Tag: Europe

Few cities are as hyped for their cosmopolitanism more than Berlin. Home to a bewildering array of nationalities, it caters to fantasies of a fully globalised space that could be designated capital of a world without borders.  (More…)

Talk to Spanish and Italian journalists about reporting on refugees and migration and a single common sentiment emerges.

“I wish to give a voice to the voiceless and record the unrecorded,” an Italian journalist told us. It echoed what a Spanish colleague had said: “It is necessary to give a voice to people who don’t have it.” (More…)

The racists have it wrong. The invading hordes of migrants are neither Arab nor Muslim. The majority, in the two cities I work, Berlin and Turin, are African. Black African that is, many speaking indigenous languages, if not French or English. If they’re religious, generally the choice of faith is Evangelical Protestantism, not jihadist Islam. (More…)

There has never been in the history of Italy a state so completely identified with one man as in the case of Fascism — and there has never been a Government in which the name of its creator and the title of its governmental system has been so meticulously kept apart. You hear plenty of  the Duce del Fascismo, but never nowadays of the “Mussolini ” Fascists; you hear in Italy of the “ Fascist ” or the “ Italian ” but not of the “Mussolini ” government, and there are Fascisti, but no “Mussoliniani.” (More…)

In the blistering heat of Lebanon’s long summer, many of the 1.5 million Syrian refugees hosted by the country have been squeezing in all the seasonal work they can. In order to pay debts and health bills, some accept exploitative work conditions and the humiliation of unpaid salaries. (More…)

Being a Palestinian from Gaza means you are deprived of some of the most basic rights of being human—like the comfort of family. Due to the 11-year Israeli and Egyptian blockade of Gaza, I haven’t been able to return home for six and a half years. (More…)

They’re the only populist party that matters. Or at least did, until Italy’s far-right Lega (Nord) entered government in June, in a previously unimaginable coalition with the upstart Cinque Stelle (5 Star), well to the Lega’s left on most issues. Numerically speaking, Alternative für Deutschland polled far better in Germany’s 2017 elections but had no one similar to partner with. (More…)

In a final “Fuck You” to the German press, soccer star Mesut Özil chose to publish his long-awaited statement on the controversy surrounding him in the form of a series of English-language social media posts spread out throughout last Sunday, ruining more than a few editors’ weekends. (More…)

The right would like to confine Jew-hatred to the Muslim ghetto, counting on the self-satisfied post-war view that in German society the problem of anti-Semitism has, with a few extremist remnants here and there, been dealt with. (More…)

I knew he was acting. But, as the Roma panhandler precariously balanced himself, with one-foot covering two Stolperstein, I handed him four euros, and spoke to him in Hebrew. “Kol hakavod” (‘All of the respect’) I said, as I put the coins in his open, albeit crippled-looking hand. (More…)

Not everyone hates refugees. The prejudice – amongst those who subscribe to it – has been cultivated. Not just by populist political parties and ‘fake news’ disseminated by shadowy forces on Facebook, but mainstream news media, and how it has framed successive waves of mass immigration to Europe since the 1990s. (More…)

We live in the past. It’s hard to escape the conclusion when regression is more fashionable than progress. Wherever we turn, politics is about turning the clock back. Whether it’s gassing civilians, or blaming Jews for Europe’s refugee crisis, we insist on holding up the 19th and 20th centuries as though they are standards for the world we want to live in today. (More…)