this & that: links to tide you over
It's Thanksgiving weekend here in the U.S. of A. We'll be back to the regular posting schedule on Monday.
- The UN Group of Experts report on the eastern DRC leaked this week. Jason Stearns has a summary of the key points and excerpts here.
- Sudanese elections have been delayed to allow more time for voter registration.
- "West African pirates kill mariner." Unlike their counterparts in Somalia, MEND and other miiltant groups operating in the Gulf of Guinea have no interest in negotiating for ransoms...yet. The piracy in which they engage is similar to that we see in the Malaca Straits: quick and focused on theft.
- "Can Somali pirates be defeated?" Not on the water.
- Here are some interesting thoughts on the need to stop sea theft as a prerequisite for solving the Somali piracy problem. The issue, however, is that the most effective pirates (who operate out of Puntland and central Somalia) aren't really interested in protecting the coastline anymore. Beyond securing what they need to secure in order to maintain access to the coast and to keep local populations at least somewhat satisfied by their on-ground presence, their real interest is in attacking large shipping operations.
- Video games allow users to commit virtual war crimes.
- Twelve million people are being vaccinated against yellow fever in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Benin. Scarlett Lion has a great picture of the effort.
- Have Blackwater workers been posing at aid workers in a "secret war" in Pakistan? Una points out the consequences of such behavior for real aid workers. It's not good.
- Here's the best visual I've seen on just how effective an insurgency-style military campaign can be.
- Here's a wonderful profile of a DRC band that's a hit in the UK.
- And Afghanistan has an indie rock band.
- If, like me, you attempt to do all of your holiday shopping without going into any actual stores, have we got the perfect gift for that embittered aid worker in your life: the CIA's new cookbook. Here's a review.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!