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2020-08-15 08:58:21
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Live Stream Flint Water Crisis Congressional Hearings, Bus Trip, Rally   

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This morning at 9am (EST) the first congressional hearing will be held in Washington DC by the U.S. House Oversight Committee on the Flint Water Crisis. The session will be live streamed on YouTube that will include a message board for audience commentary. Last night, I live streamed a series of interview sessions with Melissa Mays,

          

Leaving Town (not for good, no worries)   

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KDE Project:

This morning, I went to Tegel Airport by bus. On one hand, this is becoming a routine fast. On the other, it is always enjoyable, because I love the city in the early morning light. The bus (TXL) goes past the Reichstag building and the brand-new Hauptbahnhof (central station). What struck me is the new, open culture when it comes to integrating the government buildings into the city never, a fact that never appeared to me earlier. When I first came to Washington DC, I was amazed at how the Washingtonians played baseball and flew kites right in front of the capitol. I admired the Americans for their openess. Today, there are bars and restaurants at the river Spree located right within sight of the big wigs. How is this for a change in political culture? And yes, you can have a beer outside in the sun and enjoy the view (this is Germany, remember, no brown bags required).

Other than that, I am looking forward to spending next weekend in NYC. New York and Berlin both have very similar appeal to me, being vibrant, diverse cities. And maybe the folks from big apple learn how to make delicious Döner Kebap during the soccer championship, that would be a great success.


          

SAA 2018 – Washington D.C.   

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To the surprise of absolutely no one, I’ve just returned to Cambridge from a recent bout of travel, this time to Washington DC for the Society for American Archaeology meetings. This was an unusual conference for me. I’m slowly transitioning … Continue reading

          

FT/PT Veterinarian for Small Animal Practice in Berks County, PA | Willow Creek Veterinary Center, LLC   

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Reading, Pennsylvania, Are you looking for a better Work-Life Balance?  Consider joining our 5 and ½ doctor team at Willow Creek Veterinary Center where we strive to balance quality of life with practicing quality medicine! We are looking for a Full Time or Part Time veterinarian.  WCVC, a privately-owned practice, has been operating since 1978 and we pride ourselves on providing excellent veterinary care in a compassionate and non-dysfunctional, family-like environment. We are located in Berks County, a quiet, rural area with many hiking, hunting, fishing, riding, and camping opportunities nearby. Locally, many shopping centers, theatres, museums, fine dining and family restaurants, breweries, wineries, and distilleries are waiting to be explored. All of this coupled with our great school system makes it an ideal place to raise children while keeping your sanity! With our central location, you can be in downtown Philadelphia in ninety minutes or be standing in Times Square, New York City or Washington DC in less than three hours.  Our clinic is equipped with a full in-house Idexx diagnostic lab with dedicated lab technicians who provide same-day results. We also have digital radiography including dental, ultrasound, a full surgical suite with monitoring equipment, central sterile autoclave and gas sterilization capabilities, a fully equipped rehabilitation room with underwater treadmill and therapeutic lasers. Our doctors are encouraged to explore veterinary interests and because of this we are able to offer acupuncture and holistic medicine with one of our doctors, rehabilitation and laser therapy through our Dogs Back In Motion program, and poultry and pig medicine with our other associates!  Willow Creek Veterinary Center offers competitive compensation with great benefits, including medical insurance, matching IRA, a generous CE allowance, license and professional dues, and personal pet care.  We are also offering a hiring bonus/relocation benefit for a well-qualified candidate. New graduates are welcome to apply. We would love to have someone who has a special interest in dentistry, surgery, rehab, or orthopedics. So, come join our team in an excellent work environment with amazing certified support staff, and mentoring doctors who provide a team approach to patient care. Find your niche in the wonderful field of veterinary medicine with our practice. We have a 4-day work week with rotating on-call coverage shared between 5 doctors. On call duties are not overwhelming as we have a fully staffed overnight emergency center nearby to refer intensive cases to. Our schedule is flexible, and we prioritize family needs and vacations! Active Pennsylvania Veterinary License required. A doctorate degree allowing the applicant to practice veterinary medicine. A valid Pennsylvania Veterinary License. Interest in surgery, dentistry, rehab or orthopedics is encouraged.  

          

Veterinarian - We’re in the business of happy vets. Not burnout. | IndeVets   

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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, IndeVets was built to return balance, fulfillment, and joy to veterinary medicine. First, we start by finding great doctors and treating them well. We give them scheduling control, compensate them well, and provide highly desirable benefits. Second, we partner with top tier veterinary practices to solve their staffing challenges. We give them access to our highly qualified vets and make it simple for them to fill their immediate, short- and long-term needs. Apply to join Independent Vets and you will be empowered to gain control of your career and your time. Work with a team of fun, highly competent veterinarians that support each other in their own growth and development, while feeling truly valued in the workplace. We call it "Work-Life-Harmony". Our active regions include: New York/New Jersey and the Tristate area (includes Long Island, Westchester, Hudson Valley, Northern & Central NJ, Southern CT, and the 5 boroughs of NYC) Philadelphia and its surrounding counties (includes Harrisburg, Lancaster, Lehigh Valley, Delaware, and Southern NJ) Baltimore/Annapolis and its surrounding counties Washington DC & Northern Virginia Tampa/Orlando Atlanta Coming soon to new areas... Choose shifts from any of our 400+ partner hospitals - small private practices, large corporate practices, shelters and ER hospitals - and customize your work schedule to suit your unique needs. Most importantly, choose when you want time off - no questions asked.   We are a company driven by and for veterinarians who strive to create happier and healthier doctors and workplaces. We’ve been in your shoes. Our management team is compromised of vets and associates who know this world, and want to make it better.  If you are interested in learning how to join us in our mission to elevate and empower the veterinary community, and you’ll be living near our active regions, please fill out the form below and upload your most up-to-date resume.  Our full-time and part-time positions both receive benefits, which include: Health insurance Vision insurance Dental insurance Unlimited Vacation - never ask for permission Paid Time Off Continuing Education allowance (includes additional PTO) 401k with match Malpractice/liability Insurance Short-term and long-term disability Reimbursement for state license and AVMA membership Equity ownership plan available after 1 year (profit sharing!)   Visit our website for more details: www.independentvets.us   About  IndeVets : Independent Vets is a Philadelphia-based veterinarian staffing company that is elevating the animal health services market by providing new solutions that allow veterinarians to take back control of their schedules and lives, while helping animal hospitals finally solve their staffing challenges with "highly competent, nice doctors".   Requirements: Minimum 2 years of post-DVM/VMD work experience required. Internship training is a plus. Active veterinary license required in one of the following states -- PA, NY, NJ, MD, DE, VA, DC, FL, GA, TX, -- or the ability to get licensed in those states with our support.

          

