On the eve of the 20th anniversary of its establishment, the International Criminal Court needs to up its game

Kenneth Roth and Salil Shetty in Foreign Policy in Focus: Four years ago, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International—joining hundreds of others—urged the United Nations Security Council to send atrocity crimes committed in Syria to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for prosecution. Then, the conflict had already claimed 100,000 lives, overwhelmingly civilians. Today, the death…

Chipped rocks found in western China indicate that human ancestors ventured from Africa earlier than previously believed

Carl Zimmer in the New York Times: The oldest stone tools outside Africa have been discovered in western China, scientists reported on Wednesday. Made by ancient members of the human lineage, called hominins, the chipped rocks are estimated to be as much as 2.1 million years old. The find may add a new chapter to the…

The Enlightenment’s Cynical Critics

Katie Kelaidis in Quillette: Tribalism and slavery are as old as humanity. The very first human records are records of human bondage. Reports estimate that today 60 million people are held as slaves. While each one of these lives represents an unacceptable tragedy, not one occurs with the approval of law. And that is revolutionary.…

What Lynchings in 19th Century US Can Teach Us About ‘New India’

Asim Ali in The Wire: The word ‘lynching’, which has recently flooded our newspapers, has an American origin. It entered into popular American usage in the second half of the 19th century. At least 3,500 lynchings occurred in America between 1865 and 1920, mostly in Southern America during the period of black disenfranchisement and the enactment of racist Jim…