I went on the Majority Report yesterday to discuss Turkey’s renewed military operations against its Kurdish population. Michael Brooks asked me some great questions about why Turkey is attacking the Kurds now, reversing years of rapprochement with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), all while the PKK and its allies are fighting ISIS in Syria and Iraq.
Five years ago today the brilliant and woefully underrated pianist Geoffrey Tozer passed away. Around every time this year I re-read Stuart Rintoul’s heart-rending obituary for Tozer in The Australian.
This was a man who played Bach’s Concerto in F Minor with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra at the age of nine, but who died virtually penniless; a man who played The Yellow River Concerto eight years ago in a televised concert seen by 80 million people in China, but who was not playing in his own country; a man who loved both women and men and yet was tortured by his inability to find an enduring happiness.
As the author of one of the first English-language articles providing in-depth background on the Gezi Resistance movement, I’ve had a lot of friends and colleagues ask me what I’ll be writing for the one year anniversary of Gezi Park’s occupation. It’s tempting to write a grand sweeping analysis about what happened to the movement, where it went wrong, how it still exists today, what strategic gains it made, and so on. In fact there’s a whole genre of such reflections. But I don’t think that is actually the most useful thing I can do right now. [Read more…]