Associate Veterinarian for Edelson Equine | Edelson Equine Associates   

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Manheim, Pennsylvania, Busy exclusively equine practice has an immediate need for an equine ambulatory associate for our growing practice. Currently seeking a highly motivated associate committed to providing high-quality veterinary care in a team-oriented environment. Workload consists of routine wellness and dentistry, vaccinations, health certificates, PPE, lameness, reproduction and neonatal care, no racetrack work. Our clientele is mainly back yard horses and smaller circuit show horses. Emergency and on-call services currently split among two doctors evenly with many referral practices nearby. New associate provided with office support staff, answering service after hours, cell phone, computerized medical records and billing, fully stocked vehicle, have access to a veterinary technician, and access to the latest in technology including: wireless DR, ultrasound, therapeutic laser, thermography, 1M 1.5M and 3 M video endoscopes, power float, in house laboratory with culture and sensitivity, CBC, Chem, Fib, SAA with large ability to send out for additional testing. Newly renovated haul-in facility with stocks and stabling.   Position is full time, but part time or relief work would be considered. We are currently in need of a self-confident, independent veterinarian with a serious interest in reproduction and foal care, or a strong desire to be mentored and gain competency in that area. Position requires PA license or ability to acquire and federal accreditation. Located in beautiful south-central PA, four distinct seasons, 45 min outside the state capitol of Harrisburg, 20 min from Lancaster. We offer rural living with easy access to larger cities and airports for shopping, travel, culture, major sports teams, and entertainment (Philadelphia, Baltimore, NYC, Washington DC). Locally grown food, wine, distilleries and many restaurants. A large variety of outdoor activities are supported in the area; hiking, fishing, boating, bike trials, camping, skiing, snowmobile, RV, and horse showing/trail riding facilities are close by. Competitive base salary with production bonus paid monthly based on experience, 401K with match, medical benefits, paid state licensing, paid membership to AVMA and AAEP, large CE stipend yearly, professional liability, disability, emergency incentive and vacation time.  visit our website at  https://Model.blue/splash/pLdnaLw3jRlMA5qIWpl2akiykj1ncBOIkclFQZsZzeDNDV95pB2G9jI0IAi_SLASH_G8cjkirgdWBEmQgypS2FthTgvKyD3UBvgbsUPwmFYs0wGQ8_EQUALS  or facebook page   Internship or previous experience preferred, but energetic new graduates are welcome to apply!  Please send your resume to  edelson@dejazzd.com  to learn more about this amazing opportunity. Position requires PA license or ability to acquire and federal accreditation. base salary with monthly production bonus

          

FT Veterinarian: Signing Bonus | Marshall Veterinary Clinic   

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Marshall, Virginia, Full - Time Veterinarian:  Signing Bonus + DC Access Washington DC Bedroom Community! Signing bonus to join a well-established, privately owned veterinary practice in Marshall, Virginia. Since 1982, Marshall Veterinary Clinic has served the local communities of Fauquier, Prince William and Loudoun counties with exceptional patient care and outstanding customer service.  Walk in our doors and you will feel the difference! Our 2.5 DVM practice is 95% small animal with an occasional chicken or pocket pet. We have the perfect combination of country charm & cutting edge technology: new Smart DR system, new LOGIQ V5 ultrasound, Progeny dental DR, new Midmark ultrasonic dental unit, Cutting Edge Class IV laser, in-house and contracted lab services, stocked pharmacy, and much more. Drive less than an hour to reach Washington DC and less than 22 miles to reach Shenandoah National Park. Our location offers incredible access to some of the best outdoor recreation, sporting, music and theatrical events, restaurants, shopping, and museums that our country has to offer! What are our skills and basic qualification requirements? Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) or equivalent from an accredited university Virginia DVM License in good standing Prefer 2 years relevant veterinary experience including surgery and dentistry, the right new graduate will also be considered What are we looking for in the ideal candidate? Energetic, positive team player who has a great work ethic, integrity, a love for animals and veterinary medicine, and is adaptable to whatever the day may be bring What can we offer you? Ownership’s complete focus on the quality of your work-life balance A unique schedule that provides three day weekends, twice per month with rotating 25 to 30 scheduled work hour weeks. No-On Call Hours. Veterinary medicine free from the dictates of management, medical directors or corporations centered in a collaborative hospital culture The opportunity to work with a well-seasoned, drama-free team that is like minded in regards to standards of care, work ethic, practice values and attitude Competitive salary and benefits package including health insurance, license and association fees, malpractice and liability insurance, access to VIN, CE allowance, scrubs, paid time off (PT0), and personal pet care benefits. Salary and benefits will be negotiable based on applicants needs and experience. Advancement and buy-in opportunities for the right candidate   Are you caring and compassionate? Do you meet or exceed or requirements? We look forward to hearing from you! For more information or to apply for this position, please send resumes to the attention of Laura. Marshall Veterinary Clinic is both a drug-free work place and an

          

FT Veterinarian for Small Animal Practice in Berks County, PA | Willow Creek Veterinary Center   

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Reading, Pennsylvania, Are you looking for a better Work-Life Balance?  Consider joining our 5 doctor team at Willow Creek Veterinary Center where we strive to balance quality of life with practicing quality medicine! We are looking for a Full Time or Part Time veterinarian.  WCVC, a privately-owned practice, has been operating since 1974 and we pride ourselves on providing excellent veterinary care in a compassionate and family-like environment. We are located in Berks County, a quiet, rural area with many hiking, hunting, fishing, riding, and camping opportunities nearby. Locally, many shopping centers, theatres, museums, fine dining and family restaurants, breweries, wineries, and distilleries are waiting to be explored. All of this coupled with our great school system makes it an ideal place to raise children while keeping your sanity! With our central location, you can be in downtown Philadelphia in ninety minutes or be standing in Times Square, New York City or Washington DC in less than three hours. Our clinic is equipped with a full in-house Idexx diagnostic lab with dedicated lab technicians who provide same-day results. We also have digital radiography including dental, ultrasound, a full surgical suite with monitoring equipment, central sterile autoclave and gas sterilization capabilities, a fully equipped rehabilitation room with underwater treadmill and therapeutic lasers. Our doctors are encouraged to explore veterinary interests and because of this we are able to offer acupuncture and holistic medicine with one of our doctors, rehabilitation and laser therapy through our Dogs Back In Motion program, and poultry and pig medicine with our other associates!  Willow Creek Veterinary Center offers competitive compensation with great benefits, including medical insurance, matching IRA, a generous CE allowance, license and professional dues, and personal pet care.  We are also offering a hiring bonus/relocation benefit for a well-qualified candidate. New graduates are welcome to apply. We would love to have someone who has a special interest in dentistry, surgery, rehab, or orthopedics. So, come join our drama free team in an excellent work environment with amazing certified support staff, and mentoring doctors who provide a team approach to patient care. Find your niche in the wonderful field of veterinary medicine with our practice. We have a 4-day work week with rotating on call coverage shared between 5 doctors. On call duties are not overwhelming as we have a fully staffed overnight emergency center nearby to refer intensive cases to. Our schedule is flexible, and we prioritize family needs and vacations!   Active Pennsylvania Veterinary License required. Competitive salary with excellent benefits package for full-time employment includes health insurance, matching Simple IRA, CE allowance, licensing and professional dues. Are you looking for a better work life balance? Consider joining our 5-doctor team at Willow Creek Veterinary Center (WCVC) where we strive to balance quality of life with practicing quality medicine! We are looking for a full- or part-time veterinarian. WCVC, a privately owned practice, has been operating since 1974 and we pride ourselves on providing excellent veterinary care in a compassionate and non-dysfunctional, family like environment. We are located in Berks County, a quiet, rural area with many hiking, hunting, fishing, riding and camping opportunities nearby. Locally, many shopping centers, theatres, museums, fine dining and family restaurants, breweries, wineries and distilleries are waiting to be explored. All of this coupled with our great school system makes it an ideal place to raise children while keeping your sanity! With our central location, you can be in downtown Philadelphia in 90 minutes or be standing in Times Square, New York City or Washington, DC in less than 3 hours. Our clinic is equipped with a full in-house Idexx diagnostic lab with dedicated lab technicians who provide same-day results. We also have digital radiography including dental, ultrasound, a full surgical suite with monitoring equipment, central sterile autoclave and gas sterilization capabilities, a fully equipped rehabilitation room with underwater treadmill and therapeutic lasers. Our doctors are encouraged to explore veterinary interests and because of this we are able to offer acupuncture and holistic medicine with one of our doctors, rehabilitation and laser therapy through our Dogs Back In Motion program and poultry and pig medicine with our other associates! Willow Creek Veterinary Center offers competitive compensation with great benefits, including medical insurance, matching IRA, a generous CE allowance, license and professional dues and personal pet care. We are also offering a hiring bonus/relocation benefit for a well-qualified candidate. New graduates are welcome to apply. We would love to have someone who has a special interest in dentistry, surgery, rehab or orthopedics. So, come join our team in an excellent work environment with amazing certified support staff and mentoring doctors who provide a team approach to patient care. Find your niche in the wonderful field of veterinary medicine with our practice. We have a 4-day workweek with rotating on-call coverage shared between 5 doctors. On-call duties are not overwhelming as we have a fully staffed overnight emergency center nearby to refer intensive cases to. Our schedule is flexible and we prioritize family needs and vacations! Active Pennsylvania Veterinary License required. Email carol.simon@willowcreekvc.com.

