Khan Younis
Opinion

Gaza reading list 2, February - June 2024

07/01/2024

   This reading list gathers articles and videos published between February and June 2024.
 

GomaJacob BurnsAnalysis

Too much Never Enough : Social Support at MSF

06/24/2024Jacob Burns

Looking at MSF programming today we see a variety of social support initiatives, as well as projects aimed at treating people in situations of socio-economic difficulty: programs for drug users in Iran, cash distributions for HIV and cancer patients in Malawi, protection and social support for migrants and refugees in Libya. However, the provision of social support is often seen as a marginal activity and there is debate about the appropriateness or relevance, or even the effectiveness, of such activities.
 
This paper by Jacob Burns on social support is divided in two parts. In the introduction “Practices and Motivations”, he suggests a rough outline of different ‘social’ problems that MSF has turned to and the moments at which it has done so, between the 1980s and the 2010s: street children and people living in slums ; Mission France ; Projects addressing human immunodeficiency virus, tuberculosis, and sexual and gender-based violence ; the responses to the Ebola epidemic in West Africa (2013-2015) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (2018-2019). The author argues that it is possible to break down the motivations for providing social support into three broad categories: to help achieve therapeutic success, to aid the effectiveness of our operations, to enhance the ‘well-being’ of the person.
 
The second part of the paper is a report of a field visit conducted in October – November 2023 to Goma, DRC. The visit was undertaken with an ethnographic approach: completing observations of the teams’ work with conversations with team members during which Jacob Burns tried to understand as much as possible their reasoning and motivations for the decisions they took. As the author himself says, this paper poses more questions than it provides answers: how do we judge what the ‘real’ needs of people are? What role giving money should have in the provision of humanitarian aid? What agency a person should have when receiving aid? To what extent MSF should work on the sources of the problems it is trying to address, rather than just their symptoms or consequences?

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Djibo Camp - Burkina FassoNisma LeboulInterview

What difficulties does MSF face in the Sahel?

06/24/2024Hamadoun Dicko

Following a series of coups d'état in recent years in Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso, the Sahel region is undergoing a major redefinition. In a context of high insecurity, what are the possibilities for accessing populations? What are the conditions under which our teams are operating, and can we do more? This interview with Hamadoun Dicko, who is in charge of access issues in the Sahel for MSF, was originally published association's website of MSF-France.

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Al ShifaMSFVideo

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict

04/16/2024

Six months after the events of October 7, the situation in Gaza is catastrophic. The population is trapped and threatened with starvation, while the possibility of a ceasefire is not guaranteed. In this context, how can we describe what is happening in Gaza? Rony Brauman is categorical: it is appropriate to talk about genocide. In this interview conducted by Elba Rahmouni, he offers a historical and political reading of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, looking at the reasons given by Israel to justify the siege of Gaza, the fate of prisoners and the usefulness of humanitarian law.

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Conferences

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Racisme et humanitaireIsabel Corthier Dossier

Racism and Humanitarian Action

02/03/2022Elba RahmouniMarc Le Pape

This Crash dossier gathers a selection of Crash publications published over the last twenty years: all of them, in different manners, tackle the themes of racism and humanitarian action. They also evoke the way discussions about racism have been addressed at Médecins sans Frontières. 

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Idomeni after the closing of the borderAlex Yallop/MSFDossier

Migrants / refugees

05/29/2018Elba Rahmouni

With the cold war over, refugees have lost their status as an instrument of western soft power, whereas with the economic crisis and terrorism, hostility towards migrants is increasing. Prevailing representations of migration movements are convincing a growing proportion of the European population that migrants are a threat and refugees a burden. This file contains a collection of publications (articles, opinion columns, blog articles, press releases, CRASH papers) from 1990 to date, focusing on two themes : 1° the dichotomy between hospitality policy and migration policy, 2° camps approached from a number of different angles.  

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(Re)discover

Plumpy’Nut is being handed out in Ndougoury village.Djerabe NdegrgarOpinion

Resale of therapeutic food: who benefits from demonising mothers?

12/30/2022Michel-Olivier Lacharité

This article was published on December 26th, 2022 on the Souk, the MSF associative website.
Accusing the mothers of malnourished children of being lawless fraudsters is a well-worn trope in malnutrition treatment programmes worldwide – and one that has resurfaced recently in Nigeria, stirred up by health workers and the media. These types of accusations obscure a series of tricky truths on the control of resources, the quality of malnutrition treatment programmes, and on the extreme precariousness in which many families live. We see all of this in northwest Nigeria’s Katsina state, where we are currently conducting the largest malnutrition programme in the history of Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF).

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