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Nearly 70 dead in Syria regime clashes with Idlib militants

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Nearly 70 dead in Syria regime clashes with Idlib militants

Surman: Two days of clashes between regime forces and armed groups in Syria’s last major opposition bastion have killed nearly 70 on both sides, undermining a months-long ceasefire agreement, a war monitor said Sunday. The battles in the northwestern province of Idlib are “the most violent” there since a Russian-brokered ceasefire agreement went into effect …

Check out more stories at The Siasat Daily


          

VIDEOS show Syrian Army repelling ‘suicide drone’ attack on military airport

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Preview Footage posted on social media claims to show how the Syrian Armed Forces disrupted a militant drone attack on an air base in the western Hama province.
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I Came from the Unknown to Sing: How Poetry Saved a Political Prisoner

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'Ghazi Hussein is an award winning Palestinian poet and writer living in Edinburgh. Born in exile in Syria he was first imprisoned at the age of 14, he was never charged but was 'guilty of carrying thoughts'. Repeatedly imprisoned and tortured over the next 20 years he says that writing poetry saved his sanity. Ghazi eventually arrived in Scotland in 2000. After a three year legal battle, the legal evidence of the torture he had endured led him to being granted political asylum in Scotland. This short film, directed by award winning filmmaker Roxana Vilk explores his poetry as the narrative thread to unravel the complex emotional journey he has traveled through and how he came to eventually call Edinburgh home.' -- Aeon Video
 

          

Wordt Zoetermeer het ‘Molenbeek’ van Nederland?

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In Zoetermeer blijken relatief veel geradicaliseerde moslims te wonen. Maandag werden er twee opgepakt op verdenking van het voorbereiden van een aanslag. Eerder vertrokken vijftien inwoners van de stad naar Syrië om daar te gaan vechten. Het vermoeden bestaat dat de Al-Qibla-moskee een centrale rol speelt. Zoetermeer heeft volgens deskundigen al jaren te maken met […]

Het bericht Wordt Zoetermeer het ‘Molenbeek’ van Nederland? verscheen eerst op BeveiligingNieuws.


          

This Thanksgiving, Count the Blessings You Take for Granted

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Christians in parts of the Middle East are in danger of total extinction. That was the conclusion of a report released last month by Aid to the Church in Need, an international Catholic charity. The report said that Christianity has disappeared from towns in Iraq and Syria because of the wave of genocide carried out by ISIS.

In Iraq, the number of Christians in Iraq has fallen by 90%, the study said. In Syria, the Christian population has fallen by two-thirds since the country's civil war began in 2011, when there were 2 million believers there.

A report in The New York Times last year confirmed that most of Syria's once-Christian villages are now ghost towns. ISIS fighters kidnapped villagers and executed them. Women disappeared and became sex slaves to terrorist leaders. Churches were bombed and burned. Traumatized believers fled the country. The defeat of ISIS fighters in 2019, and the death of bloodthirsty ISIS commander Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on Oct. 26, will not bring martyred Christians back from the dead or convince refugees to return to their homeland.

As you celebrate Thanksgiving this year, I hope you are grateful that your church wasn't bombed or that you weren't forced from your home. I encourage you to make a list of blessings you may take for granted. My list for 2019 might help you think of others:

  1. Do you have religious freedom? The majority of the world's population—75%—live in areas with severe religious restrictions. And Christians in more than 60 countries face persecution simply because of their belief in Jesus Christ. About 1.6 billion people in the world live in repressive societies where they have no say in how they are governed.
  1. Do you make your own decisions? There are 29.8 million people living as slaves today, according to the Walk Free Foundation. These people live as forced laborers, forced prostitutes, child soldiers and child brides in forced marriages. Walk Free investigated 162 countries and found slaves in every one.
  1. Do you have money in a bank? More than 2.5 billion adults around the world are unbanked, according to data based on Gallup polling in 148 countries. Two-thirds of people without accounts said they simply don't have enough money to use a bank.
  1. Do you own shoes? About 300 million children around the world don't own a pair of shoes. It is estimated that 2 billion people worldwide are currently plagued with parasitic diseases that could be prevented simply by wearing proper footwear.
  1. Do you drink clean water? About 1.1 billion people in the world don't have access to clean drinking water. Because of that, about 9 million people will die this year because of water-related illnesses. The next time you open a bottle of Dasani or drink from your tap, remember that millions of women around the world spend an average of four hours daily walking to get water.
  1. Did your mother survive when you were born? Approximately 800 women die every day from complications during pregnancy and childbirth. This is equivalent to 33 women an hour. Almost all these deaths occurred in developing countries, and most could have been prevented.
  1. Did you live past age 5? Some 21,000 children die every day around the world because of poverty and preventable diseases. That is equivalent to one child dying every four seconds. The annual death toll is 7.6 million children a year.
  1. Do you eat three meals a day? The World Health Organization estimates that one-third of the world's population is overfed, one-third is underfed and one-third is starving. Approximately 925 million people in the developing world are chronically undernourished.
  1. Do you enjoy reliable electricity? About 1.5 billion people in this world have no access to electrical power. Do you enjoy that oven in your kitchen? The next time you prepare a meal, remember that 2.5 billion people in the world still use wood or charcoal to cook their food. Do you enjoy your washing machine? About 5 billion people in the world still wash their clothes by hand.
  1. Do you have a roof over your head? The U.N. Commission on Human Rights says there are 100 million homeless people in the world. One in 3 children in the world live without adequate shelter. And today there are about 42 million people who are living as refugees. Most were displaced by war and live in crude camps.
  1. Do you own a car? The United States still has the highest number of motor vehicles in the world. Globally, only 1 out of every 8 people has access to a car. Many of the others either walk, take crowded buses or public vans or ride on bicycles, rickshaws or animals. Did you fly somewhere in the past year? You are blessed. Only 5% to 7% of people in the world have ever flown in an airplane.
  1. Do you have a flushable toilet? The United Nations Development Program reports that 2.6 billion people do not have access to any toilet facilities. India has the largest percentage of people who lack adequate sanitation. About 638 million Indians must go outdoors.
  1. Can you read? Nearly a billion people entered the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names. There are 72 million children who should be in school but are not enrolled. And if you have a college degree, you are in a privileged minority; only 6.7% of people in the world have a college diploma.
  1. Can you see? Over 285 million people in the world are visually impaired. About 39 million of these are blind and 246 million have a moderate to severe visual impairment. India is home to the world's largest number of blind people, due to the country's acute shortage of optometrists.

King David wrote: "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits" (Ps. 103:2). Thanksgiving is not an optional virtue. Without it, our pride swells and our selfishness consumes us. Thanksgiving is an important exercise because it adjusts our attitude. It calibrates our hearts so that we stop complaining and instead remember how we are blessed and who deserves the credit for our blessings. Happy Thanksgiving!


          

Clashes between Syrian government forces and militant groups leave nearly 70 dead

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Two days of clashes between regime forces and armed groups in Syria’s last major opposition bastion have killed nearly 70 on both sides, undermining a months-long ceasefire agreement, a war monitor said Sunday.
          

Erdoğan, new EU commission head discuss Syria | Ahval

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the new president of the EU Commission Ursula von der…
          

Advocaat van teruggekeerde IS-vrouw zegt dat zijn cliënte “totaal gedesillusioneerd” is

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Een dag na de terugkeer van twee IS-vrouwen naar ons land, is een van de zussen Benmezian al urenlang door federale speurders ondervraagd. “Mijn cliënte is een zeer frêle, uitgehongerde jongedame die een zeer gedetailleerde en geloofwaardige verklaring over haar vertrek, verblijf en terugkeer uit Syrië heeft afgelegd”, zegt haar advocaat Abderrahim Lahlali.


          

Irish Ex-Soldier Who Married ISIS Fighter Is Arrested

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Lisa Smith, 38, and her 2-year-old daughter were deported by Turkey from a Syrian displacement camp and landed in Dublin on Sunday.
          

Lebanon's maritime forces detain Syrian, Lebanese nationals

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Lebanon's maritime forces detain Syrian, Lebanese nationals
          

EH LEGEND - male - Uk/Suffolk, Syria

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I'm looking for someone nice honest someone who can I spend rest of my life with my soulmate
          

nad13 - female - Halab, Syria

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I am a syrian lady with good heart, honest, loving and caring
          

Gas Leak

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In Episode 81 Tommy discusses the latest email leaks revealing there was no gas attack in Douma. Again, like with WMD's, the US military machine is caught spreading lies in order to commit crimes in foreign lands, and arms are still being run into Iraq and Syria through US shell companies.


          

Colorful Whispers" exhibition held in Tartous"

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The old Hall in Tartous hosted an exhibition entitled "Colorful Whispers" with the participation of a group of children and artists who exhibited drawings of various subjects and styles.

The exhibition was organized by the Ornina Fine Arts Studio in cooperation with the branch of the Union of Fine Artists. It includes about 150 works of 45 children and 20 artists from the Ornina Artists' Group.

Artist Samaher Dalla, director of the studio, explained that this  exhibition has been  held annually since 2008, pointing out that these kinds of exhibitions aim to increase cultural and artistic awareness of children and to discover their talents which reflect their sense through colors.


          

Tarboosh is a legacy and a symbol of cultural

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Tarboosh is a close-fitting, flat-topped, brimless hat shaped like an incomplete cone, usually bright red to dark burgundy. There are two types of tarabeesh, some of them are made of pressed wool (felts) or of cloth with a black silk tassel, lined with straw.

It is worn especially by Muslim men throughout the eastern Mediterranean region either as a separate headgear or as the inner part of the turban. The tarboosh worn by women is made of rich materials and adorned with ornaments.


          

“Clogs”, old rare heritage of few makers

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Damascus, (ST) - Mahmoud Sayyala,  the owner of a shop in the Souk of Qabaqbiya adjacent to the Umayyad Mosque, is one of the few who master the profession of clog making, for it has nearly died out. It is now sought only as a souvenir by tourists- part of the heritage of Damascus.

"Clogs (al-Qabqab)" is the foremost popular shoe in Damascus. For example, Ghawar el Tawasha, the most famous character in Syrian drama performed by prominent artist Duraid Lahham, wears the legendary Syrian clogs throughout a very famous drama series. In addition to the bright record of Syrian clogs in the Syrian collective memory such as folktales and popular proverbs. 


          

Hama ... Home of a Rich Treasure of Syrian Mosaics

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Mosaic paintings tell the history of ancient Hama

Mosaic boards discovered in Hama represent 65% of the total Syrian discoveries. The boards discovered from 1983 till now are the most beautiful of those discovered in Syria, especially the boards discovered in Maryamin, in Tayebet alImam, in Afamia, and the one discovered in Nahr alBared, in addition to many other boards which were deformed before being excavated as is the case in the village of Deir alSleib near Masiaf.


          

Syria pullout back in, the commies are coming, migrant mayhem – News Bytes – 29-Nov-2019

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US redeploys forces around Syria oil fields – Middle East Monitor The US has redeployed forces in eastern Syria in the area around oil-rich ​​Rumaila with trucks loaded with tanks seen heading towards the petrol fields in the region yesterday. Israel to build 11,000 new illegal housing units in Jerusalem – Middle East Monitor The … Continue reading "Syria pullout back in, the commies are coming, migrant mayhem – News Bytes – 29-Nov-2019"
          

The Great European Refugee Crisis: Turkish Actions Evoke Ottoman Nightmares

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The great European refugee crisis of 2015 seems a distant memory to some, as for that matter does its primary cause, the Syrian Civil War. Yet the number of desperate migrants heading west into Europe is on the rise again, and once more it is due to actions in Syria, this time precipitated by the … Continue reading "The Great European Refugee Crisis: Turkish Actions Evoke Ottoman Nightmares"
          

Report: Pompeo, Netanyahu ‘Likely’ to Meet on Sidelines of NATO Summit in London

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Israel has an interest with at least one issue on the agenda at the gathering: the question of Turkey’s invasion of northern Syria.
          