          

Associate Veterinarian opening in York, PA (Mentorship available) | Leader Heights Animal Hospital   

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York, Pennsylvania, Associate Veterinarian opening in the heart of South Central Pennsylvania The Opportunity Leader Heights Animal Hospital located in York, the heart of South Central Pennsylvania is hiring a passionate and self-motivated Associate Veterinarian to join their growing practice. As the Associate DVM at Leader Heights Animal Hospital you will have the opportunity to enjoy a 4-day work week, with Sundays off and every other Saturday (until noon). Leader Heights is most proud of their commitment to a work-life balance, by allowing doctors to make their own schedules and respecting what areas of medicine the doctors are most interested in practicing. The Hospital Founded in 1976 Leader Heights Animal Hospital is spacious and modernly equipped .  They are a progressive practice offering a full scope of small animal veterinary medicine. Our highly trained and professional staff provide services ranging from annual wellness exams and dental care to a full spectrum of laboratory testing, imaging and surgical procedures, as well as in-house and online pharmacy options. The building currently consists of two waiting rooms, one spacious room and one more private room, a three room, two-table surgery suite with separate prep and wash rooms and a brand new kennel area. Beginning this month, the practice will undergo a remodel to add two brand new dental tables, three addition exam rooms and a large treatment area and updated décor. Additionally, doctors at the practice have their own offices and a private bathroom with shower. Deeply involved in the Community-   When you join this family-oriented practice you will be welcomed by a tenured staff and embraced by the local community. Leader Heights has been a staple in the community for over 30 years. Additionally, many of the staff has been with the practice 15+ years, creating strong ties and establishing trust with the longstanding clients and pets they serve. Leader Heights also serves the police canines in the area. They handle their medical treatment, nail trims, food and are involved with their fundraising events. Additionally, the practice serves several rescues, offering discounted spay and neuter services, often resulting in referrals. Leader Heights serves as the preferred hospital to a local boarding resort and assists in any urgent needs. The practice does not have on call or emergency hours, but are close in proximity to numerous specialty offices, a dental center for referrals and a 24-hour ER, which allows the team to remain close with their cases while still offering a full range of services. The Impact Grow our reach as a practice – As a versatile and open-minded practice, Leader Heights is open to all types of medicine. Whether you are a doctor wanting to take general medicine appointments, someone interested in surgery, dentistry or bringing a new area of care to the practice Leader Heights encourages this and will support you! The Area Leader Heights Animal Hospital is located in York, Pennsylvania. The town is filled with and surrounded by rich history; the perfect area for someone looking to escape the hustle and congestion of a big city, while still being less than a 2-hour drive from historical cities such as Philadelphia, Washington DC, Harrisburg, Hershey and Baltimore. The area boasts an affordable cost of living, an excellent school system in the Dallastown district and in near York College. The hospital is located directly off of the interstate for easy access and surrounded by beautiful landscape making York county a great place for a relaxing and picturesque drive with the family. Benefits: Highly competitive base salary Health, dental and vision Life Insurance, Short term/Long Term Disability 100% paid liability insurance 401 (K) plan Vacation, sick days CE days and allowance Paid State License and DEA

          

Veterinarian | Creatures Great and Small Veterinary Hospital   

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Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, We are looking for an associate veterinarian to join our three veterinarian team in a small animal exclusive, full service hospital in southcentral PA.  We provide compassionate and comprehensive care for pets and their owners.  New graduates or experienced veterinarians are welcome to apply. NO after hours emergency duty required.  Pursuit of special interests is welcomed and encouraged.  You must possess confidence,  good communication skills, have strong moral character, work well with doctors, support staff and clients and be open to new ideas and approaches to provide excellent care for our clients.  Benefits include competitive salary ($70k-$110k+ possible), potential for production bonuses, two weeks/year PTO, health insurance stipend, gym membership, paid license, liability and continuing education fees, 401K retirement account and possible profit sharing.   We are located in scenic southcentral PA, 20 miles from historic Gettysburg, 10 miles from the Appalachian Trail.  Large metropolitan areas such as Baltimore and Washington DC are conveniently accessible with a 1.5 hour commute.  Visit our hospital website at www.creaturesgreatandsmallvet.com. Case load includes comprehensive health care for wellness and sick animal exams, surgery and dentistry.  Equipment to assist in these endeavors includes in house lab equipment, digital radiology, ultrasound, surgical and therapeutic laser.  Responsibilities include: -Performing comprehensive physical examinations and diagnostic/medical/surgical/dental procedures that deliver the highest quality care while minimizing patient stress and discomfort. -Building rapport with clients by gathering information and listening to their concerns. -Communicating with clients on topics such as pet diagnosis, treatment plans, preventative health care and nutritional needs. -Maintaining client/patient medical/surgical records through established protocols. -Staying current on new medical information and changes in veterinary medicine. -Assisting in the development of the paraprofessional team to ensure delivery of the highest quality medicine and exceptional client service. -Presenting a positive image of the hospital in the professional community and the general public.   Skills and Basic Qualifications: -A DVM or related degree from an accredited university. -Licensure in good standing to practice in PA. -Commitment to practicing the highest standard of medicine and upholding the veterinary code of ethics. -Excellent verbal and written communication skills. -Collaborative work with hospital team members. -Modeling a professional and courteous manner with staff and clients. -Commitment to ongoing educational development and growth.       We pay a modified Pro-Sal salary. The salary estimates provided reflect the range of past salaries.

          

Associate Veterinarian - Signing Bonus Offered | Colony Animal Hospital   

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Newport News, Virginia, Associate Veterinarian Sign On Bonus! Colony Animal Hospital is seeking a full-time veterinarian to join our small animal practice located in Newport News, Virginia.  We are in the southeast corner of Virginia; close to beaches, mountains, and Washington DC. Our facility accommodates three full-time veterinarians and is equipped with modern diagnostics including: Digital radiology, ultrasound, full in-house laboratory equipment, digital dental radiography, video otoscope and cold laser therapy. Colony is deeply rooted in the community, providing compassionate and elevated patient care to our loyal clients for over 55 years. Additionally we have maintained our AAHA Accreditation for over 54 years. We offer a multi- dimensional caseload from day to day that will exercise your knowledge and skills. We also serve both pocket pet and exotic pet owners. Colony Animal Hospital is the perfect practice if you are looking to walk into an already established, loyal clientele. If you are looking to develop as a clinician in a certain area such as surgery, ultrasound, exotic medicine; we are the team for you! We are always looking for ways to increase the specialized procedures we offer. We have a highly skilled team who support our Veterinarians in all facets of patient care and general operations of the clinic. As a Veterinarian at Colony Animal Hospital, you will have a voice. You will be considered a part of our leadership team that together strategizes practice goals and works on improving daily operations. If mentorship is what you desire as a new graduate, we allow for dedicated time each week to review and discuss cases. Your success is our goal, and our clinicians are dedicated to helping you learn and grow. An offer from Colony Animal Hospital will include:     -Negotiable sign on bonus and relocation assistance     -Flexible work schedule with a 4.5 day work week     -Paid Time Off     -Time off and stipend for Continued Education     -Full benefits including: Medical, dental, and vision insurance plan options, short and long-term disability, 401(k) retirement plan (fully vested after 5 years of service)     -Discounted pet care services     -Paid DEA and state licenses; AVMA, AAHA and VVMA dues We invite you to visit our website for more information about Colony Animal Hospital:  www.colonyvet.com Job Requirements - Degree from a 4 year program at an accredited college of veterinary medicine. Shall be licensed as a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M. or V.M.D.) with the ability to practice in the Commonwealth of Virginia. If you are interested in discussing the possibilities, please contact Jane Piske: 757-877-6464 (hospital) , 757-871-7277 (cell), or jpiske@colonyvet.com. Job Requirements - Degree from a 4 year program at an accredited college of veterinary medicine.           Shall be licensed as a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M. or V.M.D.) with the ability to practice in           the Commonwealth of Virginia.

