the first ones to blame. Maybe it’s time for some people to clean up their own act first. My goal is not to patronize, but from where I stand, and for at least two decades now, I have been working to select and provide accurate information on Sudan, Darfur and now South Sudan. I have been able to observe all sorts of misreading when it comes to Sudan and South…Read more




Sep 21, 2013

Opinion

Abyei Referendum: Sudan wants is oil, South Sudan wants its people

These are the words of Taban Abel Aguek, a Member of State Parliament in Rumbek, Lakes State published on SouthSudanNation.com yesterday. “It is clear what Sudan wants in Abyei is oil, but South Sudan wants its people“. Very clear indeed but the situation can be more complicated than it appears. Abyei is a one million square miles region, it has oil and fertile land. The Ngok Dinka, sub-Saharan cattle herders, are the vast majority in Abyei but the nomadic Misseriya tribe is also part of the equation. Not mentioning Sudan and its president, Omar al-Bashir (charged with Darfur genocide by the International Criminal Court) literally fighting for his country’s interests. The status of Abyei was one of the most contentious issues in the negotiation of  the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), and a separate referendum to determine whether Abyei belongs to Sudan or South Sudan was supposed to be held…Read more




Jul 21, 2013

World

Darfur in 2013 Sounds Awfully Familiar
Darfur, 10 years later. And nothing changed.

Asiya Tahir, 20, had her 4-month-old baby, Mariam, on her back in April when three armed men in Sudanese military uniforms seized her and her sister at a well in Darfur.  The soldiers beat Asiya and then — according to both sisters who were interviewed separately — pulled Mariam off her back and laughingly checked to see if she was a boy or a girl. Grabbing Mariam by one arm, a soldier flung her into the distance. “You’re lucky she’s a girl,” Asiya remembers one of the soldiers saying. “If that were a boy, we would have cut his throat.” Mariam survived the throw but still has health problems from it. That’s Darfur this year, as Sudan’s state-sponsored genocidal machinery revs up again. Full article here.




Jan 27, 2013

Opinion

Nick Kristof, Sheryl Sandberg about Women

I like when things look simple. When you can sum it up in one sentence. But in reality, things look quite different and may need a more balanced approach and not a somewhat oversimplified vision with on one side (quoting Sheryl Sandberg in Nick Kristof‘s article: She’s (Rarely) the Boss) ‘women who don’t aggressively pursue opportunities‘ and on the other side ‘[women who] continue to do the majority of the housework and child care‘. Women don’t necessarily have to be power hungry nor desperate housewives. Now let’s take a deeper look at this article. Kristof is at the 2013 World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, and he has no choice but to state the obvious: ‘This year, female participation is 17 percent‘. And he’s not surprised since ‘In America, only 17 percent of American Fortune 500 board seats are held by women, a mere 3 percent of board…Read more




Sep 22, 2012

Misc.

The Inconvenient Truth Behind the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands

I read a lot about the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands dispute but it’s hard to fully understand what this dispute really is about. Hopefully, Nick Kristof published on his blog On The Ground, an article written by Han-Yi Shaw is a Research Fellow at the Research Center for International Legal Studies, National Chengchi University, in Taipei, Taiwan. ‘Japan’s recent purchase of the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands has predictably reignited tensions amongst China, Japan, and Taiwan. Three months ago, when Niwa Uichiro, the Japanese ambassador to China, warned that Japan’s purchase of the islands could spark an “extremely grave crisis” between China and Japan, Tokyo Governor Ishihara Shintaro slammed Niwa as an unqualified ambassador, who “needs to learn more about the history of his own country”. The Japanese government maintains that the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands are Japanese territory under international law and historical point of view and has repeatedly insisted that no dispute exists. Despite that…Read more




Feb 19, 2012

Opinion

In Sudan, Seeing Echoes of Darfur. And still waiting for diplomacy…

Sudan’s ongoing military campaign in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile states is a reality but not one you can see. One you guess from satellite imagery, one you read from witnesses’ stories. Now we have something more, a report by Nicholas D. Kristof, a columnist for The New York Times and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner. Kristof has just reported from Yida, South Sudan. Some interesting points from his article, full version here. “Bombings, ground attacks and sexual violence — part of Sudan’s scorched-earth counterinsurgency strategy — have driven hundreds of thousands of people from their homes in South Kordofan” “While the Sudanese government is trying to suppress an armed rebellion in the Nuba Mountains, it is civilians who bear the brunt of the suffering” “The Sudanese government bombed this refugee camp in November, and, just a week ago, it bombed the nearby town of Jau, in South Sudan” “Unless outside countries…Read more




Dec 20, 2011

Misc.

