7 November 2016   Leave a comment

Fresh water is probably the most important resource on the planet as far as human beings are concerned.  Humans, however, cannot create more fresh water; we are restricted to the 3% that exists apart from the oceans.  Even though fresh water supplies are finite, we do not regulate the use of water in an effective manner.  As the human population increases to about 10 billion in the middle of this century, we will likely see serious conflicts over access to fresh water and some areas of the world will likely lose access to water.  Our attitudes toward fresh water as a resource have got to change substantially if we expect water to be available in the future.

Beijing has ruled that the two dissident lawmakers on the Hong Kong Legislative Council will not be allowed to retake their oaths.  The two had offered oaths to the Council that questioned the link between Hong Kong and China.  Beijing has therefore decided that the 1997 agreement with Great Britain that allowed the freedoms guaranteed by British rule to continue until 2047 can be altered.  The decision will likely lead to more protests in Hong Kong, but it is difficult to see how Beijing can be resisted.

There have been no formal peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority since the breakdown of the US-sponsored efforts in 2014.  Given the hostility between US President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu there is also little likelihood of any more negotiations under the aegis of the US.  France has been trying diligently to fill the gap by sponsoring a peace negotiation in Paris, but today Israel turned down the opportunity to participate.  The Prime Minister’s office released a statement saying that “Israel’s position to promote the peace process and reach an agreement will only come through direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.”  It seems highly unlikely, therefore, that there will be any negotiations until the new US Administration figures out a new approach.

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Posted November 8, 2016 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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