The Florida shooting was just one more on a list already too long and bloody

by Rashmee

Posted on February 20, 2018 / The National


What could possibly be new or different about the aftermath of the Valentine’s Day school shooting in Florida, the latest mass killing by firearms in America? Hasn’t everything that had to be said about gun violence in the United States already been articulated in factual reportage, fiction and film? There has been a bestselling novel, … Continue reading “The Florida shooting was just one more on a list already too long and bloody”

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One does not have to be Muslim to seek the freedom not to bare

by Rashmee

Posted on February 18, 2018 / The Arab Weekly


Love fashion or hate it, there are three reasons to pay close attention to women’s clothing right now. So-called modest wear, ostensibly for Muslim women, is becoming a powerful political statement. In turn, it is tailoring corporate priorities. Macy’s, one of America’s oldest and largest retail store chains, has introduced a “modest” fashion line aimed … Continue reading “One does not have to be Muslim to seek the freedom not to bare”

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Olympic unity on the divided Korean peninsula might give way to nuclear point-scoring afterwards — but it has made for an unmissable spectacle

by Rashmee

Posted on February 13, 2018 / The National


That the Winter Olympics are showcasing hopes for peace and amity in the world is exactly as it should be. The two Koreas’ rapprochement — limited though it may prove to be — has turned Pyeongchang into the unity games, with even North Korean leader Kim Jong-un describing it as a “warm climate of reconciliation and dialogue”. That is … Continue reading “Olympic unity on the divided Korean peninsula might give way to nuclear point-scoring afterwards — but it has made for an unmissable spectacle”

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Italy has fewer migrants now but hateful Trumpian echoes resound

by Rashmee

Posted on February 11, 2018 / The Arab Weekly


By every calculation, Italy’s election in early March will settle nothing. The country may or may not end up with a government straight off after the vote. It could be the populist Five Star Movement or a centre-right coalition composed of the Forza Italia, the Northern League and the Brothers of Italy. However, having a … Continue reading “Italy has fewer migrants now but hateful Trumpian echoes resound”

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India’s plan for the world’s largest public healthcare system is a big idea, but is it doomed to failure?

by Rashmee

Posted on February 6, 2018 / The National


India has one of the largest railway networks in the world and now it wants to put in place the largest public healthcare system. It’s a worthy aspiration but so far, the February 1 announcement goes no further than that. No one knows how the grandly named  National Health Protection Scheme will be funded, structured, managed or … Continue reading “India’s plan for the world’s largest public healthcare system is a big idea, but is it doomed to failure?”

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In Turkey, an ominous question: Can war ever be good for public health?

by Rashmee

Posted on February 4, 2018 / The Arab Weekly


Can war ever be good for public health? It’s a ludicrous question when the horrendous consequences of the long-running, many-sided Syrian conflict are plain to see on television screens and social media. Dozens are dead as a result of Turkey’s military offensive against the Kurds in Afrin; many were killed by suspected Russian warplanes that … Continue reading “In Turkey, an ominous question: Can war ever be good for public health?”

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Trump’s State of the Union address marks a deeply troubling back story to the narrative of American strength and success

by Rashmee

Posted on January 30, 2018 / The National


Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address is billed as a follow-through on his triumphalist message to the world from Davos 2018. America is “roaring back, open for business and competitive once again”, the US president declared. But is it really? The statistical reading is good, which explains the buzzy sense of good cheer … Continue reading “Trump’s State of the Union address marks a deeply troubling back story to the narrative of American strength and success”

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Davos and the Arab project

by Rashmee

Posted on January 28, 2018 / The Arab Weekly


The talkathon-cum-thinkfest that blazed to an end on January 26 at Davos had more leaders and executives from the Arab world in attendance than at any time since it began. The World Economic Forum, to give the high-achievers’ annual conclave its proper name, has been around in one form or the other since 1971. This … Continue reading “Davos and the Arab project”

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Plastic pollution is already a big problem. This year it just got bigger

by Rashmee

Posted on January 23, 2018 / The National


Here’s what the small Alpine town of Davos could be discussing today, but won’t. The use of traditional materials to replace plastic waste. More specifically, the annual meeting of global political and business elites could consider tangibles. For instance, the kulhar, the unglazed earthenware pots South Asians have been using as food containers for hundreds … Continue reading “Plastic pollution is already a big problem. This year it just got bigger”

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Even a gossipy book can have some truths about Trump and the Middle East

by Rashmee

Posted on January 21, 2018 / The Arab Weekly


For a US administration that promised to bring about peace in the Middle East, Donald Trump’s White House team seemed to men­tion the region hardly at all in the first eight months in office. In Michael Wolff’s gossipy block­buster “Fire and Fury,” which pur­ports to document most of the first year of the Trump White … Continue reading “Even a gossipy book can have some truths about Trump and the Middle East”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, UK and US