News Blues – II

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Dear all, this time I will keep my post a bit shorter as I was knocked out for one week due to a severe cold. But as it is Friday again and you, my readers, hunger for new material to read over the weekend I collected some interesting articles for you. This time we won`t start out with the US or Trump but rather with some international news.

James Angelos has written for the New York Times Magazine an in-depth and beautiful piece on populism in France and the “death of Social Democracy”. Combine this with some eerie shots of the “French Rustbelt” and you have a must read: LINK

Madeleine Schwartz writes for the New York Review of Books an article on El Salvador and the legacy of violence after the end of the civil war 25 years ago: LINK

And the Guardian reporter Ghaith Abdul-Ahad joined the Iraqi Special Forces “Golden Division” on the frontlines of Mosul. In this collaboration with PBS Frontline an intense video reportage emerges which shows the cost of the fighting for Mosul and how it is far from over: LINK

But let’s head back to the US and Trump. As always, in just one week many things have happened with him as the new president – never a calm week to be seen again. For instance up to six journalists who got arrested covering the anti-Trump riots in Washington before his inauguration face now felony charges – a bad sign for freedom of the press in the US: LINK

In a similar vein is Trump`s “love-hate relationship” with the media, especially with the New York Times. Paul Farhi from the Washington Post makes an analysis on this specific relationship and why Trump suddenly wishes the NY Times to “die”: LINK

Normally I would not post things from the CATO Institute, as this “think tank” is a lobby organization from the Koch-Brothers and deeply involved in some “dark meddling” in regards to politics, climate change denial and ultra-libertarian, capitalistic agendas. But it is interesting to see that they funded a scientific research paper called “Terrorism and Immigration: A Risk Analysis” in 2016 which shows clearly that Immigration can not be interlinked directly with Terrorism and thus the claims by Trump and his cabinet/supporters are BS: LINK

But lets hush away from things like the CATO Institute, even if they sometimes publish something worth-while and see what Steven Bannon was up to; besides being the master-mind behind the unlawful (as it is violating the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965) “Anti-Muslim Visa/Travel Ban” he also got a seat on the National Security Council. And as David J. Rothkopf explains us this is indeed a bad thing: LINK

David Frum from the Atlantic Magazine goes even further and tries to depict how the preconditions to building an autocracy in the USA are developing – and that it could possibly develop under Donald Trump: LINK

And thus, to round things up, after having started with populism in France and ended with a bleak outlook in regards to Trump and autocracy, Zoe Williams from The Guardian thinks it is the right time to re-read Hannah Arendt to get up to speed again on what constitutes totalitarianism in our age: LINK

So far so good they said and thus we see/read each other next week again – until than stay safe and healthy,

your Benjamin Hiller

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