Instead of starting with Libya, as my recent posts all seem to have, I will start closer to home, with the lovely Les Back. Listen to him talking about dub, reggae and sound system culture; and read him about bombing - the latter highly recommended.
Middle Eastern revolutions
A roundtable on the war in Libya and the Arab spring, from Reason.com. Two from the AWL: Ira Brekovic on the left on Libya and Gerry Bates on the battle for democracy in the Arab revolutions. Two from Dissent: Todd Gitlin on Tahrir Square and Feisel Mohamed on the Muslim Brotherhood. Another piece I missed in February, by Andre Glucksmann. Might have already posted this, but here is Hitchens still on form, on the Iraq effect.
Libya: A Libyan perspective from Tasnin. Uri Avnery on Gaddafi.
Syria: Not about revolutions, but about tyranny and its unexpected fellow travellers: Vogue to Syrians: Eat Shit 1 and 2. Michael Totten on the tyrant of Damascus.
Egypt: Patrick Cockburn on the fight to keep the revolution alive in Egypt. Amani Maged on Salafi violence in Egypt.
Liberal interventionism/responsibility to protect
Ian Williams on armchair anti-imperialism. Sunder Katwala on the Ivory Coast. Paul C on Rebecca Hamilton on Darfur (with an interesting comment thread, including a Sudanese nationalist recommending the appalling Mahmood Mamdani). Wilson Pruitt on Mamdani and Badiou on Libya, and Aziz Meshiea's response to Mamdani's anti-imperialist diatribe. JM Smith on the unexpected liberal hawks.
And, on a different side of humanitarianism, Jewlicious on how money for orphans in Malawi ended up at Madonna's kabbala cult in Beverley Hills.
Lewisham libraries in the age of austerity
Transpontine has the latest on New Cross Library. See also The Future of New Cross. When our libraries are closed down by a Labour council carrying out Con-Dem cuts, and they are replaced by "social enterprises" running "community libraries", staffed mainly by BigSoc-style volunteer labour - what is the correct political response? Answers on a postcard please, or in the comments box below.
East London Pride
Sarah AB and Lucy Lips on the complex politics of triangulating Islamophobia and homophobia.
Also at HP: on Lee Jasper, Andy Newman and the Terry Fitz affair. (Say what you want about Andy Newman, but you have to admit he has superb taste in music.)
Malcolm X: bisexual
Read Peter Tatchell and Ron Radosh on the late Manning Marable's posthumous biography.
The immigration debate
Chris Dillow on immigration and productivity. Ruth Grove-White on immigration rules and domestic violence. John Grayson on fear and hope. Zoe Williams on the cap.
Food for thought
Three fascinating readings suggested by Noga, on Hitler-loving Jews, Arab Jews and the right of return. CiFWatch on the Orwellian Orwell prize nominees.
The life and death of Juliano Mer Khamis - reflections on a tragic death, which bear on the issue of binationalism we looked at a while ago: from Ralph Seliger, Avi Shavit (h/t Engage), Gideon Levy and Jonathan Holmes. I will not link to the Angry Arab or Harry's Place posts on this death, because I found the atmosphere at both rather unpleasant. Here, however, is one of the comments from HP:
Good points by Ari Shavit. [...]
[The Freedom Theatre in Jenin Refugee Camp] survived for years, despite having a Jewish Israeli at its helm. Other cultural institutions also survive and flourish, including the music school I work for here. If Palestinian society was as sweepingly intolerant and morally bankrupt as you claim this would not be the case. As usual, many HP respondents latch onto the aspects of this story that fit their agenda.
Tonight there is a performance of Ionesco’s “The Chairs” (in one of the theatres) in Ramallah which I will go to without any expectation of being knifed as I leave. Soon there will be an international dance festival. The fanatics who murdered this man do not define the place, as much as you would wish them to, and as little as I want to marginalise their significance.