The Digital Conversationalist

Andrea T Edwards

#71 Weekend reads – will we heed the lessons of the last two decades?

It’s a time for reflection, as well as hope, that we will heed the lessons from the mistakes made since 9/11 – a moment that upended our word 20 years ago. One observation this week is, many are frustrated by the focus on 9/11, when there are so many other stories of devastation in our past that do not get the attention this moment does.

I completely understand this way of thinking – especially for those outside of America – however, the significance of this moment for the world, and what has happened since, for me, is really why we must pay attention.

Of course, the first people we must be conscious of are those who lost loved ones that day, many were children at the time, now adults, and they have grown up without parents. There are so many stories from that time. Painful, hard stories.

Most of us old enough in 2001, remember exactly where we were this day. It was a deeply powerful moment that shook us to our core, and it’s a moment that changed the world. Equally, with the Afghanistan War ending in the last few weeks, and the chaos surrounding it, this anniversary feels even more important.

In the content I’ve been consuming this week, for the first time, left and right leaning media are not showing the divisions we expect. They are very aligned. Please keep an eye out for a series of deeper reads below, discussing what was gained, but mostly, what was lost.

The terrorists we went to war to defeat are stronger than ever, because every bomb dropped created more recruits. Every mistake made fed into their ideologies. The failures are being discussed in detail, as well as the early decisions made in fear, anger and outrage, with few dissenting. It was a time for revenge and the blood lust was high! George W. Bush is quoted many times as being driven by blood lust. Not a stable leadership foundation for war.

Arrogance too. Comments made at the time – your history starts now – completely ignoring the rich history of Afghanistan and it’s more recent wars, which clearly demonstrated no country could conquer it. Our leaders at the time underestimated the enemy completely.

The intelligence failures that lead to 9/11, and the global divisions it created afterwards, especially when the new Iraq war started – you’re either with us or against us. Does anyone still call them freedom fries?

The many forms of disrespect towards Afghanis, and the insidious infiltration of the enemy into the coalitions ranks, making unity impossible between Afghanistan and it’s “conquerors.” The lawlessness of the war constantly justified, including Guantanamo Bay, which was the final straw for the Middle East. America’s credibility as The Good Guy was gone, and it was too late for Obama to get it back. The damage was done.

I definitely believe it’s a poignant moment to reflect and consider how do we can change paths from here, versus continuing as we have for the past two decades? Because what has been achieved?

Trillions spent, the Taliban back in power, fear on the ground, and women, LGBTIQA and minority groups living in fear. You have to wonder, is this whole sorry affair enough of a lesson to heed? Or will we continue with endless wars?

I recommend Afghanistan Was a Ponzi Scheme Sold to the American Public and 9/11 was a test. The books of the last two decades show how America failed.If you want to watch an overview of the history of Afghanistan, Iraq, the Taliban, the history before 9/11 and the politics of that moment, I can definitely recommend The Turning Point on Netflix.

Much else going on in the news this week. Dig in and get up to date.

Friend’s content and sometimes mine

ISABELLA AKSHAY Sicilian & Mediterranean culture, cuisine and travel my wonderful friend Isabella Akshay is a fabulous cook and she’s just launched a new Website. You can sign up and get a weekly email with new recipes. I am often looking for recipe inspiration, so check it out.

In Conversation – Pravin Shekar – Outlier Marketing – two legends, Pravin Shekar and Lindsay Adams, discussing how you can sell without selling. It’s a great listen and you will be entranced with Pravin’s joyous laugh. Always makes me smile.

Slip Away – one of my dearest friends is such an amazing talent. Justine Wahlin is a singer/songwriter and I want everyone to know how amazing she is. Have a listen and if you like it, please support her.

22 lifestyle changes we can all make to contribute to a better world and finally, thrilled to do this podcast with Susanna Hasenoehrl, Tim Wade and Michelle Mouille. This is the first and we’ll be releasing another in two weeks, going through individual actions we can all take to live in harmony with nature. If we can encourage everyone to do their part, we start moving towards massive change in the world. Don’t feel helpless.

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Content to read

And here’s the content I’ve been reading this last week. Scan the headlines, read the ones that jump out at you, read or watch them all. Knowledge is power, and global knowledge is even more powerful.

20th Anniversary 9/11 and Afghanistan

PhD, Master’s degree ‘not valuable’, says Afghanistan education minister Munir

9/11 anniversary: Biden calls for unity as US remembers attacks

The summer before 9/11

9/11 was a test. The books of the last two decades show how America failed.

Taliban’s quest for legitimacy and India’s Quad option

Five lessons learned (or not) since 9/11

How 9/11 Turned America Into a Half-Crazed, Fading Power

Afghan Special Forces commander faced race against time to flee

Afghanistan: Taliban break up women’s rights protest in Kabul tks Karsten Warnecke

Ashraf Ghani: ‘I apologise that I could not make it end differently’

How the US created a world of endless war

Afghan women to be banned from playing sport, Taliban say

Old men of ‘good character’ can teach women in Afghan universities

Taliban Unveil New Afghan Government

Resistance leader says open to peace talks with Taliban

Afghanistan Was a Ponzi Scheme Sold to the American Public

Afghanistan’s Paralympians escape the Taliban with Australia’s help to make their mark in Tokyo

The Women Burning Their Degree Certificates

Afghanistan: Fresh fighting in final anti-Taliban stronghold

Climate Crisis / 6th Mass Extinction      

Earth’s tipping points could be closer than we think. Our current plans won’t work tks Sue Adams

More than 200 health journals call for urgent action on climate crisis

Solar startup born in a garage is beating China to cheaper panels

Special Report on The Ocean and Cryosphere In A Changing Climate tks Susanna Hasenoehrl

