Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Kings of the East

My Way News - China-Russia to hold East China Sea naval drills
My Way News reports: "China and Russia will hold joint naval exercises in the East China Sea later this month, amid regional tensions over island groups and airspace. A notice on the Chinese Defense Ministry's website Thursday said the "Jointly At Sea 2014" drills would begin in late May near Shanghai. [...] China and Russia have conducted a number of joint naval and other military exercises since 2005 within the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The grouping that includes several Central Asian countries is dominated by Beijing and Moscow and aims to promote regional cooperation and check U.S. influence."

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Covenant With Many

My Way News - With Mideast talks over, Palestinians seek unity
My Way News reports: "Tuesday was to have been the day to seal a deal on a Palestinian state alongside Israel. Instead, it became another missed deadline in two decades of negotiating failures. The gaps between Israeli and Palestinian positions remain vast after nine months of talks launched by Secretary of State John Kerry."

Labels:

Monday, April 28, 2014

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - US, EU hit Russia with new sanctions over Ukraine
My Way News reports: "The United States and its European allies hit more than two dozen Russian government officials, executives and companies with new sanctions Monday as punishment for their country's actions in Ukraine, yet the penalties stopped short of targeting Russia's broader economy and it remained unclear if they would work. In Moscow, there was relief that the sanctions were not as far-ranging as feared."

Labels: ,

Signs in the Sun

My Way News - Antarctic prime spot for Tuesday's solar eclipse
My Way News reports: "The solar eclipse will be visible to skygazers in Antarctica, Australia, and the southern Indian Ocean about 0600 GMT (2 a.m. EDT). It's one of two solar eclipses in 2014, when the moon lines up between Earth and the sun. This one is a rare type of annular eclipse, meaning the sun will appear as a ring around the moon."

Labels: ,

Pestilence

My Way News - Survivors of Ebola face second 'disease': stigma
My Way News reports: "The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has claimed more than 145 lives so far. More than 240 people, mostly in Guinea, are suspected of having caught the illness, which causes horrific suffering, including bursting blood vessels and bleeding from ears and other orifices. There is no vaccine, no treatment and the disease is almost always fatal. But a handful of the infected do survive. "

Labels:

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Analysis: Beyond Kerry, seeking new Mideast ideas
My Way News reports: "Nine months of U.S.-driven diplomacy have left Israelis and Palestinians less hopeful than ever about a comprehensive peace agreement to end their century of conflict. Although a formula may yet be found to somehow prolong the talks past an end-of-April deadline, they are on the brink of collapse and the search is already on for new ideas."

My Way News - Abbas tries to reassure Israel about Hamas role
My Way News reports: "Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says any unity government with the Islamic militant group Hamas would follow his political program, an apparent attempt to reassure the West. [...] The Palestinian split came in 2007 when Hamas seized Gaza, and reconciliation efforts failed."

Comment: It will be interesting to see if Hamas will renounce their commitment to the destruction of Israel. Otherwise, it's hard to imagine them being party to peace talks.

Labels:

Friday, April 25, 2014

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - G-7 nations agree to more sanctions on Russia
My Way News reports: "In a joint statement released Friday night by the White House, the G-7 nations said they will act urgently to intensify "targeted sanctions." The statement said the G-7 will also continue to prepare broader sanctions on key Russian economic sectors if Moscow takes more aggressive action. The White House said U.S. sanctions could be levied as early as Monday. [..] Tensions were heightened on the ground, with Russian fighter jets reported crossing into Ukrainian airspace and a team of unarmed foreign military observers detained by pro-Russian forces in Slovyansk, the heart of the separatist movement in the east."

Labels: ,

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Israel halts peace talks with Palestinians
My Way News reports: "Israel broke off Mideast peace talks and brought the U.S.-brokered process to the brink of collapse Thursday, protesting a reconciliation agreement between the Western-backed Palestinian Authority and the militant group Hamas, the Jewish state's sworn enemy."

