Tahrir ammo

Tahrir ammo

Apologies, this post is really just a place to dump a load of stuff – following a couple of requests, I thought it might be useful to post somewhere a round-up of arms and ammunition being used against protestors in Tahrir right now. There seem to be a growing number people in and around the Square angry at being fired on by weapons supplied from countries making nice noises about…

Sousveillance redux

Sousveillance redux

How do we – citizens, journalists, researchers – winkle secrets from the state (corporation / criminal network / NGO / armed group)? In at least two ways, ordinarily: Make friends: find informants who, by design or chance, have access or experience of your object of desire, be it a business deal, an aircraft landing strip or a committee meeting Hack the gaze of the state: piggy-back on governments’ own information-gathering…

The world turn’d upside down

The world turn’d upside down

For various reasons (mainly a new job) I’ve been thinking a lot about “international development” recently. The development industry’s interventions are always socially transformative. Fair enough: whatever you may think about it, social and economic change – “development” – is supposed to be the point. But the direction of social transformation promoted – or permitted – in the Majority World by Western governments and development agencies is often constrained. Constrained…

iAtrocity

iAtrocity

Guinea’s opposition parties have worked hard to develop a unified political memory about what happened on the 28th September. Probably one of the reasons they remain within a unified coalition is because they and their supporters share the experience and solidarity of the repression on that day; and it’ll be significant to see what happens to the Forces Vives once it comes to election-time. But interestingly, that shared memory has…

The meat wars

The meat wars

Sunday afternoon, for many middle-class Kenyans, means music, Tusker beer and nyama choma: roast meat (nyama), usually beef or goat, ordered by the half-pound, and served with ugali (maize meal). But usually with more meat (nyama), in often epic quantities. Nyama choma is both national dish and recreational ritual. At the moment (the end of the dry season) meat is fairly cheap, grain at record prices. And while people in…