We turned on the TV this morning to hear that the Suez Canal backlog was cleared. After paying the normal $500,000 transit fee per ship, the 400 or so delayed vessels are all plying their trade again. And there, to illustrate the news story, was an aircraft carrier. The USS Dwight D. Eisenhower had also passed through the canal. And typing 400 reminds me that this is journal 400.[Read more…] about Suez Carrier
Straps, Aid, Fragility
The new trading complications for a partitioned island half in the European Union got me thinking about something Peter Frankopan wrote. He opined that ‘US policy … is being developed in response to Chinese and Russian plans, rather than offering an independent and autonomous vision …’ This quote was in The New Silk Roads, in the chapter about roads to future, about Africa, and US policies where US support is described as being matched to US priorities rather than the needs of the supported.[Read more…] about Straps, Aid, Fragility
I forgot the word sahel when I was writing From Memory. It’s the word that describes where I was in Niger. Tim Marshal reminded me that it comes from the Arabic word ‘sahil’ meaning coast. Shorelines are another of the things that depend on your perspective; the sea of Saharan sands has a southern coast. Marshall’s Prisoners of Geography is a great read for an armchair cartographer. Follow it along The New Silk Roads from Peter Frankopan to test if your current physical isolation is more or perhaps less constraining than an asymptomatic educational isolation. I’m not intending to be rude or patronising. Knowing you have limitations wakes you to the possibilities that your awareness of your limits is itself limited. Knowing of such limits may encourage you to explore for new concepts, seek the words to conjure and invoke and animate and debate them. Or cause you to distrust your perception.[Read more…] about Words
Early Detection, Early Response
My friend Peter from FabHappy recently posted to Life in the Right Direction about the TED talk from 2006 by Larry Brilliant. Here at home, we watched the talk earlier and were surprised by much of what we saw. If you’ve not see it and don’t work in the field of global medicine, you will be amazed by the simple message: early detection, early response.
I commented on his post. ‘Cheap air travel may be a thing of the past. Imagine how Europe would cope if just 1% of the people living in China and India decided to take a European package holiday in 2021. Tourism may be the biggest class of business casualty.’ Maybe. Maybe not. It’s a possible consequence we’ve been discussing here at home, on sundowner social video calls with friends and family we’ve not otherwise seen for last the 29 days of curfew. Changes to global tourism was something Peter Frankopan mentioned in The New Silk Road (2018), the arrival of newly wealthy middle class tourists from Asia – that was before Covid.[Read more…] about Early Detection, Early Response