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Daily affirmations from a time before this: a fanzine trawl

Do you miss the music fanzine culture of the 1980s and 1990s, when publications like Forced Exposure, Bananafish, Conflict, Superdope, Crank, Siltbreeze, Matter and Lowlife cataloged the under-the-counter culture? Fuckin' Record Reviews brings you highlights from all of these zines and more!

Check out the early writings of musicians like Steve Albini, Bill Callahan, Alan Licht and David Grubbs, as well as veteran rockcrits like Byron Coley, Gerard Cosloy, Tom Lax, etc.
posted by porn in the woods on Jul 2, 2014 - 8 comments

communication breakdown

Why you're (probably) not a great communicator [more inside]
posted by flex on Jun 24, 2014 - 23 comments

1,000 Days of Syria

He tells you he is one of the martyrs now. He tells you it is not safe for you to stay in your apartment, that soldiers may come soon. At any moment. You agree. It is time to go. You don't have the leisure to cry now over Ali's death now but you are eternally saddened. You pack only the most essential belongings for yourself, Emad and Yara. Before you head down the stairs with your children, you take one last look back at your home and whisper, xaatrak to yourself. Goodbye.

1,000 Days of Syria is a "choose your own adventure" historical fiction newsgame, in which you live the first 1,000 days of the Syrian conflict through the eyes of one of three optional characters. Guardian article, wiki, trailer. [more inside]
posted by alona on Jun 4, 2014 - 3 comments

Eppur si muove

The Great Ptolemaic Smackdown is a nine-part series posted by sci-fi author and statistician Michael F. Flynn to his blog last year, covering the historical conflict between heliocentrism and geocentrism, with a special focus on Galileo. They are based on an article (pdf) by Flynn which originally appeared in the Jan/Feb 2013 issue of Analog. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 8, 2014 - 10 comments

Are journalists everywhere morethanreacting?

The AP Stylebook as dropped the distinction between "over" and "more than." Journalists everywhere appear to be outraged. Others think it is no big deal. Dictionaries tend to agree.
posted by grumpybear69 on Mar 21, 2014 - 56 comments

100 Not Out

When British forces pull down the union jack for the last time in Afghanistan this year, it will be a hugely symbolic moment. It is not just that the departure marks the end of 13 years of British involvement in combat in that troubled country. The surprise is that it could also signal the end of a century or more of unbroken warfare by British forces. Next year may be the first since at least 1914 that British soldiers, sailors and air crews will not be engaged in fighting somewhere. [more inside]
posted by Jakey on Feb 13, 2014 - 47 comments

The community garden, red in tooth and claw

“People have this idea, because it’s a ‘community’ garden, you’ll have a bunch of people sitting around holding hands, singing ‘Kumbaya,’” says Julie Beals, executive director of the Los Angeles Community Garden Council (LACGC ). “Have you seen an actual community?”
posted by jason's_planet on Dec 7, 2013 - 43 comments

Those years have accomplished very little.

The A-Team Killings
"Last spring, the remains of 10 missing Afghan villagers were dug up outside a U.S. Special Forces base – was it a war crime or just another episode in a very dirty war?"
posted by andoatnp on Nov 6, 2013 - 16 comments

“It just got very, very old and all of us felt that we were whores."

More than half the population of small, rural Madras, Oregon (population: ~6059) and its surrounding community is served by one clinic: Madras Medical. At the beginning of 2006, the clinic's doctors and nurses decided to ban pharmaceutical reps from visiting their practice. No more free lunches. No more free drug samples. No more gifts. And yet.... "It's made us better doctors." (Via) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Aug 27, 2013 - 40 comments

Capturing America

In 1971, the newly-created US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hired a bunch of freelance photographers to collectively document environmental issues around the country. They were given free rein to shoot whatever they wanted, and the project, named Documerica, lasted through 1977. After 40 years, the EPA is now encouraging photographers to take current versions of the original Documerica photos and are showcasing them on flickr at State of the Environment. There are location challenges, and a set has been created with some of the submissions, making side-by-side comparisons. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Aug 8, 2013 - 16 comments

Hotter Weather Actually Makes Us Want to Kill Each Other

A new meta-analysis finds that extreme changes in temperature increase the likelihood of inter-group conflict. (SLA)
posted by MisantropicPainforest on Aug 2, 2013 - 76 comments

Dear Valentine, I Hate It When You...

