Bloody Red Cross

When the Kenyan Red Cross demands military action, you know the world has changed. It’s been a rough week for the purveyor of humanitarian relief. First there was the kerfuffle in The Ukraine where Vladimir told the white crosses to move it or lose it. Then yesterday a Red Cross ambulance in northern Kenya was [...]

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Labor Day

Today is the Labor Day holiday in the United States. America’s May Day. Labor Day is traditionally the end of summer when friends and family gather for the last summer barbecue. It vies with Christmas and New Years to be the least worked day of the U.S. year. Vacations end, schools reopen, the fall sports [...]

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Kill Mom, Sell the Baby

Chimps are not as endangered as gorillas, but they are increasingly controversial in developing Africa because they are so human-like. Most westerners think of chimpanzees as sort of smart dogs. Well, only if the dog is as big as you! That’s right, a full grown chimp averages 5½’ tall and weighs 150 pounds. This is [...]

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Immoral Exaggeration

Americans do not understand the ebola epidemic: They are reacting in the same unthoughtful way they do to unvetted political ads and sound bite media. The ebola outbreak in West Africa is serious, like a lot of other things, like poverty. In fact, diarrhea, flu and TB kill millions more Africans (and Americans!) annually. Americans [...]

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Pitiful Pitbull

Heads of State get into all kinds of trouble, from romantic to fiscal, and many then come toppling down. Jacob Zuma of South Africa is different. Nearly seven years have past since then as deputy president Zuma replaced an equally quixotic president, Thabo Mbeki. Mbeki followed Mandela and all three were close confidants and collaborators [...]

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Caring or Counting?

The ongoing battle to “list lions” as an endangered species is heating up: notably NatGeo in an embarrassing flip-flop and FWS cowering in the shadows. A year ago the conservation world was rattled when America’s Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) agreed to consider whether the African lion should be placed on America’s Endangered Species List. [...]

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Wheel From Wheel

Africa is fraught with innovation and in Ethiopia kids have reinvented the wheel! Development is happening so fast, today, in Africa that the end points and beginning points are stretching further and further apart. The dynamic is as true of wealth and poverty as it is of physical things … like cars and bikes. Ethiopia [...]

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Something To Hide?

Like few other American news stories the Ferguson unrest is widely reported in the African media. Analysts and reporters alike are essentially claiming that America is “like the pot calling the kettle black.” It’s hard to dispute. But the killing of Michael Brown will ultimately be judged excessive use of police force, and in my [...]

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Born Free

“Born Free” is an African expression that resonates with Americans as none other, and today is the 15th anniversary of the death of the man who coined it, George Adamson. “Born Free” was the name of the first book written by George and Joy Adamson about their orphaned lions in a part of Kenya that [...]

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Do We Bomb Kenya?

Jim Heck’s new novel, Chasm Gorge, will soon be available for purchase in all formats through sellers like Amazon and book stores across the country. Watch this space for free excerpts available prior to publication in September. Ohio congressman Brad Talvich is set to become the next president of the United States. As a former [...]

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How Much for 100 Million Years?

It chirps. And it doesn’t bite and it’s not toxic. It rolls up into a ball before chirping and it’s found only in about 250 acres of forest and nowhere else on earth. Would you set aside a small swath of natural forest to protect this millipede? Or would you allow some important mining to [...]

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The War Comes Home

With the Kenyan military vehemently dening it, many local residents report that Kenyan military aircraft dropped bombs in mainland forests near Lamu last Sunday. There were similar reports about a month ago. In late June militants attacked two coastal villages on the mainland opposite Lamu, massacred almost 100 people, stole stores of corn and other [...]

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Massive Rhino Relocation

“Hundreds” of rhino will be relocated from South Africa’s landmark Kruger national park in the continuing struggle against poaching. The announcement was made this morning by South Africa’s minister of tourism and wildlife. It will be one of the largest relocation of wild animals ever attempted. The park, which is the size of New Jersey, [...]

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Dumb Historians

Erbil is not Rwanda. Supporters of the U.S. air attacks in northern Iraq spent the weekend invoking the mistake the U.S. made in 1994 in Rwanda as a reason why we should restart the military campaign in Iraq. They obviously don’t know the history. Prior to the Rwandan genocide, the United Nations Security Council empowered [...]

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All’s Well That Ends

Here’s something profoundly light and happy. Contradiction? Try it out for your Friday. This is what happens when a generation of war ends. With all the turmoil going on today in the Mideast to Iraq and Ukraine, it may be hard to fast forward your interest to when it’s all over. But I think that’s [...]

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