War

How Myths and Narratives Are Dominating Events in Ukraine

Larisa Sotieva | Posted 12.08.2014 | UK Politics
Larisa Sotieva

I have always admired the expressiveness of the Russian language. Popular turns of phrase that have become enshrined in everyday language reveal quite colourfully Russians' attitudes towards themselves and ongoing events. In particular I am struck by the way Russians reflect on failure with easy humour, as captured in the phrase 'they hoped for better, but it turned out as usual'.

'Monster' Myth Hides Complexity of Sexual Violence in Conflict

Henri Myrttinen | Posted 12.08.2014 | UK
Henri Myrttinen

This week has seen a flurry of activity around an issue that for far too long has been forgotten, silenced or viewed as an inevitable consequence of war: sexual violence in conflict. All of this is extremely important - but in the rush to 'do something' about the horrific crimes being committed in Syria, Central African Republic, Nigeria, and other conflict zones, we should not forget some basic premises.

Sexual Violence, the Weapon of War That Has Ceased to Die

Anita Tiessen | Posted 12.08.2014 | UK Politics
Anita Tiessen

A critical component in addressing sexual violence is to build a protective environment to prevent children and women for being exposed to violence. In the midst of crises, even the most basic risk-mitigation efforts that can be life-saving are often deemed non-essential and overlooked.

D-Day Anniversary: We Need to Make the Case for Good Wars

James Snell | Posted 08.08.2014 | UK Politics
James Snell

As someone who has an instinctive aversion to over-praising members of the military (indeed, as someone who cannot help but shudder inwardly every time 'our brave boys' are invoked), I was more than a little surprised that the commemoration of the D-Day landings, which took place last week, brought a tear to my eye.

Reasons to Be Fearful, Part 3,456,872

Nick Abbot | Posted 06.08.2014 | UK
Nick Abbot

Britain is offering 1,000 troops and the tanks they can still start to NATO so they can put on a show in Poland that they think will put Vlad the Insaner back in his box...

The Longest Day

Lara Platman | Posted 04.08.2014 | UK
Lara Platman

Arlette Gondrée, a beautiful woman, strikingly dressed in a knitted jacket with a faultless neck-chief, the epitome of Normandy style, stands proudly, having provided us with a delicious home cooked lunch, full of traditional flavours from the region, I slowly gather my thoughts examining the abundance of memorabilia in this sanctuary.

When the Sun Comes Out, Syria's War Does Not Stop

Katie Welsford | Posted 02.08.2014 | UK
Katie Welsford

Standing in the shade of olive trees on a hill in north-west Jordan, the peaceful spring afternoon was suddenly shattered. From across the valley came the heavy thud of shelling from Syria's border villages.

Field Diary: Unicef School Bags, a Symbol of Hope in War-Torn Aleppo

Hamida R. Lasseko | Posted 20.07.2014 | UK
Hamida R. Lasseko

During my visit to the Unicef-supported Basic Education School for displaced grade one to four children at the Aleppo University I met a number of confident, upbeat children, not shy to ask tough questions... As a mother, I could not hold back my tears when a young girl got up and asked me: "When will this war end?"

Fight, Flight or Tend and Befriend?

Nick Clements | Posted 06.07.2014 | UK Lifestyle
Nick Clements

A new theory is starting to gain strength in terms of our behavioural responses to threats. It stems from the difference in female and male response to stress. I think this new work strikes a very potent cord, and actually could be an important turning point in our connection to the world.

Sleepless in South Sudan

Aimee Ansari | Posted 02.07.2014 | UK
Aimee Ansari

I smelled the decaying bodies in Haiti after the earthquake and I got ill because of the terrible fumes of the dead buried under buildings in Lebanon after the bombings. That was nothing compared to the massacres and violence happening in South Sudan now. I won't go into the details; they're too gory, too much everything.

Who Has Time for World War III?

Jon-Christopher Bua | Posted 28.06.2014 | UK Politics
Jon-Christopher Bua

Although the ominous situation in Ukraine directly affects the EU, it is not clear is how much economic pain the US, UK and the EU are willing and able to endure to send a clear and powerful message to Putin that it is time to retreat.

Our Dysfunctional World of War and Poverty

Adnan Al-Daini | Posted 16.06.2014 | UK Politics
Adnan Al-Daini

As a species we have tremendous talents. Our scientific achievements are incredible; our advances in medicine and technology are stunning. Our social development however is still almost at Stone Age level.

