8/30/2013

Around the World This Week

It has been a very busy August around our World.

As I write this, the so-called "West" is coming to grips after what has been a embarrasment for David Cameron. David Cameron lost a vote in the House of Commons as the World was clamouring for a response after the chemical attack that cost at least 350 lives--based on the data reported by Doctors without Borders.   The Syrians were on a P/R blitz as they geared up for an eventual attack.  I saw scenes of Syrians escaping into the Countryside.   Israeli citizens were clamouring for gas masks and reservists were called up.  Turkey beefed up its' defenses and assessed how to be ready just in case Syrians decide to retaliate.    The BBC intereviewed the Syrian Information Ministry Offical who vehemently denied this.    US Media is reporting that the decision has been made as Barack Obama is getting ready for the G20 in Russia.    I have to wonder whether the Policymakers in Washington actually ask what happens the "day after" such a strike.   In the meantime, the war continues.   I had a very hard time listening to a BBC report after an attack by Government Forces on a school in Aleppo.  

As I listened to the debate and the parade of officials on the US Media talk shows, I remembered Iraq.   Some of the more "brave" outlets took the time to remind the World how the Bush Adminstration unleashed a cycle of violence and destruction that is yet to run its' course.   Iraq has become a near lawless state where an average of 40 people die every day in bombings and Al Qaeda has clearly established a strong and vibrant presence that is contributing to a sense of lawlessness engulfing Iraq right now..

Beyond Syria, there is Egypt--the largest in the Arab World.   The military has crushed the Muslim Brotherhood.    As I have assessed the discourse in Egypt, I find it so interesting that the interim President has just not been there.     I also question why the Chief Justice even accepted the "offer" from General Sisi.    The repression is widening as the very definition of who is an Islamist.  The defintion has become broader and the represession even more brutal.

One other very intersting development has been how the BRICS block has begun to stumble.    The BRICS block was a term coined by a Senior Goldman Sachs partner to signfy the up and comngs around the World.   Three of the BRICS have profound challenges.  India (The I) continues to suffer  a massive drop in the value of its' currency, The Rupee, as politicans fight amongst themselves.   South Afirca (The S) has been besieged by strikes that threatnes a very fragile economic recovery and as the opposition is trying to lay the ground work for a concerted effort to challenge the ANC for the election.      Brazil (The B) has been trying to fight a weak currency and inflation fears have been raised again as it has also continued to deal with Social unrest that began a number of months ago.

Beyond the BRICS, there is one country that continues to fascinate me: Australia.   It has been in the midst of a very heated election that appears to send labor back to the opposition benches and see to it that Tony Abbott becomes Prime Minister.    The only consesus, it seems, is that the next Australian Government will have a tough terrain to navigate through due to the end of the Chinsee Materials Boom.

This was also a month that was the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington in the United States.    Three of America's living President spoke.   Surprsingly, there were no Republicans present due to apparent commitments.    George W. Bush issued an eloquent statement through his office--as he is recovering from a by-pass surgery.     But, it was unfortunate that none of the Republican Leadership elected to join the celebration.   I could not help but continue to wonder that dream that Dr. King so eloquently reflected upon continues to be realized today in America.     There are storms on the horizon.

Congress is going back to work after the long labor day Week-End in the United States.    The key Republican House Leaders have been making the fundraising rounds and have been telling the "base" about how they will use the upcoming debt ceiling negotations to force more cuts.    Although it appears that attempts by the "Tea Party" in Congress to defund Obamacare will not get anywhere, the rhetoric will continue to be heated which may cause shocks to the World Economic System that no one can afford.

It is not "easy" to be hopeful as one sees the suffering in Syria, the continued bombings and killings in Afghanistan and the economic calamity around the World.    But the need to be optimstic and think of the possible should be a driving force.    One could only take comfort in these "thoughts":  


Count your blessings - not your troubles.
- Dale Carnegie

Keep a grateful journal. Every night,
list five things you are grateful for.
- Oprah Winfrey 

Humor can help you cope with the unbearable so that
you can stay on the bright side of things until the
bright side actually comes along.
- Allen Klein 

Onward......

Also released to http://www.outsiderviews.com, 08/30/2013

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