Do unto yourselves more of what you would do unto others?

[ by Charles Cameron — IRA kills more Catholics, IS kills more Muslims ] . ** Is there anything we can learn from either one of these situations that would shed light on the other? Are there other instances of this pattern? How quickly can we take note of this effect in future, to benefit […] Read more »

Of blood and song

[ by Charles Cameron — what carves memory? blood is spilled, song carries grief and anger across centuries ] , One hundred years ago, Irish blood was spilled in the Easter Uprising of 1916, as Sinéad O’Connor & The Chieftains call us to remember in The Foggy Dew: As down the glen one Easter morn […] Read more »

Susan Hasler on Trump & Cruz, Yeats on 1916

[ by Charles Cameron — the self-examining word ] . Hasler‘s Getting the response to terrorism completely wrong — which goes after Trump and Cruz by name — was published tomorrow — it’s 11.58pm Sunday here in California. Yeats‘ poem remembers the Easter of 1916, a hundred years ago today. Read more »

Aesthetics of love & death

[ by Charles Cameron — relics of a catacombs martyr, St Valentine and more ] . ** There are times when the DoubleQuote format is confining, and the comparative method it is based on could be uswed effectively with more than two examples. Here consider also: The Tamil Tiger martyr Jenny, as discussed in a […] Read more »

JM Berger swiftly doubletweets Seamus Hughes

[ by Charles Cameron — coffee on the rocks with blarney ] . Seamus Hughes tweets: Dunkin donuts are hotspots of radicalization. Trust me, I have an anecdotal evidence. pic.twitter.com/pPyxRbVhqA — Seamus Hughes (@SeamusHughes) March 4, 2016 to which JM responds, rapidfire: .@SeamusHughes Yet again it's up to me to point out that this has […] Read more »

Behind the Lens: Photographing the President in 50 Countries

Today, President Obama visits Kenya — the 50th country he has visited during his Administration. It’s also my 50th country traveling with the President.

To mark the occasion, as I did when the President visited his 50th state, I chose one photograph from each country that we’ve visited.

Traveling abroad with the President is very different.

Often times, I am at the mercy of the host country for access. Some countries are more accommodating to me than others. I am lucky to have counterpart official photographers in many countries who are extremely helpful to me in this regard. I of course try to return the help to them when they visit the White House with their head of state.

We’re also rarely in any one country for more than a couple of days, which gives us only a partial glimpse of each place. And because of security, the sites we are able to visit are often limited too.

All that said, we’ve had the incredible opportunity to visit the Pyramids in Egypt, Stonehenge in the United Kingdom, the Great Wall in China, Petra in Jordan, and the Shwedagon Pagoda in Myanmar (Burma). (So I really shouldn’t complain too much.)

I hope you enjoy this gallery. And stay tuned — we’ll be adding a photograph from Kenya and additionally, Ethiopia, following his visit next week.

Afghanistan, 2012

Boarding Air Force One at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan, May 1, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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On the confounded confusion of religions!

[ by Charles Cameron -- Ireland and Israel are more Muslim than Saudi Arabia, while Gandhi was more Christian than Billy Graham -- non-obvious, but arguable? ] . ** The Irish Times yesterday ranked Ireland ‘the most truly Muslim country in the world’: The country in the world most faithful to the values of the [...] Read more »

Easter celebrations 3: the Middle East

[ by Charles Cameron -- third and last of three Easter posts ] . ** Voice of Russia reports: The Holy Fire has been descending in the Holy Sepulcher Church, in a small chapel called Kuvuklia, for more than one millennium. The famous Church Father St. Gregory of Nyssa is believed to be one of [...] Read more »

Christian cannibal: first the horror, then the meditation

[ by Charles Cameron -- you may not want to watch the video - read the text first, okay? ] . Here’s what the BBC-wallah said: The Christians were victims; now they’re on top. It’s a dangerous time to be Muslim. A charred and dismembered body is dragged through the streets. Christians have just killed [...] Read more »