Russian Military Police on Patrol in Syria's Aleppo, Raqqa Provinces

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MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The Russian military police continue patrolling Syria's provinces of Aleppo and Raqqa along the border with Turkey as part of the Russia-Turkey deal over the buffer zone in northern Syria, Major General Yuri Borenkov, the head of the Defence Ministry's Reconciliation Centre in Syria, said on Sunday.
          

Video: Militants Attack Hama Airport in Syria

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Tensions are high in Hama province, as well as in Aleppo and Latakia, as terrorists regularly attack the settlements there, putting the Syrian Army on alert.
          

Syrian Air Defences Repel Drone Attack on Airport Near City of Hama - Report

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Terrorists carried out an artillery attack on residential areas of the southwest and centre of Aleppo, provoking the Syrian Armed Forces to respond with their own strikes on militant positions on 21 November, according to a source from a local forensic team.
          

Amid Heroism in London, Gnawing Fear of a Simmering Terrorism Threat

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Amid Heroism in London, Gnawing Fear of a Simmering Terrorism ThreatLONDON -- It was midafternoon when Mike Finnerty, who sells cheese at his Borough Market shop just south of London Bridge, realized that something was wrong. An unusual flow of people had suddenly gathered in front of his stall, he said, and they seemed "alarmed."What he did not know was that a man dressed in black and armed with knives had gone on a murderous rampage in a grand meeting venue called Fishmongers' Hall on the opposite side of the bridge, just north of the Thames River. But Finnerty sensed the danger Friday, he would later tell the BBC and write on Twitter.So he and another employee rushed some customers -- a couple from Vancouver and a young American man -- into a cheese refrigerator and locked the door. Then he called the police.The "operator said it was an attack and not to move," he wrote. He said he could hear shouting outside the door, but he and the group huddled together in "pretty close quarters."Susan Vinn, 57, was smoking outside her office adjacent to Fishmongers' Hall about 2 p.m., when she saw people running over the bridge. And Craig Heathcote, a filmmaker, was walking there when, he told the British broadcaster Sky News, someone said:"Get out of the way. Someone's got a knife."Saturday, Britain grappled with the aftermath of another terrorist attack in the heart of London just as the Islamic State group claimed responsibility. Two people were killed and at least three were wounded in Friday's attack.In a statement, the Islamic State group said the assailant had carried out the attack in its name and added that he had done so "in response to calls to target coalition countries." The phrasing indicates that the attacker was inspired by group's ideology and refers to a speech by a former spokesman, who urged followers to carry out attacks in any way they could, including stabbing.This attack, police said, had been carried out by a man wearing a fake bomb vest, a former prisoner who had been convicted of terrorism offenses in 2012. Authorities identified the suspect as Usman Khan, 28, of Stafford, England, who was released from prison last year, apparently after agreeing to wear an electronic tag.He was part of a gang that plotted in 2010 to plant explosives in the toilets of the London Stock Exchange, authorities said, and possibly attack other British landmarks and prominent figures like Boris Johnson, then the mayor of London.The rampage Friday, near the same bridge where a terrorist attack by a group men in June 2017 left eight people dead and dozens injured, raised questions about the efficacy of Britain's prison rehabilitation system and about the release from prison of Khan, despite warnings from the judge at his trial about the threats he still posed.In his judgment, Lord Justice Brian Leveson said there was "no doubt that anyone convicted of this type of offense could legitimately be considered dangerous."In February 2012, Khan was given an indeterminate sentence, with a minimum term of eight years, but the Court of Appeal replaced it in 2013 with a 16-year fixed-term sentence. He was released in half the time.The attack occurred two weeks before a pivotal general election, and Johnson, now prime minister, is under pressure. He told reporters Saturday that he wanted to "toughen up" sentences."I have long argued that it is a mistake to allow serious and violent criminals to come out of prison early," Johnson said.Saturday, the Parole Board, which carries out risk assessments on prisoners to determine whether they can be safely released, said in a statement that it had not reviewed his case. Khan appeared to have been released automatically, "on license" -- meaning under certain conditions -- "without ever being referred to the board," it said.On Sunday, the Ministry of Justice said it had began an urgent review of the license conditions of convicted terrorists released from prison.Along with questions about the case came praise for the bystanders who had charged the suspect as he made his way along the bridge. One man wielded a fire extinguisher, video footage on social media showed. Another brandished an ornamental whale tusk that had been torn from the wall of Fishmongers' Hall, according to local reports.The assailant was wrestled to the ground in the street outside the grand hall. A man wearing a suit and tie can be seen removing a knife and walking away from the suspect. He was later identified as an off-duty member of the transport police.Thomas Gray, a tour company manager, told reporters that he saw one of the knives taped to Khan's hands."I stamped on his left wrist while someone else smacked his hand on the ground and then kicked one of the knives away," Gray told Sky News. "I went to pick up the knife when I heard a cop say, 'He has got a bomb.'"The bomb turned out to be fake. Footage showed officers, guns drawn, pulling bystanders off Khan. Then, Khan was shot and killed by the police.The trauma of the encounter, which played out as workers looked down from huge office windows and as onlookers shared video of the chaos, led Vinn to ask: "Why London Bridge anyway? It's horrible, I don't get it."She said that for a country that has experienced terrorist attack after terrorist attack since 2017: "It's become ambient. It makes you worried about your safety on a day-to-day basis, especially here, around London Bridge."Mayor Sadiq Khan of London praised the bravery of bystanders. "What's remarkable about the images we've seen," he said, "is the breathtaking heroism of members of the public who literally ran toward danger, not knowing what confronted them."The assault threw into stark relief the risks in attempting to rehabilitate those convicted or suspected of terrorism.Saturday, Chris Phillips, a former head of the country's National Counter Terrorism Security Office, said Britain was releasing people while they were still radicalized."We're playing Russian roulette with people's lives, letting convicted, known, radicalized jihadi criminals walk about our streets," he told the Press Association news agency.David Videcette, a former anti-terrorism detective and author, added that Britain must "look at sentencing and rehabilitation, as we have a huge problem with terrorist prisoners that are being released, and with those that want to come back from Syria."Khan was attending an event for former prisoners and their mentors in a prison education program, Learning Together, set up by Cambridge University. He was believed to have been invited to share his experiences as a former prisoner."We believe that the attack began inside before he left the building and proceeded onto London Bridge," said Neil Basu, assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan Police.One of those who rushed to aid victims, according to news reports, was a man convicted of murder who had been on day release.Among those killed, according to BBC and news site Cambridge Live, was a Cambridge graduate, Jack Merritt, the course coordinator of Learning Together. The police did not immediately confirm his identity. But a man who said he was Merritt's father, David, posted the news on Twitter before deleting it."My son, Jack, who was killed in this attack, would not wish his death to be used as the pretext for more draconian sentences or for detaining people unnecessarily," the post read. "R.I.P. Jack: you were a beautiful spirit who always took the side of the underdog."Saturday, three people remained hospitalized, and one person who been critically wounded was in stable condition, the National Health Service said in a statement.The attack came only weeks after the British government lowered its terror threat warning level to substantial from severe as Britons had begun growing cautiously accustomed to a life less frequently disrupted by deadly episodes.In 2017, when London Bridge and the nearby Borough Market were the subject of an attack, there was also a suicide bombing at the Manchester Arena, an attack on Westminster Bridge and at the gates of Parliament and an assault at a north London mosque.For a government seeking reelection in two weeks' time, the issue is sensitive. Before the 2017 general election, the opposition Labour Party had linked terror attacks to police cuts made by a Conservative-led government.On Saturday, Brandon Lewis, the security minister, did not say whether he considered the attack to be a failure by the authorities, but he sought to rebut suggestions that cuts to the police had played a role. He told Sky News that both funding and the number of officers devoted to counterterrorism had "consistently increased since 2015."Videcette, the former anti-terrorism detective, said that many lower-level offenders were now up for release and to monitor them, the authorities had to keep close watch on those with whom they associate. The problem, he said, was "if they don't reconnect with the individuals we expect them to" and opt instead for a low-tech, lone attack."There is a real danger," he said, "with those who have not reached the pinnacle of what they are going to be but aspire to be a well-known terrorist, or perhaps aspire to be martyred by a police officer in a terror attack."This article originally appeared in The New York Times.(C) 2019 The New York Times Company



          

Join the last day of Ajyal Film Festival celebrations this Saturday

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Experience magical performances and compelling feature films on the last day (23 November) of Ajyal Film Festival 2019, the annual cinema event hosted by the Doha Film Institute (DFI) at Katara Cultural Village.

As the festival curtains draws to a close, Ajyal’s Wonder & Under the Moonlight Cine-Concert will offer a unique musical show, presented by the Forum des Images, to delight young and old. A feast for all the senses, a thrilling selection of shorts about tales of the stars, sun and moon will be held at 11.30 AM at Katara Building 16 and is free to the public. Live musicians will accompany: Get the Moon by Jutta Schünemann, Sooner or Later by Jadwiga Kowalska, Lunette by Phoebe Warries, A Little Star by Svetlana Andrianova, and Little Wolf by An Vrombaut.

Ajyal Tunes got off to a rocking start yesterday with electrifying performances from Doha’s underground music scene, featuring talented youth artists Sana Zharandi, Amjad Essam, Savanna Rose, Varun, Omar Abdulaziz, Ayman Shukur, Jerin Jose, Jueun, Mothanna, and Omar Alyafai among others, curated by Qatari artist Dana Almeer. Qatar-based singer/songwriter and rapper Mvrs rounded off the show with a stirring rap performance. An exciting celebration of musical talents from every discipline, Ajyal Tunes is part of the festival’s growing artistic scope – showcasing and celebrating arts and culture from every discipline.

Don’t miss out on the last day of the Ajyal Creativity Hub and its bustling activities at Geekdom, Qatar’s largest pop-culture event presented in partnership with Qatar National Tourism Council, and ARC, Ajyal’s interactive multimedia exhibition featuring artworks by 19 of Qatar’s most promising artists and creative talents. Located in Katara Buildings 18 and 19, all performances and exhibits will remain open to the public until 10 PM.

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The Feel short film programme will explore the power of intuition in shaping our sense of the world with a curated selection of ten short films screening at VOX Cinemas, Doha Festival City, at 12.30 PM, including Belles étoiles (France/2017) by Naïma Di Piero and Elhadj Sidib; Like an Elephant in a China Shop (France/2017) by Louise Chevrier, Luka Fischer, Rodolphe Groshens, Marie Guillon, Estelle Martinez, Benoit Paillard, Lisa Rasasombat; Hedgehog (France/2018) by Vaibhav Keswani, Jeanne Laureau, Colombine Majou, Morgane Mattard, Kaisa Pirttinen, and Jong-ha Yoon; Maha’mel (Ships) (Qatar/2018) by Dhabya AlMuhannadi; The Stained Club (France/2018) by Mélanie Lopez, Simon Boucly, Marie Ciesielski, Alice Jaunet, Chan Stéphie Peang, Béatrice Viguier; Beit Byoot (Jordan, Qatar/2019) by Mayar Hamdan; The Unlucky Hamster (Qatar, Indonesia/2019) by Abdulaziz Mohammed Khashabi; Child of the Earth (Switzerland, USA/2018) by Claudio Fäh; The Kite (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland/2019) by Martin Smatana; and Nada Bedair’s Paper Kite (Qatar/2019).

