Spike Lee On The Buzz Surrounding ‘BlacKkKlansman’

Spike Lee On The Buzz Surrounding ‘BlacKkKlansman’

Lee’s vibrant docudrama BlacKkKlansman, which won the Grand Prix at the Cannes film festival earlier this year, is one of the director’s stronger films and—perhaps not coincidentally—one of his most focused. The narrative sticks to a just a couple of plotlines (a police investigation, a romance), and Lee manages to unify his various thematic concerns (subterfuge and sabotage, representations of blackness and whiteness in media, the political victory of Donald Trump), something he’s rarely done since Do the Right Thing (1989).

Like that earlier film, BlacKkKlansman is organized around feelings of anger. The dialogue abounds with bigoted sentiments, both heroes and villains are defined by what they hate, and the story crescendoes with an act of violence. And then there’s Lee’s rage at America’s political situation following Trump’s election, which influences the film’s conversations on race relations and prejudice. Even though the action takes place in the early 1970s, the director makes it clear that his characters are talking about the present when these sensitive subjects come up; he also concludes the film with news footage of white supremacists marching on Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017, and violently attacking counterdemonstrators. Yet BlacKkKlansman never feels overwhelmed by its anger—it’s exciting, astute, and even funny at times. Continue reading Spike Lee On The Buzz Surrounding ‘BlacKkKlansman’

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Home Office ‘wrecked my life’ with misuse of immigration law

Home Office ‘wrecked my life’ with misuse of immigration law

The Home Office has been accused of inflicting irreversible damage on the life of a pharmaceutical expert by misusing a controversial clause in immigration law to try to force her out of the UK.

Nisha Mohite finally received indefinite leave to remain (ILR) this week after a government review found she was one of more than 300 highly skilled migrants who the Home Office had wrongly tried to force to leave under paragraph 322(5) of the immigration rules.

The paragraph is a discretionary, terrorism-related clause that the Home Office’s internal guidance states should only be used when the applicant’s misconduct is on a par with “criminality, a threat to national security, war crimes or travel bans”. However, the Guardian has reported extensively on the Home Office’s use of the clause to try to force applicants – including teachers, doctors, lawyers and engineers – out of the UK for making minor and legal amendments to their taxes. Continue reading Home Office ‘wrecked my life’ with misuse of immigration law

ISRAELI PRIME Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to eject international observers in Hebron

ISRAELI PRIME Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to eject international observers in Hebron

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has decided to eject an international observer post aimed at safeguarding Palestinians in Hebron, a city in the occupied West Bank, accusing the mission of anti-Israel activity.

“We will not allow the continuation of an international force that acts against us,” Netanyahu said in a statement on Monday about the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH).

Netanyahu did not elaborate on the alleged misconduct of TIPH, which draws staff from Norway, Italy, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey, nor did he say when he plans to expel them.

The agreement to deploy TIPH observers in Hebron was reached between Israel and the Palestinian Authority in 1994 after an Israeli settler killed 29 Palestinian worshippers at the Ibrahimi Mosque, a site that is holy to both Muslims and Jews, who refer to it as the Cave of the Patriarchs.

The group didn’t start its work in the city until 1998, however, after the Israeli army refused to leave Hebron following the establishment of an illegal Israeli settlement at the heart of the city.

TIPH’s latest mandate – it is deployed in renewable, six-month terms – is due to end on 31 January, Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz reported on Monday.

The group has not yet commented on Netanyahu’s decision. Continue reading ISRAELI PRIME Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to eject international observers in Hebron

Zimbabwe Government deploys army in urban areas in another ‘Murambatsvina’ – ‘street clean-up’

Zimbabwe Government deploys army in urban areas in another ‘Murambatsvina’ – ‘street clean-up’

Zimbabwe appears headed for another social crisis as authorities have embarked on a widespread operation to destroy illegal structures in urban areas, reminiscent of the 2005 disastrous Operation Murambatsvina which left over 700 000 people homeless. Continue reading Zimbabwe Government deploys army in urban areas in another ‘Murambatsvina’ – ‘street clean-up’

Trump moving ahead with State of the Union speech next week

Trump moving ahead with State of the Union speech next week

WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House is moving forward with plans for President Donald Trump to deliver his State of the Union speech next week in front of a joint session of Congress – despite a letter from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi requesting he delay it.

The White House sent an email to the House Sergeant-at-Arms on Tuesday asking to schedule a walk-through for the speech in anticipation of a Jan. 29 delivery.

That’s according to a White House official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to discuss the planning.

Pelosi had sent a letter to Trump last week suggesting he either deliver it in writing or delay it until after the partial government shutdown is resolved, citing security concerns.

Pelosi’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Continue reading Trump moving ahead with State of the Union speech next week