• Food Sovereignty

    Food Sovereignty is a term that refers to both a movement and an idea (Wittman et al., 2010) however, as with most political concepts, it is essentially contested. This contested nature stems partly from the conviction of many of its transnational advocates that food sovereignty needs to be defined ‘from the bottom-up’ and as such it evades a precise single definition. While there is merit in such an approach given the diverse political and agro-ecological settings in which food sovereignty has emerged as a rallying cry for change, it also raises the question of whether food sovereignty can be relational without bounds [1].

    Whilst the lack of distinction of the food sovereignty concept continues to form a theoretical problem, which according to some prevents the further development of the debate[2], in practice the issue areas that food sovereignty advocates concern themselves with are very clear. The primary documentation issued by organisations like La Via Campesina and the declarations issued at the two Nyéléni meetings, include calls for the democratisation of the food system and the protection of the rights of small farmers. It also expresses a commitment to address the multiple inequalities reproduced within the current corporate-dominated food system. As such, food sovereignty builds upon a rights-based approach to food, but adds a qualifier to such rights. Human beings do not merely have a right to food, but rather ‘a right to food that is healthy and culturally appropriate, produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods’, which are defined by people instead of corporations or unaccountable governments [3]. In this manner, food sovereignty represents a radical alternative to the food security paradigm, which holds central the benefits of free food markets and seeks to solve the problem of world hunger through scientific innovation and increased market liberalisation.

    Whilst the precise origins of food sovereignty remain somewhat unclear, Edelman (2014) has put forward a strong case that it was first articulated in Mexico [4]. Additionally, as a result of Latin American peasant farmer organisation La Via Campesina’s use of the term and the fact that some of the movement’s key international meetings were deliberately held in the global South (at Nyéléni in Mali) so as to make a statement, food sovereignty itself is often seen as a ‘southern’ rallying cry. In part this is because it is associated with smallholder farming which is exercised more extensively within the global South. This is not to say that smallholder farmers do not exist within Europe or the United States,[5] or that the aspirations of small holder producers in Latin America, East Asia or elsewhere may not align with the food export-oriented framework that is conventionally understood as driven by ‘northern’ actors [6]. Nor is it to suggest that food sovereignty – where it pertains to democratisation and exercising ownership over a given food system – has no place in American and European societies. The geographic dimensions of food sovereignty, however, do serve to communicate that the negative socio-economic impacts resulting from the proliferation of large-scale industrialised food production elsewhere has been predominantly felt in the global South.

    Reflecting on the structure of the global food economy, it has been suggested that the fundamental interests of geographically differently located actors may be at odds with one another, even if they collectively mobilise behind the banner of food sovereignty [7]. Food sovereignty activists stand accused of taking a ‘big bag fits all’ approach (Patel) and brushing over the contradictions inherent in the movement. As already indicated above, however, whilst the broad geographic delineations may help to explain existing inequalities, the reproduction of binary North-South oppositions is not always conducive to better understanding the mechanisms through which such inequalities are reproduced. For example, factors such as the interaction between local elites and transnational capital or the role of food culture and dietary change are not easily captured through territorial markers such as ‘North’ and ‘South’.

    Essential Reading

    Holt-Gimenez, Eric & Amin, Samir, (2011) Food movements unite!: Strategies to transform our food system (Oakland: Food First Books).

    Alonso-Fradejas, A., Borras Jr, S. M., Holmes, T., Holt-Giménez, E., & Robbins, M. J. (2015). Food sovereignty: convergence and contradictions, conditions and challenges. Third World Quarterly, 36(3), 431-448.

    Patel, Raj. (2009). Food sovereignty. Journal of Peasant Studies, 36:3, 663-706

    Further reading

    Andrée P, Ayres J, Bosia MJ, Mássicotte MJ. (eds.) (2014). Globalization and food sovereignty: global and local change in the new politics of food (Toronto: University of Toronto Press).

    Carolan, Michael. (2014). “Getting to the core of food security and food sovereignty: Relationality with limits?” Dialogues in Human Geography 4, no. 2, pp. 218-220.

    Holt-Giménez, E. (2009). From food crisis to food sovereignty: the challenge of social movements. Monthly Review, 61(3), 142.

    Shiva, Vandana (1997). Biopiracy: The plunder of nature and knowledge (Cambridge: South End Press).

    Wittman, Hannah (ed.) (2011). Food sovereignty: reconnecting food, nature & community (Oxford: Pambazuka Press).

