Nueva Zelanda

Dairy cows grazing on a farm near Oxford, New Zealand, last year.CreditCreditMark Baker/Associated Press

New Zealand is a country of just under five million people and just over 10 million cows. The cows produce large amounts of lucrative beef and dairy — our two biggest export goods by dollar value — and even larger amounts of greenhouse gasses and nitrate pollution, and are therefore much discussed at the national level. Internationally, we try to downplay them. We prefer to tell the world about our hobbits, our pristine rivers, our unspoiled natural environment. These things are all fictional. The cows, alas, are real.

“On arrival at Edoras,” says the advertising copy for a typical New Zealand tourism venture, “enjoy the natural unspoiled beauty and breathe in the fresh mountain air.” Edoras is the chief settlement of J.R.R.…  Seguir leyendo »

En un mundo de hombres, la pitufina es la única mujer. Ellos son la norma, ella es el retoque. Ellos definen a la comunidad, su historia y su código de valores. Ella sólo existe en el marco que ellos decidan, tiene un papel simbólico, el de realzar los estereotipos establecidos por ellos. Así es en los dibujos animados, así es muchas veces en el cine, y así también es en la vida real, cuando se trata de definir los rasgos de la comunidad. Lo hemos visto en Nueva Zelanda.

Sí. En un gesto de solidaridad con las víctimas del sangriento ataque contra los creyentes de la mezquita de Christchurch, las mujeres libres de Nueva Zelanda decidieron acicalarse y cubrir su melena con un velo.…  Seguir leyendo »

A message left among flowers and tributes by the wall of the Botanic Gardens on March 17 in Christchurch, New Zealand. (Carl Court/Getty Images)

Friday’s terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, which killed at least 50 Muslims, was not an isolated event. Across Western countries, anti-Muslim hate crimes and violent attacks have been on the rise. Earlier this year, the Anti-Defamation League reported that 2018 was the worst year for far-right killings in the United States since 1995, when Timothy McVeigh killed 168 people in Oklahoma City. In Britain, the government considers far-right extremism to be an increasing threat and recently for the first time proscribed a right-wing extremist group as “terrorist.” Germany’s domestic intelligence service has observed a steady rise in the number of “potentially violent right-wing extremists,” with current estimates at 13,000.…  Seguir leyendo »

L’attentat perpétré dans deux mosquées de Christchurch a inscrit ce pays des antipodes au cœur de l’actualité internationale, tout comme son grand voisin, l’Australie, d’où vient Brenton Tarrant, le terroriste inculpé. Les sociétés néo-zélandaise et australienne s’inscrivent dans une histoire globale de l’Occident en dépit d’une géographie aux antipodes de l’Europe et d’une projection au cœur de ce siècle asiatique. L’arme et les munitions du principal accusé, couvertes de références, sont un bréviaire d’une interprétation de l’histoire centré sur une perspective millénariste d’affrontements entre monde chrétien et musulman, des croisades aux attaques de Québec, et des guerres contre les Ottomans aux attentats d’Oslo et de l’île d’Utoya.…  Seguir leyendo »

Le 15 mars, un terroriste d’extrême droite a commis un terrible attentat à Christchurch, en Nouvelle-Zélande, qui a fait 50 morts et une vingtaine de blessés graves, ciblant des musulmans. L’attaque a été filmée par une caméra GoPro diffusant en direct l’attentat sur Internet. L’objectif était de provoquer la peur dans les populations arabo-musulmanes et de montrer aux Européens et aux descendants d’Européens comment se défendre contre la supposée invasion de populations immigrées. L’auteur est un Australien de 28 ans, Brenton Tarrant. Son profil se dessine dans son manifeste, intitulé « The Great Replacement » (« Le Grand Remplacement »), mis en ligne juste avant l’attentat, un plaidoyer contre le « génocide blanc ».…  Seguir leyendo »

Al Noor Mosque, where one of two anti-Muslim terrorist attacks took place in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Friday. Credit Martin Hunter/SNPA, via Reuters

Whenever someone used to ask me if I was Muslim, I often gave an evasive answer, something like, “I was born Muslim” or “My parents are Muslim.”

It was a strange way to phrase it. I told myself that the purpose of this hairsplitting was intellectual clarity, despite the fact that I had attended a mosque my entire childhood, that I had read the Quran in both Arabic and English, and that I felt personally connected to the history of Islam. Perhaps this was the natural recourse for someone who came of age after 9/11 and was taught to retreat into invisibility because of the dangers of being Muslim.…  Seguir leyendo »

Personas afuera de una mezquita en Christchurch, el viernes. Credit Mark Baker/Associated Press

El viernes, un hombre armado se puso un casco con una videocámara, llenó su auto de armas, condujo hasta una mezquita en Christchurch, Nueva Zelanda, y comenzó a dispararles a todas las personas que veía. Ese acto terrorista fue transmitido en vivo para que todo el mundo lo viera en las redes sociales.

