The Reluctant Fundamentalist

Right now we are working with a book in class called the Reluctant Fundamentalist. The book is written by Mohsin Hamid and was published in 2007. The book is about a young Pakistani, Changez, who meets a US American in Lahore, Pakistan and tells him about his old, “successful” life in the USA – until 9/11 which changed everything. We have now read two chapters, and I will now answer some questions that has been asked after reading these two chapters.

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My impression of the story

My impression of the story so far is really good. I really like this book and the way the story is being told. I find it very interesting that the story is being told by only one persons view and how close we get to the person who is telling the story and his thoughts and views of life. This book is different from other books that I have read earlier, and that also makes it much more interesting for me to read.

Changez impression of his travel group in Greece

In the second chapter in this book, Changez talks to the American guy about a vacation in Greece. He went there with a group of Princetonians one summer and when he told the American guy about this vacation, he describes the people he was traveling with as not polite, rich people with little respect for elders. He takes a distance from the others and separates himself from them and has a lot of prejudices about them. He said that they acted like superiors, like they ruled the world. That tells me that Changez opinion about them is not good and that he might find himself as a better person than them. He does not really say anything positive about them and only focuses on their negative sides and how different they are from him. He also says that they only talk about hangovers and beaches, like that are the only things they are thinking about. Somewhere in this chapter, he says; “I, with my finite and depleting  reserve of cash and my traditional sense of deference to one´s senior, found myself wondering by what quirk of human history my companions – many of whom I would have regarded as upstarts in my own country, so devoid of refinement were they – were in a position to conduct themselves in the world as though they were its ruling class.”

How Changez talks about Pakistan

Later in the second chapter, he sits down with Erica in a cafe and she asks Changez to tell her how Pakistan is like. He says that Pakistan is many things; “from seaside to desert to farmland stretched between rivers and canals. He also told her about a trip to China he had made with his parents and brothers by car and that alcohol was illegal for muslims to buy, so he had a Christian bootlegger to get him alcohol.

The reactions of a comment Changez made

In the end of the second chapter, the group sits around a table eating dinner together when someone asks what their dreams for the future are like. When it is Changez turn to tell the others about his dream, he says that he wants to be “the dictator of an Islamic republic with nuclear capability”. The other got caught of guard and surprised of the joke he made of himself, because he explained right after that it was just a joke. I think it was really funny that he made a joke about himself like that and that he faced the prejudices about people like himself, muslim men with beards, but that it was a bit surprising. The others reacted to his comment with shock and silence, and it did not seem like they really understand the joke or thought it was funny. I think the reason he said that was to surprise the others and eliminate the prejudices about muslim men and make fun of them.

 

Sources;

The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid

https://www.amazon.com/Reluctant-Fundamentalist-Mohsin-Hamid/dp/0156034026

 

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A prime minister´s promises

In this text I am going to comment on Justin Trudeau`s, the prime minister of Canada, speech to the Assembly of First Nations in late 2015. In his speech, he announced a complete renewal of Canada´s relationship with its indigenous population.

In his speech, he first starts to say hello in many different languages to represent many of the languages that are being spoken in Canada, and he says that he could keep on going with saying hello on 60 other languages but that he does not have time. He then talks about the history of Canada and all its indigenous people and their history and traditions. He talked about the reasons of this meeting; making the indigenous people in Canada feeling included and respected in the community. He talked about getting a new relationship with them, a better one. He also said how much he respected them and appreciated them.

Later on, he presented his ideas and plans of how to reset Canada´s relationship with the indigenous people. He gives them five promises that he says that he and the government would immediately move on with;

  • Launch a national public inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women.
  • Make significant investments in First Nations education.
  • Lift the two per cent cap on funding for First Nations programs.
  • Implement all 94 recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
  • Repeal all legislation unilaterally imposed on indigenous people by the previous government.

“These are just five of the commitments we’ve made as part of our efforts to repair this most important relationship,” Trudeau said. It has been more than two years ago since he held his speech, has the promises been kept? I will now look into the first promise that Trudeau gave about protecting the indigenous women and girls better, have they been protected? The indigenous people of Canada have for years struggled with mysterious deaths and disappearances for their women and girls. Around 4000 women and girl have disappeared or found murdered in Canada for the last decades according to the guardian. The indigenous people has lost all hope for their loved ones to be protected by the government as very little has been done since Trudeau held his speech and gave his promise. The indigenous people in Canada are not the only one who sees the problem and tries to make a change, Amnesty International has made a report about the circumstances for the indigenous people and they call the violence against indigenous women and girls in Canada a human rights crisis which has deep roots in racism, marginalization and poverty. During Trudeau´s speech, he said that a national public inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women was already underway. Later on when he got confronted about the issue and the promise that the indigenous people says he has not kept, he says that it is because it is a long process that needs time and that change will not come over night.

