Posted on | februari 5, 2011 | 1 Comment


I was born in Soweto. You might have heard about it. It’s a township in the south of Gauteng. I used live in Dube with my drunkard father, spineless mother and absent brother. Some people think they know the sort of people that live in such townships. They have read about us in their fancy newspapers. They are ostensibly informed. But I can’t imagine that they know who we really are. How could they? They haven’t seen what we’ve seen.

I do miss the outside world. The crisp flippancy of sunny freedom all around you. I never got the chance to appreciate life until I was taken in. Even when I can feel that it’s a beautiful day, it’s never real to me when I’m in here.
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Day of Departure?

Posted on | februari 4, 2011 | No Comments

Is this Friday going to be decisive? That is what the protesters at Midan al-Tahrir are certaintly hoping for. They expect that again thousands will flood the square after the morning prayers and called it the Day of Departure. But the situation is tense and unclear, with barbed wire and makeshift checkpoints around Tahrir to keep attackers out, and an army which the past days occasionaly separated anti- and pro-protesters, but whose overall posture is still unclear.
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It’s time to focus on poor people – not poor countries

Posted on | februari 4, 2011 | No Comments

A better title I can not come up with. I took it directly from one of the two articles I read last weeks which took my attention. Both were published on the PovertyMatters blog – part of the website of the English newspaper Guardian. A very interesting blog I would recommend to anyone with a passion for social change. I especially like the critical view of the blog. With only good intentions you won’t achieve a lot.
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The Netherlands important supplier of Egypt’s arms

Posted on | februari 3, 2011 | 1 Comment

Dutch arms export to Egypt

The authoritarian regime of Mubarak was armed mainly by the US. But also arms sales from the Netherlands are bigger than one would expect. The sale of armoured personnel carriers (a small kind of tanks) during the mid nineties is still one of the biggest sales in the history of Dutch arms.

In 1994 the Netherlands sold 599 YPR-765 and 12 M-577 tracked armoured vehicles. In 2005 a next sale of 431 YPR’s followed. The Dutch government defended this last sale by stating “that since 1994, as far as is known, Egypt used neither military equipment nor the armed forces against civilians.
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Andes Economic Newsletter

Posted on | februari 2, 2011 | No Comments

The fifth edition of the Andes Economic Newsletter from the Royal Dutch Embassies of Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela is released. Topics of conversation: the most important economical developments, tenders, promising sectors and an overview of stocks and activities. The newsletter is in Dutch and can be downloaded HERE.

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