The News 12/11-12/16: Meltdown of humanity

Top Stories of the Week

Aleppo. The Syrian civil war has been raging for years at this point, but what happened this week in Aleppo marks one of its darkest chapters. Backed by Russian support, the Syrian regime re-took Aleppo this week, isolating and destroying the rebel stronghold -- and committing a massacre. A brief ceasefire was put in place to allow rebels to leave, but it quickly unraveled. This was and is, to put it bluntly, a "complete meltdown of humanity."

Cabinet chaos. This week in Trumpland, Rick Perry was picked to head the Department of Energy -- a department he once advocated to get rid of, and then promptly forgot. This continues an interesting trend in Trump's cabinet: people being chosen to run departments that they hate.

Guilty. Dylann Roof, the white supremacist who murdered nine African American churchgoers last year in Charleston, was found guilty this week. What his sentencing will be remains to be seen, but the verdict is, if nothing else, a grim victory for Black Americans, who have watched their country's justice system fail them repeatedly in recent trials. That having been said, with a Trump presidency on the horizon and the memory of what happened in Charleston still burning anew regularly, it's hard to say just how comforting any of this can really be.

Once, this was Aleppo. (Flickr - Chris Hill)

Once, this was Aleppo. (Flickr - Chris Hill)


Blues Buzz

Authors on Obama. ManthreadingMexican women playing soccer/football, as they should. Forgiveness, women, and the FARC. New in town etc. In praise of Zadie Smith's LondonBye Kanye, bye Bill Gates. (Also bidding goodbye to Wonder Woman.) My president was Black. How journalists of color plan to survive in Trump's America. Female writers on their literary inspirations. Ruth Negga reads Zadie Smith. The Root reminds us that Wikileaks is garbage. 


Regional Updates

South, Southeast, & East Asia:

Europe & Eurasia:

Middle East & North Africa:

Sub-Saharan Africa:

  • After saying he would honor the results of the election that ousted him, Gambia's dictator is now having second thoughts.
  • Liberia's president led a delegation to Gambia to mediate the election fallout.
  • A bombing in Mogadishu killed around 30 people when a truck targeted the city's port.



Quote of the Week:

"We have no formal chain of command around here." -- Donald Trump

Blue Out: The War on Christmas is alive and well in Texas.