          

Julia Hamm, CEO, Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA), Washington DC - Episode 53   

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Julia Hamm, CEO of The Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA) - envisioning a carbon-free energy system by facilitating the electric power industry’s transition to a clean and modern energy future through education, research, standards, and collaboration.


          

Katherine Hamilton, Co-Founder and Chair, 38 North Solutions & Co-Host, The Energy Gang, Washington DC - Episode 39   

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Katherine Hamilton, Co-Founder and Chair at 38 North Solutions & co-host of The Energy Gang podcast, has a Cleanie Award for Entrepreneur of the Year and is Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum‘s Future of Advanced Energy Technology Global Future Council.


          

Michelle Brechtelsbauer, Director of Stakeholder Relations, Energy Impact Center, Washington DC - Episode 38   

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Michelle Brechtelsbauer, Director of Stakeholder Relations at Energy Impact Center in Washington DC. She leverages her background in engineering research and an expertise in science policy to accelerate deployment of carbon-negative energy technologies.


          

Special Live From Washington DC @gridCONNEXT: Miguel Romero, VP Energy, San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) - Episode 50   

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Special Live Holiday Edition (Washington DC): Miguel Romero, VP of Energy Supply, SDG&E, oversees the acquisition of energy & capacity to serve SDG&E customers, including meeting RPS goals (currently over 40%), electric generation, and resource planning.


          

Vinton Cerf, Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist at Google & Co-Father of the Internet, Washington DC - Episode 40   

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Vint Cerf, VP & Chief Internet Evangelist, Google & Co-Father of the Internet. He was presented the US National Medal of Technology by President Bill Clinton & the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George Bush and co-founded the Internet Society


          

Reeve Summit 2020   

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Join me at the Reeve Summit 2020, an inaugural conference from the Reeve Foundation, to spark conversations, collaboration, and connections across individuals living with paralysis. The schedule is packed with riveting sessions and keynote speakers. Reserve your spot today! See you there. #ReeveSummit  Washington DC I February 26-28 I Christopherreeve.org/ReeveSummit. Hope to meet you there. Nurse Linda

          

EBT To Headline 2019 Edition of The Washington DC Jazz Festival   

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To celebrate the 100th birthday of the great Nat King Cole, the DC Jazz Festival will be programming artists at the Millennium Stage inside the Kennedy Center in June of 2019.  Artistic Director Willard Jenkins has been in negotiations with the EBT to perform a set of vocal jazz on Father’s Day in 2019.  This concert will be promoted when contracts are signed and information is finalized.  Check back here for confirmation.

          

From lawyer to baker: Lessons on passion, listening and cake with Warren Brown   

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If you had been a fellow passenger on the Green Line train in Washington DC, looking at handsome young lawyer Warren Brown staring out the window, you may have thought he was composing his next great novel, or thinking about scaling Mt. Everest. Instead, he was formulating a new recipe for chocolate cake:

"Dry chocolate cake is a no-no not to be tolerated. So I thought of coming at it from a unconventional angle. I decided to not use butter and boiled water in the batter, but use cream instead to deliver hydration and fat to the cake simultaneously. I scribbled the hypothesis on a notepad, raced off the train, mixed and panned the batter within twenty minutes, and use the same recipe to this day. It’s the New German Chocolate cake, where cream and cocoa combine to make a dense chocolaty cake that is paired with a coconut & vanilla infused buttercream."

Warren's cake dreams turned into a baking "side hustle," which occupied all of his precious time outside of his busy law career. He slowly built his baking business to the point where he was able to quit his day job and open a bakery, Cake Love, in Washington D.C. Fast forward nine years and Cake Love has seven locations, and Warren has written two books, Cake Love: How to bake cakes from scratch, and United Cakes of America, with a third in the works.

Listen in on our 40-minute podcast where Warren discusses the hard work required to turn a passion into a business, and a start-up into a solid brand, and why entrepreneurs have to be a bit crazy if they want to succeed.

You can see more of Warren in action in the short ad that my friend Erik Proulx (of Lemonade fame) recently did for Dell Computer: (YouTube link here: https://Model.blue/splash/XmZoXpIvjrJQfj72gzRe4p55K9zGiurbWjSEr12fB8oSQW_SLASH_9ijdWJ2bVE9PePl0Y_PLUS_nJYeImOHkmmLdi2JvWGRawpSkX4IPLsy_PLUS_ZeWIL47S82Vq0qOJwRmau37GjlpbKD)

 


          

Over-informed on IPM - Episode 024: What cucumber beetles want   

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Listen Now

Transcript

I don’t know if this happens to the rest of you entomologists out there but when I meet someone new and they learn that I study insects for a living they will often express how careful they are about not killing insects. It’s really very sweet the lengths that most people will go, the complexity of their strategies, to extract a bug from their home. Sometimes people will even apologize to me, if they recount a story of killing a bug. At some point or another I’ll remind them that, actually, a big part of my job is killing bugs…and not just for entomologists involved in pest management. The study of insect biology and ecology usually results in lots of sampling that results in lots of dead bugs. For the good of science and for the good of insect collections.

Well, I do spend most of my time here talking about how to kill bugs but not in this week’s episode! Well there will be a little killing – there’s always a little killing - but mostly behavioral manipulation! Directing pest behavior away from the crop you are protecting rather than trying to eliminate any bug that dare tread on your crop plants.

We are returning to a topic we covered last year, striped cucumber beetle! You know it, you love it, it’s probably in your cucurbit crops right now (I’m recording this in July)…adults are munching on your leaves and your flowers, pooping out the pathogen that causes bacterial wilt… cucumber beetle babies are below ground munching on your roots or pupating and about to emerge to do some above ground munching.

This is a pretty hard pest to control but we know a whole bunch about its likes and dislikes and there’s lots of potential for manipulating its behavior, diverting these insects away from cash crops. The three things cucumber beetles love the most – other than destruction –they love flowers, they love the bitter taste of cucurbits, and they love hanging out with their friends.

These beetles love flowers. Cucumber beetle overwinters as an adult, under leaf litter, in wild habitat, probably in the woods. In the spring they emerge and feed on the pollen and nectar of a rather wide array of host plants. Not until they’re ready to meet someone special and start a family do the turn to cucurbit crops, like cucumber, summer squash, winter squash, gourds, pumpkins and melons. But movement of striped cucumber beetle into cultivated crops really jumps up when those crops start to flower. They really respond to the bright yellow color and the floral volatiles from those squash flowers.

They also love cucurbitacins, the family of chemical toxins that cucurbit plants produce as general defense against herbivory. Well cucumber beetles have evolved a tolerance to these chemicals and so the taste is a cue for them to stay on that plant make a meal out of it. We call this a phagostimulant or a feeding stimulant. Cucurbit crops vary quite a bit in the types and amounts of cucurbitacin in different plant parts. So hubbard squashes comes from a group of cucurbits with really high cucurbitacin, particularly high content in its roots. So this is a preferred crop used as a trap crop because cucumber beetle has evolved to recognize this as a good host plant for reproduction. They’re more likely to hang out and start a family on hubbard squash plants than – say – butternut squash. So you can plant a little hubbard near your butternut squash and the beetles will hang out on the hubbards instead of the butternut squash plants.

And cucumber beetle love hanging out with other cucumber beetles. Male striped cucumber beetle produce an aggregation pheromone called vittatalactone, which is attractive to male and female cucumber beetles. It’s even attractive to other cucumber beetle species, like spotted cucumber beetle…the folks who are studying this pheromone are finding that this pheromone is even attractive to squash bug. Another pest of cucurbits that’s not even remotely related to striped cucumber beetle. So you can see that vittatalactone is a pretty powerful chemical for making a cucumber beetle party…more on that later…

So we know how to attract them. The bigger challenge is what to do after you’ve got them. I’m going to pull in some expertise in this area from a buddy working with watermelon crops on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. 

