Friday 15 August 2014

Links 15/08/14


In a much discussed interview with The Atlantic, former Secretary of State and potential future Democratic candidate for the presidency in the 2016 election Hillary Clinton criticized the foreign policy of the Obama administration: “Great nations need organizing principles, and ‘Don’t do stupid stuff’ is not an organizing principle.” She specifically focuses on the failure to intervene in Syria and act against ISIL, Iran's nuclear ambitions (insisting that there is no right to enrich, and the question of whether Israel's response to Hamas was proportionate (and here is an excellent analysis of what proportionality even means, a necessary question in any debate about just war - while "Israel Braces for War Crimes Inquiries on Gaza"). 

Meanwhile in Iraq, following the advance of ISIL (or IS - Islamic State), and its attacks on the Kurdish Yazidi minority (the US is sending special troops to plan the evacuation of some trapped refugees), Prime Minister al-Maliki is struggling to stay in power. The New Yorker explains the importance of the newly flourishing city of Erbil, the capital of the part of Iraq run by the de-facto independent Kurdish Regional Government, and explains the difficulty of sticking to the policy of wanting a unified Iraq while the “The Kurdish region is functional in the way we would like to see", as President Barack Obama states in an interview. 

Russian military vehicles have crossed the border into Ukraine (in a part of the country that is currently not under control of the Ukrainian government). 

Following the police shooting of an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Missouri, mostly peaceful protests have been met with an overwhelming and militarized police presence, tear gas, rubber bullets, some of them aimed at reporters present at the scenes (and some of the reporters have been detained by police). 

Here are two articles focusing on the increasing militarization of US police in the wake of 9/11. 

Pop Culture: 

The Paris Review interviewed Billy Wilder in 1996, and it's still well-worth a read. 

German filmmaker and artist Harun Farocki, who collaborated often with Christian Petzold (also for him upcoming film Phoenix), died two weeks ago. 

And for the 20th anniversary of the release of Portishead's Dummy, here's a 1994 interview with the band. 

William Gibson's Neuromancer trilogy is turning 30 soon, and The Guardian explores the (potentially dreadful) question of how accurate his vision of the future was. 

Arcade Fire released a video for You Already Know

FKA twigs' debut LP (LP1) is excellent

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