The Overcome short film selection, screening at 3 PM at VOX Cinemas, Doha Festival City, is a testament to the ability of people to overcome obstacles in pursuit of their dreams. The programme includes: Layla (UK/2019) by Celine Cotran; Jolanta Bańkowska’s Story (Poland/2019); Youth (Egypt, USA/2019) by Farida Zahran; Thermostat 6 (France/2018) by Maya Av-ron, Mylène Cominotti, Marion Coudert,  Sixtine Dano; Maradona’s Legs (Germany, Palestine/2019) by Firas Khoury; Esperança (France/2019) by Cécile Rousset, Jeanne Paturle, Benjamin Serero; Fault Line (Iran/2018) by Soheil Amirsharifi; Baptiste Drapeau’s Half and Half (France/2018); The Helmet (Yemen/2019) by Osama Khaled; Memo (France/2017) by Julien Becquer, Éléna Dupressoir, Jules Durand, Viviane Guimarães, Ines Scheiber; Refuge (Qatar/2019) by Maha Essid; and Fragile (Qatar/2019) by Kholood Al-Ali.

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Today is your last opportunity to watch an exciting selection of feature films:

  • For Sama (Syria, UK/2019) by Waad al-Kateab, Edward Watts screening at VOX Cinemas, Doha Festival City at 5.30 PM. Please note that the screening is rated PG-18.
  • Ailo’s Journey (France, Finland/2018) by Guillaume Maidatchevsky will screen at Novo Cinemas, the Pearl, at 5.30 PM.
  • DFI-supported feature Bombay Rose (India, France, UK, Qatar/2019) by Gitanjali Rao screeening at 8.30 PM at Novo Cinemas, the Pearl. Please note that the screening is rated PG-18.
  • DFI-supported film You Will Die at Twenty (Sudan, France, Egypt, Germany, Norway, Qatar/2019) by Amjad Abu Alala will screen at VOX Cinemas, Doha Festival City at 8.30 PM and is rated PG-15.
  • Honeyland (North Macedonia/2019) by Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska will screen at 6 PM at VOX Cinemas, Doha Festival City.

Tickets for the 7th Ajyal Film Festival are available for purchase at the Ajyal Main Box Office located in Katara Building 10; at the Ajyal Box Office at VOX Cinemas Doha Festival City for screenings taking place at VOX Cinemas; and from the Novo Cinemas Box Office for screenings at Novo Cinemas, the Pearl. For ticket purchase and up-to-date information on the Ajyal Film Festival, please visit: https://www.dohafilminstitute.com/filmfestival/ticketinformation https://www.dohafilminstitute.com/filmfestival/films

2019 Ajyal Film Festival’s Official Partners include: Katara Cultural Village – Cultural Partner; Qatar National Tourism Council – Principal Partner; Novo Cinemas, Ooredoo – Strategic Partner, St. Regis Doha - Signature Partner.

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The October uprising in Iraq

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Issue 
November 28, 2019

Since early October, there has been a spontaneous wave of demonstrations in Iraq’s capital Baghdad and other cities against widespread corruption, unemployment and poor public services.

Green Left Weekly’s Susan Price spoke to Sydney-based Iraqi human rights activist Abeer Hasan Abdulazeez about the significance of this movement.

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What has caused the protest movement in Iraq and how significant is it?

I nicknamed it the October Revolution and in Arabic language it is called intifada.

The protests started on October 1, a date which was set by civil activists on social media, spreading over the central and southern provinces of Iraq, to protest 16 years of corruption, unemployment and inefficient public services.

The protests lasted for a whole week, continuously, then stopped on October 8 and resumed on the 25th. After this day, the demands escalated into calls to overthrow the administration and stop Iranian interference in Iraq’s affairs

The Iraqi government used excessive force to suppress these demonstrations, using live bullets, snipers, hot water and tear gas against protesters. This resulted in 327 dead and over 6427 wounded, according to the latest statistics we have received.

The significance of this Intifada and what distinguishes these demonstrations, is that they did not come at the invitation of a party or political or religious groups, but were spontaneous, by young people who are not politically affiliated and from various regions of Baghdad and other provinces.

What are the people's demands?

As I explained earlier, corruption, unemployment and poor public services such as electricity, water, medical services and the absence of social security made Iraqi people struggle and suffer.

These were the primary factors that led to the intifada in its first phase. In the second phase, other demands were added for a radical change of government, including all members of parliament, as well as to change all the principles on which the Iraqi government was formed after 2003. They also added the demand for the removal of Iranian interference in Iraq's internal and external affairs and independence of the Iraqi political decision-making, to serve the interests of the Iraqi people and the region.

The Iraqi government tried to obscure the facts, distort the truth and the goal of the uprising, by accusing the demonstrators of not having clear and specific demands as well as not having leaders to represent them — so the Iraqi government could sit with them to negotiate the demands of the protesters..

The advanced political awareness among protesting youth and others made them reorganise themselves to form a group of leaders, representing the demonstrators and by states and provinces. They also reviewed all the demands of the demonstrators to make them clear, specific and uniform.

How has the United States invasion of Iraq contributed to the conditions for this uprising?

I do not think so there is a relation between these two events. Some may find that there is a strong link between the entry of US troops to Iraq in 2003 and the uprising that is occurring at present. But that is at least from my point of view.

That is because this big military operation carried out by the US in 2003 in Iraq was the reason for the removal of the former dictatorship and helped to adopt a new political system.

Unfortunately, the government that took power after 2003 with the support of the US was not able to meet the government promised to the Iraqi people, because it was occupied with political and partisan conflicts to obtain sources of power in Parliament as well as money.

On the other hand, I agree with those who say that the entry of the US into Iraq in 2003 also had negative aspects. The severe destruction that accompanied these military operations is one of them, which led to the destruction of 95% of Iraq's infrastructure, as well as the destruction of the army and its equipment in almost complete form.

Iraqis are still suffering from the effects of the destruction of its infrastructure, which not all governments since 2003 have been able to repair. The Iraqi people are still suffering from the lack of electricity, water and sewage services as well as in the areas of health and education.

The most important negative factors that emerged after the occupation of the US in Iraq is the security vacuum in the region as well as Iraq. The Iraqi border became unprotected during US military operations, which resulted in the entry by many militias who work with regional or external forces. This is what we saw through the invasion of ISIS militias into northern Iraq and the occupation of Mosul and some other areas, which required a lot of effort and money as well as sacrifice of lives to liberate these areas from ISIS by the Iraqi army.

What has been the response of the traditional parties of the left to this movement?

The reaction and response of the traditional Iraqi opposition parties were supportive of the uprising and the demands of the demonstrators, despite the difference of emphasis. Where some appeared to be trying to exploit the uprising to promote a party through the assertion and support for the demands of the demonstrators, others showed double attitudes and lack of clarity and frankness.

The general response was in favour of this uprising, supportive of its demands and belief in political reform as the radical solution to the crisis in Iraq.

All Iraqi opposition parties, as well as many parties in Arab countries, Europe, Latin America, all human rights organisations and other international parties have supported the demands of the demonstrators and condemned the use of excessive force by the Iraqi authorities, which have included the killing of many people and injuring of thousands.

The Iraqi community and other communities in a number of countries, including Australia, Germany, France, Austria, Sweden and the US are also standing in support of the rightful demands of the demonstrators and condemning the practices of power against the protesters.

What new political forces are emerging?

At the moment, there is no indication of the emergence of new political forces or ideologies.

On the contrary, all political forces in Iraq and parties are now considering and monitoring the results that will follow the intifada, to determine their stance.

Some parties have claimed support for the demonstrators and their demands, but the support by those parties is nothing but political deceit to ensure their survival in power and in the political scene.

In addition, some political forces and parties involved in the current Iraqi government think that support for the demonstrators will give them the opportunity in the future to change stances and ensure the support of the Iraqi people.

Swinging positions by some political forces, as I mentioned earlier, was a strategy to ensure they stay in the political game, whatever the outcome of this crisis.

Dual positions are only a temporary political tactic, in the event of the victory of the intifada and the fulfillment of the demands of the demonstrators — which will certainly be achieved and won.

Where do you see this movement going? Will it succeed? What are the next steps needed?

This revolution is going in the right direction, as long as the demonstrators stick to the demands and particularly, the demand for the overall change of government, parliament and the non-participation of the current parties in the upcoming elections.

The intifada will succeed, but will need more time than everybody expected, due to overlapping political interests, as well as the intervention of foreign forces that have the desire to retain the current Iraqi government in power. 

The next and important step is to mobilise more international support to pressure the Iraqi government to sit at the negotiating table and discuss the demands of the demonstrators, which represent the demands of the entire Iraqi people.

As part of the process to increase international support, we are in constant contact with most of the Iraqi community living in Australia and abroad.

Also, we are encouraging them to ask the governments of the countries in which they live to raise the issue in all international forums and to pressure the Iraqi government internationally, which will accelerate the process of political changes in Iraq.

In line with the requirements of supporting the uprising in Iraq, The Dream association is working hard with Iraqi community members to raise the issue of Iraq and explain the reasons that caused the intifada. We are succeeding in getting solidarity from other organisations and communities living in Australia, such as the Chilean community and their organisations as well as Australian organisations, including the Greens, other human rights organisations and a few members of  parliament.

The October uprising will succeed eventually, the people of Iraq will get their rights, no matter how long it takes.

How united are the forces in this movement? How important is unity?

What attracts attention about the October uprising and makes it distinctive and different from the previous uprisings in the past, is that the demonstrators are spontaneously united in all their categories and that is something that encourages optimism.

The goals of the October uprising unite the protesters and brings them together as one against the Iraqi government. Moreover, the October uprising was born from 16 years of suffering of the Iraqi people. This suffering affected all categories of the Iraqi people, except the ruling class and the rich.

The protesters' strong belief in the issues and in changing the government and its underlying principles has united them all. These principles led to sectarian division and have divided Iraqi society. It is now known to everyone that these principles and ideologies were marketed by Iran to serve Iran’s interests in Iraq and in the region, through its affiliates in the Iraqi government.

The young intellectuals, who form the largest volume in the uprising, have a great awareness of the reality of the political situation in Iraq and the changes needed to the government.

They will maintain the momentum that will push the uprising to continue until the changes are achieved and for the fulfillment of all demands.

The people of Iran are once again mobilising against the regime. Do you see this struggle as related to the struggle in Iraq? Does the Iraqi movement see itself as part of the struggles emerging in the Middle East, Chile and elsewhere?

Certainly, there is a relationship between the struggle of the Iraqi people and the Iranian people, but it is an indirect relationship and there is no cooperation between the two movements.

The two movements in Iraq and Iran suffered corrupt regimes that seized the wealth of the people.

Most of the Iranian people, especially intellectuals and youth, reject the expansionist policies of the Iranian government in the region and its interventions in the affairs of neighboring countries — such as Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Yemen — to attempt to control them completely.

The struggle against corrupt government, unemployment and poverty of public services and for freedom, equality and justice has become the demand of all peoples who struggle across the world. Therefore, the Iraqi movement is part of struggles that are emerging in the Middle East, Chile and elsewhere — and vice versa.

The protests in Iraq, Lebanon, Chile and elsewhere are complementary, because they represent the right of all humankind to live in freedom, with dignity and justice.

[Abeer Hasan Abdulazeez is the founder of The Dream association, an organisation that supports human rights and assists refugees. She has worked in international diplomacy, publishing and broadcasting.]

Protest in solidarity with Iraq in Sydney on November 24.

          

IS bride Lisa Smith arrested after arriving back in Ireland from Syria

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The 38-year-old went to the country in 2015 after converting to radical Islam.
          

IS bride Lisa Smith arrested after arriving back in Ireland from Syria

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The 38-year-old went to the country in 2015 after converting to radical Islam.
          

Rolling Stone: Max Blumenthal & Syria Propaganda

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OPCW Scandal Fabricating False Chemical Weapons Claims

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  WHY SYRIA CHEMICAL REPORT WAS REDACTED  
          

Video of Syrians withdrawing money in cash-strapped Lebanon stirs anger

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It wounds the nature of man and injures human solidarity

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Maatje voor Syrich man die geen Nederlands spreekt

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Ik een man van 54 jaar, kom uit Syria, ben laag geletterd en spreek geen Nederlands. Daarom ben ik dringend opzoek naar iemand die voor mij kan vertalen wanneer ik gesprekken bij de verschillende inst...
          

