The World

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

American Socrates

Picture credit: Noam Chomsky at a conference in Germany in June 2013 courtesy Fazila Farouk/SACSIS. By Chris Hedges - CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Noam Chomsky, whom I interviewed last Thursday at his office at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has influenced intellectuals in the United States and abroad in incalculable ways. His explications of empire, mass propaganda, the hypocrisy and pliability of the liberal class and the failings of academics, as well as the way language is used as a mask by the power elite to prevent us from seeing reality, make him the most important intellectual in the country. The...

Europe: Four Pictures of Migration

Picture credit: New Left Project Carl Rowlands - The docks: the ghost of capitalism past. Let’s start with a dockyard in the early twentieth century. In the first glimmerings of dawn, men queue by a wall, and a foreman walks up and down, selecting which men are going to be offered work on that particular day. This may seem almost a caricature of heartless capitalism, yet it is a deep folk memory within the labour movement. Mines, docks and countless factories were run on this basis until the first majority Labour government in...

It's Not Your Granny's Ireland Any More

Picture credit: Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams courtesy Iberian Proteus/flickr Harry Browne - Dublin - For many years, Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams was the member of the British parliament for West Belfast in Northern Ireland, albeit one who refused to take his seat in London. Since 2011, however, he has served in the Irish legislature, without abstention, representing constituents across the border in the Republic of Ireland’s County Louth. But if you can take the man out of Belfast, you can’t take the terrible history of Belfast out of the man. A few weeks ago he was...

Defying Israel, Pope Prays at 'Apartheid Wall'

Picture credit: The pope praying next to the words: "Pope, we need someone to speak about justice," courtesy Common Dreams. Lauren McCauley - During his historic trip to Bethlehem on Sunday, Pope Francis made waves after taking a surprise detour to pray at what is known as the "apartheid wall." The stop at the barrier—which annexes Palestinian land, cutting off Palestinians from their fields, livelihood, and each other—was made on the second day of the pontiff's Middle East visit after touring Jordan on Saturday. Describing the detour, the Guardian reports: His route had been planned to pass...

How I Met Edward Snowden (by Glenn Greenwald)

Picture credit: Glenn Greenwald courtesy Human Rights Investigations Glenn Greenwald - On December 1, 2012, I received my first communication from Edward Snowden, although I had no idea at the time that it was from him. The contact came in the form of an email from someone calling himself Cincinnatus, a reference to Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus, the Roman farmer who, in the fifth century BC, was appointed dictator of Rome to defend the city against attack. He is most remembered for what he did after vanquishing Rome’s enemies: he immediately and voluntarily gave up...

Meet the Costa Rican Lawyer Who Sued His Own President For Backing the Iraq War

Picture credit: Costa Rican lawyer Roberto Zamorra courtesy of Medea Benjamin/Alternet Medea Benjamin - Sometimes it just takes one person with a creative mind to shake up the entire legal system. In the case of Costa Rica, that person is Luis Roberto Zamorra Bolanos, who was just a law student when he challenged the legality of his government’s support for George Bush’s invasion of Iraq. He took the case all the way up to the Costa Rican Supreme Court—and won. Today a practicing lawyer, Zamorra at 33 still looks like a wiry college student. And he continues to think...