POWER: According to Hannah Arendt, the use of violence, weapons and bombs renders us politically speechless. Can her particular analyzes of power teach us anything about the violence that is being carried out from and in Gaza today?
MODERN TIMES CONVERSATIONS: We talk to the former Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn, the man who could have become Prime Minister of Great Britain, about current issues – such as military rearmament, Ukraine, Israel, climate justice and work, security, democracy, citizens' councils, and not least a hope for the future.
ISRAEL/UKRAINA: Support for arms to Ukraine and support for Israel are connected. Everyone who in various ways supports the Western expansion plan with support for Ukraine in the ongoing war, in practice supports the Western hegemony plans, which enable Israel's genocide.
VIOLENCE: If 'feminicide' has not yet established itself as a term in Norway, it is on its way into our language. It simply means femicide, but is often linked to the spouse, partner or a family member. Last year, 90 women were victims of femminicide in Italy, which places the country in third place in Europe.
GAZA: Sheikh Jarrah describes how the Israeli authorities subsequently sought to silence the journalists. Here is a current book – in connection with the murdered journalists in Gaza. The democratic function of the media is not always so democratic.
PEACE WORK: There is something vaguely medieval in the narrative of the media, politicians and gun fetishists today. That is why it is refreshing to read the chapter "NATO – out of date" in the book Fredskultur. Or how about Costa Rica: "We have no enemies and we don't need an army!"
ARMS: There are a number of developments in the three oil states of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar, which Jean-Loup Samaan researches in his latest book. These are the three oil states that account for 17 percent of all arms purchases worldwide. Saudi Arabia's desire to become a nuclear power in order to stand up to Iran.
REFUGEES: Every single day, people set out from Turkey to Greece, from Lebanon to Italy, from Morocco to Spain, from Libya to Malta and from Tunisia to Lampedusa. Never before have there been so many people on the run as there are right now. Journalist Sally Hayden gives testimony about the people the world has turned its back on.
HISTORY: Terje Tvedt breaks some research norms by seeing the water wheel to a greater degree than the steam engine as the real driving force behind the industrial revolution. It's about water, not cultural superiority.
PASOLINI: The apostle Paul shows the revolutionary power of fighting for a cause that defies the usual way of life. Paul becomes the symbol of creating a new reality and defeating hegemonic power. But can we imagine that there is a Paul in today's Israel?
PHOTO ART: The lonely person is a prerequisite for the expressive world artist who came to the fore with Edvard Munch in the 1890s. A new biography is now available: According to de Figueiredo, the frivolous reality the bohemians in Kristiania clamored for in the 1880s came to fruition in 1890s Berlin, where Munch was part of a milieu that had conversations about "naturalism and socialism, decadence and Darwinism and psychology – as well as an ever-so-small dose of Satanism”.
HAMAS: Leila Seurat provides a good basis for understanding what went terribly wrong on October 7, when Hamas made a drastic change of course. The purpose of it all was to get the Palestinian cause back on the global agenda, and it has largely succeeded.
OCCUPATION: EU parliamentarian and former trade union leader Marianne Vind has written about the problems on the European labor market in the 21st century. It could have been an important book. It just isn't.
ECOLOGY: Henry David Thoreau provides the recipe for a wandering life in balance with nature, but arguably also for a leisurely life in balance with oneself. He can be said to be more relevant than ever.
MUSICAL LIFE: With The Use of the Bodies and What is Philosophy?, Giorgio Agamben returns to his early main interest before the first homo sacer book – namely to being, to language, to thought and the blissful life. It is also about where you are – where you simultaneously discover life (ontology) and how life could be (politics, the happy life).
AVANTGARDE: The program of the avant-garde was often about 'wild socialism' – the socialism that was critical of the Soviet Union. Aesthetically pleasing is that they uncompromisingly challenged our idea of success.
NEDVEKST: The Japanese re-reading of Marx advocates green communism or degrowth. The historical overview is impressive, and the analyzes are inspiring. Will a socialist or communist society necessarily be better, ecologically speaking? And should use value now come into play instead of exchange value?