Taken to Brink by Trump, Gulf States Are Backpedaling on Iran

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Taken to Brink by Trump, Gulf States Are Backpedaling on Iran(Bloomberg) -- An expanded soccer tournament, a direct flight, clandestine meetings and a pledge to release prisoners of war; diplomacy is breaking out as Gulf Arab nations back away from a Donald Trump-inspired confrontation with Iran. And the signs are everywhere.Last week, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain played their first games of the 2019 Arabian Gulf Cup in Qatar after a last-minute decision to take part -- an apparent breakthrough in a 30-month feud that saw them halt trade and flights over Qatar’s links with Iran and support for Islamist groups.Meanwhile, the Saudi-led coalition that’s fought Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen since 2015 began releasing jailed Houthis, as efforts to end the conflict gather momentum. Oman is quietly hosting high-level meetings, according to people familiar with the matter, and even Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has hinted at direct channels with the U.A.E.Spooked by the prospect of a catastrophic war with Iran and its proxy militias across the region, Gulf monarchies are in the midst of a strategic rethink. The U.A.E., whose economic model relies in large part on its international links, quickly realized it had most to lose from a military escalation. It had removed most of its troops from Yemen by the end of a turbulent summer that saw oil tankers targeted and a U.S. drone downed in the Gulf without significant American response.While the humanitarian catastrophe unleashed by the Yemen war trained an unwelcome spotlight on Saudi Arabia, it took a brazen strike on Saudi oil installations -- which knocked out half the country’s crude production -- to ram home the risks and prove that Trump was not about to ride to his allies’ rescue.“The attacks shattered any illusion of this magical U.S. security umbrella,” said David Roberts, an assistant professor at King’s College London who studies the Gulf. “It burst the bubble and showed that Iran had the willingness to both do something astonishing like the attack on Aramco facilities and the capability to carry it out.”Iran denies U.S. and Saudi assertions it carried out the Sept. 14 strikes, pointing to Houthi claims of responsibility. But people familiar with investigations into the attacks say they were almost certainly launched from southwestern Iran -- an explosive escalation in Tehran’s pushback against an economic offensive unleashed by Trump and enthusiastically backed by the Saudis.The Trump administration withdrew last year from the 2015 deal meant to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear bomb, and reimposed sanctions that have crippled its oil exports. But the “maximum pressure” policy is designed to coax Tehran into more concessions not to drag the U.S. into a new Middle East war just as it draws down troops in Syria.Rolling back Shiite Muslim Iran’s power remains a priority for the Sunni Gulf Arab leadership. There’s an increasing recognition, however, that no one stands to gain from a military escalation in the world’s top oil-exporting region.Saudi Arabia’s Center for International Communication didn’t respond to an email seeking comment. The U.A.E. declined to comment. But in a Nov. 10 speech, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said he saw “a path to a deal with Iran that all parties might soon” be ready to embark on if Tehran demonstrated commitment.War to ‘Cold Peace’In search of a breakthrough, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, a former cricketer elected with the backing of a powerful army that provides extensive support for the Saudi military, shuttled between Tehran and Riyadh in October. He met Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Rouhani, as well as Saudi Arabia’s King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, describing talks as “encouraging.”Khan said he traveled at the request of Trump and Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir said the diplomacy wasn’t prompted by the kingdom. But deepening unease in the Gulf catalyzed the effort.Turning these overtures into lasting peace between countries that have grown further apart since the 1979 Iranian revolution remains far off.The Gulf states resent Iran’s deep reach into Arab nations. While ongoing protests in Iraq and Lebanon suggest Iran has reached the limit of its regional influence, they are unlikely to reverse political and military advances decades in the making.“Cold peace is possible but we are certainly far from a grand bargain,” said Afshin Molavi, senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute at Johns Hopkins. “For that, both Riyadh and Abu Dhabi would have to accept a role for Iran in Arab countries such as Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.”As they explore ways forward, Gulf states are moving at different speeds.The U.A.E. broke with the U.S. and Saudi Arabia by not naming Iran as the culprit behind attacks in May and June on oil tankers as they sailed toward the Strait of Hormuz, the world’s foremost oil shipping chokepoint.It sent coast guard officials to Iran for the first time in six years and Rouhani hinted at other meetings with senior U.A.E. officials. “We’re moving toward improved relations,” he said Oct. 14. Saudi Arabia is catching up.Washington built a multilateral naval operation to protect shipping in the Gulf after the attacks and sent more troops to Saudi Arabia. Both actions resulted in a “down tick” in Iranian actions,” U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Nov. 13. “The Iranians should not mistake our restraint for weakness.”Where the U.S. holds back, however, others are crowding in. Besides his role in saving Bashar al-Assad’s regime, Russian President Vladimir Putin has forged a partnership with Iran, created an oil alliance with Saudi Arabia and built ties with Egypt’s Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, who was warned by the U.S. last month against plans to purchase Russian jets.Putin traveled to Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E. in October after visits by the Saudi king and the U.A.E.’s de-facto leader Mohammad bin Zayed to Moscow. The two Gulf countries and Russia have signed deals valued at billions of dollars.For Iran’s Rouhani, the case for regional engagement is obvious.“Don’t you know that Iran is going to stay here and we will remain neighbors throughout history?” he has said, referring to Iran’s Arab neighbors. “Trump will only be around for a few years and will go back to whatever it was he was doing.”\--With assistance from Golnar Motevalli and Glen Carey.To contact the reporter on this story: Zainab Fattah in Dubai at zfattah@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Lin Noueihed at lnoueihed@bloomberg.net, Mark WilliamsFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



          

The courageous spy who helped us get Baghdadi

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This week President Donald Trump met with Special Forces soldiers involved in the Oct. 26 raid in Idlib, Syria, ending the terror reign of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Also present was their dog, Conan, wounded while chasing the murderous terrorist into a dead-end tunnel. Not wishing to disclose identities of raid participants, Trump met…

The post The courageous spy who helped us get Baghdadi appeared first on WND.


          

Turkey, Russia complete 12th joint patrol in North Syria

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  Turkish and Russian troops have completed the 12th round of joint ground patrols in northern Syria under a deal reached last month, Anadolu reports. “Turkish and Russian units have completed their twelfth joint land patrol according to plan. A total of eight vehicles comprising of four from each side participated in the twelfth joint land […]

The post Turkey, Russia complete 12th joint patrol in North Syria appeared first on Qatar Herald.


          

US redeploys forces around Syria oil fields

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  The US has redeployed forces in eastern Syria in the area around oil-rich ​​Rumaila with trucks loaded with tanks seen heading towards the petrol fields in the region yesterday. Local sources told Al-Arabi Al-Jadeed that a convoy of approximately 80 American soldiers and 100 military vehicles and trucks withdrew from several points where they had been […]

The post US redeploys forces around Syria oil fields appeared first on Qatar Herald.


          

Russia condemns Israeli air strikes in Syria

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  Russia’s Ambassador to Israel, Anatoly Viktorov, has stated that the Kremlin “condemns” Israel’s air strikes on Syria. Viktorov called the attacks a violation of international law. “In our contacts with Israeli colleagues,” the ambassador told Israel’s i24NEWS last night, “we are trying to persuade them to get rid of such behaviour because these military activities do […]

The post Russia condemns Israeli air strikes in Syria appeared first on Qatar Herald.


          

Turkey’s Syria move highlights America’s tactical nukes in Europe

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There are still 150 or so of the things
          

Pastor dismisses Turkish president's promise to rebuild churches in Syria

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A pastor in Syria has dismissed President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's pledge to rebuild churches in the country as nothing more than "a drug to numb the feelings of Christians".
          

OCWP'den Suriye’ye yönelik sahte kimyasal silah raporu

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Kimyasal Silahların Yasaklanması Örgütü’nün geçtiğimiz yıl Duma’da Suriye ordusunun kimyasal silah kullandığını iddia ettiği raporun Suriye hükümeti aleyhinde değiştirilmiş olması ülkeye müdahale için ortaya atılan bahanelerin güvenilirliğini tekrar sorgulattı.

Geçtiğimiz günlerde WikiLeaks tarafından sızdırılan belgelerde Kimyasal Silahların Yasaklanması Örgütü’nün (OPCW) 2018 Nisan ayında Duma kentinde yapıldığı iddia edilen kimyasal saldırıya dair raporun kasıtlı olarak değiştirildiği ortaya çıkmıştı. OPCW’nin hazırladığı raporun Suriye hükümeti aleyhinde değiştirilmesi Suriye’ye ABD müdahalesinin önünü açmak için kullanılmıştı.

OPCW yönetimi, kendi uzmanlarının teknik, kimyasal ve tıbbi analizlerinin Suriye hükümetini Duma'da 40 kişiyi klor bidonlarını bir helikopterden atarak zehirlediğini ortaya koyduğunu iddia etmişti.

WikiLeaks'ta yayımlanan rapora göre, OPCW bilim personeli, teneke kutuların aşağı atıldığında hasar almadığını tespit etti. Bu kutuların el ile yerleştirilmiş olduğu ihtimalini güçlendirirken, sahnede bulunan klorlu organik kimyasalların miktarının ve klor gazı ile reaksiyona girme ihtimalinin çok düşük olması raporun sahte olduğunu tekrar ortaya koymuştu. Olay sırasında çeşitli videolarda görülen kayıpların tıbbi semptomları, klor solunumu ile ölümle aynı semptomları göstermiyordu.

7 Nisan’da gerçekleştiği öne sürülen kimyasal saldırıdan sonra ABD, Fransa ve İngiltere, Suriye’nin başkenti Şam’a bir saldırı düzenlemişti.

Kimyasal silah kullanımı iddiasını takiben ABD ve diğer ülkelerin Şam saldırısını meşru göstermek için "Beyaz Miğferler" adlı El Kaide bağlantılı halkla ilişkiler grubu, BBC ve CNN Duma’da kurmaca sözde saldırıya dair kurmaca videolar çekmişti.


CNN muhbiri kimyasal silah tespitini 'koklayarak' yapıyor.


OPCW’nin raporunda Suriye ordusunun Duma’da klor kullandığı iddia edilmişti.

19 Nisan 2018’de Suriye’nin Duma kentinde Rus ordusu tarafından bölgedeki ÖSO’lulara ait Alman menşeili klor dolu konteynerler bulunmuş ve militanlara ait olduğu tespit edilen bir yeraltı kimya laboratuvarında ise 1,5 ton kimyasal madde ele geçirilmişti.

OPCW yönetimi sahte raporu savundu. OPCW genel direktörü Fernando Arias, raporun sahte olduğunun ortaya çıkmasının ardından raporun yalanlanmasının "öznel görüşler yansıttığını" söyledi ve "Ben [soruşturmanın] bağımsız, profesyonel sonucuna bağlı olduğunu tekrarlamak isterim" dedi.


          

U-M brings diversity to Steinbeck’s "Grapes of Wrath"

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U-M brings diversity to Steinbeck’s "Grapes of Wrath"

Grapes of Wrath book cover

Excerpt of the book cover for the first edition of The Grapes of Wrath, 1939.

John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath is a great American classic.

It is set in a specific time, the Great Depression of the 1930s; specific places, the Dust Bowl ravaged southwest and the fertile promised land of California; and a specific group of people, the migrant Joad family of Oklahoma, one of many families looked down upon as ignorant Okies, traveling with hope for a better life. Yet the story continues to resonate as migrants make their way from Central America to the United States border and from Syria and North Africa to the shores of Europe in search of justice, peace and a chance for that better life. 

The University of Michigan Department of Theatre and Drama is presenting a production of Frank Galati’s critically acclaimed stage adaptation of Steinbeck’s novel.

“It seemed timely, relevant, a great American tragedy, a great novel,” said production director Gillian Eaton, an award-winning actress, director, and U-M faculty member.

