23rd October 2015

  • Gaddafi’s legacy continues to haunt Libya years after his death.
  • Libya’s parliament rejected the UN’s proposal for a unity government.
  • For Benghazi’s residents, the 2012 attack that has caused so much political fallout in the US was a benchmark in the city’s slide into chaos.
  • Former Guantánamo inmate Younis Abdurrahman Chekkouri faces a hearing in Morocco to determine his fate.
  • Mali’s jihadist groups are using poached elephant tusks to finance their militancy.
  • A pair of bomb blasts this Friday morning during pre-dawn prayers at a mosque in northern Nigeria have killed at least 18 people.
  • Nigerian soldiers and some self-defense fighters have claimed they killed 150 Boko Haram militants and rescued 36 captives in an assault earlier this week.
  • Eight villagers were killed Thursday in a Boko Haram raid in Cameroon.
  • Four were killed in demonstrations in the Republic of Congo after police cracked down on a protest against President Denis Sassou Nguesso’s bid to continue his three decades of power. The opposition leader says forces of the presidential guard are surrounding his house, detaining him.
  • The leader of Burkina Faso’s failed coup, General Gilbert Diendéré, has beencharged with crimes against humanity.
  • Security forces in Guinea killed three people in the lead-up to elections this month, says Amnesty International.
  • Turkey’s politics become more polarized in the wake of the Ankara bombings.
  • Digging into the anger and frustrations have led to the latest flare up between Israelis and Palestinians, which UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has said is in danger of “spinning out of control.”
  • One of the many issues at stake is the continued evictions of Arab families from Jerusalem.
  • The UN is pushing for a resolution to end the violence.
  • Israeli PM Netanyahu caused a stir with his claim that a Palestinian mufti pressured Hitler into committing genocide. (Germany has reminded him that they alone bear the culpability for the Holocaust.)
  • A top Hamas leader was arrested by Israeli troops in an overnight raid in Ramallah.
  • Syrian President Bashar al-Assad flew to Moscow to meet with Putin.
  • Starting this Friday, Russia is holding talks in Vienna with the US, Saudi Arabia and Turkey over Syria.
  • Saudi Arabia, already engaged in Yemen, weights its options for countermoves in Syria.
  • Iran and its proxy forces are pushing to retake Aleppo on behalf of Assad. 35,000 have been displaced by the Syrian regime’s Aleppo offensive.
  • US-backed rebels are itching to move against the Islamic State’s self-proclaimed capital in Raqqa.
  • Footage from a Russian drone shows the extraordinary damage inflicted on the city of Damascus by years of war.
  • The US and Russia have signed a deal taking steps to avoid air conflict over Syria.
  • A US hostage rescue mission in Iraq freed 70 hostages of the Islamic State. One US servicemember died in the battle, however – the first American combat death in Iraq since 2011.
  • Hostilities are increasing between Iran and Saudi Arabia.
  • The Gulf-backed forces fighting the Houthi in Yemen have little in common with one another, but are united in their desire to battle the Shi’ite group on increasingly sectarian terms.
  • Yemen’s exiled government agreed to peace talks with the Houthi.
  • Newly-elected Canadian PM Justin Trudeau has withdrawn Canada’s fighter jets from the air campaign against the Islamic State.
  • The Islamic State makes $50 million a month selling crude oil.
  • Militias are gaining power in Iraq.
  • The Iraqi push to recapture Baiji has met with significant successes.
  • Three mass graves were found in Baiji after the city was retaken Tuesday.
  • Inside Iran’s Revolutionary courts.
  • The Taliban have overrun more districts in Afghanistan. The conflict is especiallytesting Afghanistan’s special forces.
  • Kunduz picks up the pieces after the Taliban’s short-lived takeover.
  • Better, closer ties between Kabul and Washington have limited the political fallout from the American strike on the hospital in Kunduz.
  • With the Iran deal negotiated, the US may turn its attentions to curbing Pakistan’s nuclear growth.
  • The US will sell 8 F-16 fighter jets to Pakistan.
  • More than 3,000 refugees have drowned crossing the Mediterranean, trying to reach Europe. The task of identifying their bodies is grim and difficult.
  • 17 European nations signed a terrorism prevention pact.
  • NATO began its largest military exercises in more than a decade, a show of force in the Mediterranean with Russia in mind.
  • Armenia’s heightened tensions with Azerbaijan this year have Armeniansrethinking the nature of their security relationship with Russia.
  • Russia will station a military unit in the Arctic by 2018.
  • Brian Whitmore of RFE/RL says that Russia is establishing a zone of control in post-Soviet states using corruption as a tool of statecraft.
  • The International Criminal Court will investigate the possibility of war crimes committed on both sides of the 2008 war between Russia and Georgia.
  • Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists have both begun pulling weaponry and equipment back from the front lines in Donetsk.
  • Ousted Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych is suing Kiev from Russia for violating his human rights “repeatedly.”
  • Kosovo moves further toward accession to the EU. It also is moving toward membership in UNESCO – which Serbia is very unhappy about.
  • The US and China face a potential showdown over US naval operations in the South China Sea, near seven artificial islands China has constructed to establish its territorial claim.
  • Fmr. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s appearance in front of the House Benghazi Committee lasted 11 whole hours and did not reveal much in the way of new information.
  • The UN Security Council is facing criticism for failing to do its job and keep peace.
  • President Obama made good on his promise to veto the defense budget.
  • My Brother’s Bomber is a three part Frontline series reported by Ken Dornstein – a journalist whose brother died in the 1988 Lockerbie bombing.

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