Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 11:04 am
I was surprised by the strong emotional reaction I had when I saw the news of the U.S. change in policy toward Cuba. I found myself in tears. As a journalist, I could process it on an intellectual level and I understand the foreign policy implications. But as a naturalized American citizen of Jamaican and Caribbean heritage, I wanted to jump for joy and shout "Hallelujah!" that finally, Cuba was no longer a pariah and there was nothing to fear. This is something I never thought would happen in my lifetime.
Originally published on Mon November 10, 2014 10:05 am
Ebola is threatening to reverse years of educational progress in West Africa. The virus has kept school closed for months in a part of the world where literacy rates are low and school systems are only now recovering from years of civil war.
In Liberia, many children have been put to work while schools are closed, and Ebola is hurting the economy, says Laurent Duvillier, a communication specialist at UNICEF. The fear now, he says, is that many of these children will never return to school.
Originally published on Wed October 29, 2014 11:00 am
For the first time, a small group of Syrian rebels have been permitted to transit Turkish territory en route to the fight against militants of the self-declared Islamic State in the besieged border city of Kobani.
The Associated Press reports, citing Syrian activists and Kurdish officials, that the group of around 50 armed men are from the Free Syrian Army. It was reported earlier that Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighters were also being allowed to cross from Turkey.
Originally published on Tue October 28, 2014 1:17 pm
At a checkpoint outside the northern Iraq town of Makhmur, I saw something I'd never seen before in Iraq.
Two men were checking cars. One was young and wearing a sand-colored uniform of the official Iraqi Kurdish forces, called the peshmerga. The other was older, grizzled and dressed in an olive-green, traditional Kurdish overall, and he's with Turkey's Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
"We're happy to be working together," said the older man, Hajji Hussein Abdulrahman.
Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 2:55 pm
The Pentagon says it will investigate a video released by the self-declared Islamic State showing its fighters purportedly rifling through crates of U.S. arms intended for Kurdish forces fighting the extremist group.
Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby said: "We're still taking a look at [the video] and assessing the validity of it."
The world is mourning the death in Broome County of a prominent African scholar who had ties to New York's State University system.
Kenyan-born Professor Ali Mazrui died early Monday morning - the 81-year-old was an academic and political writer on African and Islamic studies and North-South relations, as well as professor and director of the Center for Global Cultural Studies, State University of New York at Binghamton.