Galati began workshopping the play at Chicago’s Steppin’ Wolf theater and in Britain and New York City. It was nominated for eight Tony Awards in 1990, winning for best direction and best play. To create a drama from Steinbeck’s sprawling novel, Galati had to reshape and condense the book and shift the emphasis.

“He took a long time workshopping it with actors and cutting and adding. They put a lot of music in it that helps the narration move forward,” said Eaton. “What we’re missing often is the deep characterizations, the way Steinbeck describes the interactions.”

Galati also cut out many characters to focus more tightly on the Joad family. He’s also cut out Steinbeck’s direct social commentary.

“The other thing that isn’t in the play are the extraordinary, what we call intercalary chapters, which is every chapter that doesn’t have to do with the Joads and their journey is Steinbeck having a chapter to focus on one issue, whether it’s car salesmen, the fate of the world or what actually caused the dust storms,” Eaton said.

Galati instead focuses on the family story. Eaton’s production makes a commentary on some of the issues that Steinbeck covers with casting that emphasizes just how timely, universal and troubling Steinbeck’s story was and continues to be.

“We have a wonderful, diverse cast of actors,” she said, "One of the things when you read the book, John Steinbeck focused on one particular group of people caught in the disaster, but the Dust Bowl affected everyone, everyone on the margins of American society, African-American, Mexican-American laborers, sharecroppers, Asian farmers. They are all represented in the play. As written by Steinbeck, it’s an Oklahoma story, but it’s something that happened to a diverse group of people. We’re representing that in the play.”

Nyah Pierson, an African-American senior with an acting major at U-M, is playing Ma Joad. She not only has to play a much older woman, she also has to play a role written as a white woman. Here the character is the matron of an African-American family.

“For me, some of the challenges of playing in the role are playing a central character to a story that has historically been told by people that do not look like me,” she said. “I am a black woman and although black individuals did survive the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression, their stories are a little harder to find in the literature. The truth of the matter is that black Americans were migrating west along with their white counterparts. In research, I found that many black individuals would receive work at many of the migrant camps like the Joad family stop at, but they would also be the first ones fired at these institutions as well.”

Eaton said her cast members are finding many things in Steinbeck’s book and Galati’s play as relevant now as they were when Steinbeck wrote the novel.

“What is interesting to them is affordable housing, questionable lending practices, the ecological catastrophe and how it will affect their futures. That’s what they find in common with these people,” Eaton said. “I’ve given them a lot of research to look at. We have all the wonderful photos of Margaret Bourke-White, Dorthea Lange, and Walker Evans. White was a grad and alum of Michigan. I think those are very affecting to people and the cast, and they are also affected by the similarity of those pictures from today with shots of incarcerated children, people on the border and images of immigration and migration, that’s very real to them.”

Pierson said that one of the things the play highlights is how arbitrary the “rules of life” were enforced on the Joad family.

“Their survival is based on the will of others,” she said. “There are multiple moments during the play where Tom Joad [my son in the show] finds himself having to decide between what is right morally or whether he should stay in the good graces of the powers that have authority over him.”

The Grapes of Wrath will be presented on the large Power Center stage, but the staging will be simple, using props to move the story across time and country.

“It’s a Greek tragedy idea of a simple stage,” Eaton said. “Everything is built by the actors with materials found on stage. Certain characters are part of the family and others form a Greek chorus and like a Greek chorus they move the story along and comment on events and they help the narrative move forward all the while constructing the play as we move from one scene to another.”

Also commenting on the action are musicians who are on stage throughout the play.

“I have three wonderful musicians who are on stage as part of the chorus, a banjo player, a cymbal player, and a guitar player. We also have a harmonica player and a wonderful young man named Sawyer Denton, who has composed tunes for us that we’ll be using throughout the show and other music that has been written, all by students,” Eaton said. “I wanted it all to be done by the students’ creativity.”

Pierson said the story’s relevance today is that there are families everywhere who desperately need to find a “new beginning."

“They cannot stay on the plot of land that they have called home for so many years because the government has taken that away from them,” Pierson said. “This seems to be a stark comparison to the immigration conversations of immigrants from Mexico, Central America, Africa, and even some Middle Eastern countries. Individuals are coming to this land out of desperation. In some cases, they are seeking refugee status in America because the other option is to die in their country of origin.

“The reasons why an individual or a family comes to America are wide and diverse but the commonality is that the process for everyone is a tumultuous one. During these journeys, they do pass away and families are separated. Some individuals find love amongst the hate and others are stuck staying where they reside because they cannot see another way of life for themselves. Each of these situations happens to the Joads.”

Eaton said novels like Grapes of Wrath and the great 19th-century novels taught what it means to be human.

“This is ultimately a story of a family under duress and the one similarity we have with Steinbeck is that the family is under duress right now,” Eaton said. “The ordinary folks take a beating and have to absorb the shocks on society most directly. That’s why this book survives.”

Pierson said she hopes audiences leaving Power Center will wonder what they can do to help the Joad families of today and that the rhetoric that makes villains of migrants is not a new tactic.

“Just like all the previous times, people have risen above it and still persevered,” she said.


Hugh Gallagher has written theater and film reviews over a 40-year newspaper career and was most recently the managing editor of the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers in suburban Detroit.


Frank Galati’s stage adaptation of John Steinbeck’s novel "The Grapes of Wrath" will be presented at 7:30 pm on Thursday, Dec. 5, at 8 pm on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 6-7, and at 2 pm on Sunday, Dec. 8, at the Power Center for the Performing Arts, 121 Fletcher St., Ann Arbor. For tickets and information, call 734-764-2538, go to tickets.smtd.umich.edu, or go to the League Ticket office at Fletcher Street and North University Avenue 9 am to 5 pm, Mondays-Fridays, and 10 am to 1 pm on Saturday.

christopherporter Mon, 11/25/2019 - 11:15am
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Trump Jr. Rips Brits For Freeing Terrorist; Critics Say His Dad Enabled 100s More To Escape

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Twitter users piled on  on Sunday after he blasted Britain for letting a convicted terrorist out of prison who went on to fatally stab two people on . Critics noted that his father, President , enabled the escape of so-called Islamic State (or ISIS) fighters when he pulled American troops out of Syria in October, abandoning the U.S.’s […]

The post Trump Jr. Rips Brits For Freeing Terrorist; Critics Say His Dad Enabled 100s More To Escape appeared first on RocketNews | Top News Stories From Around the Globe.


          

Syria (barely) survived a civil war. Can it weather the latest financial crisis?

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This week, the value of Syria's pound nose-dived to its lowest level against the U.S. dollar since it began trading in 1919, threatening the collapse of President Bashar Assad's government.


          

Syria Slams U.S. for Meddling in Constitutional Committee’s Work

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Syrian Army Repels Takfiri Offensive in Idlib

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Did Medicare For All just sink Elizabeth Warren? Interview about Turkey, Andrew Heaton

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- What 2016 Trump can teach Elizabeth Warren in how to handle Medicare for All

- Did Big Structural Bailey curse Warren?

- Andrew Heaton

- The history of Turkey and Syria with Professor Nora Fisher Onar

- #ButYourEmails mailbag


          

Turkish regime’s delegation obstructs Meetings of Committee of Discussing Constitution due to its refusal of agenda

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Geneva, SANA_ Sources close to work of the Committee of Discussing the Constitution said that the meeting of UN Special Envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen with Head of the national delegation Ahmad al-Kuzbari ended without starting any session due to the intransigence of the Turkish regime’s delegation SANA delegate to Geneva quoted sources from the …
          

Tehran successfully pursues a course to export the Islamic revolution

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WEST SIBERIA/ TYUMEN - After the events in Syria in 2011, it is believed that Iran's participation in this conflict is only military and economic support for the ruling regime. The expansion of economic ties between the countries is reflected in the creation of trade zones and the emergence of a common market, within the framework of the Axis of Resistance bloc. Where in addition to Tehran and Damascus involved another ally of Iran-Baghdad.
          

Paris seeking to hide support for terror in Syria through accusations

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The French government urged Iran on Wednesday to refrain from destabilizing actions in Syria.
          

‘For Sama,’ Renee Zellweger Win Big at British Independent Film Awards

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Syrian documentary “For Sama” was the big winner at the British Independent Film Awards on Sunday, taking home four awards for its sobering portrayal of how the ongoing war in Syria affects the women who live there.

“For Sama,” directed by Aleppo resident Waad al-Kateab with Edward Watts, follows al-Kateab through five years of her life as she gets married and gives birth to her daughter, Sama, all while the city crumbles around her. The film won BIFAs for Best British Independent Film, Best Director, Best Documentary, and Best Film Editing, adding to an awards list that includes The Golden Eye for Best Documentary at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival and Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary at the SXSW Film Festival.

Other winners include Best Actress Oscar contender Renee Zellweger, who won a BIFA for her performance as Judy Garland in the biopic “Judy.” The Best Actor award went to Josh O’Connor for his performance in the Harry Wootliff romance “Only You.”

Armando Iannucci’s “The Personal History of David Copperfield,” which premiered at TIFF and will be released in theaters in 2020, won for Best Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor for Hugh Laurie. Bong Joon-ho’s “Parasite,” which is seeing buzz build around it for a Best Picture Oscar nomination, won for Best International Independent Film

Read the full winners list below:

The Richard Harris Award for Outstanding Contribution by an Actor to British Film

Kristin Scott Thomas

Special Jury Prize

Amanda Nevill

Best British Independent Film

“For Sama”

Best Director

Waad Al-Kateab, Edward Watts (“For Sama”)

Best Screenplay

Armando Ianucci, Simon Blackwell (“The Personal History of David Copperfield”)

Best Documentary

“For Sama”

Best Actress

Renee Zellweger (“Judy”)

Best Actor

Josh O’Connor (“Only You”)

Best Supporting Actress

Ruthxjiah Bellenea (“The Last Tree”)

Best Supporting Actor

Hugh Laurie (“The Personal History of David Copperfield”)

Most Promising Newcomer

Sam Adewunmi (“The Last Tree”)

The Douglas Hickox Award (Debut Director)

Harry Wootliff (“Only You”)

Debut Screenwriter

Emma Jane Unsworth (“Animals”)

Breakthrough Producer

Kate Byers, Linn Waite (“Bait”)

The Raindance Discovery Award

“Children of the Snow Land”

Best Casting

Sarah Crowe (“The Personal History of David Copperfield”)

Best Cinematography

Benjamin Kracun (“Beats”)

Best Costume Design

Suzie Harman, Robert Worley (“The Personal History of David Copperfield”)

Best Editing

Chloe Lambourne, Simon McMahon (“For Sama”)

Best Effects

Howard Jones (“A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon”)

Best Make-Up & Hair Design

Jeremy Woodhead (“Judy”)

Best Music

Jack Arnold (“Wild Rose”)

Best Production Design

Cristina Casali (“The Personal History of David Copperfield”)

Best Sound

David Bowtle-McMillan, Joakim Sundstrom, Robert Farr (“Beats”)

Best British Short Film

“Anna”

Best International Independent Film

“Parasite”

Related stories from TheWrap:

Graham Norton to Host 2020 BAFTA Film Awards

Jane Fonda Accepts BAFTA Award as She's Arrested

BAFTA Los Angeles Names Matthew Wiseman as New CEO


          

Comment on New spasm of Syria chemwar denialism: don’t buy it by Bill Weinberg

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<h3>Wikileaks abets Assad's genocide</h3> If you still had any doubts whose side <a href="https://countervortex.org/node/16314" rel="nofollow">pro-fascist WikiLeaks</a> is on...It just published an e-mail from a member of the fact-finding team that investigated the 2018 Douma attack, accusing the OPCW of distorting evidence. As with the leaked sub-team reported discussed above, there is no reason to assume that this dissenting voice is more credible than the OPCW consenus position that chlorine was used in the attack. But it sure helps the Russians, who are making a big propaganda push now to discredit the OPCW. As <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/nov/25/chemical-weapons-watchdog-opcw-defends-syria-report-after-leaks" rel="nofollow">The Guardian</a> reports, the OPCW is standing behind its findings. Why doesn't WikiLeaks ever leak anything that is unfavorable to fascists and dictators? #JustAsking
          