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Sources:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/justin-trudeau-afn-indigenous-aboriginal-people-1.3354747   By Susana Mas, CBC News. Posted: Dec 08, 2015. Retrieved 10/01/18

https://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2016/12/06/prime-minister-justin-trudeaus-speech-assembly-first-nations-special-chiefs-assembly   Retrieved 10/01/18

A speech about multiculturalism

In this post, I am going to comment on David Cameron´s, the former British prime minister, speech about multiculturalism. The speech were held at the Munich Security Conference in February 2011. This speech were his first speech as a prime minister, and in the speech he criticized “state multiculturalism”, which is about separating cultures living side by side, and he said that it had failed. He also talked about the UK needing a stronger national identity to prevent people from turning to all kinds of extremism.

The topic of his speech was terrorism and extremism, and during the speech he highlighted several terror attacks that has happened during the last years and the kinds of people that are behind them. He talked about people who finds it hard identifying themselves, and get lost during the source and ends up being radicalized by extremist because of their vulnerable position. He talked about people judging others because of things other people with the same citizen and/or religion has done. He talked about Islam and muslims, who has been a victim of that for a long time now. And he talked about the solutions, what to do to prevent terrorism and extremism.

He first started his speech really clear and with a strong voice addressing what he wanted to talk about and what his focus was on. The he followed up with some humor, talking short about his life and wife before the main part of the speech started. His voice was very clear and loud during the entire speech, and he talked with a tempo that was easy to follow. His body-language showed that this was something he really cared for and was engaged in. He addressed the three aims that was behind all decisions in the UK very point vice, and had the listeners attention during the entire speech.

His idea with this speech was to present his views on radicalization and islamic extremism. He stated that Islam is not the problem, and that it is a peaceful religion with people just like ourselves. The problem is all the terrorism and extremism. He talked about all the good things about muslims and Islam before he started to talk about the Islamophobia that had appeared in the UK the past couple of years. The reason why is because of all the muslim terrorist attacks that had happened. The terror attacks were done by mostly young, muslim men who felt that they did not belong and fit in in their community. At the same time, most of them could not identify themselves with the islamic believes that they got from home. And if they find it hard to identify themselves, they are in a vulnerable position that makes them easy to brain-wash and radicalize. That can lead into extremism and hate towards the society, which again can lead into terror-attacks. Cameron says that he believes that the root of terrorism lies in the existence of this extremist ideology. Another one of the ideas that he stated in his speech was that ending poverty will not end terrorism. Many terrorist are educated and have a good economy, so that would not have changed anything. What we need to do is to create communities were everyone can feel they belong to. We must create a national identity and say us and not them. We need to stand together.

He ended his speech with a encouragement and brought up ideas of what to do next. He meant that we have to build stronger societies, create the feeling of belonging, continue with democracy and freedom, create equal rights, and confront the ideas of identity.

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I was supposed to comment on one of the statements that were presented on my teachers blog, and I chose this one; Non-violent extremists are just as dangerous as violent ones. I agree with this statement, and there is several reasons why. I think that non-violent extremists are just as dangerous as the violent ones, because they plant ideas in peoples head. They recruit people to join their ideology and throw gasoline on small sparks that can, and most likely will, involve into a great fire of extremism and believes that their own ideas and way of living is the only one that is right, and then they might try to fix that “problem”. Non-violent extremists often work as recruiters and planners, planning the attacks and getting the supplies. They are smart and often well-educated, and many of them are great speakers and know how to persuade people and get into their minds.

 

 

Links:

https://ndla.no/en/node/89540?fag=71082 ÅSE ELIN LANGELAND and CAROL DWANKOWSKI, published 05/01/12 (updated 04.03.17)

https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/pms-speech-at-munich-security-conference David Cameron, Published 5 February 2011

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-12371994 published 05/01/11

http://reyhanapatel.blogspot.no/2011/02/david-camerons-speech-at-munich.html Reyhana Patel, published 13/02/11

A letter by way of explanation

The past weeks, our class has read several text about different cultures and religions, and also about multiculturalism. We read five different texts, and my favorite text is “A letter by way of explanation” by Mohsin Hendricks. The reason why is because it was really personal and informative, and I felt with the writer as I was reading the text. I also liked the text because it was different from other texts I have read, since it was a text written by a openly gay muslim and about his life.

