16 March 2016   Leave a comment

A few days ago, one of my posts indicated that one of the ideas floating around in the Syrian cease-fire negotiations was a decentralized Syria, with various regions getting a high degree of autonomy from the central government.  Federal governments are difficult to manage, particularly after a civil war, but it seems clear that the Syrian Kurds have wholeheartedly embraced the idea. Needless to say, the Turks are not at all happy about that prospect and it would be difficult to implement.  But the key is whether the Syrian Kurds can actually take control of the territory they desire.


The combination of the strongest el Niño and the warmest months ever recorded have led to a growing humanitarian crisis in Africa.  A drought extends from Ethiopia to Zimbabwe as abnormally high temperatures and the lack of rain have devastated crops.  The drought affects more than 36 million people and does not show any signs of letting up any time soon.  The world needs to step up its humanitarian assistance to these people to prevent a tragedy.

Today marks the anniversary of one of the worst episodes in American military history:  the massacre of more than 300 (some estimates say 500) unresisting Vietnamese men, women, and children by American troops in the village of My Lai in central Vietnam on 16 March 1968.  The soldiers of Charlie Company, First Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 11th Infantry Brigade, 23rd Infantry Division had been out in the field for more than two months and had lost many comrades to the stealthy guerrilla tactics of the Viet Cong.  The frustrations and anger of the soldiers boiled over in My Lai and one of the worst war crimes ever committed by American forces occurred.   Lt. William Calley, one of the officers involved, was convicted of premeditated murder, but, due to political pressures in the US, only ended up serving 4 and a half years in prison.


Posted March 16, 2016 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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