"Follow the Art" posts seek to observe the world of popular culture and the arts to see what our artists are reflecting back to us. This acknowledges the enduring role art has in helping people to 'make sense' of their changing world. One 'recurring' theme I have noticed in art and the public conversation lately … Continue reading Follow the Art (No.2) – George Orwell’s 1984
With the ‘urbanisation’ trend in full swing globally, security and defence professionals are noting that this may mean less time in jungles and deserts, and more time in ‘urban terrain’. There are many implications of this: interface with civic agencies; how to protect the population; types of tactics and so forth. In understanding how to … Continue reading Urban Security Planners – Meet Urban Designers… Take charge of the atmospherics…
Last night I attended an introductory workshop on "Women, Peace and Security" (WPS) run by the UN Women's Canberra office. The 30 minute video: ‘Side by Side’ provides a great introduction to the issues. ‘Side by Side’ refers to the ideal vision that both men and women will work ‘Side by Side’ to solve this and … Continue reading If sexual violence in conflict is a war tactic, let’s work out how to prevent & defeat it.
It is a very basic symbiotic relationship: Creatures and Trees. Creatures breathe oxygen and expel carbon dioxide; trees expel oxygen and breathe carbon dioxide. I have sometimes wondered, if the world mobilised a mass tree planting regime, how much carbon would that suck up? Could a worldwide, mega tree-planting 'backyard blitz' help much in addressing … Continue reading People Who Plant Trees… from fictional film to reality
Social media helping communities rebuild, good to hear such a positive story… “If you know the history of Iraq—and Baghdad especially—it goes through a dark phase and then rises again …[Iraq Builders] has helped 45 families in Iraq, but there are still 36 million Iraqi people. Some might say: What’s the point? The point is that we are doing what should be done during this period. We are refusing to be the broken circle in this chain of civilization from Babylon till now. We refuse to be the dark ages of Iraq.”
A team from Iraq Builders puts a new roof on a bombed-out home in Basrah last August. Photo: Courtesy Iraq Builders
If you happened upon a small park in Nasiriyah, Iraq, last June 28, you would have noticed a group of 15 people, fast asleep, with blue hard hats and orange vests nearby. This group was not homeless, nor staging some kind of occupation. They were volunteers from Iraq Builders who had traveled more than 350 kilometers to repair the badly damaged home of a family without the means to do repairs themselves. Since they didn’t have a place to stay for the night, they slept in the park.
“It was nothing,” says Elaf Mohammed Al-hijazi, who’s a doctor as well as the social media coordinator for TEDxBaghdad and the co-founder of Iraq Builders.
Iraq Builders started a year ago, out of a conversation Elaf Mohammed had with friend Zaid…
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This 3 minute clip of a US media chit-chat on CNN shows just how serious the Climate Change messaging / narrative problem is...It will be hard to avert dangerous climate change when the public debate is so polarised, and also - I regret to say - at such an ill-informed level. http://crossfire.blogs.cnn.com/2014/05/06/bill-nye-climate-change-is-our-most-urgent-number-one-priority-right-now/
It appears that those who have advocated for Climate Change action are getting sick of reasoned debate. The new approach reminds me of the song, "You Gotta Be," by Des'ree. (Lyrics below). They have realised that to get anywhere, they gotta be bolder, they gotta be tougher, they gotta be wiser. The toughening up is easy … Continue reading New Climate Tactics – You gotta be bold, you gotta be wiser, you gotta be tough, you gotta be stronger