Simon Zebulo UMDES

Anna: Watermelon is not susceptible to bacterial wilt so it generally tolerates a few cucumber beetles. Relying on behavioral manipulation for pest management usually works best when you have a high acceptable threshold. Another key aspect here is that Simon works with growers who are producing for the Washington DC market and the demand is quite high for organically-produced or insecticide-free produce. These farmers are very open to labor-intensive ways of avoiding the use of pesticides. Trap cropping, or what Simon refers to as sacrifice plants or sacrificial crops, it’s a great approach for this market.

Simon: trap cropping is a very old kind of pest management method. And different people have different names for trap crops. Some people say catch crops, some say sacrifice or sacrifice plants, because you normally sacrifice some plants for insects. Which insects, they like to stay or hang around them to eat, to lay eggs, to raise their kiddos stuff like that. So, trap crops are something that you grow away in a garden or hedge to try to attract pests, and then you trap them there or you can control them there easy.   

But when you have, you know the summer squash as a trap crop, cucumber beetles prefer squash, especially summer squash over watermelon, cantaloupe and other cucurbits. Why do we use squash as trap cropping watermelon seeds? Because squash produces very nice, big, good looking flowers. These flowers act to trap cucumber beetles. Whenever you go to any cucurbit field you will find the cucumber beetles all out on the flowers. So these squash have the really big yellow flowers which attract many, many cucumber beetles.

We really need to keep them producing flowers for an extended period of time. What we do is we keep harvesting the fruit as soon as they emerge so this would force the squash to keep producing flowers so especially during those initial growth stages for watermelon, we need squash plants with flowers in the perimeter or intercropped with watermelon so most of the cucumber beetles would get attracted towards squash. Because if the plant produces, especially squash, if the plant produces enough fruit they don’t produce flowers.  

Anna: Once you get the beetles on the trap crops you have them there, they are attracted to those big beautiful flowers that you’ve forced by picking the little fruits off. What happens once you get there? Like are you worried about them spilling over to the crop? How are you managing them once they get on the trap? 

Simon: I think they are, they are, that’s why I’m in this. If you just let the plant produce food, the insects will go to the main crop, the watermelon plant. So that’s why you have to make sure, always flowers has to be there in order to keep the insects in the squash plant.  

Some farmers after they trap they control them right there. When they get attracted in the squash they can do whatever. That can be pesticide, biological pesticide, organically accepted pesticide. They will spray to the squash not the watermelon.

Anna: So Simon has found a rather clever way to keep cucumber beetles on his summer squash trap crop, or in this case probably a sacrificial crop. He knows how much these beetles love flowers so keeping flowers in the trap crop keep adults there longer.

There has been some work demonstrating mass trapping by taking advantage of this affinity for flowers. Jaime Pinero (now of UMass) found that yellow bucket traps baited with floral lures captured and killed enough cucumber beetles to keep the number on nearby plants below threshold. Investigations were pretty much stalled because we really need a more specific lure. The combination of yellow visual stimuli and floral olfactory stimuli makes these cucumber beetle traps pretty effective bee traps too. Not only do we want to avoid hurting local bee populations, cucurbits are insect pollinated crops. I asked Simon what he saw when he was studying these systems where an insecticide was not applied to the cash crop but just to the trap crop.

Simon: You know, interestingly in the trial that we did, we had controls without trap crops and fields with trap crops. And the watermelons from our trap crop plots are much bigger in size than the watermelon in our control. The reason that you know, the size of the watermelon depends on the number of flowers getting pollenated by pollinators. The more pollenating that you are doing, you will have more seeds and more seeds mean a bigger fruit. So that it was really fascinating to see the size of the watermelons. Even my farmers really love this method and even they adopt this method. They grow last summer, they grow very nicely.  

Anna: So a system that works nicely for these farmers. Perhaps knowing what beetles love can help you with your system? For those of you who take the time to hand pick cucumber beetles, you should do this at night if you can. They are most active at dusk. Maybe focus those efforts on a preferred host, like hubbard squash if you grow it, on the crop that’s flowering the most.

For those of you growing in a larger scale, you probably already know that these beetles display an edge effect in the spring. Early season chemical control applied too just edge rows is likely just as effective as applications to the whole field. Avoiding chemical applications, especially early in the season, can be very important to conserving the natural enemies that help keep pest populations lower, more manageable.

So that’s it for now. Thanks to Simon Zebulo of UMD Eastern Shore. I also want to thank Rebecca Smyth, Don Weber, and Lauren Brzozowski, who taught me everything I know about cucumber beetles. And a special thanks to Jason Lightbown who wrote and performed our theme music.

Music credits:

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Dig the Uke by Stefan Kartenberg (c) copyright 2016 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial (3.0) license. https://Model.blue/splash/rp1rewoz7zoWbpjKxbbQdNRiTx_SLASH_D7zE_PLUS_MaHs9C9TXnnJa7yEC7vD_PLUS_2MVMl6Li9kUAw6xnfyUP2LF0nTfuMZF8ZwnoA_SLASH_ZkXMJzZ38zolGxegLH6oY3V9oaPV74SpBZQOc Ft: Kara Square

NiGiD: These Quiet Places by  Martijn de Boer (NiGiD) Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial (3.0) license https://Model.blue/splash/mb0X2nPkPtAbwa4Ybo3afk1H3Wz1VdgPM3IhQDUvyG_PLUS_3T0mDsr5GuwLgBXqirsl_SLASH_zTmbtVuEdZzMuLN1FUG2rVmfc2MJ9bBOl_SLASH_FA4mQ3pD0Qs_SLASH_64OnWFRwOVZhFGefQB


          

Hotspot – Street names   

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Some street names can be highly geopolitical, depending on where they are located
When street names become political. Klaus Dodds examines the trend of changing street names to make other nations uncomfortable

If you live in Bristol or Glasgow, you are surrounded by a near-constant reminder of past wealth creation and some of the notable individuals that made it possible. We have a Jamaica Street in Glasgow and a Colston Street in Bristol, named after a slave trader called Edward Colston (see last issue’s Discovering Britain). Presently, there are calls to rename the Colston Memorial Hall following its refurbishment in 2020. It’s not the first time activists have taken issue with the way in which the city of Bristol has failed to address its complicity in slavery. The Colston controversy is a useful entrée into the contested geopolitics of street naming. When, where, what and how we choose to name space is never politically innocent. Our naming choices and practices are tied to place identity and expressions of power. 

Some countries are currently reflecting on their colonial histories, legacies of authoritarianism and fascism, and past associations with the former Soviet Union and Marxist-Leninism. In Poland, the Law and Justice Party government has taken to the task with some relish. As part of a concerted effort to remove the stain of communism from Polish society, communist-era street names are being rescinded and a process started in the early 1990s is being accelerated. Since 2017, the Institute of Remembrance has identified hundreds of street names that acknowledge the Soviet Red Army, communism, Rosa Luxembourg and others. Critics worry that the current government is hellbent on forcing through a version of Polish history and geography that white-washes the country’s past.

shutterstock 1206029221Human rights campaigners have called on the Trump administration to rename a section of the New Hampshire Avenue the 'Jamal Khashoggi Way'

Most recently, human rights campaigners have called upon the Trump administration to rename a section of the New Hampshire Avenue in Washington DC, the ‘Jamal Khashoggi Way’, following the Saudi journalist’s violent death in October 2018. The renaming gesture is designed to morally shame. While it is unlikely to be approved, given the US administration’s closeness with Saudi Arabia, the aim is clear – a permanent gesture designed to embarrass and remind those passing through a section of the Avenue where the Saudi embassy is located.