    Zurayk, R. (2016). The Arab Uprisings through an Agrarian Lens. In Kadri. A. (ed). Development Challenges and Solutions after the Arab Spring. Hampshire, England: Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 139-152.

    #souveraineté_alimentaire #alimentation #définition

  • Dunkerque : Nolan, l’art au détriment de l’histoire - Le Vent Se Lève

    A part un personnage de resquilleur qui tente de prendre le large, à l’anglaise, avec un uniforme volé de la British Army, les Frenchies ne sont là qu’au début et à la fin. Une présence en forme d’alibi. « Je suis innocent puisque vous voyez bien qu’on les aperçoit, là, les grenouilles, à 3 minutes 40. » Perverse dédicace, quota indigne. Ultime et honteux retournement, c’est même l’amiral anglais qui décide finalement de rester sur la jetée pour aller récupérer encore d’autres Français. On croit rêver, quand on sait que 16 000 soldats français sont morts pour défendre la ville, que 123 navires français ont été coulés, que Dunkerque a été détruite à 90% !3 Accueillant avec les honneurs les 140 000 soldats français et belges évacués, le peuple anglais avait été en son temps moins ingrat. Un journaliste du Monde a parlé de « cinglante impolitesse » pour qualifier cet oubli.4 Indélicatesse impardonnable, pourrait-on ajouter.

    • Lors d’une interview à la radio le 15/07, la veille de la projection à Dunkerque, Nolan disait (en gros, je n’arrive pas à trouver un podcast, je ne sais même pas sur quelle radio c’était, mais je suis sure de l’avoir entendu) « "Dunkerque", c’est une histoire anglaise, qui se passe en France et qui a nécessité un budget Hollywoodien. » Pas surprenant donc que l’on parle peu des français dans le film.

    • The Dunkirk spirit: how cinema is shaping Britain’s identity in the Brexit era | Film | The Guardian

      You can’t blame Christopher Nolan for Brexit. The director was halfway through making Dunkirk, his new war epic, when the EU referendum took place last June. But if the leave campaign had wanted to make a rousing propaganda movie to stir the nation, it couldn’t have picked a better subject matter. Dunkirk has got it all: Britain standing alone against the world, our manufacturing superiority prevailing, the nation coming together – all in a literal effort to get out of Europe. If he had got the film together a little earlier, perhaps Nigel Farage wouldn’t have needed to cite Independence Day in his morning-after victory speech.

      The Dunkirk analogy has already been trotted out by leave campaigners, of course. Last February, for example, three months before she (wrongly) claimed that Britain would be powerless to prevent Turkey joining the EU, Tory minister Penny Mordaunt wrote an opinion piece for the Daily Telegraph titled “The spirit of Dunkirk will see us thrive outside the EU”. “In our long island history, there have been many times when Britain has not been well-served by alignment with Europe,” she wrote. “When Britain stood alone in 1940 after the defeat at Dunkirk, we were cut off and ridiculed. True leadership sometimes does feel isolating. Yet we have never suffered for it. We are resourceful; we are well connected; our brand is strong in the world.

      Never mind that Britain didn’t actually stand alone at that precise point during the war. Or that Winston Churchill favoured “indissoluble” union with an as-yet undefeated France. Or that by standing together with our European neighbours over the past 40 years, we have avoided another Dunkirk. This is the Brexiter version of British identity in a nutshell: proudly isolated, independent, not European, and “strong in the world”. And to be clear, this is primarily English identity we are talking about, given that a majority in Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain.

  • #Assange : l’enquête pour viol en Suède classée sans suite
    AFP / 19 mai 2017

    ❝Le parquet suédois a annoncé vendredi qu’il abandonnait ses poursuites pour viol contre le fondateur de WikiLeaks Julian Assange, refermant une saga judiciaire qui durait depuis 2010.

    « La procureure Marianne Ny a décidé de classer sans suite l’enquête pour viol présumé contre Julian Assange », a indiqué le parquet dans un communiqué.

    • La mention de « sans suite » est plutôt trompeuse : il me semble que ce n’est pas ainsi qu’on peut qualifier la décision de la procureure. Cela ressemble plutôt à une suspension de l’action judiciaire. Je ne sais pas s’il y a l’équivalent en droit français.

      Le communiqué de presse dit ceci (en suédois)


      Vid en presskonferens i Stockholm den 19 maj redogjorde Marianne Ny för sitt beslut.

