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: An Ever So Challenging Time Before Us...
It has been another challenging few days around the World. We here at "outsiders" were gratified as we were monitoring the reports of the ceasefire in Gaza as all parties agreed to it. Celebratory gunfire were heard in Gaza and as we went to press, it appears to be holding.

What was quite interesting was to observe the internal Israeli Political Dynamics. The ceasefire was agreed to by the Israeli Defense Minister and the Israeli Prime Minister without requesting a direct vote from the Israeli Cabinet. Two of the most hawkish of Ministers--including the Foreign Minister--opposed the ceasefire. It also clearly appears that the Israeli Prime Minister will be faced with some profound challenges both on the right and the left as negotiations continue onward for a post-ceasefire period. The situation was explained best by the scholar Vijay Prashad when he noted that if and when a pillow is pressed on one's face, eventually one will have to fight back. It is crucial to note that Gaza has been actually under since 1988.


Beyond the Gaza war, there is the continued tragedy in Syria. The Islamic State thugs have taken over a major Air Base in Syria to consolidate their hold on it. What is so ironic to note is that they have killed more Muslims that all the other combined. They are brutal and fight in a very asymmetrical way which requires a profound transformation in the way they are fought. It is also so troubling that they have embarked upon an ethnic cleansing campaign in Mosul to drive out the Christians and the Shiites. It was also gratifying to see how the entire Muslim World is coming together to condemn them. This includes The leader of Hezbollah and the highest Authority in Sunni Islam as well.

Beyond the Middle East, one country that is ever so fascinating is India. India is part of the "BRICS" group and is starting to be ever so assertive since the election of Mr. Modi as Prime Minister. The launch of an Indian-Built Destroyer is just one example. This is as Pakistan has been violating the ceasefire by attacking Indian border posts in Jammu & Kashmir. As we were ready to go to press, Pakistan requested a "flag meeting" which has been their mechanism to defuse the situation. As this has been going on, the BJP had a setback in Assembly elections in the State of Bihar. There are a number of key elections coming up that would be the first test of the BJP-Led Government after the landslide victory that saw Mr. Modi assume the office of Prime Minister.


As we reflect upon our world, this admonition from Einstein is something to consider:


“In the middle of every difficulty comes opportunity.”






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: As Iraq, Syria, Nigeria Burn...
This is a Story of a struggle that must be told that should underscore a sense of hope despite all the challenges being faced right now. We have commented on it extensively here as the World was just witness to car bombings and killings just today:

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: A sense of danger & purpose..and maybe hope?!?!
For this edition of the "View of the Week" here, this provocative "TED TALK' is featured to underscore how the World needs to be aware and wake up as A World Continues to be @ War:


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View of the Week: A Fable by Aesop

August 22nd 2014 22:19
: Embracing A Sense of Purpose


It is a challenging World. Yet, a sense of hope and optimism has to prevail. This fable from Aesop is about accepting change and appreciating a sense of purpose which we hope all enjoy--courtesy of Jonathan Lockwood Huie


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: Troublesome...
As we were getting ready to go to press, the ceasefire in Gaza ended. Rocket Fires has resumed and has been responded to with Israeli Air Force strikes.

Israel attempted to assassinate the head of Hamas' Military Wing, Mohammad Deif. Israel24 has reported that Deif's Wife and Daughter have been killed. It appears that Mohammad Deif may have survived--but he has been the target of assassination attempts at least four times. Hamas has said that this has opened up the "Gates of Hell". This is as Israel has called up 2,000 Military Reservists and reports coming out of Israel are noting how the Government is asking the IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) to potentially have another ground incursion into Gaza


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: An Aid Worker's Story
Stunning images of the righteous who strive to make a difference in so many ways:


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: Believing in the Art of the Possible
This is a "Virtual Treat" as a small measure of thanks for all who have supported this labor of love for the last number of years:


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: Why is the 4th Estate So Feared?
This is quite a stark indictment on the challenge to the First Amendment in the United States:


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: Can we Overcome?
Iraq's Al-Maliki agreed to step aside and support the new Prime Minister Designate. He was flanked by the entire leadership establishment as he spoke on Iraqi State Television.

As the thugs of the Islamic State have raged on, a Facebook Friend posted a picture of Senator McCain with the thugs of the Islamic State before the recent so-called U-Turn. This led to a remembrance of this blast from the recent past


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: Challenging Ever More
The truce appears to be holding between Israel and Hamas. It is of profound interest as the debate in Israel rages on,though, about the aftermath. What was quite interesting is how the Israeli Opposition Leader, Mr Herzog, came out swinging against the Israeli Prime Minister as the Israeli Ministers on the right are extremely unhappy with recent US decisions. Amir Oren Said it best just now on i24news: the Government of Israel is moving in circles as the Israeli Public is ever so confused due to the confused nature of the policy.

This was ever so epitomized by what Gideon Levy noted in Haaretz


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