Quick Tweets: North Korea, Sudan, Congo, Stiglitz…

A quick round-up of the recent tweets I consider interesting sharing with you. Follow the links, articles are all must-read.   @NickKristof (Nicholas Kristof) Best recent books on North Korea are Barbara Demick’s Nothing to Envy, and also the Inpector O mysteries set inside N.K. @sudanreeves (Eric Reeves) Obstructions of humanitarian relief in Sudan should be legally recognized as crimes against humanity: http://goo.gl/Z31zJ @KenRoth (Kenneth Roth) In surprise decision, #ICC rules that crimes against humanity by #Congo rebel group FDLR have not been proved. bit.ly/vswLsx @bechamilton (bechamilton) Smart of @enoughproject to distinguish #conflictminerals legislation they support from the failed #blooddiamond regs : http://bit.ly/sGcyG1 @Jake_Bernstein (Jake Bernstein) @joestiglitz explores parallels between Great Depression and today. Both involved shifts in the “real” economy. vnty.fr/tyTBMx




Jun 19, 2011

Sunday Roundup

Sunday Roundup on Sudan and South Kordofan

When will international community take action? This is the question asked on Twitter by Susan Morgan, co-founder and the Director of Communications for Investors Against Genocide (I mention them here). Many people are asking the same question right now. I wrote many times about #Sudan and #Darfur and I’m glad I could, for over two decades now (since the bloodless coup d’état by Omar al-Bashir in 1989) bring my humble contribution to raising awareness about the situation in the country. But as the years pass, the question remains: When will international community take action? Rebecca Hamilton, author of the book ‘Fighting for Darfur: Public Action and the Struggle to Stop Genocide‘ (I organized a reading group, I will post about it soon) said on Twitter: ‘Perhaps more depressed on #Sudan than I have felt since 2005‘. First time I heard about Sudan I was a teenager; now I’m not anymore…Read more




Jun 12, 2011

Sunday Roundup

Sunday Roundup: Bahrain, Sudan, Physics…

The Bahrain Grand Prix will not go ahead. Many concerned people such as #Nicholas Kristof and Kenneth Roth tweeted this week about the upcoming Formula One Grand Prix expected to take place next October in Bahrain. In a post published on Foreign Policy we can read: ‘On Friday, the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile, the governing body for the world of motor sports, announced its decision to return the Bahrain Grand Prix to the island Gulf nation, which has been rocked by unrest, brutal human rights abuses, and a deepening sectarian divide since protests broke out on Feb. 14‘. Then on CNN: ‘The Bahrain Grand Prix will not go ahead after organizers said Friday that they had abandoned plans to re-schedule the race later this year […] Bahrain were to host the opening race of the 2011 Formula One season on March 13, but it was postponed on February 21 after…Read more




May 22, 2011

Sunday Roundup

Sunday Roundup: Abyei, WOZA, Rwanda, DSK, Cannes

Today is International Day for Biological Diversity. The UN General Assembly expressed ‘its deep concern about the continuing loss of the world’s biological diversity, and reaffirmed the commitment to the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources, including by appropriate access to genetic resources and the appropriate transfer of relevant technologies, taking into account all rights over those resources and technologies, and by appropriate funding.’ It’s always baffling when stating the obvious seems, unfortunately,  necessary… Not a good day for the environment but neither it is for #Sudan: Northern Sudanese troops appeared to have seized the contested town of Abyei on Saturday night, a UN spokeswoman said, increasing fears of conflict as the country’s south prepares to become the world’s newest country. We can read on this article: ‘Southern Sudanese army…Read more





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