Deforestation and climate change have worsened flooding along the Brahmaputra river in India, breeding competition and conflict for higher land. Flooding’s economic devastation has also led to an uptick in the trafficking of girls for sex and brides. Read the story from Pulitzer Center grantee Carl Gierstorfer. Image by Carl Gierstorfer. India, 2013.
We’re featuring our water-related projects for World Water Day.
Can India and Pakistan Share Water?
In a wide-ranging essay, Pulitzer Center grantee William Wheeler reflects on his global water reporting. An excerpt:
“In Pakistan, I saw how water crises are not self-contained. Several analysts and historians I talked to that summer believe the initial spark of the region’s most enduring conflict – the Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan over the Muslim region – was perhaps less about religious differences and more about control of the region’s vital water resources.
Kashmir is home to the headwaters of the Indus River, Pakistan’s primary water lifeline. India also harnesses some of the river’s flow for hydropower. But the fragile status quo that governs sharing of the river is under threat from booming population demands and the impacts of climate change. Both nations are racing to complete hydroelectric dams along the Kashmir rivers, elevating tensions. India’s projects are of such size and scope to worry Pakistan about water shortages at critical times and massive deluges at other times.”
We’re featuring our water-related reporting for World Water Day.
Pakistan cannot afford to be entering into an arms race with India. We can never match them, tank for tank, missile for missile, aircraft for aircraft or gun for gun. All we want is to regain the credibility of our deterrence.
said General Ehsan Ul-Haq, Former Director of Pakistan’s Inter-services Intelligence. He spoke to Senior Editor Tom Hundley as part of Tom’s Pulitzer Center project on India and Pakistan’s nuclear arms race. (Watch a video compilation of some of Tom’s interviews here and continue reading for a synopsis.)
India thinks Pakistan uses its nuclear capability as a shield to hide behind while allowing proxy extremist attacks on India. Both the US and India are concerned about what would happen to the nuclear weapons if Pakistan should fail as a state, but nuclear disarmament looks like a far-off prospect.
Rajah Mohan of the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi voices his concern by asking a question which he says no one has been able to answer for the last 20 years: “How does India change Pakistan army’s strategic calculus?”
“ Since the 9/11 attacks, preventing the world’s most dangerous weapons from falling into the hands of the world’s most dangerous actors — whether al Qaeda terrorists or Iranian mullahs — has understandably been America’s stated priority. Yet the gravest danger — not only for the region, but for the United States itself — may be the South Asian incarnation of a Cold War phenomenon: a nuclear arms race.” - Pulitzer Center Senior Editor Tom Hundley in Pakistan and India: A Race to the End (click to read the whole story). Image by Rizwan Tabassum/AFP/Getty Images.
We’re very proud and excited to announce the launch of a new and incredibly important project, Too Young to Wed: The Secret World of Child Brides, by world renown photographer Stephanie Sinclair.
In subsequent years I traveled to Nepal, Ethiopia, India and Yemen researching and photographing this issue for several publications, most recently for National Geographic. In almost every situation, I wanted to take the girl, throw her over my shoulder and get her out of there…
I hope people will hear the voices of these young girls, see these images and talk about what they have witnessed in this film. I believe those conversations will lead to actions on their behalf. There is a lot of work to be done on this issue, but change will come. It can be daunting, but it’s not impossible.
Take a moment to view powerful video above, and read more about her work: Too Young to Wed: The Secret World of Child Brides
At 6:45 am, Golf reported six more injuries and called again, frantically, for reinforcements. The company was now caught in a textbook ambush, with the Maoists occupying the raised ground and the CRPF pinned down in an open field, under fire, or so it seemed, from all sides. A Maoist machine-gunner on the top of a hill was picking off targets at will, even as guerrillas taking cover in shallow ditches and gullies threw grenades and petrol bombs at the hapless soldiers. Well-positioned Maoist snipers took aim at CRPF machine-gunners and communications specialists. Survivors from Golf Company later said they saw machine-gunners shooting from trees, with replacement fighters taking cover behind the trunks, ready to climb up in case the gunners were taken out.
At 7:45 am, Golf Company’s deputy commandant, Satyawan Yadav, made a phone call from the vortex of the ambush to say that his company had been completely surrounded—and then the phone went silent.
When reinforcements finally arrived from Chintalnar at 9:30 am, three and half hours after the first call for help, only seven badly injured troopers were still alive. The remaining 76 corpses had been arranged 15 to a pile, carefully stripped of their rifles, munitions, grenades, mortars and wireless sets. The Maoists, meanwhile, had laid their fallen comrades on makeshift stretchers and slipped back into the forests.
The citizen media video that inspired an Indian village to come out in support for gay rights.
Read more about the challenges gay people face around the world:
In Haiti, Jamaica, Istanbul, Nepal and many others members of the LGBTQI community face widespread discrimination, risk of violence and even death. As the global voices article linked above demonstrates, slow progress is being made but a lot of work remains.