Save your marriage... with a writing workshop. Link to paper: (PDF)
posted by AceRock on Feb 13, 2013 - 3 comments

"they did not know or expect that the evidence would point to Tehran."

A Trail of Bullet Casings Leads From Africa’s Wars Back to Iran. Iran’s Cartridges & Their Quiet Distribution to Brutal Regimes and Many Wars. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Feb 10, 2013 - 42 comments

ConflictResolution

A lengthy wiki-list of "techniques to avoid or to resolve conflict."
posted by winecork on Jan 23, 2013 - 21 comments

“This is also the limits of photography in that sense; it only goes so far in understanding what’s in front of you,”

New York Times' Lens blog: Looking at the Tangled Roots of Violence in Northern Nigeria highlights the work of Benedicte Kurzen. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Dec 10, 2012 - 2 comments

Niza Yanay - the ideology of hatred: the psychic power of discourse

"The Ideology of Hatred": An interview with Niza Yanay - "Once we understand how hatred operates as an apparatus of power relations, and particularly how the discourse of hatred is motivated and mobilised in national conflicts, serious questions about misrecognition, veiled desires and symptomatic expressions arise. These questions have, to a large extent, been left unaddressed in studies of hatred between groups in conflict." [more inside]
posted by flex on Nov 15, 2012 - 13 comments

Three Ts and Gold

Last month, the Securities and Exchange Commission changed their rules to require companies to disclose if they use 'tantalum, tin, gold, or tungsten if those minerals are “necessary to the functionality or production of a product”' These are also known as 'conflict minerals.' The Deadly Tin Inside Your Smartphone, Businessweek [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Sep 27, 2012 - 17 comments

'You actually have to really build a collaborative relationship with the people on the ground if you want to have any hope of understanding what’s going on.'

"Let’s Map Who Owes The Local Warlord Money": Meet An Urban Planner For Cities That Don't Yet Exist (via Small Wars Journal). [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jul 30, 2012 - 6 comments

"He is no longer his own person."

The Checkpoint. An essay which looks inside the conflicted mind of an Israeli soldier, stationed at a West Bank checkpoint. By Oded Na'aman, currently a student in the Philosophy PhD program at Harvard University, who served in the Israeli Defense Forces from November 2000 to October 2003. Mr. Na'aman is also a member of Breaking the Silence, a website that gathers and publishes anonymous testimonials from IDF soldiers -- combat veterans -- about their experiences and the realities of life in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.
posted by zarq on Jul 24, 2012 - 6 comments

Strike At The Strand

The workers at Manhattan's famous Strand Bookstore are currently in conflict with management over a severe new contract that radically reduces benefits. Bookstore employee and cartoonist Greg Farrell has decided to explain the conflicts and background of the problem via comic book.
posted by The Whelk on Apr 11, 2012 - 63 comments

The last word on warfare

A short conversation on the cultural and biological origins of war.
posted by latkes on Feb 28, 2012 - 20 comments

OWS: Phase II

Class Conflict Awareness Rose Significantly From 2009 To 2011 A new Pew Research Center survey reports that "the issue of class conflict has captured a growing share of the national consciousness".
posted by Benny Andajetz on Jan 12, 2012 - 86 comments

Borders. Security. Refugees. Jerusalem.

The Atlantic is in the middle of a four-part special report on the Israel / Palestinian peace process, called "Is Peace Possible?" which features multimedia presentations on and analyses of what they believe are the four core issues of the conflict: Borders, Security, Refugees, and Jerusalem. (The latter two will be released on Monday, November 7 and 14th, respectively) The report was put together in collaboration with the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Nov 1, 2011 - 21 comments

The shot that nearly killed me.

In pictures: the life of a war photographer (There are some graphic images in here; not for the squeamish, though for most would be SFW for most workplaces).
posted by smoke on Jul 6, 2011 - 11 comments

Photojournalism in Libya

Photojournalism in Libya from "a towering perspective": Bryan’s height — somewhere north of 6 feet 6 inches, closer to 7 feet with helmet and boots — is both a perennial joke and a source of wonder among those who cover war and know him. Why would anyone so damn tall take on a line of work where, on many days, you want to be small? Let’s be clear. Bryan is a big target. Correction: he is a very big target. He looks like a walking sheet of plywood out there. [via]
posted by oxford blue on Jun 1, 2011 - 3 comments

