This paper argues that equality in the right to vote in electoral politics alone cannot ensure the actual empowerment of the minority, although this is a necessary step in the process. Legal and institutional frameworks for empowerment are also necessary for minority groups, like the Munda, to gain ground in the assertion of their rights and equitable access to government resources. The democratisation that began in 1991 after the long year of military rule provided universal suffrage. However, this benefited only a fraction of ‘elites' among the Munda, while others remained marginal to the political process and were exploited as a mere ‘vote bank' by the powerful Muslim leaders and Munda ‘elites.' Since 2007, there have been several initiatives by the government to establish institutional frameworks for minority and poor people to demand their share of state benefits based on the principle of equity. This paper describes how these institutions have shaped local politics and the everyday lives of Munda in the villages. There is emerging a new ‘public culture' focused on creating a desirable political community, based on the concepts of ‘right,' ‘equality' and ‘fairness' at the local level.
In Karamoja, northeastern Uganda, which borders Sudan and Kenya, the inflow of automatic rifles from neighboring Sudan and from Ugandan government troops began in the 1970s, through exchange and raiding. The pastoral Karimojong, Jie, Dodoth, Tepes, and Pokot have a history of shifting alliances and low-intensity conflict (LIC) revolving around cattle raiding using guns. The Ugandan government has disarmed the pastoral peoples in the past, and it began a new disarmament program, which these people call ‘harvesting guns,' in 2001. This has resulted in an arms imbalance among groups, an increase in raids by groups that still possess guns, and many refugees from the disarmed groups. In addition, the forcible disarmament involves cordon and search tactics and torture in the army barracks. This paper examines the sequence involved in implementing the disarmament program in Karamoja and describes the essentialist frame that justifies the state dominating the pastoral peoples of the Karamoja, using physical violence combined with politics, administrative measures, and the military, and how their cooperation tragically leads the local people to a critical predicament. It also describes the history of the inflow of automatic rifles and their current use in the society. It is elucidated how “othering” poses an unjust threat to the daily lives of the pastoral peoples and has existential effects, and proposes recommendations to improve the disarmament sequence.
Mangrove forests have decreased worldwide in recent decades with land-use changes in coastal areas, which have converted mangrove forests into industrial, aquaculture, and agriculture areas. It has been argued that the decrease in mangrove forests has been affected by the economies of developed countries, but that economic development cannot be restrained to preserve the livelihoods of people in developing countries. Therefore, both “mangrove conservation” and “preservation of local livelihoods” are needed. This study characterised the relationships between mangrove forest and human activity under the influence of an outside economy. Batam Island, Indonesia, is near Singapore and has been affected by Singaporean industries and developed as an important site for industrialisation. We focused on the utilisation of mangrove forests by local people and the influence of a foreign economy. Our results suggested that mangrove charcoal production is a model activity that maintains the livelihood of local people at an appropriate level without affecting the mangrove forests of Batam Island.
This article aims to clarify the geographical transformation of Arab media and understand contemporary Arab media dynamics with a focus on satellite channels. After the 1970s, many Arab media publishers, initially operating in Europe, became influential actors in the Arab media scene. Since then, Europe has been regarded as a harbor for the freedom of speech. These media with headquarters outside of the Arab world, mainly in Europe, are referred to as ‘offshore media.' The offshore media phenomenon and its consequence, the geographical division of Arab media discourse between the Arab world and Europe, were regarded as an essential characteristic of Arab media. However, after the mid-1990s, the development and proliferation of satellite television prompted the return of Europe-based Arab media companies, particularly satellite channels, to Arab countries, and this geographical division was dissolved. Now, most of the pivotal Arab satellite channels broadcast not from Europe but from within the Arab world. Importantly, in accommodating these previously Europe-based media channels (and a number of newcomers), a phenomenon called the ‘media city' has played an important role. Some consider these media cities as the new harbors for freedom of speech, an alternative to the role previously played by Europe. This article will trace the geographical transformation of Arab media historically, with particular focus on the decline of offshore media and the rise of the media cities. Furthermore, through the analysis of three media cities in Egypt, Jordan, and the UAE, this article will suggest that the media city can function not only as a substitute for Europe, but also as a key device for promoting and maintaining the diversity and multiplicity of contemporary Arab media.