Politics & Society

Black metal and two-number disasters

The genre of rock music known as “metal” has gone through some interesting evolutionary changes over the past forty years; the original “heavy metal” of Led Zeppelin and Judas Priest now sounding positively tuneful and, well, almost light in comparison

Read More

A faction of factions

The period since the beginning of the two-year Ethiopian military intervention in Somalia in late 2006 has seen the rise to world notoriety of the Islamist insurgent group al-Shabaab. Already known as the most extreme of the factions making up

Read More

A forgotten path to peace?

Speaking to the UN General Assembly today, President Obama reaffirmed his country’s commitment to what has become over time the world’s only strategy for achieving peace in the Middle East: “Last year, I pledged my best efforts to support the

Read More

A new geography for an old problem

With ever-increasing numbers of human beings choosing or being pushed by economics to leave low-density rural areas for life in high-density cities, we would be wise to devote at least a small proportion of our personal and collective resources to

Read More