The World

SACSIS seeks to examine global issues, particularly as they relate to South Africa.

Scotland Can Show the World that Small is Beautiful

Picture credit: Scrape TV David Morris - Since 1945 the number of nations has soared from about 60 to more than 180.  The first wave of new sovereign states came with the decolonization movement of the 1960s and 1970s; the second in the early 1990s with the break-up of the Soviet Union.  If Scotland votes for independence it may ignite a third wave.  Dozens of would-be nations are waiting in the wings:  Wales, Catalonia (Spain), Flanders (Belgium), Brittany (France), the list is long. In 1957 in his classic...

Six Months after MH370, Boeing & Inmarsat Need to Explain Themselves

Picture credit: A Passenger walks past a banner filled with signatures and well-wishes for the missing passengers and crew of Malaysia Airlines MH370 at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (courtesy E&T Magazine) Nile Bowie - Six months have passed since the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in March, which took off from Kuala Lumpur carrying 239 people en route to Beijing. The aircraft veered wildly off course while flying over the South China Sea before turning back over the Malaysian peninsula toward the Indian Ocean, where it is presumed to have crashed. Despite the largest multinational search and rescue effort ever conducted, not a trace of debris from the aircraft has been found, nor has...

The Islamic State and a Burgeoning Refugee Crisis: Whither Democracy and Social Justice?

Picture credit: New arrivals in Lebanon last year. Refugee Khatar with three of her six children in a cowshed on a farm in the Bekaa valley (CAFOD Photo Library/flickr) Alexander O'Riordan - While the world shudders at the horrific and systematic brutality of the Islamic State, formerly known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), it pays scant attention to the fuel that powers organisations such as militant jihadist groups. Meanwhile there is an escalating refugee crisis developing in Syria, as ordinary people flee the jihadism of the Islamic State. Somewhat bizarrely, this enormous human rights crisis is growing alongside a decrease in donor assistance. While...

Battle over Austerity Collapses French Government

Picture credit: French President Fran├žois Hollande courtesy Jean-Marc Ayrault/flickr Sarah Lazare - French President Francois Hollande took the dramatic step Monday of dissolving the country's government in the midst of a heated row over unpopular austerity policies - a move that effectively forced austerity critics from their positions and created a new cabinet of loyalists. The upheaval marks the second time in less than five months that Hollande has orchestrated a shake-up of the French cabinet and comes amid rising opposition to the austerity policies of the president, whose approval...

How the Brutalized Become Brutal

Picture credit: Al Arabiya English Chris Hedges - The horrific pictures of the beheading of American reporter James Foley, the images of executions of alleged collaborators in Gaza and the bullet-ridden bodies left behind in Iraq by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant are the end of a story, not the beginning. They are the result of years, at times decades, of the random violence, brutal repression and collective humiliation the United States has inflicted on others. Our terror is delivered to the wretched of the earth with...

Power, Ideology and the War on Terror

Picture credit: RidzDesign Tom Mills - Arun Kundnani teaches at New York University and is the author of The End of Tolerance: Racism in the 21st Century (2007).  His latest book The Muslims are Coming!, examines the ideologies and strategies of the domestic War on Terror in the US and UK, critiquing both the explicitly Islamophobic ‘clash of civilisations’ ideology and more sophisticated notions about Muslim ‘radicalisation’ which have impressed liberal commentators.  In an interview with Tom...