“A letter by way of explanation” is a personal letter written by a openly gay Islamic cleric and how he struggled excepting his own sexual identity. And later how he in the end came out to his mother and the rest of the society. He lives in South Africa and is the youngest son of nine children, and he studied his religion for years to figure out what his sins were. He was left-handed and that caused problems, but he figured out that that was not his only issue. Because he was gay, and that was not accepted in his religion. He kept quiet about it and married a woman and got three kids, but ended up leaving them and went to a farm for three months were he lived in seclusion. When he was at the farm, a personal miracle happened to him and he finally accepted himself for being who he was. So after that, he went out of the closet and told his mother that he was gay. After that moment, he could finally be himself.

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This story taught me to be honest with my self and to those around me. Your life will not be as good as is can be if you can not be honest with yourself and live your life as you want to. You need to accept yourself as who you are and not hide it. It also taught me a bit about the Islamic culture and their view on homosexuality.

Link:

https://answersafrica.com/muhsin-hendricks-openly-gay-imam.html

Gran Torino

This week, our class are going to watch a movie called Gran Torino. The movie is about a racist Korean War veteran living in a crime-ridden Detroit neighborhood who is forced to confront his own lingering prejudice when a troubled Hmong teen from his neighborhood attempts to steal his prized Gran Torino.

1a, I think the car may signify and symbolize wealth and success in this American movie, since these kinds of american cars are very expensive, but also typical American.

1b, Detroit, Michigan, is known for the historic heart of the American automotive industry. It is known as “motor city”.

2, The Korean war was a war between the North Korea and South Korea where North Korea got support from China and the Soviet Union, and South Korea got support from US veterans. The war began on 25 June 1950 when the North Korean communist army invaded un-communist South Korea . The war ended 27 July 1953 after a peace treaty was signed at Panmunjom, returning Korea to a divided status essentially the same as before the war.

3a, Asian Americans are Americans of Asian descent. The term refers to a group that includes diverse populations, which have ancestral origins in East Asia, Southeast Asia, or South Asia, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau. This includes people who indicate their race on the census as “Asian” or reported entries such as Asian Indian, Thai, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Pakistani, Japanese, Vietnamese, and Other Asian”. Asian Americans with no other ancestry comprise 5.4% of the U.S. population, while people who are Asian alone or combined with at least one other race make up 6.5%.

3b, Some of the most common stereotypes about Asian Americans are;

  • Asian-Americans work hard
  • Asian-Americans are democrats
  • All Asian-Americans are socially awkward
  • All Asian-Americans can’t play sports but are martial artists
  • Asian-Americans don’t know how to speak English

Toxic relations

This week, we have read the short-stories “My son the fanatic” and “Free for all” in class. Both of them were about fathers who did not accept the way their sons wanted to live their lives. They were about fathers who had a clear vision of what they wanted their sons to do, and they both became violent when their sons did not fulfill their expectations. Both these two fathers originally came from Pakistan, but now lived in USA and U.K.

In the first short story, “My son the fanatic”, it was about a father and son living in London. The father originally came from Pakistan, but did not follow the Pakistani culture. In stead, he followed the British culture and worked as a taxi driver. His son lived what seemed to be a good life; he had a girlfriend, nice clothes, friends, hobbies and he was studying for a well-paid job. But suddenly, he broke up with his old life and sold all his belongings, broke up with his girlfriend and quit school. He had suddenly found an interest in religion, and now became very religious. His father was not religious and avoided all kinds of religion after a very religious and indignity treatment he got as a child. Therefor, he did not accept his sons wish of following a religious life. They were not good at communicating and did not respect each other, and in the end of the story, the father beat up his son with no resistance.

