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Eric Schewe

Eric Schewe

Eric Schewe holds a PhD in Modern Middle Eastern History from the University of Michigan and has taught history at Baruch College and Queens College. He has lived and worked as a journalist in Egypt beginning in 2004, and writes about the region on ericschewe.wordpress.com and @ericschewe.

Border between Mexico and US reaching into the pacific ocean

Border Walls are Symbols of Failure

From feudal fortresses to contemporary border barriers, walls have always offered more symbolic value than real protection.
From an advertisement for a model kit tie in for the film The Silent Star, also released as First Spaceship on Venus

Socialist Sci-Fi Reimagined the Future

The 1960 East German film The Silent Star provided a significant cautionary tale for the Cold War era.
An illustration of a TSA security checkpoint

Why Can’t the TSA Just Go on Strike?

The post-9/11 expansion of federal powers over transportation security was also an extension of power over the security workforce.
Security camera

The World’s New Private Security Forces

The global private market for security has brought with it the need for hiring, measuring, and monitoring security workers in unprecedented ways.
Kodak Brownie Starlet, 1957

How the Brownie Camera Made Everyone a Photographer

Eastman Kodak used folklore to sell a modern technology, and ended up creating new communities and forms of expressions along the way.
The Knightscope K5 Security Robot

Do Security Robots Signal the Death of Public Space?

A security robot targets the homeless, raising questions about whether private companies can expand their security detail to public spaces like sidewalks.
Factories Emitting Pollution

Why Climate Change Is a National Security Issue

Viewing climate change through a national security lens makes a certain amount of sense -- but it won't entirely solve the problem.

Can Universal Basic Income Achieve Economic Security?

A wealthy country like the United States needs a solution for improving the supply and fairness of work overall. Is universal basic income the way to go?
Yemen crisis children

Why Yemen Suffers in Silence

Yemen is suffering a major humanitarian crisis. How did the country get to such a precarious state, and why aren't Americans paying more attention?
declassified NSA poster

What Drives American Disenchantment with the NSA

The National Security Agency's surveillance of citizens flew under the radar for decades. Why is there now so much mistrust of the NSA?
ominous smartphone

How Pleasure Lulls Us into Accepting Surveillance

The domestication of surveillance technology has caused big legal and ethical implications for security on both a personal and a social scale.
Food security

Global Food Security: A Primer

World hunger is not caused by our inability to produce enough food. The problem arises because of the economic inequality that distorts food distribution.
Airport map Afghanistan

Why is the U.S. Military Occupying Bases Across Africa?

The U.S. occupation of Africa has become self-justifying. The U.S. military now must stay in Africa to protect the interests of the U.S. military in Africa.
Indonesian man smoking

Why Do So Many Indonesian Men Smoke?

Indonesia has the highest smoking rates in the world. Why? It might have to do with economic liberalization in the 1990s.
Aerial view of Riyadh downtown

Are Reforms Part of Saudi Arabia’s PR Campaign?

In September, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia announced to the world that it would begin licensing women to drive in 2018. Is it all part of a PR campaign?
Afghanistan colourful mountains

War Has Made Afghanistan’s $1 Trillion in Minerals Worthless

Developing rare earth mining in Afghanistan has been a potential objective since the USGS estimated the country had $1 trillion in mineral ore deposits.
Soldiers paying respect to Kim Il-sung

The Dilemma of Sanctions on North Korea

Recent diplomatic tension between America and North Korea seems bewildering, and not just because of the boasts and paranoia of Trump and Kim Jong Un.
Hurricane/Tropical Storm Harvey in Houston - August 27 2017

How To Recycle Half A Million Flooded Cars

Although a car seems like a long-term capital investment, it is only a crash or disaster away from becoming two tons of mass-consumer junk.
Great Mosque at Mecca

How European Empires Helped Shape the Hajj

Despite the Hajj's celebration of ascetic faith and brotherhood, there has always been plenty of profit made off the pilgrims traveling to Mecca.
NYC intersection

“Jay Walking” and the Fight for the Streets

Debates over the priorities of cars, public transit and "jay walking" are nothing new. There has long been a story class buried within the disagreements.
Sacred Cow plane

National Security and the Rise of American Air Power

Intending to rein in spending, the 1947 National Security Act reorganized the military establishment.
Cairo Tahrir Square

How Cassette Tapes Helped Muslim Revivalism

Modern conditions play a crucial role in religious revivalism. Cassette tapes have been crucial in the Muslim revivalism of the past 40 years or so.
Coptic Christians Egypt

Why Egypt’s Coptic Christians Face Rising Sectarianism

Egypt’s Coptic Christians supported President Abdelfattah al-Sisi's overthrow of the Muslim Brotherhood. Why do they still face discrimination?
Preet and Dalya Bharara

U.S. Attorneys and the Struggle for Justice

The U.S. Constitution’s system of checks and balances have made the judiciary President Trump’s key foe in his first 100 days. ...
big pharma

How Did Big Pharma Get Big?

One branch of the healthcare industry that receives particular opprobrium for its high costs in America compared to other countries is pharmaceuticals.