America: A house divided

by Rashmee

Posted on January 12, 2019


US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo went to Cairo with a nonsensical message – we care, the other guys didn’t. But there really was only one point he was sent to telegraph to the world. That the Trump administration feels profound antipathy to Barack Obama, America’s first visually black president. Mr Trump likes (possibly even … Continue reading “America: A house divided”

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Sixteen years after 9/11, how does America see the world?

by Rashmee

Posted on September 11, 2017 / The National


The “war on terrorism” may have been a misnomer, for how do you fight a noun that describes a methodology, but it has been moderately successful in real terms. That’s if you measure success for the United States domestically. It hasn’t suffered a successful attack by a foreign terrorist organisation since 9/11 on its territory. … Continue reading “Sixteen years after 9/11, how does America see the world?”

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Unknown knowns: The phrase post-9/11 decade only just became real and true

by Rashmee

Posted on June 23, 2015


Journalists use the phrase post-9/11 decade pretty glibly but one has to wonder if it has only really just begun, in late May, nearly 14 years after the attack on the Twin Towers. Key signs that the fever brought on by 9/11 has finally broken: –      First, the US Senate allowed some key provisions of … Continue reading “Unknown knowns: The phrase post-9/11 decade only just became real and true”

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Post-9/11 decade: Rand Paul often speaks truth to power of security state

by Rashmee

Posted on June 10, 2015


The post-9/11 decade has only really just begun, two years on from former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden’s revelations about the US government’s vast surveillance programme. And one of the only American politicians (with name recognition and some standing) who has had the courage to praise Mr Snowden’s actions is Rand Paul. As Fareed … Continue reading “Post-9/11 decade: Rand Paul often speaks truth to power of security state”

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Can everyone carry the water to Ed Husain’s burning ‘house of Islam’?

by Rashmee

Posted on January 11, 2015


“The house of Islam is on fire. The water needs to be carried by everybody, regardless of race or religion,” wrote Ed Husain in The Guardian. Yes. If they would be allowed to do so. Let me explain. Soon after the #charliehebdo attacks, a young woman contacted me with the offer of a penetrating piece … Continue reading “Can everyone carry the water to Ed Husain’s burning ‘house of Islam’?”

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Will Cuba cash the US rental cheques for Guantanamo Bay?

by Rashmee

Posted on December 19, 2014


Talk US-Cuba relations and Guantanamo Bay doesn’t immediately come to mind. But it should. The Americans have been using this leased bit of real estate since 1903 and after the 1959 Communist revolution, Havana hasn’t even cashed the annual cheques. Okay, so each cheque is worth a measley $4,085 a year (or thereabouts), as Matt … Continue reading “Will Cuba cash the US rental cheques for Guantanamo Bay?”

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Jihadist groups are the new Mafia in their use of the wages of crime

by Rashmee

Posted on December 15, 2014


The BBC is running a big study on jihad – its toll, its cost and funding sources. (Click here to read the feature.) On Friday, December 12, the BBC came up with this line: “Islamic State is ‘probably the best-funded terrorist organisation’ the US has ever confronted”. It went on to say that jihadist groups … Continue reading “Jihadist groups are the new Mafia in their use of the wages of crime”

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Open for business: The Freedom Tower represents New York’s Blitz spirit

by Rashmee

Posted on November 7, 2014


I count myself intensely lucky to be in New York the very week that the first tenants move into the 104-storey Freedom Tower, built on the site of 9/11s most ghastly attack. Many New Yorkers say that everyone in the city is walking a little taller. Hard to be sure on that point but Dennis … Continue reading “Open for business: The Freedom Tower represents New York’s Blitz spirit”

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Battling Islamic State: Boots on the ground. How about brains in the air?

by Rashmee

Posted on October 3, 2014


Heard the one about Iraqi pilots mistakenly delivering food, water and ammunition Islamic State (IS) militants on a mission that was meant to supply their own side? It’s a droll but true story and a uniquely illustrative sidebar to the ‘boots on the ground’ (brains in the air?) issue. NBC News had Hakim Al-Zamili, a … Continue reading “Battling Islamic State: Boots on the ground. How about brains in the air?”

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Bombs, boots on ground won’t destroy Islamic State. Only the locals can

by Rashmee

Posted on October 2, 2014


The new Iraqi Prime Minister would probably agree with this, given his interview to Lyse Doucet, broadcast by the BBC on Wednesday. So here goes. It’s hard to see why anyone would pay even passing heed to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s insane prescription for “boots on the ground” to tackle Islamic State fighters. … Continue reading “Bombs, boots on ground won’t destroy Islamic State. Only the locals can”

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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