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In the second short story, “Free for all”, it was about a father and son living in the USA. The father in this story originally came from Pakistan, and he followed the Pakistani culture while living in the US with this family. He was as a physician and worked about 16 hours a day. He achieved a great success while earning lots of money for his family. His son was at home, playing the guitar with his long hair and tattered clothes. His father did not like that, and asked the son to cut his har, dress well and start doing something else than playing the guitar. The son refused and continued playing, and one day his father slapped him in the face because he was playing. The son then called the police, and the father got arrested and lost his physician license for 3 months and had to pay huge bills to his son in replacement. The father got furious on both the police, his son and the justice system in USA. He therefor took his family with him on a trip to Pakistan, and the minute after they arrived, he started beating up his son and crushing his guitar. The son asked the police for help, and they slapped his face and asked him to show more respect for his father. Then they went back home to the USA.

COMPARING

Both these two stories were about bad father-son relationships. They were about fathers and sons who did not respect each other and understand each others wishes and ways of living. This caused huge problems in both stories, and the son in both of the stories ended up being beaten up by their father for not doing as they wanted them to. Both fathers in these two stories were from Pakistan, and while one of them were following the Pakistani culture in their new home-country, the other did not. The father who did not follow the Pakistani culture and were not religious had a son who wanted to follow the culture and was very religious. The father who followed the Pakistani culture and was religious had a son who did not. This caused huge problems, and the father-son relationships got worse and worse by time. Not necessarily because they were different, but because they did not accept the fact that they were different and that the other person had different thoughts, views and opinions than the other. In the end of both stories, the sons got beaten up by their fathers. I think the reason why the fathers beat up their sons was because they wanted to show them who was the boss and who was the most powerful of them so the sons might change their visions and start doing as their fathers wanted them to.

In both stories there was a person who identified itself with something else than their family member and who did not hesitate to follow their dreams and wishes, even though they got no support from the person who should love them the most; their parent. But is it really like that, that you should have the same vision, thoughts and believes as your parent? No, it is not. You should follow your own dreams and wishes for life, not someone else’s. But you should listen to your parent or child and respect their ways of living even though it is not the same as you.

 

Links:

https://mostlycinema.com/2015/03/12/my-son-the-fanatic1997/

https://cruxnow.com/commentary/2016/11/09/post-election-lets-clear-limits-respect/

 

 

 

International Day

Last Wednesday, it was international day at my school. On this day, our normal classes were out and we focused on international problems around the world and this years OD-project. We had a human library with several interesting people in a bunch of different rooms who were talking about various topics. There were also other rooms were you could work more with this years OD-project and get more informed. This year´s OD-project is the oil-spill in the Niger Delta and the goal of this project is to educate the youths in Nigeria so they can get informed about their rights and how they can be heard. The oil-spill have to end and must be cleaned up by the ones who has spilled it, because if not, there is not much hope for the youths to get an education, for the adults to have a job, and for the people to drink clean water and eat food without getting sick. The OD-day was about us youths to help each other. I worked one day and earned 400 NOK that I gave to OD to help the Nigerians, and so did the rest of my school.

“WE ARE ALL THE CHILDREN OF OIL”

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In the weeks ahead of the international day, my class and I worked a lot with the project and watched videos on the OD-page, we talked and discussed about the topic, and we planned how the day should be like and what kinds of rooms and people who should be there. I was traveling the week we got to choose the rooms I wanted to be a part of and when it should be planned, but I was with my friend Ragnhild and she choose the Norwegian room and the room “Reisebrev fra Øst” for us. The Norwegian room was about learning and discussing about a conception called “Oljebarn” which was very relevant for the OD-project. In the room “Reisebrev fra Øst” was one of the teachers at Fagerlia and he was talking about some of his many trips to eastern Europe and about the climate change and pollution in those countries.

I think the rooms that I was in was very well planned and organized. The teacher in the room knew what he/she was doing and was very good at explaining. At the room “Reisebrev fra Øst” the teacher showed us a lot of images that he had taken himself and he told us about when and where he took each picture and explained what was going on and what we could see on the images.

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I think the International day was more or less a success and that the students got very well informed on many various and important topics that includes most parts of the world and our climate. There were many interesting rooms and they all were very different from each other, but they were still some how connected. I also liked that there was physical activity in the hall that also learned us about the differences in the world and injustice. If there is one thing about this day that I would have liked to improve and do better next year, it would be to schedule the lectures that were held in the rooms so that you could plan when you could go there instead of waiting for the lecture to start over again, and not knowing when it would start so you might have to wait outside for 20-30 minutes doing nothing. I learned a lot both on this day and in the preparation weeks, and I felt that I got brighter about several topics including climate, freedom, pollution, justice and injustice, and the affects of oil spill. I had never heard about the oil spill in the Niger Delta until we started working with this year´s OD-project, and I am so glad that I got informed and got the opportunity to help out. I think that I have put a lot of effort in this project and really worked hard to get more informed and make the international day as good as possible. I made several people walk into the rooms I was in and I joined the lectures to show the other students that I wanted to participate my self and that I was engaged.