Cuarenta y nueve personas fueron asesinadas y más de 40 resultaron heridas en el ataque, que ocurrió en dos mezquitas distintas de la ciudad. Un sospechoso, Brenton Harrison Tarrant, fue acusado de un cargo de asesinato, y se espera que se presenten más cargos. Otras tres personas fueron detenidas por la policía, pero una fue liberada horas después.…  Seguir leyendo »

People take part in a vigil at the New Zealand War Memorial on Hyde Park Corner in London Friday. (Dominic Lipinski/AP)

It begins with humor. The alt-right’s jokes, a teenage friend assures me, are genuinely funny: They ridicule the pomposities of “mainstream” culture, laugh at political correctness and create ridiculous memes mocking everything, including themselves. And once you’ve laughed at the jokes, there is a whole amusing, darkly ironic, alternative world out there, only a couple of clicks away.

There are the YouTubers such as PewDiePie, the Swedish gamer and vlogger who has shown Nazi videos while metaphorically arching his eyebrows. Viewers are meant to get that it’s a joke: “I know my audience understand that and that is why they come to my channel,” he has said.…  Seguir leyendo »

On Friday, terrorist attacks at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, left 49 dead and scores more wounded. The attack, reportedly by an Australian shooter, has cast a spotlight on the global scope of white supremacist rhetoric and violence. The shooter left behind a manifesto riddled with the language of modern white nationalism, and wrote that he chose to commit this horror in New Zealand to show that “nowhere in the world is safe.”

As news continues to emerge about the attacker, many have focused on how the shooter may have been inspired by white nationalist rhetoric from other countries, including the United States.…  Seguir leyendo »

People write condolence messages to the victims of a mass shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand, during a candlelight vigil outside the New Zealand Embassy in Brussels on Friday. (Laurie Dieffembacq/AFP/Getty Images)

The livestreamed slaughter of 49 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, has shined a spotlight on how terrorists employ social media. As The Post noted on Friday: “The New Zealand massacre video, which appeared to have been recorded with a GoPro helmet camera, was announced on the fringe chat room 8chan, live-streamed on Facebook, reposted on Twitter and YouTube and discussed on Reddit.”

This is horrifying but not surprising. Terrorism is inconceivable without mass media. Terrorists, after all, typically operate by themselves or in small groups. (The Islamic State is one of the few exceptions: It had grown into a quasi-state before being reduced to its terrorist roots.) They cannot hope to defeat their enemy — a powerful nation state — by brute force.…  Seguir leyendo »

People gather at a vigil for Christchurch shooting victims at Lakemba Mosque in Sydney on Friday. (Tayyab Hameed/Reuters)

Details are still emerging about the attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, in which at least 49 people were killed at two mosques. However, it appears that one person with advance knowledge of the planned attack is an active participant in a radicalized online right-wing media culture. Before the massacre, a man posted a long manifesto, police said, which was full of inside references to online memes and ideas that are commonly circulated among the radical right. An individual announced his intention to carry out an attack on the online messaging board 8chan, linking to the manifesto, before the massacre occurred. Video that appeared to be one of the shootings was live-streamed, clearly in the hope that it would go viral on social media.…  Seguir leyendo »

Alrededor de todo el mundo, cada vez más y más países, así como también regiones, prometen dejar de emitir dióxido de carbono en el futuro. La Unión Europea gana ovaciones de los activistas verdes por establecer el objetivo de llegar a convertirse en una región “neutral en emisiones de carbono” hasta el año 2050. Varias ciudades, que van desde Adelaida hasta Boston y Rio de Janeiro, anuncian objetivos similares, y Copenhague inclusive señala que logrará dicho objetivo hasta el año 2025.

Tales promesas deben ser recibidas con una saludable dosis de escepticismo. Por ejemplo, es probable que Copenhague no llegue a alcanzar su objetivo, aun después de gastar el doble del costo planificado para lograr convertirse en una ‘ciudad carbono neutral’.…  Seguir leyendo »

Flags outside the meeting of the Pacific Islands Forum in Nauru in September. Photo: Getty Images.

The countries of Oceania have wildly different economies – Papua New Guinea (PNG) exported close to $4 billion in oil and gas in 2016, while in Tonga, the biggest commodity export was $11.6 million worth of agricultural products. But what they have in common is a history of communal landownership, an emphasis on social capital (as opposed to financial capital), and cash-strapped governments.