      – Julian Assange tog för nästan fem år sedan sin tillflykt till Ecuadors ambassad i London, där han fortfarande befinner sig. Han har alltså undandragit sig alla försök för svenska och brittiska myndigheter att verkställa beslutet om att överlämna honom till Sverige enligt EU-reglerna om en europeisk arresteringsorder. Min bedömning är att överlämningen inte kan verkställas inom överskådlig tid, säger Marianne Ny.

      Enligt lagen ska en brottsutredning ske skyndsamt. Vid den tidpunkt när en åklagare inte har möjlighet att vidta fler utredningsåtgärder är åklagaren skyldig att lägga ned förundersökningen.

      – Alla möjligheter att för närvarande driva utredningen framåt är uttömda. För att kunna gå vidare skulle det krävas att Julian Assange formellt skulle delges misstanke om brottet. Det kan inte förväntas att vi skulle få bistånd av Ecuador med detta. Utredningen läggs därför ned.

      – Om han vid en senare tidpunkt skulle göra sig tillgänglig kan jag besluta att omedelbart återuppta förundersökningen. Mitt beslut innebär att det för tillfället inte är meningsfullt att driva utredningen vidare, säger Marianne Ny.

      Mais comme le traducteur attitré de ST s’est étranglé avec un bout de surströmming qui dépassait de son knäckelbröd, ce n’est pas aisé à comprendre.

      En gros, ça dit ce que tu as repris dans ton commentaire, mais le paragraphe Enligt rappelle que la loi oblige à effectuer l’enquête dans des délais brefs et que lorsqu’il n’est pas possible de mener de nouvelles investigations, le procureur est tenu de clore l’enquête préliminaire.

      Et surtout, le dernier paragraphe dit : si ultérieurement il [Assange] se rendait disponible, je pourrais décider de rouvrir immédiatement l’enquête préliminaire.

    • Sweden Withdraws Arrest Warrant for Julian Assange, but He Still Faces Serious Legal Jeopardy

      BUT THAT CELEBRATION obscures several ironies. The most glaring of which is that the legal jeopardy Assange now faces is likely greater than ever.

      Almost immediately after the decision by Swedish prosecutors, British police announced that they would nonetheless arrest Assange if he tried to leave the embassy. Police said Assange was still wanted for the crime of “failing to surrender” — meaning that instead of turning himself in upon issuance of his 2012 arrest warrant, he obtained refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy. The British police also, however, noted that this alleged crime is “a much less serious offence” than the one that served as the basis for the original warrant, and that the police would therefore only “provide a level of resourcing which is proportionate to that offence.”

      That could perhaps imply that with a seriously reduced police presence, Assange could manage to leave the embassy without detection and apprehension. All relevant evidence, however, negates that assumption.

      Just weeks ago, Donald Trump’s CIA director, Mike Pompeo, delivered an angry, threatening speech about WikiLeaks in which he argued, “We have to recognize that we can no longer allow Assange and his colleagues the latitude to use free speech values against us.” The CIA director vowed to make good on this threat: “To give them the space to crush us with misappropriated secrets is a perversion of what our great Constitution stands for. It ends now.”

      Days later, Attorney General Jeff Sessions strongly suggested that the Trump DOJ would seek to prosecute Assange and WikiLeaks on espionage charges in connection with the group’s publication of classified documents. Trump officials then began leaking to news outlets such as CNN that “U.S. authorities have prepared charges to seek the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.”

  • Un échantillon des #énormités des #msm dans leurs compte-rendus des #guerres au #moyen-orient,

    #Gareth_Porter :

    – à supposer que l’#Iran mène au #Yemen une « guerre par procuration » contre l’#Arabie_Saoudite à travers les #Houthis, comment peut-on décemment qualifier de même l’intervention on ne peut plus directe de l’Arabie saoudite dans ce pays ?

    – Comment un article dont le sujet est précisément les guerres par procuration, peut-il décemment faire le silence sur celles menées en #Syrie par la #Turquie, le #Qatar et l’Arabie saoudite, notamment à travers des groupes aussi peu recommandables que #al-Nusra/#al-Qaïda #ISIS ?

    • Entre autres choses, le passage sur la Syrie :

      The crimes committed by the Syrian regime in the war are unconscionable, but the policies of external countries pursuing a proxy war to overthrow the existing regime have created a far more ominous threat to the entire region. Washington Post columnist David Ignatius has detailed the process by which Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar competed with one another to create proxy forces with which to overthrow the Assad regime. 

