Saturday, June 17, 2006

Touring the Archipelago

It’s true. I was – what’s that word? Tail-gating? Band-wagoning? Jumping on the band wagon. That’s it. I’d seen the “This blog is anti-torture” logo a few places around the Eegian Neighbourhood and so I signed up. (Now I just have to figure out how to do the Tapir thing)

It’s quite easy to sign up – all you have to do is click the link and follow the instructions. The harder thing is writing something about torture. They’re after more bloggers, so if you’re even slower to jump on a bandwagon than me, click that ‘Join Us’ link just under the logo.

I suspect I’m not the first to observe that one of the side-benefits this idea is that it exposes you to a lot of other good bloggers out there who write on – well, all manner of things political actually, and in all manner of styles.

So let me take a leaf out of Nanette’s book and take you on a very abbreviated tour of an extensive archipelago.

First stop, Kel’s The Osterley Times. It’s primarily a news blog, focusing on U.K. and U.S. stories from a U.K. left perspective. If you want to get a sense of what’s going over this way, this is a great starting point -- here is an example of what I like about it.

“Most reasonable people can conclude that any Israeli footage taken from a drone that shows people sunbathing on a beach is unlikely to have been taken whilst that beach was, according to Israel's own timeline, being shelled.”

Kel – you have mastered the art of dry understatement.

South Africa has been on my mind this week for both personal and political reasons – well, I can write about the political ones anyway. It’s 30 years now since schoolchildren in Soweto took to the streets to protest against the use of Afrikaans as the medium of instruction in their (chronically and deliberately underfunded) schools. (There’s a great Guardian article by David Johnson on this). Over at Crossing the Line: Life in Occupied Palestine , Christopher Brown has a powerful account of the ways in which the apartheid regime used sleep deprivation as a form of torture.

Meanwhile at My Occupied Territory; thoughts in a space, moi has provided an informative and excellent account on the extraordinary rendition of Maher Arar, a Syrian-Canadian citizen, rendered to Syria where he was imprisoned and tortured for thirteen months.

He says of his ‘occupied territory’ that:

although i have occupied this blog, i do not plan on enforcing this occupation through concrete barriers that will prevent visitors from traveling though this site. Nor will I use security check points to make sure that individuals have the right nationality/race/ethnicity in order to comment.

Grin. Bravo.

Finally (well I said it was abbreviated) Al-Baal has a tale to tell (June 12th so you have scroll down a little) about a Swedish controversy over the naming of wines. Enjoy.


Blogger Nanette said...

What interesting sites, dove! I did a quick read through... will go back and look more a bit later. I love the different perspectives, and the one from crossing the line has helped coalesce some thoughts for me on something I've been writing for some time. In my head, of course ;).

I want to continue the conversation in the other thread as well, and will get back to that soon. Funny how just certain words will set off entirely new thought processes.

6/17/2006 11:34 pm  
Blogger dove said...

Continuing that other discussion sounds good to me too. And I want to see what you're writing in your head as well (I remember that 'yon bonny road' thread ;) )

6/19/2006 10:16 am  
Blogger moi said...

Thanks for featuring my blog and I'm glad you enjoyed your visit :) The anti-torture blogroll really is a great way to get to know some great blogs out there. (btw, I'm a she :))

6/24/2006 12:48 am  
Blogger dove said...

Hi moi,
Sorry about the gender confusion (that's embarassing -- I try to avoid making that kind of mistake!). I did enjoy your blog!

6/24/2006 7:11 pm  
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