Link:

https://vieralleoljebarn.od.no

Hunger crisis

At this moment there is a huge hunger crisis in Africa. The countries that are affected are South Sudan, Yemen, Nigeria and Northern Somalia. These countries lies in the middle of Africa and has millions of inhabitants each. Nigeria is the one with the biggest amount of inhabitants of these four, but Yemen is the one with the most people in need. 20 million of the country´s 27,5 million inhabitants are in need and 17 million of them does not have access to enough food. The number of people in need in these countries are chilling and for each day that passes by, more and more people are in need and the number of deaths are rising.

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In Somalia, it has not been raining on three years. That has made the ground so dry that it has burst up and nothing will grow. Thousands of people have been forced to leave their homes to get to somewhere they can get food, and huge refugee camps have been made where the people can get food and water from help organizations. Trucks arrive with vital food to the people so they can live, and one person from each family lines up to get food to their family. But there is never enough food. The children are malnourished, and some of them are so malnourished that they will not live much longer.

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In South Sudan, there has been a civil war going on for years between a group called Dinka, which is the one the country´s president belongs to, and the group Nuerne. At the same time the country is going through a political and economical crisis and is also going through a massive drought. This makes it close to impossible growing things in the ground and it makes it hard feeding all the country´s inhabitants and animals. Bad sanitation and lack of clean water is also making it hard for the people to live. Many of them have been forced to leave their homes to seek for help from help organizations who has set up camps where they give the people medical help, water and food. There has been a drought for some time now and the crops has failed, but there is little doubt that this crisis would not have been as bad as it is if there were no war. 3.6 millions have fled their homes, and 6 out of 10 of the refugees are children.

Yida Refugee Camp Struggles To Cope With Population Swelling

In Nigeria, the country has been fighting against Boko Haram, an Islamic militant group who has been terrorized by their gruesome and violent actions against the country´s citizens. 10.7 million people are now in a humanitarian crisis because of their actions, and even though the militant group has been driven away now, millions of people are still affected of their actions. 7.1 million does not have access to food and 2.4 million have been forced to leave their homes and cities. In this country as well there is help organizations helping the citizens, giving them water and food, medical help and a place to stay.

Africa UN Security Council

In Yemen, the situation is just getting worse and worse. As I mentioned earlier in this text, 20 of out the country´s 27.5 million citizens are in need and 17 million of these does not have access to enough food. The reason why is because the country is in a war. A group of people with some support from the government attacked the country´s capital, took the control and led the president out of the country and to Saudi-Arabia in 2014. A couple of months later, Saudi-Arabia attacked them back, and since then the country has been in a constant war. Bombs are falling down from the sky while the lack of food is just becoming a bigger and bigger issue. According to FN, 18.8 million people are depending on help from other countries to live, and Norway gave Yemen 212 million NOK this year to help the citizens in this teared up country. Thousands of people have been killed during the war, but thousands has also died because of hunger and malnutrition.

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HOW CAN WE HELP?

While millions of people are starving to death and being forced to escape their homes to save their lives, I am sitting in a couch in my home eating and drinking whenever I want to and whatever I want to. I live a comfortable life where I have endless options, access to food and clean water, I never go to bed hungry or thirsty, and I am healthy. There is many people who lives a comfortable life just like me, people with access to the vital things in live and money to life their life. I think that we have a responsibility. We are lucky living those lives we are and having all the options that we do, we should therefor share our fortunes with those who are not as lucky as we are. There is many ways you can help, and the easiest is to donate money to a charity organization helping the people who is in need. I challenge you to donate 5 nok every time you feel the slightest of hunger or every time you feel a bit thirsty, because then you for a second think of every person who does not have the option to eat whenever they are hungry and drink whenever they are thirsty. If you want to take a bigger step and help more, you can contact the help organizations and join them on their work for people in need.

