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Complexity in the Syria

Complexity in the Syria | AP Human Geography, WHS 2012-2013 | Scoop.it
A color-coded map of the country's religious and ethnic groups helps explain why the fighting is so bad.

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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 2, 2014 6:19 PM

This map shows tha tthere are an overwhelimg amount of Arabs especially in centeral Syria. And then on the coast lline it is mostly mixed with pink representing the overwhlming other majority.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 2, 2014 8:11 PM

It appears from this article that Syria is a complicated country. The map shows the different ethnic and religious groups of Syria, along with other groups, all of which live within a small area. Syria, along with other countries within the Middle East have been faced with one serious issue or another. Many different people live within a very small area; those people practice different religions and are ethnically and culturally different. Unfortunately, being different in this part of the world may get you killed.   

Paige Therien's curator insight, May 4, 2014 1:25 PM

Maps such as this one are very valuable when trying to understand conflict.  In Syria and the greater Levant area, unbalanced power and representation in politics is the result of many different religious and ethnic groups living in such close proximity each other, allowing conflict to become very invasive.

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Afghan Troops Get a Lesson in American Cultural Ignorance

Afghan Troops Get a Lesson in American Cultural Ignorance | AP Human Geography, WHS 2012-2013 | Scoop.it
Afghan troops are told that insulting behavior by Americans is an oversight, not a slight.

 

Cross-cultural interactions can be beautiful when immersed into a new cultural setting and the visitor learns to appreciate it.  Unfortunately, it can often lead to clumsy missteps that are born out of ignorance of a new guiding set of cultural norms.  Some missteps can lead to great laughter while others can be gravely insulting.  The United States military seeks to train U.S. soldiers about Afghan customs, but they are trying a new tactic as well to minimize these issues.  The U.S. military has prepared a cultural guide to teach the Afghan soldier that they work with about the curious customs that are part of social interaction in the United States but not considered offensive. 

 

Tags: culture, war, unit 3 culture, conflict.


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Charles Matley's comment, October 1, 2012 11:31 AM
Shows that the United States could use a higher quality education.
Rich's comment, October 3, 2012 1:28 PM
We could have used an idea like this quite a long time ago. The cultural bridges have already been burnt to the ground.
Kendra King's curator insight, February 27, 7:18 PM

I think the comparison to Vietnam at the start of the article shows just how little our culture learned last time. During the Kennedy administration, troops were given "guides" to inform them about the area as the article suggests. However, this "hearts and minds" strategy was a huge failure. So, what does the United States do? Send the army to a forghien country again  with "recommended readings" and superfine "video games." As a result, some are so offended they are killing American fighters. While I might think this a bit extreme, the US also came in the country in an welcomed manner to begin with. Furthermore, the west (overall) consistently looks down upon Middle East culture. Belittling a culture will eventually anger the people. It is common sense that is consistently overlooked. 

 

Something clearly needs to be done and while I think this strategy might not have immediate short term results, the military should continue on with the plan regardless. Currently, the tensions in the country are incredibly high. Clearly, what ever efforts the US put towards working with Afghanistan citizens came of as insincere. As such, people might just look at American's new attempt to work with them as a disingenuous effort. Furthermore, they might think calling it "ignorance," is just excusing Americans' actions. In the long term though, if done correctly, soldier's might actually learn to be more empathetic of the culture and more genuine so that the Afagni's might actually realize it all is just a "big misunderstanding" (there is a significant culture gap that will take time to learn) and not just laziness on the part of American's.    

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Roots of the Mali Crisis

January 19, 2013—The West African nation of Mali is making headlines after a wave of French military actions on Islamic extremist groups now controlling the northern part of the country. National Geographic Senior Writer Peter Gwin has...

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Araceli Vilarrasa Cunillé's curator insight, February 6, 2013 6:37 AM

La crisi propera no es deixa fer prou atenció als canvis geopolítics a l' Africa.

Emma Lafleur's curator insight, March 29, 2013 3:32 PM

   This video clip that is great for learning not only about the situation in Mali, but how history leads to the events of today and how much one country can affect another country.

   When Europe colonized  Africa they created borders that separated groups of people that should have stayed together, and they put different ethnic groups together that should have been separated. With this alone comes great conflict because ethnic groups and neighboring tribes that have had conflicts for years now have to operate under the same government somehow and no one is ever really happy so conflicts arise.

    Also, the Arab Spring broke out which brought on all these new ideas and opportunities for the people to revolt and change their country, and some of the people left Libya after the fall of Gadaffi and went to Mali bringing their weapons and anger with them. All of these events led to the Mali crisis today, and it is interesting to see how much one country affects another country and as a history major I am greatly interested in how the history of the country brings about the events of today.

Al Picozzi's comment, July 18, 2013 12:15 PM
The borders were randomly drawn without taking culture, language, beliefs of the native populations etc into account. However drawing borders along ethnic lines didn't work in Europe after WWI. Alot of ethnic minorities were in countires that did not feel welcome. That was one reason for WWII
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Younger Africa

Younger Africa | AP Human Geography, WHS 2012-2013 | Scoop.it
Across Africa, a continent where the average age is about 19, protests have flared against leaders who may have outstayed their welcome.

 

This interactive mapping feature compares two distinct data sets in an attempt to show that the two are correlated on the continent of Africa.  The base layer of this thematic map is demographic, noting how much of the overall population in a given country is under the age of 16.  The interactive feature with point data describes the political unrest or instability in that particular country. 

 

Questions to ponder: Does the cartographer 'convince' you that Africa's having a very young (globally speaking) demographic cohort led towards greater political instability?  Are there other factors worth considering?  What does this map and it's embedded data tell us?    

 

Tags: Africa, political, conflict, unit 4 political, states, governance, population, demographics, unit 2 population. 


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