Comment: Can't blame Israel really, Hamas has already declared war on Israel and has backed that up with repeated missile attacks, their desire for peace is somewhat lacking. After this, it would be very difficult to make the case that the Palestinians really want peace with Israel.

Labels:

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Pestilence

My Way News - Ebola death toll in West Africa rises to 147
My Way News reports: "The World Health Organization says 147 people have died from the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa. In a statement posted on its website, the organization said more than 240 cases of the virus have been recorded in Guinea and Liberia. Most of those cases are in Guinea, where 136 people have died. Another 11 people have died in Liberia. "

Yahoo News - Saudi announces 11 new MERS infections
AFP reports: "The new cases bring to 272 the total number of MERS infections, including 81 deaths, registered across the kingdom -- worst hit by the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome which was first detected in eastern Saudi Arabia in September 2012."

Labels:

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - Ukraine orders new military operation in the east
My Way News reports: "Ukraine's acting president ordered security forces to resume operations in the country's east on Tuesday after the bodies of two people allegedly abducted by pro-Russia insurgents were found and a military aircraft was reportedly hit by gunfire. [...] The acting government, which took over after President Viktor Yanukovych fled to Russia in February, says Russia is behind the unrest in eastern Ukraine which it fears Moscow could use as a pretext for an invasion."

Labels: ,

Monday, April 21, 2014

Gospel

My Way News - Thousands celebrate Easter in Holy Land
My Way News reports: "Thousands of pilgrims from around the world are celebrating Easter in the Holy Land, commemorating the day when according to Christian tradition Jesus was resurrected in Jerusalem two millennia ago."

Labels:

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Signs in the Moon

My Way News - Full lunar eclipse delights Americas, 1st of year
My Way News reports: "Sky-gazers in North and South America were treated to a full lunar eclipse - at least those fortunate enough to have clear skies. [...] For some, the moon appeared red-orange because of all the sunsets and sunrises shimmering from Earth, thus the name 'blood moon.' It's the first of four eclipses this year and the first of four total lunar eclipses this year and next. The latter is a rare lineup; the next so-called tetrad of total lunar eclipses won't occur until 2032-2033. In the meantime, get ready for a solar eclipse in two weeks."

Labels: , ,

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - Ukraine bares teeth against eastern uprising
My Way News reports: "In the first Ukrainian military action against a pro-Russian uprising in the east, government forces repelled an attack Tuesday by about 30 gunmen at an airport, beginning what the president called an "anti-terrorist operation" to try to restore authority over the restive region."

Labels: , ,

Monday, April 14, 2014

Persecution

My Way News - Blast at bus station in Nigerian capital kills 72
My Way News reports: "Suspected Islamic militants struck in the heart of Nigeria on Monday with a massive rush-hour bomb blast at a bus station that killed at least 72 people and wounded 164 in the deadliest attack ever on the nation's capital. [...] Fighters from Chad, Cameroon and Niger have been found among extremists in Nigeria, whose 170 million people are divided almost equally between Muslims living mainly in the north and Christians in the south."

Labels: ,

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - Ukraine struggles as east slips out of its control
My Way News reports: "Over the past 10 days, more than a dozen government offices in eastern Ukraine have been taken over by pro-Russian forces, with most of the seizures following the same pattern. Aggressive gangs, sometimes carrying firearms and wearing military fatigues, storm the buildings. The Ukrainian flag is replaced with a Russian one. Then local men move in to hold them."

Labels: ,

Doomed Damascus - Believers Persecuted

My Way News - Syrian troops choke off rebels north of Damascus:
My Way News reports: "Syrian troops triumphantly swept through some of the last remaining opposition strongholds north of Damascus, including a much coveted ancient Christian hamlet, sending rebel fighters fleeing to nearby hills amid an ever tightening noose. [...] During a government-led tour of the village Monday, the toll of the past few months on Maaloula was clear, including to Christian sites. It was not clear, however, whether the wreckage to Christian buildings was intentional, or whether the ancient sites were merely caught in the crossfire. The church bell and cross were missing from the Mar Sarkis convent, while icons of saints, copies of the holy bible, papers and glass littered the floors."

