It's not so often in the media that we hear of the happenings in Yemen, but a lot is happening, a lot has happened. Since 2015 over 11,000 deaths have happened in Yemen. 2.2 million severely malnourished children stand to die in the coming months. Health facilities are almost non-existent. Whilst 80 percent of its population wait for aid to emerge through its blocked corridors, in the shadow of a dreadful famine.
68 celebrities died in 2016. Over 56 million people died in total. So, the RIP posts spamming our Facebook walls are for 0.00012% of the people who actually passed in 2016. Wouldn't it be better if we put all our 'mourning' energy into use, to combat some of the ills that contribute to the deaths of millions?
We need change that builds, rather than destroys. That means controlling arms supplies as the Arms Trade Treaty already requires governments to do. It means offering a refuge to those fleeing violence and persecution, as the Refugee Convention has for decades prescribed. We must also develop a Global Compact on Migration, to protect migrants, so often as vulnerable as refugees, and to manage migration for the benefit of all. If the terrible events of 2016 are not to be repeated, the calls for change to make the world more secure and inclusive must be heard and acted on. Nadi's experience may seem a million miles away from ours but we share the same thread of laws and norms that are supposed to keep us safe. Ultimately we are all in this together.
Children are most at risk. With the innocence of youth, they fetch water, collect wood and play football. On a path, they step on an invisible landmine, or reach for a brightly coloured cluster bomb found in a bush. In a split second, if they survive, their life will be devastated - changed forever.
Maybe, just maybe, if we stopped worshipping national flags, stopped considering dying in the name of a flag as anything other than a shameful waste - maybe if we instead valued a child's comfort blanket or toy a little bit more - we might finally move beyond the curse of partition. Until then, I, for one, desperately need a comfort blanket of my own.
Today, our hope that the majority chooses exclusively peace is still stronger than our fear of naivete. One war is more than enough for a lifetime, and we hope to provide a peaceful childhood for our offspring. The War Childhood Museum's message comes from a generation that learned this lesson firsthand, and never has it rung truer: peace has no alternative.
Voices and ideas from the areas of food, land, travellers, domestic violence, poverty, asylum and debt are all vital to finding grains of truth that allow us to face up to our Hidden Civil War. To face difficult truths in troubled times, we require deep collaboration, reflection and above all, listening.
Funny? Sure. Dramatic? Nope. War Dogs was brought off the boil too early. It's a film of two halves, and that's never entertaining. Hangover instigator Phillips gives it a shot, but ultimately this is The Big Short with big guns smacked with a little Lord of War egoism for kicks. On the plus side, I like that Philips is investing comedy in this way. Imagine if more comedies were this unique?
For the first time in the 70-year history of the UN, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has brought together world leaders and the humanitarian community for the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul, with the aim of making bold commitments to reduce the impact of the unprecedented wars and disasters we are seeing today.