The story begins in the 19th century, when Indian labourers were put to work in British East Africa by English colonial rulers. This rule, and it exploitation and appropriation of peoples and lands, continued for a generation and was followed by the fight for liberation from dominance and for independence.
I don't think this can be said loudly enough because it should be big news. The UK government has decided to pay compensation to over 5,000 people it tortured and kept in concentration camps in Kenya 60 years ago. It has, however, refused to accept legal responsibility for the crimes committed, or to use the word 'sorry'.
If Femen really want to help Muslim women they should address the fact that for far too long now, Muslim women have been marginalised, bombed, raped, killed, and enslaved by men from the western world. They should work within their own countries to try and subvert future wars against Muslim countries and help break down barriers. Or perhaps they should stick to trying to liberate women in the west.
William Hague argued that Britain needs to get over its feelings of "post-colonial guilt", stating that we have a "new and equal partnership" with countries unburdened by our colonial past history. Apparently we all need to 'relax', because Britain's empire history is "no longer an issue for the rest of the world." Is that so?
The Mau Mau, it must be said, were vile. After swearing to magical oaths, they butchered children, they tortured, mutilated and murdered - mostly Africans - who would not join their movement. The Kenyan government now calls them heroes, and has a national day in October to honour them, which is a despicable re-writing of history. But the British response to the uprising was also brutal, driven by the atavistic fears of the settlers in the so-called White Highlands, commonly regarded as the most snobbish and racist in the Empire.
Thirty years after the end of the Falklands War, Argentina's president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, has launched a diplomatic campaign to gain control of the islands of such breathtaking hypocrisy she makes Jimmy Carr look like Martin Bell. At the UN, in the breaks of the latest G20 summit, every time she opens her mouth it seems, she's been accusing Britain of naked colonialism, demanding we hand the islands, and the 3000 British citizens who live there, over to her. Colonialism - that's rich, coming from a country of European immigrants whose national policy has been to wipe out all trace of the people they snatched it from.
Literary biographers almost invariably conclude that their subject is unjustly neglected and deserves to be more widely read. Few writers have a reputation as uninspiring as Edmund Spenser (1554?-99), a poet who commands hardly any general readers and who English undergraduates routinely shun.
I've written previously about 'green' non-governmental organisations and their penchant for protectionism. But as the European Environmental Paper Network met over the past few days in Portugal (my invite must have been lost in the post), I thought I'd bring to you a video worth watching and sharing.
Where No Vultures Fly (1951) is, in many ways, an overlooked Ealing film of the early 1950s, being released after the one-two hit of The Lavender Hill Mob (June 1951) and The Man in the White Suit (August 1951), and belonging to a genre - colonial action-adventure - that is less well-covered in histories of the studio.