Choosing the right road or street to make such a geopolitical point is vital. New Hampshire Avenue is close to the heart of Washington DC and embassies are high-profile targets for activists and governments alike to register their displeasure. Embassies are located in capital cities, often in the most exclusive and expensive areas. A change in street name would also force embassies and their governments to acknowledge that change through their business cards, formal letters and other forms of correspondence. If change cannot be secured officially, however, there are always opportunities to do things more spontaneously. In Washington DC, congressional figures have expressed support for a plan to rename the street outside the Russian embassy the ‘Boris Nemtsov Way’ and an equivalent one outside the Chinese Embassy the ‘Liu Xiaobo Way’. Both are gestures designed to embarrass the respective governments for killing and/or imprisoning opposition leaders.

Such place naming gestures work both ways. If the street name of the Chinese embassy in Washington DC was renamed, it has been suggested that the Chinese might retaliate and come up with a ‘Snowden Street’ or ‘Osama bin Laden Street’. It could easily become a popular game as governments seek to come up with a name that would cause maximum embarrassment for geopolitical foes. In Turkey, the mayor of Ankara has done just that. Against a backdrop of worsening US-Turkish relations over the ongoing Syrian crisis, the street where the new embassy is due to be built has already been renamed the ‘Malcolm X Avenue’. Named after the controversial African-American civil rights activist, the decision reveals something about how foreign powers identify popular figures, geopolitical themes and periods of history that they believe will bring discomfort. To impose those names outside the buildings that are intended to regularise and formalise international relations is telling.

shutterstock 680496808Another potential street name? Some congressional figures support renaming the street outside the Chinese embassy 'Liu Xiaobo Way' after the late Chinese activist jailed for his hand in writing a political manifesto

Foreign governments can sometimes get around awkward street re-naming. In 1981, the Iranian government renamed ‘Winston Churchill Street’, ‘Bobby Sands Street’. The change in name was designed to signify a profound shift in Iranian geopolitics. Britain’s close relations with the pre-revolutionary Iran were over. The UK embassy’s official address in Tehran was henceforth going to include a street deliberately named after an IRA prisoner who died in a UK prison. The British authorities attempted to circumvent the problem by closing its official entrance on Bobby Sands Street and opening a new one on Ferdowsi Avenue.

Street renaming nourishes populist geopolitics. The Turkish example is striking because Erdoğan met Malcolm X’s daughters when visiting New York in 2018. The meeting was, inevitably, shared with the wider world via the president’s official Twitter account. In Russia, there are reports of plans to rename the US embassy’s official postal address in Moscow: 1 North American Dead End.

Klaus Dodds is Professor of Geopolitics at Royal Holloway, University of London and author of Geopolitics: A Very Short Introduction

This was published in the January 2019  edition of Geographical magazine

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Geopolitical Hotspot – continuing tension in Ukraine as China moves in   

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Geopolitical Hotspot – continuing tension in Ukraine as China moves in
Klaus Dodds turns his attention to Ukraine and examines the growing influence of China in the region

The Ukraine crisis rumbles on in a variety of ways. Crimea continues to be annexed by Russia and there is little prospect of that being overturned despite the persistence of EU and American sanctions. The UN General Assembly condemned the occupation of Crimea in December 2019 and described Russia as an ‘occupying power’. The non-binding resolution passed 63 to 19, but notably the United States choose not to vote and more than 60 members abstained. The resolution also criticised Russian interference of Ukrainian naval vessels around the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. While Russia did release three captured Ukrainian ships taken in November 2018, it raises disturbing questions about how the right of innocent passage will be affected for others, not just Ukraine. Tensions remain high and peace talks between the two sides have made tentative progress. Further afield in Washington DC, a Democrat-controlled House of Congress initiated impeachment proceedings against President Trump on the basis that there was evidence of improper presidential behaviour involving Ukraine and US promises of military aid.

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What is less appreciated is the role of another actor in this geopolitical melee – China. While Russia views Ukraine as integral to what is understood to be its ‘near abroad’ and as a security buffer zone against NATO forces, China sees Ukraine as a transit point between the EU and Central Asia. As part of its ambitious Belt and Road Initiative, China views Ukraine as a prime candidate for investment in infrastructure, agriculture and as a transit hub for Chinese goods. In the last couple of years, the Chinese government established a Trade and Investment Development Centre. While the EU remains the most important trading partner for Ukraine, China is growing in significance and has accelerated past Russia. International events have enabled this tilt towards China. Worsening relations with Russia impacted on bilateral trade with Ukraine. China’s demand for food is considerable and this, in part, enabled Beijing to become the sixth largest export partner for Kiev and the largest supplier of corn for China.

Ukraine aspires to NATO membership in the future and the NATO-Ukraine commission continues to meet to consider this proposition. Kiev also wishes to join the EU. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy is clear on this twin-track strategic ambition. Both are problematic not least because Russia does not want Ukraine to slip out of its geopolitical and geo-economic orbit. While a sizeable element of the Ukrainian population would conclude that the country would be safer if it was covered by the NATO security umbrella, Russia’s continued destabilisation of eastern Ukraine is making NATO partners uneasy about whether they want to take on this additional commitment. 

In other words, Russia has little to no incentive to allow Ukraine to strengthen its connection with either the EU or NATO. While Ukraine is an extreme case, it is worth bearing in mind that Sweden and Finland to the north also represent NATO-related challenges. Neither are formal partners of NATO. Russia would resist both becoming full members. Would the easing of EU and US sanctions against Russia bring about a shift in Moscow’s attitude towards further expansion of EU and NATO? Unlikely, as President Putin sees the Arctic, the Baltics, Central and Eastern Europe, the Caucuses and the Middle East as one extended ‘security arc’ for Russia.

Given these complexities affecting Russia, Ukraine, the EU and NATO, it is not surprising that this creates openings for powerful players such as China. In the next five years we are going to see further Chinese investment in infrastructure. One such plan is to invest in ports such as Mariupol in southeastern Ukraine on the edge of the Sea of Azov. Mariupol’s fate was complicated further by a Russian bridge across the Kerch Strait that prevents larger vessels from entering the Sea of Azov. Up to $7bn has been pledged and Ukraine has described China as a ‘strategic partner’.

Other investment will be in the banking sector, the metro in Kiev and continued support for the Ukrainian agricultural sector. 2019 was the ‘Year of China’ in Ukraine and featured profile-raising exercises designed to highlight the opportunities to take advantage of Chinese investment. 

Two things to watch. First, Chinese investment in military-industrial companies such as the well-regarded aviation company Antonov. Ukraine needs to modernise its armed forces and hence the importance of that promise of US military aid that brought scrutiny to bear on Trump’s telephone calls. How does NATO’s strategic situation alter if China ends up being the driver of Ukrainian military-industrial innovation and development? Second, if China invests more in Ukrainian infrastructure, how does that alter Russian strategic calculation if Chinese civilian and even military vessels start to enter the Sea of Azov?

For now, the Ukrainian government is hoping for progress following a December peace meeting in Paris brokered by Germany and France. But Ukraine’s future will not escape the strategic calculations of Russia, China, the EU and the United States.

Klaus Dodds is Professor of Geopolitics at Royal Holloway, University of London and author of Geopolitics: A Very Short Introduction

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Geopolitical Hotspot – the Sahel   

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Geopolitical Hotspot – the Sahel
Geographical’s new geopolitics columnist, the author Tim Marshall, begins his regular monthly column by shining a light on an under-reported region and the conflicts that blight a troubled land

Earlier this year a Nato power sent in fighter jets, helicopters, special forces and a Reaper drone on a mission against an Islamist terrorist group. At least 30 militants were killed. This was not Iraq, nor Syria, it was not Yemen nor Libya. The French military were operating in the Liptako-Gourma zone – a sparsely populated hilly region straddling Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger.

The conflict in the Sahel region of Africa is for much of the world a forgotten war. And yet, last year alone, 4,000 people were killed in terror attacks, and by this spring France will have more than 5,000 troops fighting alongside local forces. The Sahel is considered the world’s fastest growing Islamist insurgency. It’s taking place in a huge region which contains some of the world’s poorest countries and is a crossing point for migrants trying to get to Europe. 