Labels: ,

Rumors of War - Persia

My Way News - Iran official concerned for nuclear power plant
My Way News reports: "World powers negotiating a final nuclear deal with Iran want a reduction - not an increase - in the number of centrifuges Tehran is operating to remove concerns that the Islamic Republic may use its enrichment capabilities to build a nuclear weapon. [...] The talks are to continue on May 13 and the future scope of Iran's uranium enrichment program has remained the toughest issue."

Labels: , ,

Earthquakes

My Way News - 4.9-magnitude earthquake rattles central Idaho
My Way News reports: "A 4.9-magnitude earthquake shook central Idaho, flinging items off walls and scaring residents but otherwise producing no reported damage or injuries in the sparsely populated mountain area. USGS geophysicist Dale Grant says the earthquake was 'kind of an unusual occurrence' being the first one of its strength in the area since 2005."

Labels:

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Earthquakes

My Way News - 2 powerful earthquakes hit Solomon Islands
My Way News reports: "Two strong earthquakes struck the Solomon Islands on Sunday, triggering tsunami warnings, but there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage. [...] The magnitude-7.6 quake's epicenter was 323 kilometers (200 miles) southeast of Honiara, at a depth of 29 kilometers (18 miles), according to the U.S. Geological Survey."

Labels:

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Security of Jerusalem

My Way News - Israel launches new spy satellite
My Way News reports: "Israel's Defense Ministry said on Thursday that it has successfully launched a new observation satellite into orbit, one which is expected to be used to observe Iran and hostile militant groups in the Middle East."

Labels:

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Signs in the Moon

My Way News - Americas get front-row seat for lunar eclipse
My Way News reports: "North and South America, get ready for the first eclipse of the year- in color. Next Tuesday morning, the moon will be eclipsed by Earth's shadow. This total lunar eclipse will be visible across the Western Hemisphere. The total phase will last 78 minutes, beginning at 3:06 a.m. EDT and ending at 4:24 a.m. EDT."

Labels:

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - AP Interview: US troops may be sent to E Europe
My Way News reports: "NATO's top military commander in Europe, drafting countermoves to the Russian military threat against Ukraine, said Wednesday they could include deployment of American troops to alliance member states in Eastern Europe now feeling at risk."

Labels: ,

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Israeli ministers to stop meeting Palestinians
My Way News reports: "Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered his ministers Wednesday to cut off contact with their Palestinian counterparts, an official said, the latest in a series of troubles plaguing floundering U.S.-brokered peace talks. The move is retaliation for a Palestinian bid to join United Nations agencies, which the official said was a violation of the Palestinians' commitment in the peace talks."

Labels:

Pestilence

My Way News - Saudi Arabia reports 2 more deaths from MERS
My Way News reports: "The deaths bring to at least 66 the number of people who died in the kingdom, which is at the center of the MERS outbreak. Other Mideast countries that have reported cases of infection include Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. A small number of cases have been diagnosed in Europe and North Africa."

Labels:

Wickedness Increases

My Way News - Teen stabs 22 at Pittsburgh-area high school
My Way News reports: "Flailing away with two kitchen knives, a 16-year-old boy with a "blank expression" stabbed and slashed 21 students and a security guard in the crowded halls of his suburban Pittsburgh high school Wednesday before an assistant principal tackled him."

Labels:

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - Ukraine tries to quell pro-Moscow uprisings
My Way News reports: "The Ukrainian government and the U.S. have accused Moscow of fomenting the unrest as a pretext for another Russian military incursion like the takeover of Crimea last month. Up to 40,000 Russian troops are massed along the Ukrainian border, according to NATO."