A Stateless People

The CBC has launched an interactive web documentary with tonnes of videos that takes users inside Shatila refugee camp (pop. 12,000) in Beirut, where Palestinians have now lived for more than 60 years.
posted by gman on May 19, 2011 - 15 comments

Conflict, Security, and Development

Remove the scourge of conflict - "Taming mass violence is the theme of the World Bank's latest World Development Report, which focuses on 'conflict, security and development' [pdf] ... Mass violence destroys all hopes of progress. We should make a huge effort to eliminate this scourge. It seems feasible. It is desirable. So try."
posted by kliuless on Apr 30, 2011 - 18 comments

War and Conflict Across the Globe

Conflict History: a Timeline of War and Conflict Across the Globe You can browse the timeline to find information about wars from a long time ago up to the present. A map shows the conflicts spread across the globe. You can search for specific wars: we got your War of Jenkins' Ear and your Battle of Gqokli Hill.
posted by marxchivist on Apr 7, 2011 - 13 comments

Defense firms lure retired generals

From the Pentagon to the private sector - In large numbers, and with few rules, retiring generals are taking lucrative defense-firm jobs [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jan 10, 2011 - 56 comments

Cursed By Gold

Georgina Cranston travelled to the Democratic Republic of the Congo to photograph the women who work deep inside some of the country's disused gold mines. [more inside]
posted by gman on Dec 4, 2010 - 13 comments

Latest flare up in the Korean peninsular

Artillery rounds are being fired across maritime borders between the Koreas. At least one soldier is dead. In what appears to be a response for South Korean military exercises (accompanying commentary from a blog which to be run by North Korea is here), the North Korean army has fired numerous (at least 200, according to CNN) artillery rounds on an island in South Korean territory, resulting in one South Korean marine dead and 15 wounded. The South Korean army has responded by returning artillery fire and deploying fighter jets but is seeking to limit the scope of the conflict. At the same time, there have been signals that South Korea was seeking redeployment of US nuclear weapons on its soil. This just one day after revelations about North Korea's uranium enrichment facilities.
posted by butwheresthesushi on Nov 23, 2010 - 150 comments

Domestic Conflict, Explained by Stock Photos

Domestic Conflict, Explained by Stock Photos
posted by Joe Beese on Sep 8, 2010 - 25 comments

All you need is love

Mass wedding for former Tamil fighters Fifty-three couples of former Tamil Tiger rebels were married Sunday ... at a rehabilitation camp near the northern town of Vavuniya. [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jun 13, 2010 - 7 comments

2010 Joint Operating Environment

Chronic budget deficits, compounding debt and unfunded liabilities suggest the US financial situation will not be remedied, wiping out military funding. Surplus world oil production could disappear entirely by 2012, and reach a 10 million barrel a day shortfall by 2015. Coalition military operations would become essential to protecting US national interests. According to this year's remarkably candid United States Joint Forces Command Joint Operating Environment report (PDF), anyway.
posted by falcon on Apr 7, 2010 - 49 comments

Planet War

From the bloody civil wars in Africa to the rag-tag insurgencies in Southeast Asia, 33 conflicts are raging around the world today, and it’s often innocent civilians who suffer the most. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Feb 23, 2010 - 14 comments

"The soil is our bank."

African land reform, plot by plot, may be the foundation for solving so much else – from famine to poverty to genocide.
posted by lullaby on Feb 3, 2010 - 6 comments

Malaysian churches attacked over "Allah"

Malaysian Catholic newspaper Herald was recently involved in a major lawsuit against the Malaysian government, stating that their constitutional rights were violated when they were stripped of their license to publish in East Malaysian indigenous language Kadazandusun. The ruling was overturned, amidst support by state ministers and protests by the Government, the Islamic Opposition party, and Muslim activists - some of whom have spent the past week attacking churches and convents through firebombs, Molotov cocktails, paint, and bricks thrown at glass. [more inside]
posted by divabat on Jan 10, 2010 - 25 comments

Darfuristan

How the world's campaign to stop a genocide created a quagmire. (Print version.)
posted by andoatnp on Jan 2, 2010 - 10 comments

Strange Medicine

Radovan Karadzic was a war criminal who was able to escape prosecution for his war crimes during the genocide in Bosnia. In a particularly strange twist, Karadzic assumed the name Dragan Dabic and rose in the ranks of the alternative healing community in Belgrade. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Dec 9, 2009 - 20 comments

Violence, death, mud, insanity.