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Violence has spread since Islamists launched a terror campaign in Mali in 2012. It has since spilled over into Niger and Burkina Faso, and is dragging in Chad and Cameroon, displacing hundreds of thousands from their homes. This year there are worrying signs that the conflict could even spread to some West African coastal states. 

The crisis has fuelled a resurgence of local conflicts, and comes after decades of poor governance and neglect of rural communities. This, along with climate change, has helped create an alarming spike in food shortages especially in central Sahel – Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso. This deadly confluence of events means hundreds of thousands of people are displaced. 

In 2013, France deployed about 2,000 troops to help the Malian Army, saying they were required to prevent the creation of an Islamic State as seen in Iraq and Syria. By 2019, 4,500 French troops were on the ground, but stretched  thinly over a massive area covering more than five million square kilometres, they were unable to prevent the insurgency growing and forming alliances. 

Among the groups active are ‘The Islamic State in the Greater Sahara’ which operates in north-east Mali, ‘Ansarul Islam’ in northern Burkina Faso, and ‘Boko Haram’ which has spread from north eastern Nigeria into Niger, Chad, and northern Cameroon. All are loosely affiliated with Islamic State or Al Qaeda. The United Nations now says the levels of terrorist violence are ‘unprecedented’ and ‘devastating’. One of the worst cases came last December when an attack on an army base in Niger killed 71 soldiers. In January, another 89 were killed. There were also numerous attacks on civilians.

This prompted French president Emmanuel Macron to convene a summit and ask for international support to help what is called ‘Operation Barkhane’. He believes the region is part of a new European defence policy seeking to prevent countries to the south collapsing into chaos with millions heading towards EU states. He said with French forces having already suffered more than 40 fatalities it was time for other European countries to step up.

He had few takers. The UK has several dozen personnel on the ground along with three helicopters which help ferry the French troops around. Denmark has sent a few aircraft and about 70 of its military, and the Czech Government has now said it will send 60. This limited response led Macron to order in another 600 soldiers along with 100 armoured vehicles, bringing troop levels to 5,100. 

Most are targeting the border region linking Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso, joining forces from the G5 Sahel countries – which include Chad, and Mauritania. The five support the continuation of the French engagement even as portions of their populations bridle against what some see as a neocolonialist project. 

Shortly before the Macron summit there was an anti-French demonstration by hundreds of Malians in the capital, Bamako, during which the French flag was burnt. The French president has made it clear that he is unhappy with the level of political condemnation of such acts across the region. However, the G5 leaders want the French to be brought under the auspices of a regional UN force which will transition from peacekeeping and training to peace-enforcing.

The situation seems to be at an impasse. Without flooding the region with many thousands more troops, a military victory seems unlikely. French military commanders are anxious that the Americans may be withdrawing from the region, knowing that Washington DC is increasingly focused on the Pacific region. If they go, they’ll take with them their unparalleled surveillance capabilities. 

The French are concerned that they may be locked into a conflict they cannot win and from which they cannot escape. The British and others worry that a point may come when they have to become more involved, and millions of civilians, in a region stretching for thousands of miles from the Atlantic to the Red Sea, fear endless conflict.


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Tim Marshall is a journalist, broadcaster and author of Prisoners of Geography and Divided: Why We’re Living in an Age of Walls

 

 

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Mise à jour - le 30 janvier 2009   

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L’Europe veut tenir le haut du pavé pour répondre à la crise financière
Un avertissement envers l’opposition américaine (et canadienne ?) à une nouvelle architecture internationale des institutions et à une réglementation plus sévère pour une forme de gestion plus « morale » du capitalisme, un Conseil Économique plus souple au sein des Nations Unies, et une charte pour une économie durable établissant les règles d’une gouvernance financière mondiale, constituent trois des thèmes clés soulevés par la Chancelière allemande Angela Merckel et le Président français Nicolas Sarkosy, lors du Symposium organisé au plus haut niveau par Nicolas Sarkosy et l’ancien Premier Ministre britannique Tony Blair, ce mois-ci à Paris.

L’objectif de la rencontre, qui a rassemblé responsables des politiques, économistes, syndicalistes et chefs de file du monde des affaires, était de travailler sur les réflexions de personnes telles que Joseph Stiglitz, Amartya Sen et Francis Fukayama, sur les trois problématiques clés suivantes : les principes devant guider un capitalisme plus responsable et plus éthique; les points faibles des institutions (y compris l’État) qui ont besoin d’être renforcés et les mécanismes qui doivent être établis pour assurer une distribution plus équitable des bénéfices de la mondialisation à la fois entre les États et au sein des États; les renforcements nécessaires de la réglementation du marché et leur mise en application de la façon la plus efficace possible.

Bien que N. Sarkosy et A. Merckel souhaitent que l’Europe mène tambour battant le prochain sommet du G-20, il se peut qu’íls soient obligés de laisser leurs ambitions au vestiaire. Dans une lettre ouverte aux ministres des finances du G-20, les priorités du Royaume-Uni pour le sommet d’avril ressemblent à une série de mesures visant davantage à réparer l’éclatement des marchés financiers qu’à repenser les fondements d’un « nouveau monde, nouveau capitalisme », et qui consistent, selon la citation d’un critique, à « rafistoler le bateau et à repartir à fond les gaz ! ».


« Nouveau monde, nouveau capitalisme, Éthique, développement, régulation
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Objectifs du Royaume-Uni pour le G-20 en 2009,
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La Banque mondiale en quête d’un fonds spécial pour les pauvres
Le président de la Banque mondiale Robert Zoellick demande instamment à Barack Obama de soutenir les pays qui ne peuvent renflouer leur déficit, en transférant 0,7 % (6 milliards $) du plan de relance américain récemment approuvé sur un nouveau « Fonds de vulnérabilité ». Dans les pages éditoriales et d’opinions du New-York Times, R. Zoellick est d’avis que ce fonds, qui vise à protéger de la crise économique mondiale les pauvres au niveau de la planète, aura aussi des retombées économiques aux États-Unis, puisque la hausse des dépenses en infrastructures dans les pays en voie de développement augmentera la demande en biens de fabrication américaine.

R. Zoellick espère que les autres nations occidentales suivront Barack Obama et engageront des fonds lors du sommet du G-20 à Londres. Le président de la Banque mondiale propose d’utiliser le fonds pour soutenir les programmes de protection de revenus, les infrastructures, les microcrédits, et les petites et moyennes entreprises.

Il ne fait aucun doute que les pays en voie de développement ont besoin d’aides supplémentaires. La question qu’il reste à éclaircir est de savoir si la proposition de R. Zoellick est saine, à savoir que le Fonds soit administré par la Banque mondiale, l’ONU et les banques régionales de développement. Bien que R. Zoellick s’engage à fournir « une aide souple et rapide, accompagnée de mesures de sauvegarde garantissant que le fonds est dûment dépensé », le bilan de la Banque en prestations d’aides et l’impact dévastateur de certaines actions entreprises par le passé invitent au scepticisme quant à ses déclarations.


Un Plan de relance pour le monde, 22 janvier 2009, New-York Times Op-Ed
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L’ONU va de l’avant avec ses plans pour faire face à la crise financière
Refusant d’être mis hors jeu du processus du G-20, le Président de l’assemblée générale des Nations Unies, Miguel d’Escoto, a organisé ce mois-ci la première rencontre de sa Commission d’Experts (voir babillard du mois dernier). Il a annoncé une période de consultation avec la société civile et la Commission, ainsi que les modalités et le calendrier de la Conférence des Nations Unies sur la Crise économique et financière mondiale et ses répercussions sur le développement. La Conférence de l’ONU a constitué l’un des résultats clés de la rencontre sur le Financement pour le développement le mois dernier (voir le bulletin Mise à jour de décembre 2008).