Conservationists celebrate arrival of eastern quoll joeys at Barrington Tops breeding facility

World’s biggest machine capturing carbon from air turned on in Iceland

Northern hairy-nosed wombats are back from the brink after dropping to just 35 in the 1980s                            

Supervolcano eruptions appear to be much more likely than previously thought

Vulnerable nations call for ’emergency pact’

Logging of WA native forests to be banned under state budget plan unveiled by Mark McGowan

ESG investment funds rife with greenwashing

Billions are pouring into the business of decarbonisation

Climate change solution could come from ‘electrifying everything’, Australian inventor Saul Griffith says tks Warwick Merry

Australia warned climate crisis will ‘wreak havoc’ on economy if coal isn’t phased out

Climate change: Massive Attack gig data to cut live music impact

New York City was never built to withstand a deluge like the one Ida delivered. It showed.

‘The climate crisis is here’ declares Biden as US is ravaged in one week by hurricane, floods and wildfires

In the Amazon, the World’s Largest Reservoir of Biodiversity, Two-Thirds of Species Have Lost Habitat to Fire and Deforestation

Australian Climate Technology Community tks Susanna Hasenoehrl


Biden Boosts Vaccine Requirements for Large Employers, Federal Workers to Combat Covid-19

The Coronavirus Is Here Forever. This Is How We Live With It.

Howard Stern Tells Anti-Vaxxers Who Catch Coronavirus: ‘Go F**k Yourself’

Grim satellite images show Australia’s Covid restrictions from the sky

New U.S. vaccine requirements draw praise, skepticism and outrage.

Fury as Covid crisis hits Australia’s Aboriginal communities

WHO discusses strengthening health emergency security systems with South-East Asia member countries

Overcrowded Aboriginal Housing Highlighted as Australia Races to Help COVID-19-Hit Outback Town

Covid denier filmed coughing on fellow customers at grocery store in Nebraska

Ivermectin infertility story correction: FDA rejects 2011 Nigeria study

14,176 new Covid cases, 228 more deaths

World Health Organization forecasts 25% fewer Covid vaccines for the world this year than earlier hoped

New Studies Find Evidence Of ‘Superhuman’ Immunity To COVID-19 In Some Individuals tks Tori Allen 

Toss the Clorox Wipes, Stock Up on Masks to Be Safe at Work

Bangkok set for November reopening

New normal tourism may see foreign and local tourists segregated at Pattaya tourist attractions

Victoria Covid-19 update: 76 new cases; Andrews says it’s a ‘pandemic of the unvaccinated’ – video

The Masks Were Working All Along tks Lisa L3?

Health Officials Advise White House to Scale Back Booster Plan for Now

Global Politics

Has Covid ended the neoliberal era?

Canada federal election: Key takeaways from the debate

Companies Who Donated to Co-Sponsors of Texas Abortion Bill Revealed

How the hell is Angus Taylor still a thing? tks  Phillipa Edwards

Business and technology

UK trade with EU falls sharply as Brexit and Covid drive down exports

Food sharing app OLIO raises $43M Series B, as the world switches on to the food waste crisis tks Susanna Hasenoehrl

CEO Ridiculed for Raising Minimum Wage to $70K Has the Last Laugh

Twitter to label ‘good’ bot accounts

An ‘Internet apocalypse’ could ride to Earth with the next solar storm, new research warns

Office Occupancy Sputtered in August as Delta Variant Foiled Return-to-Work Hopes

High Court finds media outlets are responsible for Facebook comments in Dylan Voller defamation case tks Jenni Thorman

Choose Love: Gifts With Heart

LinkedIn is scrapping its Stories feature to work on short-form video tks Chris J Reed

Creating meaningful experiences this peak season

Bitcoin crashes on first day as El Salvador’s legal tender

Soros Calls BlackRock’s China Investment a ‘Tragic Mistake’

You’re Right! You Are Working Longer and Attending More Meetings tks Andrew Psarianos

Social issues (#BlackLivesMatter) and humanity

What were the flashes of light seen during Mexico’s recent earthquake?

How to forgive someone and the health benefits of forgiveness, both mental and physical tks Ruchi Singh

Mexico decriminalises abortion in landmark ruling

As Abortion Rights Expand, the U.S. Joins a Handful of Telling Exceptions

Top US court halts Texas execution of inmate seeking pastor’s touch

I Am So F**king Tired

Kids Are Getting the Wrong Message About Happiness. Here’s What You Need to Tell Them Samantha Gayfer

What If We Stopped Pretending? tks Robert Kirubi

Paris attacks 2015: Accused complains of conditions

How Life Became Endless, Terrible Competition tks Claude Calleja

Australian bush rescue: Mother’s reunion with boy lost for four days

A Generation of American Men Give Up on College: ‘I Just Feel Lost’ tks Denise Chai

Simone Biles Has a Message for Online Haters Who Would Call Her a Quitter

Texas Private School Hands Out Handmaid School Uniforms

Men are marched out of prison camps. Then corpses float down the river

What’s the best age gap in a relationship? tks Sue Adams

Passion, humour, history

Molly the magpie and Peggy the dog are a ‘real-life Winnie the Pooh and Piglet story’

Rebel with a million-dollar cause: Wilson donates $1m to theatre that gave her a start tks Willie Wahlin

Steve From ‘Blue’s Clues’ Returns With 2-Minute Message That Has Everyone Crying

Follow a Couple’s Daring Escape From Slavery in the Antebellum South

Stunning and Unique Golden Treasure Hoard Found In Denmark

ABBA – I Still Have Faith In You tks David Lim

Let me know what jumped out at you? Or share with me what you’re reading? I love that!



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