Taken to Brink by Trump, Gulf States Are Backpedaling on Iran

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Taken to Brink by Trump, Gulf States Are Backpedaling on Iran(Bloomberg) -- An expanded soccer tournament, a direct flight, clandestine meetings and a pledge to release prisoners of war; diplomacy is breaking out as Gulf Arab nations back away from a Donald Trump-inspired confrontation with Iran. And the signs are everywhere.Last week, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain played their first games of the 2019 Arabian Gulf Cup in Qatar after a last-minute decision to take part -- an apparent breakthrough in a 30-month feud that saw them halt trade and flights over Qatar’s links with Iran and support for Islamist groups.Meanwhile, the Saudi-led coalition that’s fought Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen since 2015 began releasing jailed Houthis, as efforts to end the conflict gather momentum. Oman is quietly hosting high-level meetings, according to people familiar with the matter, and even Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has hinted at direct channels with the U.A.E.Spooked by the prospect of a catastrophic war with Iran and its proxy militias across the region, Gulf monarchies are in the midst of a strategic rethink. The U.A.E., whose economic model relies in large part on its international links, quickly realized it had most to lose from a military escalation. It had removed most of its troops from Yemen by the end of a turbulent summer that saw oil tankers targeted and a U.S. drone downed in the Gulf without significant American response.While the humanitarian catastrophe unleashed by the Yemen war trained an unwelcome spotlight on Saudi Arabia, it took a brazen strike on Saudi oil installations -- which knocked out half the country’s crude production -- to ram home the risks and prove that Trump was not about to ride to his allies’ rescue.“The attacks shattered any illusion of this magical U.S. security umbrella,” said David Roberts, an assistant professor at King’s College London who studies the Gulf. “It burst the bubble and showed that Iran had the willingness to both do something astonishing like the attack on Aramco facilities and the capability to carry it out.”Iran denies U.S. and Saudi assertions it carried out the Sept. 14 strikes, pointing to Houthi claims of responsibility. But people familiar with investigations into the attacks say they were almost certainly launched from southwestern Iran -- an explosive escalation in Tehran’s pushback against an economic offensive unleashed by Trump and enthusiastically backed by the Saudis.The Trump administration withdrew last year from the 2015 deal meant to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear bomb, and reimposed sanctions that have crippled its oil exports. But the “maximum pressure” policy is designed to coax Tehran into more concessions not to drag the U.S. into a new Middle East war just as it draws down troops in Syria.Rolling back Shiite Muslim Iran’s power remains a priority for the Sunni Gulf Arab leadership. There’s an increasing recognition, however, that no one stands to gain from a military escalation in the world’s top oil-exporting region.Saudi Arabia’s Center for International Communication didn’t respond to an email seeking comment. The U.A.E. declined to comment. But in a Nov. 10 speech, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said he saw “a path to a deal with Iran that all parties might soon” be ready to embark on if Tehran demonstrated commitment.War to ‘Cold Peace’In search of a breakthrough, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, a former cricketer elected with the backing of a powerful army that provides extensive support for the Saudi military, shuttled between Tehran and Riyadh in October. He met Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Rouhani, as well as Saudi Arabia’s King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, describing talks as “encouraging.”Khan said he traveled at the request of Trump and Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir said the diplomacy wasn’t prompted by the kingdom. But deepening unease in the Gulf catalyzed the effort.Turning these overtures into lasting peace between countries that have grown further apart since the 1979 Iranian revolution remains far off.The Gulf states resent Iran’s deep reach into Arab nations. While ongoing protests in Iraq and Lebanon suggest Iran has reached the limit of its regional influence, they are unlikely to reverse political and military advances decades in the making.“Cold peace is possible but we are certainly far from a grand bargain,” said Afshin Molavi, senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute at Johns Hopkins. “For that, both Riyadh and Abu Dhabi would have to accept a role for Iran in Arab countries such as Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.”As they explore ways forward, Gulf states are moving at different speeds.The U.A.E. broke with the U.S. and Saudi Arabia by not naming Iran as the culprit behind attacks in May and June on oil tankers as they sailed toward the Strait of Hormuz, the world’s foremost oil shipping chokepoint.It sent coast guard officials to Iran for the first time in six years and Rouhani hinted at other meetings with senior U.A.E. officials. “We’re moving toward improved relations,” he said Oct. 14. Saudi Arabia is catching up.Washington built a multilateral naval operation to protect shipping in the Gulf after the attacks and sent more troops to Saudi Arabia. Both actions resulted in a “down tick” in Iranian actions,” U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Nov. 13. “The Iranians should not mistake our restraint for weakness.”Where the U.S. holds back, however, others are crowding in. Besides his role in saving Bashar al-Assad’s regime, Russian President Vladimir Putin has forged a partnership with Iran, created an oil alliance with Saudi Arabia and built ties with Egypt’s Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, who was warned by the U.S. last month against plans to purchase Russian jets.Putin traveled to Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E. in October after visits by the Saudi king and the U.A.E.’s de-facto leader Mohammad bin Zayed to Moscow. The two Gulf countries and Russia have signed deals valued at billions of dollars.For Iran’s Rouhani, the case for regional engagement is obvious.“Don’t you know that Iran is going to stay here and we will remain neighbors throughout history?” he has said, referring to Iran’s Arab neighbors. “Trump will only be around for a few years and will go back to whatever it was he was doing.”\--With assistance from Golnar Motevalli and Glen Carey.To contact the reporter on this story: Zainab Fattah in Dubai at zfattah@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Lin Noueihed at lnoueihed@bloomberg.net, Mark WilliamsFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



          

Malta prime minister Joseph Muscat to resign in new year

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BBC — Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has announced on national television that he will step down in the new year, amid a crisis over a murdered journalist. The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres declares efforts to tackle climate change “utterly inadequate”. And at least seventy people have been killed in Syria in two days of fighting between government forces and militias in the last major rebel-held region of Idlib.
          

Former Irish Soldier Who Joined IS Arrested in Ireland

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Lisa Smith, 38, who served in the Irish Defense Forces before going to Syria, was taken into custody on arrival at Dublin airport Sunday
          

Positive: 'A rich exchange': The refugees teaching languages in Brazil

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Refugee-led language school Abraco Cultural [in Sao Paulo, Brazil] looks like any other language school, complete with scrawled whiteboards and beige school chairs. But it exclusively employs teachers from war-torn and crisis-stricken lands, including Haiti, Congo, Venezuela, and Syria. The school's main goal is to generate income for refugees. In five years, the school has paid over 2m reais in salaries to 55 refugees and vulnerable immigrants.
          

Christian World News - Braving the Danger - November 22, 2019

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A band of medical missionaries risks their lives to save the suffering in Northern Syria.
          

Nấu món ngon cổ xưa nhất thế giới

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Bản hướng dẫn nấu món cừu hầm trông giống danh sách các loại nguyên liệu hơn là một công thức nấu ăn thực sự: "Sử dụng thịt. Bạn chuẩn bị nước. Bạn thêm muối bột, bánh lúa mạch khô, hành củ, củ hành tím Ba-tư, và sữa. Bạn nghiền và thêm tỏi tây cùng tỏi vào."

Nhưng ta không thể hỏi lại đầu bếp những phần còn thiếu trong công thức nấu ăn này: người viết ra công thức món ăn đã qua đời đâu đó chừng 4.000 năm trước.

Thay vào đó, một nhóm học giả quốc tế am hiểu về lịch sử ẩm thực, thành phần thực phẩm và nghiên cứu chữ viết hình nêm (hệ chữ viết của người Babylon do những người Sumeria cổ đại thuộc vùng Lưỡng Hà sáng chế) đã tìm hiểu để tái hiện lại món ăn này và ba món khác trong số những công thức nấu ăn cổ xưa nhất thế giới.

Đây là một dạng khảo cổ ẩm thực theo đó sử dụng bảng chữ cổ từ Bộ Sưu tập Babylon tại Đại học Yale để hiểu sâu hơn về văn hóa qua góc độ ẩm thực.

"Việc này cũng giống như là việc tái hiện một bản nhạc; một nốt đơn cũng có thể tạo ra điều khác biệt," Goijo Barjamovic nói và chỉ vào bảng chữ cổ cỡ quyển sách bìa mềm dưới ống kính tại Bảo tàng Lịch sử Tự nhiên Yale Peabody.

Barjamovic là nhà nghiên cứu chuyên về vùng Assyria ở Đại học Havard. Ông đã biên dịch lại bảng chữ và làm việc cùng nhóm nghiên cứu liên ngành, tìm cách thực hiện công thức nấu ăn cổ xưa này. 

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Một nhóm học giả đang tái hiện lại công thức nấu nướng cổ xưa từ một bảng chữ tượng hình cổ

Ba trong số bảng chữ viết từ bộ sưu tập ở Yale có niên đại từ những năm 1730 trước Công Nguyên, và công thức thứ tư có niên đại sau thời gian đó khoảng 1.000 năm.

Tất cả bốn bảng chữ đều xuất phát từ vùng Lưỡng Hà, vốn là nơi bao gồm cả đế quốc Babylon và Assyria - ngày nay là vùng phía nam và phía bắc Baghdah của Iraq, cùng nhiều phần thuộc Syria và Thổ Nhĩ Kỳ.

Trong số ba bảng chữ, bảng chữ còn nguyên vẹn nhất gần giống với danh sách nguyên liệu nấu ăn trong đó có 25 công thức món hầm và súp; hai bảng chữ còn lại bao gồm thêm trên 10 công thức khác, chuyên sâu hơn vào hướng dẫn nấu nướng và cách trình bày thức ăn, nhưng phần này đã bị vỡ và không dễ đọc được.

Thách thức là lần giở từng lớp lịch sử và đồng thời đảm bảo tính nguyên bản trong bối cảnh người xưa không có các nguyên liệu nấu nướng như thời hiện đại.

"Đây không phải là những công thức nấu ăn đầy đủ thông tin lắm - có lẽ chỉ dài chừng bốn dòng - vì vậy bạn phải đưa ra rất nhiều giả định," Pia Sorensen, nhà hóa học ẩm thực từ Đại học Havard nói; bà đang làm việc với nghiên cứu sinh Patricia Jurado Gonzalez về Khoa học và Nấu ăn ở Trường Havard để hoàn thiện thành phần nguyên liệu sử dụng trong món ăn, bằng phương pháp tiếp cận khoa học giả thiết, kiểm soát và biến lượng.

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Các bản ghi chép đến từ vùng Lưỡng Hà, ngày nay là một phần Iraq, Syria và Thổ Nhĩ Kỳ

"Tất cả nguyên liệu ẩm thực ngày nay và 4.000 năm trước đều giống nhau: một miếng thịt cơ bản vẫn là miếng thịt. Từ quan điểm vật lý, quy trình nấu là giống nhau. Khoa học của ngày hôm nay cũng giống như khoa học của 4.000 năm trước," Jurado Gonzalez nói.

Các nhà khoa học ẩm thực sử dụng những gì mà họ đã biết về khẩu vị của con người và các công đoạn chuẩn bị, vốn không thay đổi quá nhiều theo thời gian, và những thành phần họ giả định là có thể có tỷ lệ phù hợp để đoán ra gần chính xác nhất công thức nấu ăn nguyên bản.

"Ý tưởng là chúng tôi sẽ dựa vào kết quả thành phẩm để xác định - nếu món ăn quá nhiều nước, đó sẽ là món súp. Thông qua việc chú ý vào các thông số nguyên liệu, chúng tôi có thể xem xét chi tiết đó là món gì" - trong hầu hết các trường hợp, đó là món hầm, Sorensen nói.

