Food aid for Syrian refugees has been reduced in Lebanon.
The military-industrial complex dislikes the word “drone” because it has bad connotations and could –gasp- invite greater oversight and debate over their use. They prefer to say Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or “remotely-piloted.” I have noted this preference and will now make it a point to use the term drone as frequently as possible.
Related: a panel on what life under America’s drones is like.
Also related: Malala Yousafzai, the widely-celebrated young woman who survived an assassination attempt by the Taliban and has become a major activist for education in her native Pakistan, is even cooler than previously thought. In a meeting with President Obama, she thanked him for his efforts at expanding the right to education, but also expressed her concern over his dependence on drones in fight the war on terror, saying that the drones inspired more terrorism instead of deterring it. There are some good thoughts on her accomplishments and her fame here, and the article asks the question: would anyone even know Malala’s name if she were “collateral damage” in a U.S. drone strike. The answer, unfortunately, is an unequivocal no.
I’ve always been under the impression that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict required a two-state solution, and I think that might still be the case. But here is an outline of the argument in favor of a one-state solution, which you do not hear advocated very often. I found it interesting, although I think the nationalism on both sides of this issue is too great to enable a one-state solution…
One of the imprisoned members of Pussy Riot in Russia says that she is being kept in isolation. She has been prevented from seeing her lawyers and relatives for two weeks, following her hunger strike. She is serving her sentence in Penal Colony Number 14, in a region once famed for its Soviet-era gulags. Her description of conditions there suggest not much has changed since the bad old days.
This piece on the future of development, and how our currently models are economically, socially, and environmentally unsustainable, was really interesting.
The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons won this year’s Nobel Peace Prize. I’m writing a couple of pieces about chemical weapons that will hopefully get published soon, but in the meantime…this is pretty cool. Teams are currently in the process of verifying and destroying Syria’s chemical weapons.
But there is also some bad news out of Syria: the International Committee of the Red Cross has reported that six of its employees and one Syrian Red Crescent volunteer have been abducted at gunpoint.
There was a major oil spill in North Dakota on September 29. But due to the government shutdown, the report on it was not made available until October 8, a full 9 days later.
The Guardian has produced a climate-change survival guide detailing some of the changes we will see as the planet warms over the next century. It is Britain-specific in some instances, but a lot of it is applicable worldwide.