      Such an unbridled competition in the creation of armies for regime change was by its very essence a reckless and cynical use of power that carried the obvious risk of even worse chaos and violence of the war in Syria. But they have made the costs of proxy war far greater by targeting the most aggressive armed groups they could find as their clients, and their weapons soon “made their way to the terrorist groups,” wrote Ignatius, to which the Turks and Qataris “turned a blind eye”. 

      Once it became clear that Sunni states were creating a proxy war in Syria that could tip the balance against the Syrian regime, Iran and Hezbollah intervened in support of the regime.

      But what the conventional view of the Syrian proxy war leaves out is the linkage between Syria in Iran’s deterrence strategy. Iran is militarily weak in relation with Israel and US military power in the Middle East, and has been the target of US and Israeli military threats going back to the 1990s.

      Iran’s deterrent to such attacks has depended on the threat of retaliatory rocket attacks against Israel by Hezbollah from Southern Lebanon - destroying the ability of Hezbollah to retaliate for an attack was the single biggest reason for Israel’s 2006 war against Hezbollah.

      The Assad regime was part of the Iranian deterrent as well. Not only did Syria have a force of several hundred missiles that Israel would have to take into account but also, Syrian territory is the shortest route for Iranian resupply of Hezbollah.

  • Obama “peace” envoy ridicules notion that Palestinians have “rights”

    Indyk’s qualifier “supposed” and the appearance of quotation marks around the words “rights” and “justice” in the official transcript of his talk indicate contempt for the notion that Palestinians have rights at all.

    In fact, in the video of the speech (at about 56:30), Indyk actually uses air quotes or scare quotes when he speaks the words “justice” and “rights,” a hand gesture used to indicate a speaker’s skepticism or disagreement with the quoted words.

    This stands in marked contrast to the Obama administration’s frequent insistence on Israel’s claimed “right to exist as a Jewish state” an idea that necessarily negates basic Palestinian rights.

  • L’utilisation du terme « régime » dans les médias permet systématiquement d’introduire un jugement de valeur négatif, sans avoir à apporter ni preuves ni explications. Quand un gouvernement est qualifié de « régime », généralement, il ne tarde pas à « narguer » la communuauté internationale... vous voyez, ce genre de choses que font les « régimes ».

    Un journaliste ne doit donc jamais, mais alors jamais, qualifier Israël de « régime ». Il faut être Ahmanidejad ou Nasrallah pour faire un truc aussi dingue.

    Ou bien... ce journaliste qui publie une tribune dans le Guardian. Et là, il n’arrête pas : « régime israélien » par-ci, « régime israélien » par-là.

    Palestinians in Lebanon, at the lonely end of the Arab uprisings | Matthew Cassel

    The Israeli regime not only keeps under occupation more than 4 million people in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and limits the rights of more than a million Palestinian citizens of Israel, it also denies more than 5 million refugees the fundamental right of return to the place they were forced to flee.

    Une analogie malpolie :

    Israel is showing itself to be no different to the infamous despotic Arab regimes in its willingness to use brutal force against people demanding their rights.

    Et finalement, l’analogie et le « régime israélien » dans le même paragraphe :

    Often the fate of the Israeli regime is raised when considering the rights of Palestinian refugees. Yet when Egyptians, Libyans and others took to the streets in the Arab world, it wasn’t a concern for the justice-supporting international community what became of the regimes they battled against. In many cases, internationals have even joined in calls for their ousting.

    Si ça continue, la semaine prochaine, le Guardian publiera une tribune de Matthew Cassel expliquant que le régime israélien est destiné à disparaître des pages de l’histoire. Ou pas.

  • Mofaz : US has adopted Israeli targeted killing strategy

    Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee chairman MK Shaul Mofaz (Kadima) on Tuesday said that the killing of Osama bin Laden bears witness to the fact that the US has adopted the Israeli strategy of targeting terrorist leaders.


    He added that if terrorist activity continued to originate in the Gaza Strip, the leaders of Hamas should be made aware that they are potential targets for assassination and that such targeted killings are considered unquestionably legitimate.

    Ami journaliste, n’oublie jamais que, lorsque tu évoques Kadima, tu dois systématiquement le qualifier de « parti centriste ».

    #ben_laden #israël