A STORY ABOUT HUNGER AND ESCAPE

I have read the short story The Ultimate Safari by Nadine Gordimer, and it made a great impact on me. The overall theme of the story was hunger and people in need. People who had been forced to escape their own homes because of bandits who took everything they had so they were left with no food, animals and not even a roof on their houses. To survive they had to walk for days to get to a refugee camp where they could be safe and get help and food. The story is about a little family consisting of 3 children. Their father were forced to go in the army and their mother vanished when she was going to get oil for her family. The children where then left alone with no food and no one to take care of them until one day their grandparents came to look after them. They took them with them on the escape to the refugee camps so they would survive and continue living. This story is fiction, but it still tells, more or less, the same story as the lives many Africans are living today and their situation.

Links:

Arafat (1) dør av sult. Nå kan millioner følge etter October 15th 2017, Harald Berg Sævereid

QUICK FACTS: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE SOUTH SUDAN CRISIS February 23rd 2017, Kelly Montgomery

South Sudan’s Hunger Crisis July 1st 2015, Jane Harkness

NATO’s War Of Resources Is Causing A Humanitarian Crisis In West Africa March 20th 2017, Eric Draitser 

Verden lukker øynene for katastrofen i Jemen April 25th 2017, Hans-Kristian Rangnes

Starvation stalks Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Yemen April 11th 2017

PLANTING PEACE RESPONDS TO SOUTH SUDAN’S HUNGER CRISIS May 5th 2014, Aaron Jackson

 

 

In the shadow of an entire world

Today, we had a visit from a woman from West Sahara. Her name was Asria Mohammed, and her story brought a great impression on me. She is a refugee from West Sahara, the last remaining African colony. She was born and raised in a refugee camp in Algeria, and she has never taken a foot step in her own country. The country her parents were born and raised in, the country her heart belongs to. She talked about the conflicts that is going on in the area of West Sahara and the situation today. She told us about her childhood and how it was growing up in a refugee camp and how she ended up in Norway.

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Asria grew up in a refugee camp in Algerie with her family and 165 000 other refugees from West Sahara. The refugees lives depends on help from organizations to get food and medicine, and Norway has given 5 million NOK to the refugee camp through an organization. The refugees lives in tents and both girls and boys have the right to go to school at the camp. Almost everyone at the camp can read and write. There is only primary school at the camp, so when they finish primary school they have to travel for three days through the desert to get to north of Algerie to continue studying. They stay at the school the entire year and only see their family at the two months break before a new school year starts. A lot of the people at the refugee camp has a higher education, but they can´t work in the West Sahara or Algerie, so they have to go back to the camp. Asria got a higher education, and in the end of 2011 she came to Norway to study. Very few people in the camp can get abroad, so she calls herself “one of the lucky ones”. She now lives in Norway and fights for her home-country to be heard and get their independence back. She hopes for a better future for West Sahara and for the country to be free.

As said, West Sahara is the last remaining African colony. The UN and the world leaders helped all the other African colonies to get their independence back, and as you can see on the map below, there were a lot of colonies in Africa back in 1945. But still today, 70 years later, there is still one more colony left. The UN and the world leaders have failed helping West Sahara. They have been left behind in the shadow, almost forgotten. If you ask someone about West Sahara, the chance for them to not know anything about it and it´s existence is huge. So now, let´s get educated about the country and it´s situation. According to Asria, the reason why the media is not covering the situation in West Sahara is because the Sharawis does not use violence and only has peaceful demonstrations. They are not interesting enough for the media and they are therefor not being written about.

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“It is okay to grow up as a refugee, it is okay to grow up in a tent, but what´s not okay is that my country has been forgotten and left behind.” 

West Sahara was a Spanish colony until they pulled out in 1975, and after that Morocco and Mauritania suddenly invaded West Sahara with guns and fires. They claimed the country as their own as they meant it belonged to them. Mauritania pulled out in 1979, and there was an on-going war between Morocco and the liberation movement group Polisario from 1975-1991. Then they finally signed the agreement of peace and the war ended. Morocco now controls almost the entire area while Polisario controls 1/4 of the area. Morocco has built a 2500 km long wall which divides the country into two pieces; the western part which is controlled by Morocco and the eastern part which is controlled by Polisario. The wall is protected with some of the worlds biggest minefields, and it is impossible to cross. It has been called a crime against humanity, because it divides the Saharan people and their country.

moroccan-wall-26No human and no country should ever be forgotten. The world should stay together, helping each other out in situations like this and supporting one another. But unfortunately for West Sahara; they do not have many on their side helping them getting their country and their independence back. Help spreading the information about West Sahara and help the refugees getting their homes back.

