The stories of women who had escaped ISIS from when I was in Istanbul were still very much on my mind as we flew into Beirut. My sense of the city was a place under siege, in spite of a vibrant café culture. At this stage the elections were still to take place and the outcome – a continuation of repression – was still a possibility rather than reality.
We arrived in Beirut late in the afternoon and walked the tiny curvy lanes and steep steps past smashed stone buildings bumping against elegant frames.… Continue Reading
I woke up on my boat the day of my departure for Ankara in Turkey to news that two bombs there had killed almost 100 people and caused horrific injuries to hundreds more. With Ankara in chaos I instead flew into Istanbul with a colleague in order to meet with women’s groups in Turkey, and to join a convening of Syrian women activists that Global Fund for Women co-funded with the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and MADRE.
Arriving into Istanbul, we heard the call to prayer as we drove alongside an ancient stone wall.… Continue Reading
I left the joyful energy of my houseboat in Sausalito to catch a flight to Mexico City.
This was around the time President Obama was preparing to head to Alaska and to hike the peaks to provide a dramatic visual backdrop to his message about the need for urgent international action on climate change.
I was headed to the International Meeting on Campesinos Economy and Agroecology in America as a gathering designed to strengthen the movement of campesinos (peasants) fighting for food, water and land sovereignty through agro-ecology, the science behind sustainable agriculture.… Continue Reading
I’ve just been in Uganda in East Africa, a country bordered to the east by Kenya, to the north by South Sudan, to the southwest by Rwanda, to the west by the Democratic Republic of the Congo and to the south by Tanzania.
This is a country that has the distinction of being the world’s second most populous landlocked country after Ethiopia. It is home to a substantial portion of Lake Victoria, one of Africa’s Great Lakes and once thought to be the source of the Nile.… Continue Reading
I’m here in Tanzania to visit women’s groups working on sustainable agriculture and livelihood initiatives. As you may know, Tanzania is a country in East Africa within the Great Lakes region. Bordered by Kenya and Uganda to the north, Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo to the West; Zambia, Malawai and Mozambique to the South and the Indian Ocean to the east. And, always, the view of Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, providing poetic inspiration to Tanzania’s population of some 47 million people.… Continue Reading