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Given my propensity for seeing conflicts in sectarian terms

Sunday, June 12th, 2016

[ by Charles Cameron — delicious irony in the twitter stream as a teaching tool re middle east ]
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Given my propensity for seeing conflicts in sectarian terms, it’s a breath of fresh air / splash of wet water for me to read Hayder al-Khoei, scion of the eminent al-Khoei family and Chatham House Fellow, tweeting on the subject of the English football hooliganism in Marseille over the last three days, which has included both bottle-throwing against French riot police and a running battle with a pack of Russian supporters brandishing knives:

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Al-Khoei‘s observations offer us a brilliant parody of the way western analysts, myself included, all too often write about events in the Middle East, and I admire his skill in delivering his reproof — but it’s also worth remarking that England as I understand it seems less and less interested in attendance at its established Protestant church, while France is notable for it’s official laïcité. Indeed, of the three nations involved in this circus, only the Russians appear to be experiencing quite a resurgence of Orthodoxy, coming after decades of official atheism.

Enfin:

The England v Russia match was a 1-1 draw. Game theorists would presumably call the event a zero-sum game, since the two sides do seem to have cancelled each other out — but in the larger context of sectarian rivalry, the entire three days have surely been lose-lose, while al-Khoei‘s wit is a win for us all.

Do unto yourselves more of what you would do unto others?

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

[ by Charles Cameron — IRA kills more Catholics, IS kills more Muslims ]
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Tablet DQ victims catholic muslim

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Is there anything we can learn from either one of these situations that would shed light on the other? Are there other instances of this pattern? How quickly can we take note of this effect in future, to benefit from that recognition?

Sources:

  • The Guardian, Catholics main victims of Northern Ireland republican terror groups
  • The Independent, Paris attacks: Isis responsible for more Muslim deaths than western victims
  • Hat-tip: John Horgan

    Carambolages, huzzah!

    Monday, March 14th, 2016

    [ by Charles Cameron — a brilliant new exhibition breaks the usual museum rules to provoke prodigious & repeated leaps of imagination ]
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    Carambolages Dominos

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    Cath Styles, whose Sembl games are closely related to my own HipBone variants on Hermann Hesse‘s Glass Bead Game, recently pointed me to an exhibition called Carambolages that opened recently at the Grand Palais, Galleries Nationales, 3, avenue du General Eisenhower, Paris.

    Strolling their website, I was struck by this double image, which in HipBone terms would be called a DoubleQuote, or a Sembl in Cath’s Sembl game:

    Carambolages
    (left) Sword, Kiribati, Micronesia Islands, Oceania, sd, Paris, Musée du Quai Branly
    (right) Bertrand Lavier, Black & Decker, 1998 collection Giuliana and Tommaso Setari

    It appears, indeed, that the exhibit in question features a Domino game of Sembls or DoubleQuotes —

    Fascinating — and definitely a notable step in the expanding history of bead game variants — which I view, among other things, as an art movement that has yet to be written up as such.

    Congratulations, Jean-Hubert Martin! The catalogue will no doubt be as close as I can get physically, but I’m all the way with you in spirit…

    Bonne idée, bon chance!

    DoubleQuoting Jacques Louis David

    Wednesday, February 10th, 2016

    [ by Charles CameronNapoleon at the St Bernard Pass goes to Turkey ]
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    Jacques Louis David, Bonaparte, the first Versailles version:

    Jacques Louis David, Napoleon 600

    Introducing Erdoganist art, tweeted by Mustafa Akyol and RT’d by Hayder al-Khoei:

    Erdogan

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    Oh, but it gets better. How’s this for a wild DoubleQuote? I found it while rummaging around for a “best version” of the Erdogan pic:

    Poetry is dead vs the death penalty for poetry?

    Monday, November 30th, 2015

    [ by Charles Cameron — current affairs, target practice, and incarnation ]
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    Ah.

    Palestinian poet and painter Ahraf Fayadh is currently under a death sentence in Saudi Arabia.

    It appears important to recognize the full human significance of one’s target

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    Flaubert apparently pronounced poetry dead in his posthumous opus, Bouvard et Pécuchet, 1881, and even Newsweek had noted the fact — “filed under: News” — by 2003. Neither Flaubert nor Newsweek, however, was reckoning on the long-standing Arab enthusiasm for poetry, nicely illustrated to this day by the seriousness with which the authorities treat their poets.

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    Oh..

    and while we’re on the subject of targeting..

    it may also be wise to recognize the full divine significance of one’s target.


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