Joe Attwood

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Royal Charter on Press Regulation: A False Dichotomy

By Joe Attwood

The authors of the Royal Charter on the Self-Regulation of the Press have come under a great deal of criticism in recent weeks, but if there is one thing that can be said of them it is that they have certainly read the Leveson Report.

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Sound and Fury: Kirchner and the Falklands

By Joe Attwood

On 27 June 2012, Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner stood at a podium and ad-libbed a farewell speech to her country’s Olympic team as they made final preparations for their departure to the London 2012 Games. Kirchner reassured her nation that despite the recent increase in tensions over the Falkland Islands sovereignty dispute, and despite competing in the capital city of the country with whom the dispute exists, neither her government nor the Olympic team would do anything during the Games that does not have to do with sports. During the competition, said Kirchner, Argentina would compete, represent its flag, and not do anything outside of sport to draw attention to itself.

Al-Shabaab

Could Less Be More in Somalia?

By Joe Attwood

The ongoing conflict in Somalia has largely been ignored by the Western world. Since the 1991 overthrow of the oppressive regime of President Siad Barre, intense fighting between Somali warlords and their respective clans has left the country in a state of almost constant war. Al-Shabaab, whilst the largest and most active, is by no means the only Islamic extremist group fighting against the forces of the AU. Although the UN is unwilling to commit troops or materiel in support of the AU on the ground, the Western world and the US in particular remain concerned by the recent and substantial gains made by al-Shabaab and its affiliated organisations.Absent a centralised form of government for twenty years, the country is ensnared in a cycle of unrelenting violence that has accounted for the deaths of up to a million Somalis, with a further quarter of a million having been displaced as a direct result of the violence.