Support for Children in the UK on Their Own Is Needed Now

Matthew Reed | Posted 08.06.2014 | UK
Matthew Reed

By providing children with a guardian in law, the government could guarantee that any child who arrives in the UK on their own would have one trusted adult in their life who has their best interests at heart. Someone who understands the complicated system they will have to face...

Jessica Elgot

Rwanda's Genocide Survivors Show Their Inspiring, Smiling Portraits

HuffingtonPost.com | Jessica Elgot | Posted 05.04.2014 | UK

The polaroid of the smiling boy standing with his puffed chest straining his pink and red striped t-shirt is difficult for Cyprien to look at. "Wh...

Forgotten Crisis: Why Aren't We Talking About South Sudan?

Sir Nick Young | Posted 04.06.2014 | UK
Sir Nick Young

Reports of continued fighting in South Sudan are worrying. But even more distressing is how little attention this humanitarian crisis is generating. Let us not underestimate the scale of the crisis in the world's newest nation.

An Inspiring Orphan From Syria, Stepping Into Her Mother's Shoes

Dana Sleiman | Posted 03.06.2014 | UK
Dana Sleiman

I first met Hala at a tented settlement in central Bekaa, East Lebanon. She had been here for a year, one in a million refugees who have fled Syria. They call her 'the orphan'; her tomboy walk and winter hat make her easy to spot. She speaks with a disturbing nonchalance; a hardness, common amongst many refugees I have met. Her hair is falling out.

A Taxi Driver's Guide to Peace in the Philippines

Phil Vernon | Posted 28.05.2014 | UK
Phil Vernon

Taking full advantage of the opportunity for peace in the Philippines will require a sustained effort on the part of central and local governments, by the rebel movements, as well as in civil society and the business community, over many years. Some of the factors they will need to take into account were identified at by our taxi driver last night.

What I Might Have Said If I Had Been on Newsnight...

Myriam Francois-Cerrah | Posted 26.05.2014 | UK Politics
Myriam Francois-Cerrah

The Muslim community is far from perfect, but our misrepresentation as ‎squabbling men who need reforming through those who have themselves rejected the faith is ‎palpably absurd. Who speaks for Muslims? How about the myriad Muslims doing the hard graft on ‎the ground.‎

15 Years on From Serbia - Why Does the UN Still Exist?

Marko Kasic | Posted 25.05.2014 | UK Politics
Marko Kasic

I have no standing in passing judgement on the actions of those entrusted with making enormously difficult decisions, most of which are far beyond my comprehension. However, I do believe I am entitled, just like every other person, to ask the question of why the UN has not been sacked?

Hany: A Young Syrian's Dreams, Interrupted

Melissa Fleming | Posted 14.05.2014 | UK
Melissa Fleming

"If I am not a student, I am nothing." Hany's home is a wooden frame and plastic sheets. Thick carpets line the floor and long cushions serve as sofas. A wood stove offers warmth. A TV connected to satellite brings news from Syria.

How Cross-Border Trade Is Empowering Women and Fostering Peace in DRC

Maria Lange | Posted 10.05.2014 | UK Politics
Maria Lange

Through a collection of photographs and interviews, Crossings: The journey to peace challenges predominant narratives about eastern DRC, which focus on 'conflict trade' and 'rape' above broader lived experiences.

Do You Really Know What's Going On in Ukraine?

Francisca Stewart | Posted 05.05.2014 | UK Universities & Education
Francisca Stewart

It is easy to point the finger and make automatic decisions on who is right or wrong. But with any normal family that has its fair share of dysfunction, there is usually no side that is completely free of blame...

South Sudan: Give Peace (and Children) a Chance!

Unni Krishnan | Posted 07.05.2014 | UK
Unni Krishnan

In a group of 100 children, singing, playing and some crying, two girls stand out. Their names are Madiha, 9, and Lina, 4. It is not their unusual silence that catches my attention, but the way they frequently hug each other, often involuntarily...

LGBT Rights and Peace: Why Aren't We Talking About It?

Phil Vernon | Posted 06.05.2014 | UK Politics
Phil Vernon

While it is clearly important for peacebuilders to pay more attention to the marginalisation and repression of LGBT people, it's not always so obvious how we should do so...

Blair: Others Have Stupid Religious Wars; We Had Smart Ones

Abby Day | Posted 30.03.2014 | UK Politics
Abby Day

When Tony Blair claims it is religious or cultural difference that will fuel 21st century wars, not the ideologies that caused past wars (The Observer, January 26, 2014) he shows only a skewed notion of religion's place in society and history. He projects a narrow idea of what it means to be religious, and diverts attention from other, more systemic problems.