Once upon a time there were black swans - now there are gray rhinos and the pandemic is one of them

by Rashmee

Posted on July 2, 2020 / The Focus


Once upon a time there were black swans. Now, there are gray rhinos. Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s black swans were unknown unknowns, which is to say unforeseeable or highly improbable risks. A gray rhino is a metaphor coined by risk expert Michele Wucker to describe “highly obvious, highly probable, but still neglected” dangers. Ultimately, we may … Continue reading “Once upon a time there were black swans - now there are gray rhinos and the pandemic is one of them”

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Is it just me or is President Obama becoming linguistically sloppy?

by Rashmee

Posted on January 16, 2016


This might sound like an odd question. After all Barack Obama is the man who wrote New York Times’ bestsellers ‘Dreams from my Fathers’ and ‘The Audacity of Hope’. He’s the leader who can bring tears to people’s eyes with his word pictures. And he’s a politician who solemnly distils the truth into sentences we … Continue reading “Is it just me or is President Obama becoming linguistically sloppy?”

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America’s ambassadors reflect the country? Yes, that fund-raising pays off

by Rashmee

Posted on March 25, 2015


America’s ambassadors reflect the place they come from. In the sense that the US takes initiative and fund-raising seriously and rewards it accordingly. This is the most charitable way to describe the fact that the US often sends, to far-flung outposts, people who are not trained diplomats, don’t seem to be necessarily diplomatic, have no … Continue reading “America’s ambassadors reflect the country? Yes, that fund-raising pays off”

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Is this the year North Korea’s Kim Jong Un finally meets another leader?

by Rashmee

Posted on January 19, 2015


“Is this the year that Kim Jong Un finally meets another leader?” asks The Washington Post. He’s not left North Korea in the three years since he’s been the ‘Great Successor’. Unlike his late father and grandfather, Kim Jong Il and Kim Il Sung, the 30-something Kim has not even visited China and Russia. But … Continue reading “Is this the year North Korea’s Kim Jong Un finally meets another leader?”

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A ‘lean back’ chair for President Obama

by Rashmee

Posted on January 30, 2013


You’ve got to hand it to foreign policy wonks. They’re able to mint new doctrines and phrases despite the decided challenges of having familiar, well-worn world issues to work with. Iraq, Afghanistan, al Qaeda, Mali, Libya. The new is but a re-run of the old. So John Arquilla, professor of defense analysis at the U.S. … Continue reading “A ‘lean back’ chair for President Obama”

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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