Sometimes when I see an acacia tree, if the location is just right, I am transported back to my first home. For a moment, despite the heat and the dust, I see another scene, a rocky hillside brown with heather and a different kind of tree, a Scots Pine. My two homes, the highlands of […]
The conflicts in Laikipia and elsewhere in northern Kenya ought to be looked at as a national security issue exacerbated by historical land injustices and the pursuit of an inappropriate conservation model that relegates the true owners of the resources to the periphery.
When Kenyan troops crossed the proverbial Rubicon and entered Somalia nearly six years ago, it caught almost everyone by surprise. It was Kenya’s first sustained and significant foray into its troubled neighbors territory and ran counter to the country’s historic pacifism -at least in international if not necessarily in domestic, affairs- as well as against […]
Listen to audio or download I had arrived late to Ethiopia, when I first visited it in 2012, barely managing to see the vestiges of the early 20th century nation of lattice work balconies, of Lada taxis, family pizzerias and piazzas; also the Ethiopia of Red Terror squares and state surveillance carried out on such a […]
“That old law about ‘an eye for an eye’ leaves everybody blind. The time is always right to do the right thing.” – Martin Luther King Jr When my colleagues and I at the Independent Medico-Legal Unit (IMLU) learnt about the disappearance in June 2016 of our comrade advocate Willie Kimani, his client and their taxi […]
‘The traveller whose name is not Annah remembers thinking about all the mothers she had seen on television, clutching old photographs, speaking of sons who never made it home. She wonders how it must have been for them – sitting, waiting, hoping that each knock on the door was from their son’s fist.’ These words […]
Kenya and its neighbours, despite the mistakes and bungling characterising its anti-terrorism efforts up to now, are better off reconceptualising how to domesticate the range of threats to public security than following the lead of those calling the shots from abroad.
Kampala, Uganda – AN ASYMMETRICAL CONFLICT WITH A SHAPE-SHIFTING ENEMY There were two historic junctures at which the journey to the current ever-globalising quagmire of the ‘war on terror’ could have been headed off. I say ‘globalising’ because what began as a promise of a quick war to depose the Bin Laden-friendly Taliban regime in […]