Le premier rapport de la Commission d’Experts aborde les répercussions de l’échec des politiques et pratiques élaborées dans le Nord et affligeant le Sud, l’incapacité totale des pays en voie de développement de fournir des aides de renflouement similaires à celles que débloquent l’Europe ou les États-Unis, ainsi que la nécessité de financements immédiats et substantiels (toujours grâce au FMI mais en dehors des conditions « habituelles ») qui permettent aux pays du Sud d’entreprendre des politiques contracycliques comparables, de stimuler leur économie, de mettre en place des mesures de protection sociale et de garantir une liquidité pour leur commerce. Ce rapport demande également une plus grande transparence financière du marché et l’aboutissement des négociations commerciales du Cycle de Doha.

De nombreux groupes de la société civile, se demandant où étaient passées les propositions de réformes élargies et plus radicales du système monétaire et financier international, ont réagi sans beaucoup d’enthousiasme.


Commission d’Experts de l’ONU.  Consultations avec la société civile, 26 janvier -13 février 
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Babillard – Ce mois-ci…
  • La Banque mondiale a réuni 350 millions $ en « obligations vertes » provenant d’investisseurs scandinaves. Ces fonds sont destinés à la rénovation de centrales électriques et de lignes de transmission (afin de réduire les gaz à effet de serre) et à des projets d’implantation de centrales solaires et éoliennes, de gazéification du charbon, de capture et stockage du CO2 et du méthane. Ces obligations viennent à échéance dans 6 ans et rapportent un intérêt annuel de 3,15 %.
  • Après la Géorgie, la Hongrie, l’Ukraine et la Lettonie, le Belarus est le cinquième pays de l’Europe de l’Est ou centrale à négocier, ces deux derniers mois, un prêt d’urgence (de 2,46 milliards $) avec le FMI. Ce prêt est devenu indispensable étant donné que les subventions russes et les exportations du Belarus avaient diminué ces dernières années. Par ailleurs, le Belarus pourrait dévaluer son rouble de 20 %, augmenter ses taux d’intérêts, couper dans les dépenses publiques, geler les salaires du secteur public et augmenter les tarifs des services publics. 
  • La Banque mondiale a exclu sept compagnies, dont deux définitivement, ainsi qu’un individu qui ne pourront plus soumissionner pour les futurs contrats de la Banque. Ces sanctions suivent une enquête menée par le Vice-président à l’Intégrité de la Banque qui a dévoilé des preuves de collusion au sein d’un cartel de firmes locales et internationales soumissionnant pour la première phase du Programme de gestion et d’amélioration du réseau routier national des Philippines. Sur les 33 millions $ de l’offre de la Banque pour le programme routier, aucune des compagnies exclues ne s’est vu attribuer de montant. En novembre 2007, les directeurs exécutifs de la Banque mondiale ont mis leur veto sur un nouveau prêt de 232 millions $ pour ce même projet routier aux Philippines, car les enquêteurs de la Banque avaient confirmé que le projet faisait l’objet d’un truquage d’offres.
  • Dans son nouveau budget, le gouvernement canadien a fait remarquer que son plan fiscal de relance de 40 milliards $, soit 1,9 % du PIB, respectait les engagements pris lors du récent sommet du G-20 (voir la Mise à jour de novembre 2008), puisque le FMI suggérait un plan de relance de 2 % du PIB. Bien que la portée de la relance dépende en dernier lieu de la capacité des municipalités et des individus à injecter une partie des sommes pour profiter de certains programmes (capacité que de nombreux critiques remettent en question), le FMI a soulevé un spectre plus pessimiste : les projections de croissance économique du ministre Flaherty. Le FMI et M. Flaherty ont prévu une baisse de 1,2 % cette année. Mais le budget de Flaherty compte sur une croissance de 2,4 % l’année prochaine, alors que le FMI anticipe une hausse de 1,6 %. Il serait peut-être judicieux d’équilibrer les comptes d’ici 2013-2014.

Nouvelles publications du mois
Événements à venir
  • Rencontre des ministres des finances à Rome, Italie, les 13 et 14 février 2009.
  • Rencontre des observateurs Euro-IFI à Bruxelles, Belgique, les 16 et 17 février 2009.

LES FAITS : Calendrier d’événements 2009 : la crise financière mondiale
1er janvier L’Italie prend la présidence du Groupe des Huit (G8)
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5-6 janvier  1ère session plénière de la Commission d’Experts de l’ONU sur la crise financière
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9-10 mars 2e session plénière de la Commission d’Experts (Genève)
14 mars Réunion des ministres des Finances du G-20 (Londres)
25-27 mars    Dialogue interactif thématique de l’Assemblée générale sur la Crise économique et ses répercussions sur le développement
28 mars Mobilisation de masse au G-20 pour « Emplois, justice et climat » (Londres)
2 avril    Sommet des chefs d’États du G-20 (Londres)
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6 avril Ébauche du document présentant les résultats de la Conférence de l’ONU sur la Crise économique et financière mondiale et ses répercussions sur le développement. Les négociations intergouvernementales sur ce document débuteront le 13 avril.
17-19 avril   Ve Sommet des Amériques (Trinidad et Tobago)
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25-26 avril  Réunions de printemps de la Banque mondiale et du FMI (Washington DC). Un dialogue interactif entre ECOSOC/CNUCED/ Banque mondiale/FMI/OMC suivra le 27 ou le 28 avril.
Mi-mai  Publication du rapport final de la Commission d’Experts de l’ONU
May 26-29 Conférence de l’ONU sur la Crise économique et financière mondiale et ses répercussions sur le développement (New York)
12-13 juin Réunion des ministres des Finances du G-7 (Venise, Italie)
8-10 juillet Sommet du G-8 (La Maddalena, Italie)
15 septembre Début de la 64e session de l’Assemblée générale des Nations Unies (New York)
6-7 octobre Assemblée annuelle de la Banque mondiale et du FMI (Istanbul, Turquie)
Novembre Réunion des chefs de gouvernement du Commonwealth (Trinidad et Tobago)
17 Novembre Réunion des ministres des Finances du G-20 (Royaume-Uni)
7 décembre Conférence des Nations Unies sur les changements climatiques (Copenhague, Danemark)

Une chronologie plus détaillée des événements et un calendrier des activités sont disponibles en ligne sur :
https://Model.blue/splash/_PLUS_Wa0kQOgoHKz2TPCByoXk7_SLASH_eLkAPfPrNOya0eVdfMGx_SLASH_LQrYnEe8l_SLASH_HfGsV2GZ5gmqqjiG4ubDWokQ_PLUS_80972OYjehIgAvb3kX5Q1hJGVOdwYPnaHL8XML4ek0Zei75BoD4SK3Ym_PLUS_1BH15Jsq7FnGWw_EQUALS_EQUALS

          

The Power and Beauty of Typography   

Cache   

Web typography has come a long way, but how do you find inspiration to push your designs forward online? Letters can say far more than the words they spell. In her session, Samantha will look at the lettering surrounding us everyday, tapping into the way it makes us feel. If you don’t already get emotional about which font to use, you will, looking at letters in a whole new way and learning how to translate those feelings into your web designs. https://Model.blue/splash/BWuHAUhnk5GZeU1fX_PLUS_adPfj2UMy_SLASH_ND6nnT_PLUS_9es_PLUS_0fHIyPNu_SLASH_G0YRRUnGfasbOUIq7u2pDKJaoARV4xtoaCopxt5yKWtir4_SLASH_VrlHCR63PA9DM4RrhmGczPBLvkQI7vsNOrPmoGRc2UIvaS521NAmXAw_EQUALS_EQUALS Samantha Warren loves big concepts as much as she loves badass typography and thrives on telling interesting stories through usable interfaces. She has written articles for .net Magazine, regularly speaks at industry events and is on the Board of the Art Directors Club of Washington DC. When she is not doing any of the above you can find her enthusiastically teaching typography and web design at the Center for Digital Imaging Arts at Boston University.

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