Tag Archives: Libya

Is Muammar Gaddafi Darth Vader?

Gaby Chavez ’13 invites you to attend an unconventionally edifying and refreshing presentation on Middle Eastern politics:

Is Muammar Gaddafi Darth Vader? How Star Wars Explains the Arab World — a talk given by Haroon Moghul. Currently the Executive Director of The Maydan Institute, Moghul served as Director of Public Relations at the Islamic Center at New York University  from 2007 to 2009. He holds an M.A. in Middle East and South Asian Studies from Columbia University, where he is currently a Ph.D. candidate. Mr. Moghul graduated from NYU in 2002 with a B.A. in Middle Eastern Studies and Philosophy, and a minor in Arabic. He has also studied Persian, Punjabi, Hindi and Urdu. He was nominated for the 2009 Presidential Award for Best Teaching by a Graduate Student at Columbia University.

Chicken shawarmas will be served!

  • Date:   April 28 – April 28
  • Time:   6:00 PM – 7:30 PM
  • Place:  PAC 002
  • Cost:   $no dollaz

Junger Pays Tribute to Fallen Colleague


Junger (left), and Hetherington (right)

Many of you will know Sebastian Junger ’84 as the author of The Perfect Storm and War, and as half of the directing duo behind the visionary war documentary “Restrepo”. Junger’s partner in that endeavor, the photojournalist Tim Hetherington, boasted an equally decorated and prolific career in conflict journalism until his death this past Wednesday. Hetherington and fellow photographer Chris Hondros were killed in a firefight in Misrata, Libya, after being struck by shrapnel from a rocket-propelled grenade.

Junger recently composed a heartfelt letter to his late friend and collaborator, to be released in an upcoming issue of Vanity Fair, where he is a contributing editor. You can scope it here (or check out this vid from ABC); under the yawning pressure of final papers and exams, it might behoove us to reflect on the magnitude of the sacrifice required of those who aspire to the realization of something greater than themselves.

Govt. Profs Rutland, Chenoweth on NYT

So this whole Revolution in the Middle East thing is shaping up to be not only a boon to liberal democracy (probably, hopefully, maybe?), but to publicity for good ol’ Wes as well.

Russia expert and Putin-meme connoisseur Peter Rutland (pictured on the right) has an op-ed up in the New York Times presenting the case of why what happened in Egypt and Tunisia will probably not happen in big, fluffy China. His op-ed was written in collaboration with one Orion Lewis, who – aside from having the first name I have now decided to bestow upon my firstborn – is a Government postdoctoral research associate here at Wesleyan. He co-coordinates the Program on Terrorism and Insurgency Research (PTIR), which as I talked about in an earlier post was started up by Govt. Prof. Erica Chenoweth back in 2008.

You can go clicky-clicky on the op-ed here.

Speaking of Prof. Chenoweth, she also has an op-ed up in NYT entitled “Give Peaceful Resistance a Chance,” which provides evidence that nonviolent uprisings actually succeed more often than violent uprisings, even against bat-shit-crazy regimes (see Mumu Gaddafi). She even preempts counterarguments by publishing counter-counterarguments on her personal website, which is pretty damn badass. As you can probably tell by now, I’m something of a Chenoweth fan-boy, and if such bad-assery doesn’t justify my fanboy-dom, I don’t know what kind of bad-assery will.

You can go to that one here, with the counter-counterarguments here.

[Thanks to Shoutbox Poster for the tip!]

I hope you guys are enjoying the break, because I’m here on campus enjoying the cold, cold weather.