Photos from the war. A slideshow of photos taken by German soldier Werner Wiehe... vermisst in Russland, 1944. (While viewing the slideshow, might I suggest playing some appropriate musical accompaniment, arranged in sequential order?!)
posted by markkraft on Oct 17, 2009 - 18 comments

Beyond war and crisis

Sustainable Security is a website launched this month by the Oxford Research Group "to be an important platform for promoting a better understanding of the real threats to global security in the 21st century and the policies that should be implemented to address those threats at their root cause." It highlights "four interconnected drivers of global insecurity: climate change; competition over natural resources; global militarism; and poverty and marginalisation. Prof. Paul Rogers makes the case for a rethink of the security paradigm.
posted by Abiezer on Sep 11, 2009 - 10 comments

"I started the movement with the firm resolve that I will never be caught alive by the enemy. That has spread down the ranks."

Velupillai Prabhakaran, the elusive and ruthless leader (timeline, short bio) of the violent separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has been reportedly killed in battle by the Sri Lankan Army (self-loading video) [more inside]
posted by shoebox on May 19, 2009 - 57 comments

LTTE Is No Excuse For Killing Vanni Civilians

"A young mother is injured and her three month old baby killed by shell fragments as she breastfeeds the child in the government declared no fire zone. Parents hide their children in roughly dug bunkers to escape LTTE press gangs who comb the no-fire zone for conscripts. A woman loses her husband to sniper fire and the toddler he was carrying too drowns when they attempt to wade across a lagoon to escape the no-fire zone. A father is shot in the head by LTTE members as he attempted to flee with his family." - The University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) discuss the situation in Vanni, Sri Lanka, in their 47th information bulletin.
posted by chunking express on Apr 17, 2009 - 25 comments

"So Say We All"

Fantasy Meets Reality. The very best works of science fiction illuminate controversial current events and the intricacies of human nature. So, it's no surprise that the United Nations Public Information Department and the Sci Fi (SyFy?) Channel co-hosted a panel yesterday evening on "humanitarian concerns" at the UN, with the creators and actors of Battlestar Galactica -- a show which regularly explores those themes. A 2-hour video webcast is archived here. (RealPlayer video). Entertainment Weekly has an additional write-up. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 18, 2009 - 57 comments

Tigers beat

Is this end for the Tamil Tigers? The Sri Lankan army have captured Elephant Pass, the latest in a string of victories against the guerrilla outfit. The army has pledged to avoid civilian casualties (which have caused India and other countries to intervene in the past) but there are still concerns with reports of artillery strikes on civilian centers in Tharmapuram [graphic], and serious human rights concerns. Though the military battle may be all but over the country is sure to face armed political struggle for some time.
posted by Artw on Jan 9, 2009 - 34 comments

Samuel Huntington Dies

Samuel Phillip Huntington, best known for his work "Clash of Civilizations," died on December 24. Previously on the blue (here, here, here, and here)
posted by Glibpaxman on Dec 27, 2008 - 20 comments

Black July

Groundviews has posted a collection of writing about the July 1983 and 1958 riots in Sri Lanka. [more inside]
posted by chunking express on Aug 7, 2008 - 3 comments

Први светски рат

Prvi svetski rat - Gritty and poignant Serbian postcards from the First World War. Just one of the seriously interesting (e.g. check out the collection of 78s) holdings at the Digital National Library of Serbia.
posted by tellurian on Jul 20, 2008 - 12 comments

Modern Warfare in Kenya...

Very recently the Kalenjin and Kisii peoples of Kenya's Olmelil valley began skirmishing over land disputes. Over 20 people have died so far. This type of inter-tribal unrest is nothing new in Eastern Africa. What makes this particular conflict most jarring to western eyes is that it's being fought with bows and arrows (Time Magazine Slideshow, a forum post with many large images inline, [coral cache of same]). You get the feeling that somewhere in Fresno, California Gary Brechter might be pretty wound-up at the moment...
posted by cadastral on Mar 18, 2008 - 10 comments

The Gaza Bombshell

Vanity Fair has obtained confidential documents, since corroborated by sources in the U.S. and Palestine, which lay bare a covert initiative, approved by Bush and implemented by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Deputy National Security Adviser Elliott Abrams, to provoke a Palestinian civil war.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 on Mar 3, 2008 - 94 comments

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