Between Darkness and Light

Steve McCurry's Blog

The shadow is that place between darkness and light.

00054_09, Preah Khan, Angkor, Cambodia, 1999, CAMBODIA-10049NF. Shadow Play. Untold_book retouched_Sonny Fabbri 09/08/2015 Preah Khan, Angkor, Cambodia

We find beauty not in the thing itself but in the patterns of shadows,
the light and the darkness, that one thing against another creates…
Were it not for shadows, there would be no beauty.
–  Junichiro Tanizaki

Kampala, Uganda Kampala, Uganda

The loveliest things in life are but shadows, and they come and go, and
change and fade away…”
– Charles Dickens

Angkor Wat, Cambodia Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Angkor Wat, Angkor, Cambodia Angkor Wat, Angkor, Cambodia

Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow.
– T. S. Eliot

Bamiyan Province, Afghanistan Bamiyan Province, Afghanistan

A shadow on the wall
boughs stirred by the noonday wind
that’s enough earth
and for the eye
enough celestial participation.
– Gottfried Benn
Translated from The German by Michael Hofmann

New York City, USA New York City, USA

Afghanistan Afghanistan

I thought the most beautiful thing in the world must be…

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Palestinians: “The Mafia of Destruction”

Question: How do Palestinian patients obtain permits to receive medical treatment in Israeli and other hospitals around the world? Answer: By paying bribes to senior Palestinian officials in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Those who cannot afford to pay the bribes are left to die in under-equipped and understaffed hospitals, especially in the Gaza Strip.

Yet, apparently some Palestinians are more equal than others: Palestinians whose lives are not in danger, but who pretend that they are. These include businessmen, merchants, university students and relatives of senior Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas officials, who receive permits to travel to Israel and other countries under the pretext of medical emergency.

Many Palestinians point a finger at the PA’s Ministry of Health in the West Bank. They argue that senior ministry officials have been abusing their powers, in order to collect bribes both from genuine patients and from other Palestinians who only want medical permits in order to leave the Gaza Strip or the West Bank. Thanks to the corruption, many real patients have been denied the opportunity to receive proper medical care in Israel and other countries.

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Hubris Thy Name is France

Beyond the Cusp

French diplomats told Haaretz, describing the situation after the meeting between French envoy Pierre Vimont and Israeli officials Monday where the Israelis restated their refusal to cooperate with the French peace plans, the French representatives stated, “Envoy Pierre Vimont’s discussion with Israeli government representatives in Jerusalem was sincere and difficult. The negative Israeli response was predictable, and we will take Israel’s position into consideration. However, we plan to carry on promoting our peace initiative.” Apparently the French establishment is determined to pursue their designs on formulating a peace proposal based on the defunct two state solution, which they feel and believe is fair and acceptable to the nations they are able to gather by year’s end even if Israel is not included in the formulation of the solution. Israeli refusal is based on the insistence for direct party to party negotiations to resolve any differences. Since Israel rejected the French…

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Where Does Black Lives Matter’s Anti-Semitism Come From?

The recently published platform of Black Lives Matter (BLM) states that Israel is responsible for “the genocide taking place against the Palestinian people,” and “Israel is an apartheid state … that sanction[s] discrimination against the Palestinian people.” These statements are anti-Semitic not only because they are false and modern versions of tradition anti-Semitic blood libel, but also because BLM selectively chooses the Jewish State out of all the states in the world to demonize. What has inspired BLM to engage in this counter-factual, anti-Semitic rant? BLM has been guided to anti-Semitism by the concept of “intersectionality.”

“Intersectionality” is the idea that all oppressed peoples and categories of people share a position, and by virtue of that fact are potential allies in the struggle against their oppressors.

“Intersectionality” is a concept used to describe the ways in which “oppressive institutions” (racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, xenophobia, classism, etc.) are interconnected and cannot be examined separately from one another. The concept is credited to the legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw, writing in 1989, but it is only in recent years that it has escaped academia and swarmed into the streets.

“Intersectionality” has, however, been extended beyond individuals to types of oppression. The argument, as above, is that all oppressions “interconnected and cannot be examined separately.” Thus, women can never be treated equally or fairly, if blacks face racial prejudice, and the disabled are not given sufficient support to be equal to the abled, and unless the Palestinians are liberated from the Israelis, and the Israelis are liberated from their country, their lives and their home. To make the point, the Israelis are accused of having had a hand, direct or indirect, in the oppression of blacks, women, and the disabled everywhere. So much oppression, intersectionists apparently think, can be traced back to the fraudulent Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and the International Jewish Conspiracy.

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Morning Briefing – The Telegraph

Good morning.

“They will soon be calling me MR. BREXIT!” Donald Trump tweeted back in August. His victory, which he dubbed “Brexit plus plus plus” due to how much it defied the polls, has left the British government scrambling to reach out to his team. Ministers may now have to rely on the services of Britain’s own “Mr Brexit” Nigel Farage, we report, as an unofficial intermediary to build bridges with Team Trump in order to keep the “special relationship” in good shape. “Nobody in the British government has reached out to his campaign, believing as with our referendum that he could not possibly win,” the Ukip leader laments in today’s paper. “The traditional relationship between the British Conservative party and the Republicans has completely broken down.”

Downing Street insists that Farage will not be representing Theresa May in any way, although International Trade Secretary Liam Fox – who is well-connected with the Republicans but has yet to meet Mr Trump – is understood to be planning to speak to Farage beforehand. The Prime Minister has at least managed to speak to him since his victory, although that came after he had spoken to the leaders of at least nine other nations, including Egypt and Turkey

Mrs May is now expected to fly to Washington early next year, while Dr Fox is set to travel there “as soon as possible” in a bid to “engage” with the next President. Boris Johnson, then a new Foreign Secretary, had told his officials three months ago that they must do more to forge links with Trump’s campaign, and now they’re having to make up for lost time. He has also called for an end to the “collective whinge-o-rama” among European politicians about Trump’s win. The EU is certainly feeling the Trump jitters, as Jean-Claude Juncker has warned that the continent cannot rely on America in the long run for security.

The new President’s preparation for taking power continues in the meantime, as he met with Barack Obama yesterday for the first time. “They both looked glum – like they were naughty boys told to make up,” writes Tim Stanley. Their wives also held a meeting. Donald Trump vowed to do “spectacular things” for America and praised Obama for achieving some “great things” (yet on the campaign had repeatedly called him the “worst president in the history of the U.S). Obama wished him well, although the White House later confirmed that he still thought Trump was “uniquely unqualified for office”. He may not have earned Obama’s approval, but he is at least back on Twitter, condemning those protesting against him as “very unfair!”. He also held a meeting with the Republican leadership and said he will move quickly to lower taxes and reform healthcare. Mr Brexit has gone to Washington, and has hit the ground running.