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Greta Thunberg, Global Learning and Social Change: Lessons for International NGOs from the Climate Strike Movement

This new blog from the Centre for Global Education argues that the global movement for climate action inspired by Greta Thunberg has exposed the lack of critical interrogation by INGOs of government and corporate inaction to reduce global warming.  It reflects the growing inertia of an INGO sector trading in ‘incremental change’ rather than ‘systemic political and economic transformation’. Part of the solution lies in embracing the radical pedagogy of global learning as part of internal capacity-building and external stakeholder engagement.

When They See Us is Event Television about Racial Injustice that Resonates in Trump’s America

23 million account-holders with Netflix have watched When They See Us, a drama recreating a scandalous miscarriage of justice inflicted on five Black and Latino teenagers in New York in 1989.  Stephen McCloskey suggests that the drama captures the unease and concern over race relations in Trump’s America. 

It’s time for the Wealthiest One Percent to Start Paying their Way

An alarming new report from Oxfam points to extreme levels of global economic and social inequality ten years on from the international financial crisis. This is largely attributed to the under-taxing of the world’s wealthiest one per cent, cuts to public services and gender discrimination.  Stephen McCloskey argues that it’s time for the one percent to start paying their way.

The Shock Economics of Austerity have Targeted the Poor to Disastrous Effect

A damming report from the United Nations Rapporteur on Poverty has condemned the UK’s austerity policies as ‘punitive, mean-spirited and often callous’.  Stephen McCloskey argues that the shock economics of austerity have been used to implement punitive new welfare policies that have hit the most vulnerable hardest.

Caring for Calais

Maria McCloskey is a solicitor, Chair of the Immigration Practitioners’ Group NI and Vice Chair of the Centre for Global Education’s Management Board. In July 2018, Maria volunteered with Care4Calais. Here, she talks about her experiences and some of the people she met.

Gaza’s “Great March of Return” is an International Rallying Call for Peace and Justice

Reduced to refugee status 70 years ago when dispossessed of their land and homes, subjected to three wars since 2008 and an eleven-year economic siege, Israel now denies Palestinians the right to protest against these outrages.

Trump has dropped any pretence of the US as an ‘honest broker’ in the Middle-East

The Trump Administration in the United States has rocked the Middle-East with two devastating policy announcements in recent months that have created fear and instability for the five million Palestinians living in the region. 

In December, President Trump announced a plan to move the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, thereby reversing a longstanding US commitment to have the status of the contested Holy City agreed as part of a negotiated Middle-East settlement. 

Western Complicity is Fuelling Yemen’s Humanitarian Crisis

On 26 December, a crowded market in the Al Hayma district in Yemen was hit by airstrikes from a Saudi-led coalition that left 54 civilians dead, including eight children with 32 others injured.  It was the latest bloody episode in a conflict that has been raging for a thousand days and claimed 10,000 victims with 20 million more (from a population of 28m) in ‘dire need of assistance’.  The United Nations Humanitarian Co-ordinator for Yemen, Jamie McGoldrick, has described the conflict as ‘absurd’ and ‘futile’, characterised by ‘the destruction of the country and the incommensurate suffering of its people’. 

The Saudi Coalition airstrikes began in March 2015 in response to Houthi rebels’ seizing control of much of Yemen in late 2014.  There was widespread disillusionment in Yemen with Saudi-backed president, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, whose transitional administration was dogged by corruption, unemployment and food insecurity. The Houthi uprising forced Mr Hadi to flee abroad in March 2015 which signalled the start of Saudi airstrikes.  On the larger canvass of Middle-East relations and current tensions, the Sunni Saudis accuse the Houthis of being proxies for Shia Iran, their main regional rival.

No Is Not Enough: Defeating the New Shock Politics - Review by Stephen McCloskey

Naomi Klein has served the development sector well with sharp insights and ground-breaking analysis that has helped us better understand how today’s increasingly de-regulated, corporate-driven global economy is ploughing the world toward record levels of social and economic inequality.  Earlier this year, Oxfam reported that eight billionaires own as much wealth as the bottom half of humanity (2017) and, last year, Credit Suisse estimated that the ‘the wealthiest top 10 percent own 89 percent of all global assets’ (2016).  So, we are witnessing grotesque levels of wealth concentration in fewer hands which makes the election of a celebrity billionaire vulgarian as president of the United States look less like an aberration and more like an inevitability.  Indeed, one of the strongest assets of this book is its clear-eyed analysis of how Trump came to be elected and Klein spares no criticism of the soft and hard left in the United States (US). 

The Poor Are Paying The Price

We keep hearing that if we let the free market do its thing, everybody would benefit. However, a closer look at India and its politics reveals that the 'partnership and commitment' promoted by the G20 are but symbolics. India's nature and the poorest of its people are being exploited to the benefit of, who would have guessed, multinational corporations. We need to realize that the free market is, against all expectations, not fixing things for everybody.

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