Links:

http://biomesbymk.weebly.com/desert.html

http://saih.no/trondheim-blogg/2015/04/13/vest-sahara-afrikas-siste-koloni-2/

https://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vest-Sahara

http://www.amusingplanet.com/2017/03/moroccan-wall-longest-minefield-in-world.html

http://universitas.no/nyheter/60458/politiet-kaster-murstein-pa-barn

 

 

 

Girls are worth the investment.

Girl rising is a movie which follows 9 girls from Haiti, Nepal, Ethiopia, India, Egypt, Peru, Cambodia, Sierra Leone, and Afghanistan on their journey to education. It was released in 2013 and directed by Richard E. Robbins, and it may be one of the most powerful movies ever made of girls and education. All these girls are girls who do not take education for granted, because they are not being prioritized over boys to get an education where they live. In many of these stories, the girls have been forced to work while their brothers and the men in their family get an education and a job. All these girls are hard-working girls wanting to get equality and education, they want to get educated and earn money instead of working at home doing dishes, cleaning and cooking all day long.

Girl Rising Photo #1

80% OF ALL TRAFFICKING VICTIMS ARE FEMALE

The story that made the greatest impression on me was the story about Suma from Nepal. Her family was poor, and when she was six years she was forced into bonded laboring. It was her parents who sold her to a master so she could be a kamlari, and they could earn money. While she moved from master to master being treated badly, beaten, abused and doing hard work, her brother was sent to school. Her parents had been kamlaries too, and since her family was poor, it had become a tradition in her family.

WE MUST SET HER FREE

After being a kamlari for 5 years, she moved to her third master. It was not as bad there as  with the previous masters, because there was a teacher there who ended up changing her life; he took her to a night class and learned her to read and write. The night class was arranged by social workers for girls like her; kamlaries. They started talking about being a kamlari and at that moment, they realized that it was slavery. The teachers from the night class started going from house to house,  trying to make the masters let their kamlaries free. Suma’s master would not let her free, but the teacher came back every day to tell him that he was breaking the law and that he should let her go free. And in the end, he did. He let her go back home to her mother and father, and now she is her own master. She began writing songs and sings to get through the days when she was working as a kamlari, and now she uses the songs to free other girls from working as kamlaries.

IT WAS SUCH A NORMAL THING IN THE SOCIETY THAT SUMA SAID “HOW WILL YOU LIVE WITHOUT A MASTER?”

GIRLS ARE WORTH THE INVESTMENT

I think the phrase “One girl with courage is a revolution” is as true as it can possibly be. This movie showed girls living in difficult situations all over the world and that education played an important role in their life. The movie also showed a lot of statistics which told us how much it would help if more girls got an education. It said, that there is 33 million fewer girls than boys in primary school worldwide, and that is a scary number.

I definitely found myself getting lost in their stories. The way the stories were told were so powerful and raw, and everything was very exposed as the producers did not hesitate to hide anything. This made the movie extremely powerful. It felt real, and you got so close to the characters that it almost made you sad when their stories were done told. It made me feel like I could put myself in their shoes.

IN ONE YEAR, 150 MILLION GIRLS ARE VICTIMS OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE

I can not empathize with these girls due to the fact that I live in such a high developed country as Norway where education and freedom is equal to all, no matter where you come from and where you live. However, it is very easy for me to sympathize, especially because I am a girl and because human rights are close to my heart.

There are a lot of messages being given in this movie, especially for those who are not already familiar with this issue. Many people might not be aware of all the differences in our society in the world today, or at least how big they are. This movie informs the people and really brings up the truth about reality. Many people are still in denial about some events that are happening in the world, and the tragic truth about how young girls and women live in different parts of the world, being seen as less worth than men.

STAND UP FOR YOUR RIGHTS

In summary, I would really recommend this documentary to everyone, both youth and elders. It is a strong movie showing the brutal reality for many women and girls in the world today, and I believe that everyone should be grateful for what they have in life. Although school is not free in over 50 countries, these girls took the chance to stand up for themselves not knowing what the consequences would be and if they would make it. This movie shows that fighting for your rights and standing up for yourself is very important, as you are the master of your own life.

India_Cropped

Sources:

http://www.globaleducationfund.org/blog/2017/5/29/access-girl-rising

http://www.rocofilms.com/film.php?code=GRIS 

http://girlrising.com

http://amara.org/nb/teams/girlrising/