Leader of the 1968 Student Revolt and radical Green MEP Daniel Cohn-Bendit on his idea of Europe

MEP Daniel Cohn-Bendit, prominent leader of the student revolts which erupted throughout Europe in 1968, came to Kings College London on 28th February to give a talk on where the EU should be headed in these equally turbulent times. Originally nicknamed ‘Danny the Red’ for his outspoken anarchist views, Cohn-Bendit became known as ‘Danny the Green’ when he joined the environmentalist movement during the 1980s. He is now co-president of the European Greens–European Free Alliance in the European Parliament, and has become known for his fiery wit, idealism and willingness to challenge the status quo. Continue reading

What next in Syria?

The deaths of two Western journalists in Homs on Wednesday 22nd February appear to have been a critical turning point in the Syrian conflict. The Assad regime’s continuing refusal to halt its relentless shelling of the city are now leading to growing clamours for intervention in the Western media, and US and EU leaders have unanimously called for action. As every day brings yet more civilian deaths, and the specific targeting of reporters stokes fears that an imminent massacre is being planned, the pressure to act is rapidly growing. Continue reading

ACTA Protests: “Government of the People, by the Lobby Groups, for the Corporations”

European officials probably thought that no-one would take much notice when they signed the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) on 26th January, on behalf of the EU and 22 of its member-states. Two weeks later, mass protests erupted in cities all across Europe against the controversial treaty, criticising the secretive nature in which it was negotiated and claiming it will lead to a significant curtailing of internet freedom. Continue reading

Crime, transport and the battle for London Mayor

Just six months ago today London was emerging from its third night of rioting, with a semblance of order only just beginning to take hold as a massive police presence descended on the city. The fear in the streets was palpable. We had been given a brief and terrifying glimpse of what sheer anarchy looked like, the rage and shameless opportunism of London’s marginalised youth provoking deep existential questions about what was wrong with our society.

Yet, as the contest for London Mayor begins to build up momentum, Ken and Boris’ campaigns continue to revolve around the same old topic of public transport, ignoring the deeper societal issues at stake Continue reading

China, the EU and the new race for Africa

In Luanda, the capital of Angola, Chinese construction workers are relentlessly putting up another skyscraper, one of many which have been popping up like mushrooms all over the city over the past few years. Back in 2002, this was a barren, impoverished place, ravaged by decades of civil war. Now it is the centre of one of the fastest growing economies on the planet, with new infrastructure and construction projects rapidly transforming the face of the country. Continue reading