Tag: Denmark

Conn Hallinan’s 2016 ‘Are You Serious?’ Awards

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This year’s lowlights from world politics, the culture wars, and the military-industrial complex.

Each year Conn Hallinan gives awards to individuals, companies, and governments that make reading the news a daily adventure. Here are the awards for 2016.

The Golden Lemon Award had a number of strong contenders in 2016, including:

General Atomics for its MQ-9 Reaper armed drone, which has a faulty starter-generator that routinely shorts out the aircraft. So far, no one can figure out why. Some 20 were either destroyed or sustained major damage last year. The Reapers costs $64 million apiece.
Panavia Aircraft Company’s $25 billion Tornado fighter-bomber that can’t fly at night because the cockpit lights blind the pilot. A runner up here is the German arms company Heckler & Koch, whose G-36 assault rifle can’t shoot straight when the weather is hot.
The British company BAE’s $1.26 billion Type 45 destroyer that breaks down “whenever we try to do too much with them,” a Royal Navy officer told the Financial Times. Engaging in combat, he said, would be “catastrophic.”

Denmark Imprisons Danish Woman for Fighting Daesh with Kurds

A 23-year-old Danish woman who attracted international attention for joining the Kurds in battling Daesh has been imprisoned, stripped of her visa, and banned from international travel for 12 months by the Danish government.

Joanna Palani seemed a natural to attract international attention. The daughter of Iranian Kurds, Palani was born in a UN Iraqi refugee camp in 1993. In 2014, she dropped out of college, returning to her motherland to “fight for human rights for all people,” in her own words. Her father and grandfather were soldiers as well, and she has been operating firearms since the age of nine.

Peace Walks across all of Ghana

Civil society in Ghana has mobilised in large numbers to ensure that the 7th December elections will be fair and peaceful. Faith-based organisations, local NGOs, women’s groups, artists, sportspeople, and prominent Ghanaians have stood up to promote peace and solidarity in Ghana. This popular peace movement is not partisan and does not carry political messages – it is a celebration of democracy.

The Embassy of Denmark supports the work of the Christian Council of Ghana and the Office of the National Chief Imam. Together they are currently implementing the Interfaith Sensitisation Programme on Peace, where they reach out to the Ghanaian youth via different activities such as community/interfaith dialogues and Peace Walks. Dialogues and walks have been organised across five regions, including in Kumasi, Aflao, Wa, Bimbila, Tamale and Accra.

Danes revive heroic WWII-era practice of smuggling refugees to safety

About 100 Danes, young and old, stood outside Copenhagen City Court in the chilly seaside winds last Tuesday to show their solidarity with four activists alleged to have illegally assisted refugees in their trek across the waters from Denmark to Sweden.

While only two of the accused are Danish citizens, all are members of MedMenneskeSmuglerne, or “Those who smuggle thy neighbor” — an outgrowth of the more broad-based initiative Welcome to Denmark, which welcomes migrants and refugees into the country.

World’s Largest Drug Consumption Room Opens in Copenhagen

The world’s largest drug consumption room (DCR) has opened in Copenhagen, offering a safe and supervised environment for people to use illicit drugs.

The 1000 square-metre drug consumption room, named H17, officially opened in the Vesterbro district of the Danish capital on August 15. Staff say that the facility is providing a space for people who use “hard drugs” – most illicit substances apart from cannabis – safely, and without the risk of legal consequences.