• About Barbara Crossette

    Barbara Crossette is a fellow of the Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies at the Graduate Center of CUNY as well as the United Nations correspondent for The Nation. She is also a board member of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

    Previously, Crossette was the UN bureau chief for The New York Times from 1994 to 2001 and before that its chief correspondent in Southeast Asia and South Asia. She is the author of "So Close to Heaven: The Vanishing Buddhist Kingdoms of the Himalayas," "The Great Hill Stations of Asia" and a Foreign Policy Association study, "India: Old Civilizations in a New World."

    Crossette won the George Polk award for her coverage in India of the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi in 1991 and the 2010 Shorenstein Prize for her writing on Asia.

    UN Peacekeeping Upgrades Its Reactions to Conflicts and Adds Surveillance Tools

    by  • November 11, 2014 • Africa, Peace and Security, UN Agencies, UN Peacekeeping • 
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    Ladsous in helicopter

    By the time United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon named a panel in October to review peacekeeping comprehensively for the first time in more than 14 years, innovations in technology and intelligence-gathering to make UN missions more effective had already been introduced by the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations. The strategic and tactical changes, some...

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    Child Brides as Slave Labor: The UN Is Conflicted

    by  • November 3, 2014 • Gender-Based Violence, Human Rights, Human Trafficking, UN Agencies, Women's Issues • 
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    Narmada, above, Narmada was supported by the Mamidipudi Venkatarangaiya Foundation (MVF), a member of Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage.

    During the six years that Gulnara Shahinian served as the first United Nations special rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, she said on numerous occasions, as well as in a 2012 report to the General Assembly, that girls forced to marry against their will end up being condemned to a life of servility and...

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    Islamists Systematically Destroying World Heritage Sites in Syria and Iraq

    by  • October 29, 2014 • Middle East, UN Agencies • 
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    The Syrian Directorate General of Antiquities and Museums has been assessing damage to various sites, including the ancient city of Basra, a World Heritage Site. The Omari Mosque, above, has suffered extensive damage.

    Beyond the horrific executions, the deadly assaults on Christian and Yazidi communities and the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people fleeing towns to avoid their terror, fighters of the Islamic State movement sweeping through Syria and Iraq are deliberately demolishing or damaging ancient historical sites in some of the world’s oldest towns and...

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    A Voice From Nigeria Pleads for an Africa Managed by Africans

    by  • October 15, 2014 • Africa, Development, Health and Population • 1 Comment
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    Lagos

    Preparing for next year, when United Nations member governments will meet to grade the Millennium Development Goals and agree on a new set of benchmarks for 2015-2030, an important part of the discussion is focusing on Africa, the continent recognized as having great unrealized potential that is still unmet. Kingsley Chiedu Moghalu, a former...

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    Shadowy Militias Spread Terror in Rural Myanmar

    by  • October 7, 2014 • Asia, Governance, Myanmar, UN Office on Drugs and Crime • 
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    Wirathu

    He is a young man whose name or exactly where he lives in the Burmese countryside cannot be published because he fears retribution when he returns to Myanmar from a visit to the United Nations headquarters. Speaking in English, learned from books and private tutors, he details the harsh treatment people away from major...

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    Lakhdar Brahimi: When Will the US Learn From Its Mistakes in the Middle East?

    by  • September 26, 2014 • Asia, Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Middle East, US Foreign Relations • 
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    US Navy Super Hornets prepare to launch from  USS George H.W. Bush in the Arabian Gulf, to conduct strikes against the terrorist group ISIS in Syria, Sept. 22, 2014. ROBERT BURCK/US NAVY

    More than two decades of American naivety or misunderstanding of Arab and other regional societies, astonishingly poor planning and post-conflict miscalculations that undercut claims of success have left a deep mistrust and lack of confidence in the United States in the Middle East, in the view of the United Nations’ most experienced and savvy...

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    As Africa’s Population Growth Explodes, Its Children Lose Out

    by  • September 9, 2014 • Governance, Health and Population, Refugees • 7 Comments
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    Malian Boy

    Among a clutch of new studies surveying the fate of children globally in 2014, a year that may be remembered as the most violent and catastrophic in more than half a century, Unicef has looked into the future of Africa and found that an unexpectedly persistent population boom is not only robbing children of...

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    Khmer Rouge Leaders, Recently Sentenced to Life Imprisonment, Face New Genocide Charges

    by  • August 8, 2014 • Asia, International Justice • 
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    Nuon Chea

      The highest panel of judges on the joint United Nations-Cambodian government tribunal on crimes of the Khmer Rouge regime have cleared the way for a second trial of two top leaders of the Communist movement that devastated the country almost four decades ago. The new trial, completely separate from the earlier proceedings against...

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