Rwanda, Research and the Wisdom of (Non)Responsiveness (or, Email is a Gift Not a Responsibility)

As I prepare for the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan political violence of 1994 (i.e., the genocide, the interstate war, the civil war and the other forms of activity that are not easily named), I am reminded of earlier correspondence and how the modern period conceives of communication as well as what researchers must/need not… Read more »

The True Cost of Turkey´s Crisis

One of the foundational concepts of good democratic governance is that of a separation of powers. French Enlightenment philosopher Baron de Montesquieu´s argument for the separation of political power between the three branches – executive, legislative and judiciary – hinges on the notion that power should not be centralized in a single sovereign to prevent… Read more »

Myanmar’s National Census – Helping or Disrupting Peace?

In March/April 2014 Myanmar will carry out its first population and housing census in more than 30 years. If carried out properly it may provide reliable data to be used not just by the government, but also by civil society organizations and political parties, as a basis for negotiating the terms of the country’s future… Read more »

Ein Hijleh: A new Boost for the Popular Resistance

The grassroots popular resistance movement in the West Bank continues its strategy of reclaiming Palestinian land to highlight how Israel slowly annexes big parts of the West Bank. This time they did not establish a new village, like the case was in early 2013, with Bab al-Shams and its offshoots. Instead, they re-established an existing… Read more »

The Syrian Refugee Crisis and Conflict Spillover

The Syrian refugee crisis has been heartbreaking to watch. According to the United Nations, over 2.4 million people have fled the country, and many more have been displaced internally. This human tragedy has shocked the world’s conscience and has led for appeals for humanitarian relief. However, does the influx of hundreds of thousands of refugees… Read more »

Old Wine in an E-bottle (or, The Text that Mistook Itself for a Tactical Shift)

On January 24th Barbara Walter wrote a fascinating blog entry entitled “The Text that Changed the World”. It noted that the “Ukrainian government” had issued a text message to “thousands of protesters” effectively telling them that they had been busted (i.e., they were identified as participating in a protest event). While it is useful to… Read more »