Archive for the general Category

Light relief

Posted in Africa, comedy, general with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 26 June, 2010 by Virgil

With all the seriousness going on in this blog, it is important to step back and have some light relief every once in a while – still keeping on topic, of course.

So here are some parody videos courtesy of the Onion News Network, poking fun at nationalism, ignorance of the rest of the world, and celebrity activism (actorvism).

First up, this video is a news item about a hurricane bound for Texas that is slowed by a big and unknown/unnamed/unimportant “land mass” in the south…a “blessing”!

Next, in this video the US government donates billions of dollars in aid money to Andorra, apparently mistaking it for Angola. Andorra is enjoying using the money for hot-air balloons for all its citizens! Great map of Africa being used by the US State Department.

On a similar note, here is a panel discussion by commentators who have no idea about Nigeria (or is it Niger?) but are forced to comment anyway.

Now onto Darfur – another panel discussion, this time about how Darfurians can be made aware of what celebrities are doing for them – Darfurians “don’t understand the significance of the fact that Matt Damon is worried about them”…

Finally, in this video, did Don Cheadle orchestrate the Darfur genocide to create a film role based on the tragedy (to top Hotel Rwanda)? And why in Darfur? Because of the panoramic vistas that would provide a striking backdrop for the movie!

Plenty of laughs there…

Back in business

Posted in general on 10 November, 2009 by Virgil

I have been away from this blog for far too long. My apologies to those who have been wondering what is going on.

Things have certainly been busy. Among many other tasks, I have been involved in organizing and holding a series of events to raise awareness about the conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) here in Japan – where awareness is particularly low. I intend to write about these events in my next post. I have also been doing some work on the Japanese version of the Stealth Conflicts blog.

But excuses aside, I seem to have fallen out of the habit of writing this blog. It is something I hope to rectify. There remain so many issues associated with conflict that require far more attention than they are getting – the massacre in Guinea, increasing violence in Somalia, and ongoing problems stemming from Operation Kimia II in the DRC among them.

It would be unrealistic to expect that the scale of a problem be the most important factor in determining the amount of attention that it gets. But in terms of the way conflict in the world is seen today, the scale (particularly the death toll) seems to have nothing whatsoever to do with the levels of attention. Doing something about this sad and sorry state of affairs remains a key objective of this blog.

Looking forward to getting back into the swing of things.

Welcome to Stealth Conflicts

Posted in general with tags , on 16 November, 2008 by Virgil

This blog has recently been set up to help draw attention to (and enhance understanding of) the problem of major conflicts (major in the sense that their death tolls are high) that end up being marginalized and ignored, most notably by powerful policymakers, the media, the public and academia. I will start writing posts as I get the time, hopefully sooner rather than later. In the meantime please follow this link to check out the introduction to the book: Stealth Conflicts: How the World’s Worst Violence Is Ignored. You may also want to check out an article published online called Stealth Conflicts: Africa’s World War in the DRC and International Consciousness. More information about me can be found here.

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