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January 2016

The Aegean Sea Claims Another 37 Lives of the Syrian Desperate

A boat carrying refugees seeking comfort in Europe, capsized on the Aegean Sea yesterday, striking a rock soon after departure from Turkey, and killing another 37 Syrians trying to reach Greece. Just over a week ago, the Aegean claimed the lives of another 46 Syrians attempting the perilous journey to find solace away from their war-torn region.

This new year, 2016, is witnessing an increase in deaths of refugees on the Aegean Sea. Thus far in the winter month of January, some 218 desperate souls have died trying to cross into Greece from Turkey, where 2.

Another 16 Starve to Death in Syria - Victims of a Siege of War

Another 16 civilians have starved to death in a besieged Syrian town since a United Nations(UN) aid convoy reached it earlier this month. Another 30 people starved to death in Madaya late last year and according to the International charity, Medecins Sans Frontieres(MSF), Doctors Without Borders, another 33 people in the town are in grave danger of dying from starvation - all victims of the ploy of siege, in the Syrian war.

As reported by the BBC-News earlier this morning, Brice de la Vingne, MSF operations director, described the situation as "totally unacceptable" as he observed that people "should have been evacuated weeks ago.

A Damnation of Humanity - the Starvation of Civilians as a Tactic of War

That millions of people in Syria, Yemen and Iraq are inflicted by hunger and struggling to survive with little help from the outside world, is easily construed as a failing of humanity. That many are starved as a direct tactic of war, sadly affirms a damnation of humanity in this modern era.

The Associated Press(AP) reported on these condemnations earlier today on its News Service App. In a story headlined:In Mideast wars, hunger grips millions across the region, journalist Zeina Karam with contributions by writers Susannah George in Baghdad and Maggie Michael in Cairo, revealed a stark reality of conditions of war.

Vietnam Affirms Retention of Olden Times and One-Party-Rule

Vietnam's Communist Party has affirmed one-party rule with the selection of China-friendly Nguyen Phu Trong, 71, as General Secretary and as the number one power broker in the country of 94.3 million people, of whom only 4.5 million are members of the communist party.

Trong's selection by the Communist Party in essence ends the political hopes of the seemingly reformist Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, under whose guidance Vietnam challenged China's supremacy on the South China Sea as well as forged closer ties to the west and formed a stronger bond with the Philippines and Japan.

The Kurds are Deserving of a Seat on Syrian Peace

Any objections from Turkey or others cannot be sufficient reason to deny the Kurds a seat at negotiations on Syria's peace in Geneva, Switzerland or elsewhere.

Of all the parties to the conflict in Syria, the Kurds have from town to town, from Kobani to Ramadi in both Syria and Iraq, performed exemplary on the battlefield and have taken on the Islamic State(IS) while other groups stood in waiting. Therefore, the Kurds are deserving of a seat on Syrian peace. 

Moreover, denied a sovereign homeland of their own, the Kurds have fully earned consideration of land when the final spheres of Syria are drawn. 

Syrian Peace Talks Without a Ceasefire - a Prelude to a Failed Accord

Russian jets continue to bomb Syrian Opposition positions on behalf of Bashar al Assad, even after earlier air raids,  killed 63. Opposition forces earlier today targeted a Syrian regime check point near Homs, where a series of explosions killed 20 people and injured 100. 

Syrian peace talks are set to be begin on Friday without any ceasefire agreement between the Assad regime and Opposition groups. In lieu of any pact to stop fighting, the battle for Syria rages as diplomatic tact is waved from Riyadh to Damascus and from Washington to Moscow, to find a solution to the Syrian fighting.

Vietnam - at a Crossroad of Change or Retention of Times of Yore

That a nation could subtly undergo a profound social, economic and political change without any input from its 94 million people, is a phenomenon - it seldom occurs. Yet, in communist Vietnam, the Vietnamese people could awake tomorrow to find a greatly transforming nation - one willing to stand up to behemoth China, one that encourages and gets greater international investment, one that stands in uniformity with the global community and one that soon would inevitably offer a voice to all Vietnamese.

Fears of Russian Bombings in Syria are Realized - 63 Dead in a Raid

Humanitarian fears that Russian entry into the complicated Syrian war could end in civilian tragedy have been realized with the bombing death of 63 people - including nine children, in an eastern Syrian town earlier today, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has reported.

According to the London, England based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the raid took place on the town of Khasham, near the city of Deir al-Zor, where Russian bombers have been campaigning. Russian involvement in the conflict has complicated dialogue toward a peace since some Oppositions groups, some of whose fighters Russian jets have been bombing, have objected to Russian naming of parties to a peace.

The Aegean Claims Another 46 Lives of the Desperate

Displaced by war and a desperation for solace, many Syrians continue to endanger their own lives by risking perilous journeys across the unpredictable Aegean Sea in search of a dreamed comfort in Europe. But the law of averages coupled with dangers of navigation, faulty equipment and a changing Europe, stand in the way to stability for many people.

Two boats carrying Syrian refugees from Turkey to Greece foundered on the Aegean Sea yesterday, sending some 15 children and 30 adults to their deaths into the watery depths.

The 4th Industrial Revolution - Prospects of the People

The Fourth Industrial Revolution - this period of rapid development and applications of artificial intelligence, an era of leaps and bounds in the biotech industry and a time of tantalizing growth in 3-D printing and nanotechnology, is being heralded as a defining moment when humankind will build upon the technologies of the past 50 years in order to enhance global advancement.

However, as in other Industrial Revolutions, there will be winners and losers in the 4th Industrial Revolution. Yet, prospects of the people appear headed by the industrialists, who already own most of the means of production and who possess vast resources, to sustain a jump start to success ahead of average people.