In many cases, the first two combine to supplement the shortfalls of the last. There may not be government-funded welfare, but someone in the extended family likely has access to land where they can grow food, or will share their fish catch, or will do a church fundraiser to help with school fees.…  Seguir leyendo »

New Zealand is a small country, often wrestling for relevance in the world beyond “The Lord of the Rings” references and sporting success. (We are very good at sports). There’s a running gag about journalists interviewing celebrity visitors as they get off the plane, asking “what do you think of the place so far?”

So imagine the consternation when The Washington Post ran a column titled “How the far right is poisoning New Zealand.” Numerous journalists, commentators and politicians took to social media to express degrees of horror and ridicule. How could the “far right” have poisoned this country without any of us noticing, they asked.…  Seguir leyendo »

A shadow is poisoning Middle-earth.

On the surface, New Zealand’s new government sounds like a progressive dream: a young, energetic prime minister reminiscent of Barack Obama or Justin Trudeau who not only discusses the importance of feminism but calls people out for misogynistic comments on the spot; ministers for climate change and child poverty reduction; and the fact that the heads of the three branches of government are all women.

But for all the excitement around Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her new government, the real power lies with the far right. And, more terrifying: The far right seized power by exploiting the very system meant to be a fairer version of democracy.…  Seguir leyendo »

En 1972, le professeur de droit américain, Christopher D. Stone, rêvait d’attribuer «des droits juridiques aux forêts, rivières et autres objets dits «naturels» de l’environnement» dans son provocateur Should Trees Have Standing ? («les arbres devraient-ils se pourvoir en justice ?»). Quarante-cinq ans plus tard, la Nouvelle-Zélande a exaucé son vœu. Le fleuve Whanganui, le troisième plus long cours d’eau du pays, a été reconnu le 15 mars par le Parlement comme une entité vivante et s’est vu doter d’une «personnalité juridique».

«La décision du Parlement néo-zélandais n’est que la traduction législative d’un accord politique trouvé en 2012, sur un différend judiciaire de près de soixante-dix ans», décrit Victor David, juriste à l’Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD) de Nouméa, en Nouvelle-Calédonie et chercheur en droit à l’environnement.…  Seguir leyendo »

At the end of the street where I lived in Wellington, at the southern end of the North Island of New Zealand, a street of gracious two-story houses set in large gardens that were planted with oak and ash and maple, with English herbaceous borders and flowering fruit trees and shrubberies, was a park.

“A park?” you say.

A park, yes. But not a park as you know a park to be, not what you would call a park. It was the place where we went to play, at the end of our street.

This park was set with games areas for children as is the case with most parks, with railings around the green, and a swimming pool at the entrance.…  Seguir leyendo »

New Zealand One Nation Under a Beach Towel

New Zealand is as beautiful as it is isolated. We live a long way from anyone and anything, and we like it that way. We have almost four and a half million people and more than five million dairy cows. We have snow-capped mountains and deep dark woods where hobbits roam, as directed by Peter Jackson in his interminable “Lord of the Rings” movies. We sing (Lorde) and act (Russell Crowe) and throw stuff (rugby balls).

The rest of the world rarely notices our country, but this month everyone — well, some people — seems to be taking note. Our green and pleasant archipelago is heading to the polls for a national referendum on whether or not to do away with our current flag and replace it with something that kind of looks like a beach towel.…  Seguir leyendo »

Civil Liberties in Peril Down Under

Australia and New Zealand are not among the usual suspects when it comes to state suppression of civil liberties. But both countries, stung by Edward J. Snowden’s revelations last year about their intelligence-gathering efforts, have been cracking down on the press: Australia has passed sweeping secrecy laws, while police officers in New Zealand recently raided the home of a reporter who had published information regarding a government scandal.

There has been little international outcry, and Washington is hardly likely to be upset: The two countries harbor the only major intelligence gathering facilities for the National Security Agency in the Southern Hemisphere, and, along with Britain, Canada and the United States, are members of the intelligence-sharing arrangement known as the “Five Eyes.”

In New Zealand, the journalist targeted in the raid is the country’s top investigative reporter, Nicky Hager, who has been working with Mr.…  Seguir leyendo »

In recent weeks visitors to Christchurch described the mood as optimistic, energised since the earthquake of 4 September, determined to rebuild. We were used to hearing about aftershocks; Cantabrians were used to toughing them out. And then this – shattering the fantasy that surviving one tragedy somehow exempts you from another.

It feels like much longer than a few days. There is, in general, what a friend calls a belief shortfall. For those of us not in Christchurch, not experiencing aftershocks day and night, not bereaved or homeless or without electricity and water, there’s the weirdness of the mornings, waking to realise it’s still happened.…  Seguir leyendo »