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Các nhà nghiên cứu tiết lộ một phần quá trình tiến hóa của món cừu hầm ngày nay vẫn thịnh hành ở Iraq, đồng thời cho người ta cái nhìn về "món ăn thượng hạng của vùng Lưỡng Hà", thể hiện đẳng cấp nấu nướng 4.000 năm tuổi, Agnete Lassen, phó giám tuyển giới thiệu Bộ sưu tập Babylon của Đại học Yale, nói.

Bốn món ăn được chọn lọc từ danh sách trên bảng chữ cũng có tác dụng đặc biệt.

Chẳng hạn như món súp Pashrutum là dành cho người bị cảm lạnh, Lassen nói, dù cho tên gọi của món súp lạt này, mà trong thành phần nguyên liệu chế biến có cả tỏi tây, ngò và hành củ, dịch ra có nghĩa là "giúp thư giãn".

Mặt khác, món súp Elamite là một trong hai món ăn ngoại lai (còn gọi là "Zukandra") được viết trong bảng công thức nấu ăn, Barjamovic nói.

Ông so sánh món này với các món "ngoại lai" phổ biến ngày nay như món lasagne, hay skyr hay món đậu gà nghiền (hummus), là những món đã được đưa khỏi nơi khai sinh và chế biến theo khẩu vị mới, và cũng là chỉ dấu cho thấy có giao thoa với văn hóa giữa các quốc gia xung quanh.

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"Có một khái niệm về 'ẩm thực' trong văn bản 4.000 năm tuổi này. Đó là thức ăn 'của chúng ta' và 'ngoại lai', Barjamovic nói. "Ngoại lai không có nghĩa là xấu - chỉ là khác biệt, và đôi lúc rõ ràng là đáng nấu, vì họ đã cho ta công thức."

Mặc dù món súp huyết giờ đây đã hoàn toàn bị cấm theo truyền thống Hồi giáo và Do Thái giáo, nhưng món súp Elamite thì có nguồn gốc từ nơi bây giờ là Iran, và món này cũng sử dụng rau thìa là, một nguyên liệu không hề được liệt kê ở bất cứ món nào khác trong bảng chữ, Barjamovic và Lassen nói.

Đây là sự khác biệt vẫn còn rõ ràng tới ngày nay: ẩm thực Iraq hiếm khi sử dụng thìa là, trong khi thìa là lại phổ biến trong món ăn của người Iran. Đây có thể là chỉ dấu cho thấy cách nấu này đã được hình thành từ hàng ngàn năm trước, Barjamovic nói.

Nasrallah lưu ý khái niệm "ngoại lai" ý chỉ sự giao thương giữa hai nền văn hóa, và sự coi trọng đối với khẩu vị thường không phổ biến trong món ăn bản địa. Người Babylon có lẽ đã gắn kết hương vị của thìa là với món súp Elamite theo cách tương tự như ta cho rằng vị ngò tươi là món ăn của các cộng đồng gốc Tây Ban Nha, Nasrallah nói.

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Các nhà khoa học cố gắng hoàn thiện tỷ lệ thành phần nguyên liệu nấu nướng bằng cách đưa ra các giả định, kiểm soát và điều chỉnh gia giảm

Cũng có những yếu tố trình diễn và kỹ năng mà đầu bếp vẫn thể hiện qua hàng ngàn năm, các nhà nghiên cứu nhấn mạnh.

Các đầu bếp sẽ thích thú trong việc khiến thực khách thích thú. Các đầu bếp ở vùng Lưỡng Hà cũng làm như vậy khi chuẩn bị các bữa yến tiệc công phu dành cho tầng lớp thượng lưu.

Có một món ăn gần giống với món bánh nướng nhân thịt gà hầm, với một lớp bột bánh và miếng thịt gà lớn nướng trong sốt béchamel Babylon, chuyên gia sử học ẩm thực Iraq Nawal Nasrallah nói.

Bà là người nghiên cứu về ẩm thực Ả-rập thời Trung cổ, nhằm kết nối bảng viết cổ đại với kỹ thuật nấu nướng sau này từ cùng vùng đất đó.

Cách trình bày món ăn cũng chứa nhiều yếu tố khiến người thưởng thức ngạc nhiên, bà nói.

Món thịt gà được đưa ra mời thực khách với phần phủ bánh giòn tan, mà thực khách sẽ mở ra để thấy món thịt bên trong.

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Đó là kỹ thuật "món ăn trong món ăn" mà Nasrallah nhận thấy lặp đi lặp lại trong sách dạy nấu ăn của người Baghdad Thế kỷ thứ 10, cuốn 'Kitab al-Tabikh' (nghĩa là "Sách dạy nấu ăn"), mô tả truyền thống ẩm thực thời Trung cổ ở địa phương, và ẩm thực Iraq thời hiện đại.

"Ngày nay, trong thế giới Ả-rập và đặc biệt là ở Iraq, chúng tôi tự hào vì những món ăn kiểu nhồi nhân bên trong, chẳng hạn như món dolma. Chúng tôi có vẻ như kế thừa xu hướng trình bày ẩm thực này trong cách nấu nướng," Nasrallah nói. "Theo cách này, tôi thực sự thích thú với sự tiếp nối của ẩm thực và những gì đã tồn tại qua thời gian."

Sự tinh tế trong cách nấu nướng của người Babylon thể hiện ở việc dùng nhiều nguyên liệu đầy màu sắc như bông nghệ tây hay ngò tươi, rau mùi tây và rau cải bảy màu để khiến món ăn nổi bật kích thích vị giác, cũng như sử dụng nước mắm bắt nguồn từ vùng sông Tigris và Euphrates trù phú để tạo ra hương vị umami (hương vị thịt) trong món ăn, Nasrallah nói.

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Các món hầm ngày nay của vùng này thường có màu đỏ từ cà chua (là thức ăn xuất hiện nhiều thế kỷ sau đó), nhưng những nguyên tố tạo hương vị như nghệ, ngò, lá bạc hà, tỏi và hành vẫn có thể nhận ra.

Chẳng hạn món mỡ từ đuôi cừu béo ngậy hầm nhừ (trong tiếng Ả-rập là alya) được coi là đặc sản và là "thứ nguyên liệu không thể thiếu ở Iraq cho đến tận khoảng thập niên 1960," Nasrallah nói.

"Tôi thấy xu hướng tương tự từ thời cổ đại đến ngày nay; ta không chỉ thêm muối và tiêu đen, ta còn thêm vào hàng loạt các gia vị khác để tăng hương thơm, để tăng cường vị ngon, và ta không chỉ bỏ tất cả gia vị vào cùng một lượt, mà ta thêm từng gia vị vào tùy theo giai đoạn và ta đun món hầm sôi âm ỉ," Nasrallah nói. 

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Phần nội dung hướng dẫn cách nấu món cừu hầm thì giống như danh sách các nguyên liệu nấu nướng

Món cừu hầm me-e puhadi được ăn bằng cách ta bẻ nhỏ bánh lúa mạch thả vào nước sốt, cũng giống như người ta bỏ bánh mì vào súp ngày nay.

Món ăn mà các nhà khoa học nấu ra cho hương vị thịnh soạn, hấp dẫn khi ăn sau nhiều tháng thử nấu đi nấu lại, và bằng cách sử dụng phương thức gia giảm các thành phần nguyên liệu khác nhau để làm rõ những bí ẩn của công thức nấu nướng.

Chẳng hạn, họ nhận ra rằng, như thành phần cây bọt xà phòng, một loại cây lâu năm thỉnh thoảng được dùng làm xà phòng nhẹ, đã bị dịch nhầm trong công thức: khi thêm thành phần này vào, dù ở hàm lượng bao nhiêu, cũng làm món ăn bị đắng, sủi bọt và không ăn được.

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Tương tự, thành phần gia vị nào cũng có ngưỡng: mỗi món ăn chỉ dùng một lượng muối nhất định, dù là 4.000 năm trước hay ngày nay, nếu vượt quá sẽ khiến món đó không thể ăn được nữa, họ nói.

Những người thưởng thức ẩm thực thời hiện đại có thể nhận ra nhiều thành tố trong các món ăn bổ dưỡng từ nhiều nền văn hóa đã bắt nguồn từ bữa ăn của người Lưỡng Hà.

Chẳng hạ như món Tuh'u, sử dụng củ cải đỏ và có nhiều nét tương đồng với món súp kem phổ biến trong ẩm thực Ashkenazi, cũng như món hầm quen thuộc với người Do Thái Iraq gọi là Kofta Shawandar Hamudh (thịt viên hầm chua ngọt với củ cải đỏ), theo Nasrallah.

Tương tự, món cừu hầm cũng gợi nhắc món thịt xào trong món mỡ đuôi cừu. Một họ hàng gần của món hầm này có thể là món pacha của người Iraq, món ăn mà Nasrallah nhớ mẹ của bà thường nấu và sử dụng tất cả các phần thịt của con cừu, theo cách tương tự như trong bảng chữ mô tả.

"Tôi cực kỳ ngạc nhiên khi phát hiện ra những món phổ biến ở Iraq ngày nay, như món thịt hầm, cũng là món ăn phổ biến từ thời cổ đại, vì ở Iraq ngày nay, đó là những gì có mặt trong bữa ăn hàng ngày của chúng tôi: thịt hầm và cơm với bánh mì,"Nasrallah nói.

"Thật sự tuyệt vời khi ta thấy một món ăn đơn giản như vậy, với vô vàn biến lượng, đã tồn tại từ thời cổ đại đến hiện tại, và trong những công thức nấu ăn của người Babylon kia, tôi thấy thậm chí không phải là sự sơ khai, mà họ đã đạt đến trình độ tinh tế khi nấu những món đó. Ai mà biết được họ đã khởi đầu bao lâu trước đó?"



Ashley Winchester

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Bởi vì kể từ sau khi cộng sản Liên Sô bị xóa sổ tới hết nhiệm kỳ của tổng thống Obama, họ chưa chứng kiến và tin tưởng vào một ứng viên tổng thống nào có quyết tâm trừng trị Tàu cộng trong chiến dịch tranh cử như ông tỷ phú Donald Trump mặc dù Tàu cộng là một trong những nơi còn sót lại thứ chủ nghĩa quái thai với những tội ác tày trời như thảm sát Thiên An Môn, đàn áp các sắc tộc, tôn giáo ở Tân Cương, Tây Tạng,... xâm lược lãnh thổ của các nước lân bang và ăn cướp công ăn việc làm của Nước Mỹ,...

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Sở dĩ họ tin tưởng tuyệt đối vào quyết tâm của tổng thống Donald Trump hòng hủy diệt nền kinh tế Tàu cộng để đi đến cái đích cuối cùng là xóa sổ CNXH quái thai là vì ông Trump có đủ phẩm chất để gánh vác trọng trách này do ông Trump là một doanh nhân tài ba, đầy kinh nghiệm trên thương trường, thừa bản lãnh để hủy diệt nền kinh tế của Tàu cộng.

Tàu cộng lớn mạnh như hôm nay ngoài việc biết giấu mình chờ thời, biết giương Đông kích Tây, biết thao túng chính trị toàn cầu,... thì có một yếu tố quan trọng giúp Tàu cộng có được ngày hôm nay đó là sự dung túng, dễ dãi của các tiền nhiệm tổng thống Mỹ. Nhờ vào sự dễ dãi, dung túng của giới chức Mỹ mà con rắn Tàu cộng đã lớn mạnh thành còn rồng quái vật nguy hiểm tới mức Obama phải thốt lên "nếu Tàu cộng suy yếu sẽ là mối họa không riêng gì của toàn cầu mà còn là đại họa cho Nước Mỹ". Theo quan điểm của Obama thì Tàu cộng đã trở thành khối u ác tính trong cơ thể của Nước Mỹ buộc Nước Mỹ phải cộng sinh với Tàu cộng chớ nếu phẫu thuật cắt bỏ nó đi thì Nước Mỹ cũng sẽ giãy chết.