ECONOMY: The conflict between the United States and China is a confrontation between the divergent political-economic models of Chinese industrialism and American fiscal policy. But China has charted its own course and avoided neoliberal shock therapy, according to American economist Michael Hudson.
CHINA: How much do we know about what the Chinese themselves think and say? In China, the transformation process from a traditional empire to a modern state has included the amalgamation of 56 ethnic groups. This anthology has a number of themes from China itself.
RUSSOPHOBIA: Russophobia has cost hundreds of thousands of lives – not because you are afraid of the Russians, but because you need enemy images. Did the USA/NATO have a carefully planned and announced provocation intended to provoke reactions from Russia?
KENNEDY: 60 years after JFK was killed, despite the Biden administration's attempts to renege on its administration's promises, some of the remaining secret documents about the incident are being released. One of the revelations is that the CIA kept an eye on Lee Harvey Oswald.
NATO ENLARGEMENT: The exclusion of Russia was a serious violation of international law. President Bush's promises to Gorbachev were nothing but deception – he appeared as a two-faced Janus, working closely with Gorbachev on a tactical level, while actually forcing the Soviet Union to retreat on a strategic level. We in the West claim that Russia must follow international law, but we ourselves can break it when it suits us.
KENNEDY: He said in his speech in 1963: "Where ignorance too often abounds and truth too seldom prevails, the most important subject we have is: world peace." Was it possible, as he said, "to create conditions so that weapons can finally be abolished"? According to Kennedy, the struggle for disarmament had been a matter for US governments since the 1920s. This has not been the case for very many of his successors.
UNITED NATIONS: MODERN TIMES prints here Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's speech to the UN Security Council in New York on 20 September 2023. He emphasizes that the UN Charter is the cornerstone of today's international legislation – which has not been followed in terms of peace and security in Ukraine. Lavrov also points out that the Ukrainian constitution states that the state is obliged to respect the Russians and other ethnic minorities. In Lavrov's view, it is the Western countries that do not want to overcome the deep crisis that has arisen in international relations. Here you have the opportunity to (and with ORIENTERINGs several articles) to read and evaluate yourself.
PROPAGANDA: Glenn Diesen has undertaken a comprehensive academic analysis of 'Russophobia' which we get a small glimpse into with this introductory chapter from his book Russiophobia: Propaganda in International Politics (2022). The West's relationship with this world's largest country is characterized by a mixture of fear and the teacher's superiority.
WOKE: The crime community is pushing people over to the right, which is growing because people feel alienated by woke and identity politics. Moreover, the left has become more interested in monitoring each other than forming a common front against the right. Is solidarity and compassion for the suffering of others a limited resource?
THE SHORT FILM FESTIVAL IN OBERHAUSEN: 'Machinima' – films made through computer games – reflect and illuminate the digital worlds we are moving ever further into. It is also reasonable to believe that artificial intelligence will make a significant impact on this field in the future.
MODERN TIMES CONVERSATIONS: This time we met a fearless activist and anarchist. After a long life, he summarized a thoughtfulness in the areas of anarchism, minorities, fear/violence – and love. Audun Engh was ill when the conversation took place, and died a few months later.
RECONSTRUCTION: What are the prerequisites for rebuilding better in a way that strengthens Ukraine's ownership of its own development? Is democracy both the means and the end? What can the international community contribute? We have asked six players.
50 YEARS AGO: Why has the Middle East been a powder keg for 25 years? What is the background for the irreconcilable attitude between Israel and the Arab states? And what happened to the Palestinian Arabs when the state of Israel was established?
PEACE PRIZE: MODERN TIMES has chosen to reprint this article about the Nobel Peace Prize from ORINTERING 50 years ago. There are 351 candidates nominated this year, of which Jens Stoltenberg (with 'weapons for peace') and Volodymyr Zelenskyj have been proposed for this award. Former laureate Carl von Ossietzky was one of German militarism's most uncompromising opponents. Here we see how the Norwegian right-wing press reacted to this.
Full 100-page MODERN TIMES including the appendix Orientering and Modern Times Review comes out quarterly in early March, June, September and December) with international book reviews (non-fiction) and comments / essays. According to the physical newspaper (and PDF), the articles are published regularly online (see the newsletters).