Geographies
Diyarbakır is Burning

Diyarbakır is Burning

An image remains in my mind that encapsulates Turkey’s second election day this year. Especially within the pro-government AK Parti (AKP) strongholds of Istanbul, such as Beykoz. As we sat in the café of the regional elections centre, watching television, and waiting for the vote count to slowly arrive, every time a Turkish or Kurdish member of the left-wing HDP (People’s Democratic Party) delegation rose from their seat, the police in the room would laugh. More»

The Bedou are Wogs

The Bedou are Wogs

After our journeys in South Africa and Abyssinia, it was suggested to my husband that a survey of the Hadhramout by an independent traveller would be useful to the Government; so in the winter of 1893 – 94 we determined to do our best to penetrate into this unknown district.  More»

Communism for Capitalists

Communism for Capitalists

Last week, it was announced that Finland is set to introduce a citizen’s basic income. It’s said to be around €800 a month, which would be provided universally and without any conditions to all Finnish citizens. It will replace all previous benefits. More»

AKP is Authoritarian

AKP is Authoritarian

The AKP’s growing neoliberal authoritarianism can be viewed most succinctly within the period between 2015’s two elections. Suruç’s re-opening of Kurdish guerrillas’ conflict with the state was used by the AKP as an opportunity to punish Kurdish citizens for their subversion of voting norms.  More»

Liberating London

Liberating London

In recent years, there has been plenty of talk of devolving powers to London thereby allowing the city to exempt itself from the same tax rate and regulatory measures as the rest of the UK. It’s not surprising that the case for decentralisation should be made on such grounds. London is the centre of political and economic power in the country. But it is also the city of squats, warehouse raves, hipster cafes and the liberal commentariat. More»

Democratic Militarism

Democratic Militarism

Several Turkish and Kurdish cities are successful recruiting grounds for ISIS, in particular the capital Ankara and the majority-Kurdish city Adıyaman. Despite the AKP government heavily publicising their raids and arrests of alleged ISIS members, lax border controls are obvious.  More»

Letter to an ISIS Militant, Part I

Letter to an ISIS Militant, Part I

As the US-led coalition (France, United Kingdom, the unofficial assistance of Russia) expands its war against Islamic State, it is worth revisiting the work of Albert Camus. More»

English Answers

English Answers

A high court judge has ruled that the abortion ban in Northern Ireland is incompatible with the rights of women. This ruling tells you a lot about the region and its history in the UK. Under the leadership of Roy Jenkins, the UK legalised abortion in 1967 around the same time that the government also decriminalised homosexual relations and abolished the death penalty. More»

Between a Dam and a Hard Place

Between a Dam and a Hard Place

I’m absorbing the Kurdish equivalent of propaganda when the background noise changes from People’s Democratic Party (HDP) ads to the orchestral movements of poorly-acted dramas.  More»

Imperialism Redux

Imperialism Redux

In the very interesting account which Mrs. Devereux Roy has given of the present condition of Algeria, she says that France “is now about to embark upon a radical change of policy in regard to her African colonies.”  More»

Death of the Levant

Death of the Levant

Why ISIS as the standard-bearer of Sunni resistance? It is not the result of some lusting for barbarism on the part of the region’s Sunnis. It is not even because of the fearsome barbarity with which the Islamic State enforces its edicts (although that helps). Nor is it because its military and security structures are designed and run on Baathist lines (though that helps too). More»

F-Word Revival

F-Word Revival

Ever since the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001, the word “fascism” has made periodic appearances in American political discourse. Critics of the Patriot Act invoked it as a way of warning against the dangers of prioritizing security over liberty. President George W. Bush later described the nation’s primary enemy in the War on Terror as “Islamic fascists”. And conservatives even labeled Barack Obama a fascist. More»