In the aftermath of a terrifying new reality in Afghanistan, this year’s Concrete has a difficult job to make sense of it all. Luckily, we’ve already started. The Taliban’s treatment of women and children – despite widespread denial – is shocking and unjustifiable. We only know this thanks to the work of media groups on the ground. Concrete’s recently formed Breaking News team – headed up by Breaking News editor and LiveWire 360 deputy station manager, Emily Kelly – have already reported on the fall of the Afghan capital, with stories available on our website.
In essence, our job as journalists is to check the facts in order to reveal what is currently hidden. And it is a plainly unpleasant fact of life that life is terrible for some just as it is wonderful for others. As hope and freedom crumbled in Afghanistan, forcing tens of thousands of people to flee their homes, others were dancing away the night under the Greek stars.
During the Taliban’s swift takeover of the Afghan capital, the foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, was on holiday in Crete. After Raab’s stay at the Amirandes Hotel, a since deleted Tripadvisor review from the strangely familiar name, ‘Dom R’, seemed exceedingly impressed by the 5 star resort: “quite honestly, there could be a war going on outside, and you’d barely notice it. Bliss!”
I bring this up because I firmly believe our principal role at Concrete is to not only tell the stories that matter, but to be ‘present’ – whether that be physically, emotionally or both – as and when they break. Whichever side of the political pendulum you stand on, the unpredictable nature of today’s world is undisputable.
This explains why Concrete’s motto is striving for the truth. Our team is fitted with the talent and determined spirit to match any other publication. With our creative and illuminating coverage in Venue, Concrete aims to celebrate the accomplishments of students from a range of schools across campus: sports players, scientists, journalists, actors, writers, musicians, lawyers. Most importantly, the oxygen of the paper stems from those who write, read and share it. Let’s keep doing this together.