‘The Eyes of Darkness’ is not about the Coronavirus and not a particularly good read

by Rashmee

Posted on October 16, 2020


  By curious coincidence, I finished Dean Koontz’s ‘The Eyes of Darkness’ on the day it was announced that vast swathes of south-eastern England would be placed under “high” alert for risk of Coronavirus infection, which means tough restrictions on moving around and socialising. The reason I mention the Koontz novel in the context of … Continue reading “‘The Eyes of Darkness’ is not about the Coronavirus and not a particularly good read”

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Does the centre-left have the ideological flexibility to take power?

by Rashmee

Posted on July 18, 2020


In the days before the coronavirus epidemic struck, there was a growing sense that the centre-left  in the US and UK was no longer ready for change, that it was too broad-minded, as poet Robert Frost once said, to take its own side in an argument. The pandemic is changing things. Ideas normally considered socialist … Continue reading “Does the centre-left have the ideological flexibility to take power?”

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Why a 1000-year-old English flour mill should be a case study for Harvard Business School

by Rashmee

Posted on May 3, 2020


When this is all over, Sturminster Newton flour mill in Dorset, England, should be a case study for Harvard Business School. The mill, which originally predated the 1066 Norman Conquest and was rebuilt in the 16th century, ceased commercial milling half-a-century ago and become a museum piece. But now it is back to commercial production … Continue reading “Why a 1000-year-old English flour mill should be a case study for Harvard Business School”

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Joe Biden and the Great Man Theory of History

by Rashmee

Posted on April 20, 2020


  In his three-and-a-half years in the White House, Donald Trump has illustrated both the basic truth and the contradiction that underpins the Great Man Theory of History. It is as follows: you do not need to be a great man – in the sense of being wise, honourable, good and kind – to greatly … Continue reading “Joe Biden and the Great Man Theory of History”

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Viral words: ‘Social distancing’ is out but hard to dislodge

by Rashmee

Posted on April 16, 2020


Had Donald Trump any sense (including of the English language) he would have taken the World Health Organisation (WHO) to task for allowing the phrase “social distancing” to go viral. Instead, the US president used his daily Gorilla Man imitation to turn off millions of dollars in American funding to the global health body for … Continue reading “Viral words: ‘Social distancing’ is out but hard to dislodge”

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It may take a pandemic to change the whole idea of national security

by Rashmee

Posted on April 15, 2020


Even in lockdown, the “make love not war” brigade must be hopeful, high-fiving each other over Zoom, in appropriate socially distant fashion. When this is over – a year, or two, or three  from now – countries may be too broke to spend on tanks and guns. The people, meanwhile, might be asking – fiercely … Continue reading “It may take a pandemic to change the whole idea of national security”

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One day, the pandemic will end. The other malignancy in US body politic may be harder to dislodge

by Rashmee

Posted on April 13, 2020


A sad and telling development in the crippling affliction that wracks America came on Easter Monday (April 13). I’m not talking about the coronavirus pandemic, though it figures in the story. The truly malignant agent that has invaded the American body politic and is spreading fast – secondaries are in parts we might not have … Continue reading “One day, the pandemic will end. The other malignancy in US body politic may be harder to dislodge”

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United Nations struggles in a leaderless world

by Rashmee

Posted on April 12, 2020 / The Arab Weekly


Tunisia, which has a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council, put forward a resolution expressing concern about the outbreak. It is sobering to think that the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) held its first meeting on COVID-19 only on April 9, nearly a month after a pandemic was officially declared by the World Health … Continue reading “United Nations struggles in a leaderless world”

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The British weather has failed us – again. It should have been a grey, rainy weekend

by Rashmee

Posted on April 11, 2020


The favourite phrase in the British press this Easter weekend has been “sun-drenched lockdown”. It’s quite obvious that it was said through gritted teeth, the computer keys sulkily pressed to form the two terrible words that sum up the strangest Easter anyone has known for more than a century. A pandemic. A global lockdown. Britain … Continue reading “The British weather has failed us – again. It should have been a grey, rainy weekend”

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Burqa bans apart, face coverings have gained acceptance during the pandemic

by Rashmee

Posted on April 7, 2020 / The National


Developments in Lombardy, the northern Italian region worst affected by the novel coronavirus, are rich in tragic irony. Over the weekend, it introduced a law to compel citizens to wear face masks outside their homes. But in December 2015, Lombardy became the first Italian region to outlaw face coverings in public offices and hospitals. Austria … Continue reading “Burqa bans apart, face coverings have gained acceptance during the pandemic”

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