Labels: , ,

Monday, April 07, 2014

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - Pro-Russians call east Ukraine region independent
My Way News reports: "Pro-Moscow activists barricaded inside government buildings in eastern Ukraine proclaimed their regions independent Monday and called for a referendum on seceding from Ukraine - an ominous echo of the events that led to Russia's annexation of Crimea. The Ukrainian government accused Russia of stirring up the unrest and tried to flush the assailants from some of the seized buildings, setting off fiery clashes in one city. Russia, which has tens of thousands of troops massed along the border, sternly warned Ukraine against using force."

Labels: , ,

Friday, April 04, 2014

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Kerry: US reconsiders role in Mideast peace talks
My Way News reports: "The Obama administration will reevaluate its role in foundering Middle East peace talks following actions by both Israel and the Palestinians that have brought the negotiations to virtual collapse, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday."

Comment: It appears that the latest push for Mideast peace has ended. Since Obama is now a lame duck, it will fall to the next U.S. president to try again, as it always does. Unless, of course, an isolationist comes to power in America, leaving it to the EU to step into the role of peace negotiator. 

Labels:

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Pestilence

My Way News - Ebola patients await death in Guinea wards
My Way News reports: "Ebola is so virulent that those who do test positive can only wait to die in a special ward where they are treated by medical personnel wearing protective suits and gear. The Zaire strain detected in Guinea kills up to 90 percent of its victims, and with no cure all that can be done is to make patients comfortable as their organs begin failing. [...] In southern Guinea, church pews are now empty on Sundays. People are fearful of shaking hands and instead make the sign of the cross when they greet a friend or loved one."

Labels:

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Quakes

My Way News - 7.6 aftershock rattles Chile's far-northern coast
My Way News reports: "A powerful 7.6-magnitude aftershock hit Chile's far-northern coast late Wednesday night, shaking the same area where a magnitude-8.2 earthquake hit just a day before causing some damage and six deaths. [...] But there were no immediate reports of new damage or injuries from the latest tremor, which was one of dozens that have followed the 8.2 quake."

Labels:

Wickedness Increases

My Way News - Gunman kills 3, wounds 16 at Fort Hood Army base
My Way News reports: "A soldier opened fire Wednesday on fellow service members at the Fort Hood military base, killing three people and wounding 16 before committing suicide at the same post where more than a dozen people were slain in a 2009 attack, authorities said."

Labels:

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Quakes

My Way News - 5 dead as magnitude-8.2 quake hits northern Chile:
My Way News reports: "A powerful magnitude-8.2 earthquake struck off northern Chile on Tuesday night, setting off a small tsunami that forced evacuations along the country's entire Pacific coast. Five people were crushed to death or suffered fatal heart attacks, the interior minister said, but Chile apparently escaped major damage or serious casualties."

Labels:

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Palestinians resume bid for further UN recognition
My Way News reports: "In a surprise move that could derail U.S. peace efforts, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday resumed a campaign for further international recognition of a state of Palestine, despite a previous promise to suspend such efforts during nine months of negotiations with Israel."

Comment: This suggests that Kerry's mediation efforts have come to an end. It's a shame that the Palestinians think they have such leverage and that the U.S. allows them to think that. There are few governments in the world more fragile than the Palestinian Authority. It's almost comical to see them try to flex their muscles on the world stage. 

Labels: ,

Rumors of War - King of the North

My Way News - NATO allies pledge to beef up eastern defenses
My Way News reports: "NATO foreign ministers moved Tuesday to beef up the defenses of front-line alliance members feeling menaced by a more assertive Russia [...] On Tuesday, an estimated 35,000 to 40,000 Russian troops equipped with tanks, other armored vehicles and fixed and rotary wing aircraft remained positioned near the border with Ukraine, a NATO military official told The Associated Press, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the information."

Labels: ,