Last updated: 23 April 2021
April 2021 – Our efforts to harness the sun’s energy to power our future may require up to 5% of the territories of some countries, a new simulation finds. This could have significant direct and indirect environmental side effects, including habitat loss and deforestation. But there are ways to avoid this.
April 2021 – Using offensive images of Muhammad in the context of a lesson on blasphemy is entirely justifiable pedagogically, intellectually and morally. Conservative Muslims protesting against it are attempting to shut down free inquiry and undermining pluralism.
April 2021 – The concentration of immigrants in certain poor neighbourhoods in Denmark is far more a sign of the ghetto mentality of the majority than that of minorities.
April 2021 – The European Union has committed itself to dispelling the spectre of racial prejudice. But with the resurgence of racism and discrimination across Europe, combating it requires urgent action, not just noble words.
March 2021 – The Republicans have become the party of anger and grievance. Their rage is amplified by the conservative media and gun rights associations. This is bad news for society.
March 2021 – A sudden lurch from ignoring or underplaying the threat of right-wing extremism in America to treating white crusaders like jihadis and QAnon like al-Qaeda will set off the insurgency timebomb rather than defuse it.
March 2021 – Despite the paranoid conspiracy theories and fear-mongering of the extreme right, cultural diversity is a beautiful and wondrous thing.
February 2021 – A decade after Egyptians rose up against Hosni Mubarak, the counterrevolution appears victorious in the political domain. However, under the radar, a social revolution is in motion.
February 2021 – Donald Trump’s latest impeachment throws a spotlight on the politics of grievance, the role of social media and the dangers of hate speech spilling over into real life. Fortunately, the pushback has started.
February 2021 – Events following the fall of Hosni Mubarak reveal that the Egyptian regime is on the path to self-destruction.
January 2021 – There was a certain poetic justice to Donald Trump’s undoing. I’d even call it Shakespearean.
January 2021 – Unable to extinguish the ideas awakened by the revolution, the Egyptian military has focused its efforts on violently and brutally crushing almost every form of open dissent. This is an extremely dangerous and reckless game.
January 2021 – Spanning some three millennia of recorded history, Ancient Egyptians built a state to last. What was behind this success and what can we learn from it? Quite a few surprising lessons, in fact.
November 2020 – Rather than humans becoming enslaved by robots, machines have become the new slave or serf class, with devastating consequences for society and the environment. We desperately need a more humane and sustainable approach to automation.
November 2020 – With Biden elected, Rebekah Crawford, like much of America, is waking up from being in an abusive relationship. Sadly, millions of Americans did not mind Trump’s racism, corruption and abuse of power.
November 2020 – Outside America, Donald Trump has provoked near universal outrage and dismay. However, Europeans and Middle Easterners must not forget the racism closer to home.
October 2020 – I may never be able to convince a Trump voter not to vote for Trump, but I can tell them what it’s like for an American to live with “socialist” healthcare and education in Europe.
October 2020 – The refugees and migrants who survived the fire at the Moria camp in Lesbos find themselves in an even worse predicament as authorities repeat the same dire mistakes.
October 2020 – It is the cypher of the age, the new C-word that the know-ware machine must not detect lest it conjures up undesirable meanings, and undesirable consequences.
September 2020 – As it stumbles from one political crisis to the next, Belgium faces a profound existential threat. But can the slow disintegration of the Belgian state be reversed and, if so, how?
July 2020 – The world’s best-known Arabic dictionary started off as a Nazi propaganda project and cost a young Jewish scholar her life. It’s time Hedwig Klein received the posthumous recognition she deserves.
July 2020 – Many of the leaders held up as representing the epitome of evil were extraordinarily and spectacularly untalented, incapable and incompetent. With this mediocrity of evil, it is almost a wonder that they managed to rise to the top at all.