The Fifth Estate
View all events in this series
Tom Porteous is a former journalist for the Guardian and the BBC, and an expert on global conflict management and resolution. Over the last five years, in his role as deputy program director at Human Rights Watch, he’s seen the war in Yemen escalate to become the world's worst humanitarian crisis.
March marks the five-year anniversary of the Yemen conflict, which has killed more than 100,000 civilians as well as causing deadly cholera outbreaks, malnutrition and famine. Fighting began in 2015, and hasn’t stopped since. It’s a war with complex regional and civil roots, perpetuated by an intricate network of forces stretching across the globe.
Who is implicated in this conflict? Who benefits? How can it end? And how does the situation in Yemen reflect other tensions between major regional and world powers? Porteous will tackle these questions, and discuss the pressing global human rights issues of the present day, at the Wheeler Centre with host Sally Warhaft.
Tom Porteous is the deputy program director at Human Rights Watch and is based in Washington DC. He joined Human Rights Watch in 2006 as the London director responsible for communications and advocacy in the United Kingdom. Porteous has a background in journalism, diplomacy, and UN peacekeeping. In the 1980s and early 1990s he was a freelance correspondent for the Guardian newspaper, the BBC, and other media, first in Cairo and later in Berlin, Algeria, and Morocco. He worked in UN peacekeeping operations in Somalia and Liberia. He also served as conflict management adviser for Africa in the UK's Foreign Office from 2001 to 2003. Porteous studied classics at Oxford University.
Sally Warhaft is a Melbourne broadcaster, anthropologist and writer. She hosts the Fifth Estate, the Wheeler Centre’s live series focusing on journalism, politics, media, and international relations, now in its ninth year. She is a former editor of the Monthly magazine and the author of the bestselling book Well May We Say: The Speeches that Made Australia.
Sally is a regular host and commentator on ABC radio and has a PhD in anthropology. She did her fieldwork in Mumbai, India, living by the seashore with the local fishing community.
For in-depth insider analysis of current affairs, it doesn't get any better than The Fifth Estate.
This long-running series is a mainstay of the Wheeler Centre’s programme, and of public conversation in Melbourne. Twice a month, our in-house news anchor Sally Warhaft hosts guests from the world of politics, culture, journalism and international relations to dissect pressing questions of policy, power and public affairs. It's free, it's fortnightly and it's a chance to give complex local and global issues the thoughtful discussion they deserve.
Guests are announced in the weeks prior to events, so keep an eye on our website (or the Wheeler Weekly newsletter) for updates. Subscribe to the popular Fifth Estate podcast – or book a (free) ticket – for expert analysis on today's key debates.