Transform is presenting the seminar «Underreported realities» in cooperation with journalist Øystein Windstad. We invite strong, brave and independent journalists and individuals who dedicate themselves to shedding light on conflicts, injustices, social issues and violations of human rights around the world. Often putting their own life on the line! These conflicts don’t necessarily make it to the frontpage news or set the political agendas, but they deserve to be and the reason why we choose to shed light on them.
The title was coined by one of Norway’s foremost digging journalists Erling Borgen. This year we get reports from Libya, Afghanistan, Burkina Faso and Norway.
The political scientist and historian is a former professor with Institutt for Fredsforskning (Prio) and has released a number of books and articles on security policies, terrorism and geopolitics. In 2018 he published the book «The Libyan War – how retorics and deception destroyed a national state». Tunander shed critical light on how mass media was used by the intelligence services of the parties behind the military operations of 2011. The scientist writes: «News agencies and political leaders in the US, France and Great Britain reported on an upcoming massacre in Benghazi, a new Rwanda. Today we know this was a lie and that the US intelligence agencies were aware of this». Tunander has done extensive research on so called psychological operations identified by how a nation’s intelligence service use mass media to change the populations’s perception and opinion. He has studied operations from the Cold War up until today.
The Brazilian documentary film maker has made movies about anything from the lives of sherpas in the Himalayas to farmers fighting against large agricultural consolidations in Burkina Faso. Lee has lived and worked in Syria, Jemen and Tunisia. And she was on one of the first ships who tried to break the blocade of Gaza in 2010. Her pictures from the boarding were published around the world when nine activists were killed by the Israeli navy. The director has also funded the organization Cultures of Resistance Network where people who want to use art and culture to improve peace and tolerance can gather. Iara Lee stands out with her work on forgotten conflicts through her work on refugees in West-Sahara and on the Xingu-people’s struggle to survive in the Brazilian jungle when modern society gets ever closer.
The retired officer and Commodore claims the government has broken one of the main principles in Norwegian Security Policy post WW2. He has criticized the decision to have American soldiers stationed in Norway and doubts the argument it improves the national security. He is also critical of the general downsizing of the armed forces. He is a former fellow with Norsk Utenrikspolitisk Institutt (NUPI), has published a number of books on the Armed Forces and was a member of the Defense Policy Committee.
The award winning British journalist has revealed how the American Special Forces killed a number of innocent civilians in Afghanistan and then tried to cover it up. The results can be seen in the critically acclaimed documentary Dirty Wars. As a journalist he’s also had quite the journey from being a reporter with the tabloid The Sun to working as a NATO information officer in Afghanistan. He’s currently with The Times and is writing a book about his experiences in Afghanistan.