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Trước khi tỷ phú Donald Trump xuất hiện trên chính trường Nước Mỹ thì Obama với lực lượng truyền thông Fake News hùng hậu và những lời có cánh của đảng Dân chủ đã thổi phồng anh ta lên ngôi vị tinh hoa số 1 của Nước Mỹ. Tuy nhiên, kể từ khi tỷ phú Donald Trump gác lại chuyện làm giàu cho gia đình để lao vào con đường chính trị thì hình tượng của Obama trở nên lố bịch, thậm chí còn có dấu hiệu phản bội lại Nước Mỹ vĩ đại.

Donald Trump không khó nhận ra sở trường cũng như sở đoản của Tàu cộng. Sở trường của Tàu cộng là thói bắt nạt và khả năng "nín thở qua sông" và đây cũng là sở đoản của Tàu cộng nếu biết áp dụng nguyên lý "nhu thắng cương, nhược thắng cường, cương cường cương tất thắng". Ngay từ khi ông Trump vừa nhậm chức tổng thống Mỹ, Tàu cộng đã giậtt dây cho đảng Dân chủ tìm cách phế truất ông ta qua trò săn phù thủy của Robert Muller, trước đó là việc Tàu cộng ép Kim Jong Un ra mặt thách thức, thử gan Donald Trump bằng hành động phóng hỏa tiễn liên tục khiến Nam Hàn, Nhật Bản và Nước Mỹ luôn thấp thỏm, âu lo.

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Trước trò thử gan của Kim Jong Un, Donald Trump đã phủ đầu bằng việc dọa chú Ủn là "tao có chìa khóa hạch tâm to và hiện đại hơn mày gấp ngàn lần, mày lộn xộn tao nhấn nút là cả Bắc Hàn sẽ thành tro bụi", đồng thời Donald Trump đã ép Nga, Tàu cộng phải đồng thuận ký vào lệnh trừng phạt Bắc Hàn do Liên Hợp quốc đưa ra. Căn cứ vào lệnh trừng phạt của Liên Hợp quốc, Donald Trump quay qua đập thẳng mặt Tàu cộng thông qua lệnh trừng phạt ZTE, Huawei.

Phải nói Tàu cộng quá gian manh trong nghệ thuật mua chuộc lòng người, mặc dù Donald Trump tung ra những tuyên bố đanh đá nhắm vào Tàu cộng nhưng Tập Cận Bình vẫn tìm cách mò qua nhà riêng của Donald Trump và đã chiêu đãi yến tiệc theo nghi thức thượng khách để lấy lại lòng của Donald Trump cũng như cam kết sẽ mua hàng hóa của Mỹ với các hợp đồng trị giá 250 tỷ Mỹ kim. Tuy nhiên sau đó bị Donald Trump bắt bài, làm tới nên Tập Cận Bình tỏ ra cứng rắn để lên dây cót tinh thần cho đồng đội với tuyên bố "nếu người Phương Tây bị tát vào má trái họ sẽ đưa má phải còn lại ra cho đối phương tát tiếp còn người Tàu cộng sẽ đánh trả lại kẻ đã đánh mình".

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Trong suốt quá trình thương chiến, Tàu cộng luôn khẳng định sẽ không chấp nhận kiểu đàm phán "dí súng vào đầu" của Donald Trump. Tàu cộng khè Mỹ rằng sẽ nếm mùi cay đắng bởi những đòn trả đũa tàn khốc của Tàu cộng. Tuy nhiên Tàu cộng đã gặp phải cao thủ Donald Trump, một người biết "mềm sẽ nắn, rắn sẽ đập cho nát luôn". Một mặt ông Trump tha thiết với Tàu cộng hãy ký vào bản thỏa thuận thương mại do ông Trump đưa ra, một mặt ông dọa sẽ nghiền nát nền kinh tế Tàu cộng như nghiền quả trứng. Hàng loạt giải pháp nghiền nát nền kinh tế Tàu cộng được ông Trump tuyên bố như sẽ kích hoạt các Đạo luật lúc khẩn cấp để biến Tàu cộng trở thành kẻ thù của Nước Mỹ. Sẽ giúp các trái chủ Mỹ đòi món nợ ngàn tỷ Mỹ kim từ thời nhà Thanh,... Nguy cơ nhứt vẫn là giải pháp đánh sập chuỗi cung ứng của Tàu cộng thông qua các Hiệp định thương mại như USMCA, Hiệp định thương mại song phương với Nhật Bổn, Ấn Độ,...

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Cũng như hai kiếm sĩ luận kiếm phân cao thấp, không cần chờ tới lúc đối thủ xuất chiêu mà chỉ cần hiểu nhau qua "kiếm ý" thì đủ biết thắng bại. Tập Cận Bình đã thi triển hết khả năng để Donald Trump từ bỏ quyết tâm ép Tàu cộng nuốt nhục quy hàng, chấp nhận cái chết từ từ là ký vào bản thỏa thuận thương mại do Donald Trump soạn thảo với tất cả những điều khoản áp đặt theo hướng có lợi cho nước Mỹ nhưng mọi nỗ lực của Tập Cận Bình đều tỏ ra vô vọng. Xúi Iran gây hấn với Mỹ không xong, xúi Putin làm căng với Ukraine để Mỹ nhảy vào giúp Ukraine cũng thất bại, xúi Kim Jong Un chọc tức Donald Trump thì nhận lại kết cục là Donald Trump xô ghế đứng dậy rời khỏi Hà Nội nhưng sau đó lại tay bắt mặt mừng với Kim Jong Un ở Bàn Môn Điếm.

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Chiêu bài cuối cùng của Tàu cộng là ép đảng Dân chủ phải luận tội tổng thống Trump bởi trò mèo của Nancy Pelosi và Adam Schiff và thổi phồng việc ông Trump quyết định rút quân đội khỏi Syria nhưng cũng thất bại thảm hại khi Donald Trump kết liễu trùm khủng bố ISIS là Baghdadi, và việc Thổ Nhĩ Kỳ cùng người Kurd, Nga, Assad đã thống nhất giải pháp hòa bình cho người Kurd ở miền Bắc Syria.

Bị Donald Trump đọc vị, bắt bài, Tập Cận Bình đành chọn kế 36 là "tẩu vi thượng sách". Trời đã hại Tàu cộng nhưng trời cũng giúp Tập Cận Bình thoát hiểm ngoạn mục khi có cớ để nuốt nhục quy hàng Donald Trump. Nạn dịch heo bùng phát cộng với việc Tàu cộng ngưng nhập cảng nông sản Mỹ trước đó đã đẩy Tàu cộng rơi vào khủng hoảng thịt heo. Cuộc khủng hoảng thịt heo là phép thử khả năng chịu đựng của dân Tàu cộng, qua phép thử của cuộc khủng hoảng thịt heo, Tập Cận Bình chỉ tay vào cảnh dân Tàu cộng giành giựt thịt heo như đồ chết đói lâu năm mà phán rằng "chỉ vì miếng thịt heo mà dân mình đã đối xử với nhau bất nhẫn như vậy thì làm sao ta có thể tiến hành một cuộc Vạn Lý Trường Chinh đây hả các đồng chí ?". Vậy là Tập Cận Bình có lý do chính đáng để bay qua Iowa ký thỏa thuận thương mại với lão Trump càng sớm càng tốt vì nếu chậm là tết nay hổng có tàu hũ, thịt heo để dân ăn tết và trên hết là để dân có đủ năng lượng chống lại cái rét buốt của mùa Đông.

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Biết rõ Tàu cộng đã ngấm đòn khi hầu hết các địa phương của Tàu cộng đều không hoàn thành chỉ tiêu phát triển khi năm kế hoạch sắp kết thúc vào cuối tháng 11 này. Biết rõ Tàu cộng đang thiếu thịt heo, thiếu tàu hũ khi Đông sang, Xuân tới. Một lần nữa Donald Trump lại chơi xấc Tập Cận Bình khi yêu cầu Tập phải bay qua Iowa ký kết thỏa thuận thương mại. Iowa là bang chiến trường của đảng Dân chủ vì đã hai lần ủng hộ Obama vào năm 2008 và 2012 nhưng đã bị Donald Trump lật đổ Hillary Clinton vào năm 2016 khi Iowa đã tặng cho Donald Trump tới 6 phiếu Đại cử tri. Tiểu bang Iowa là thủ phủ của ngành nông nghiệp Nước Mỹ, nơi mà thời còn trai tráng Tập Cận Bình đã qua ăn nhờ ở đậu để học hỏi kinh nghiệm sản xuất nông nghiệp và cũng là nơi bị thiệt hại nặng nề do Tập Cận Bình trả đũa thuế quan. Lôi Tập Cận Bình qua Iowa ký thỏa thuận thương mại để mua tới 50 tỷ Mỹ kim nông sản Mỹ, một con số lớn gấp hai năm thời Obama làm tổng thống Mỹ thì đâu phải là trò đùa. Đây là nghệ thuật "công tâm" tuyệt đỉnh công phu của quái kiệt Donald Trump.

Việc triệu hồi Tập Cận Bình qua Iowa để ký thỏa thuận thương mại với Mỹ là một thắng lợi to lớn về vật chất lẫn tinh thần cho cá nhân tổng thống Donald Trump và cho Nước Mỹ. Nhưng nó cũng là một thất bại cay đắng cho Tàu cộng, bởi vì Tàu cộng luôn thị uy các tiểu quốc lân bang, các chính khách gan thỏ bằng lối ứng xử kẻ cả, chúa tôi. Bằng chứng là Tập Cận Bình đã cho Obama đi cửa hậu máy bay và giở trò cho sĩ quan giựt vali hạch tâm trong chuyến công du của tổng thống Donald Trump tới Bắc Kinh vào tháng 11/2017 nhưng đã bị đặc vụ của Mật vụ Mỹ (U.S. Secret Service) quật ngã sấp mặt. Nhưng khi Tập Cận Bình phải nhượng bộ Donald Trump khi phải bay qua Iowa ký thỏa thuận thương mại thì cái uy dũng giả tạo của Tàu cộng bấy lâu nay đã trở thành lố bịch, hèn kém.

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Có thể cộng sản Ba Đình cho là bình thường nhưng với dạng khí khái như Nga, Iran, Bắc Hàn thì hành động Tập Cận Bình qua Iowa ký thỏa thuận thương mại là một nổi nhục nhã ê chề và sự phản bội khủng khiếp đối với họ. Hành động lần này của Tập Cận Bình đã lột tả hết bản chất "miệng hùm gan sứa" của Tàu cộng. Nếu trước đây đám cuồng cộng sỉ vả, chửi rủa ông Gorbachev khi cho rằng chính thái độ mềm yếu của ông Gorbachev với quyết định rút quân đội khỏi Afghanistan và tuyên bố không can thiệp quân sự vào Đông Đức, Đông Âu, các nước trong Liên bang Sô viết khi phong trào ly khai trỗi dậy thì nay thái độ của Tập Cận Bình phủ phục trước uy vũ của Donald Trump còn tệ hại hơn tỷ lần ông Gorbachev.

Tóm lại, KÝ THỎA THUẬN THƯƠNG MẠI VỚI MỸ, MỘT QUYẾT ĐỊNH ĐAU ĐỚN CỦA TÀU CỘNG LÀM RÚNG ĐỘNG KHỐI CNXH QUÁI THAI tuy nhiên Tập Cận Bình không còn sự lựa chọn nào khác hơn khi nền kinh tế của Tàu cộng đang ngập ngụa trong gam màu tối. 

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Ký thỏa thuận thương mại với Mỹ là chỉ dấu rõ ràng của sự suy vong nơi Tàu cộng. Lẽ dĩ nhiên với những kẻ thức thời như Putin, Kim Jong Un, Assad, tổng thống Iran,... sẽ quyết định rất nhanh trong mối quan hệ với Tàu cộng và Mỹ theo lý trí "phò thịnh không phò suy". Chỉ có những con chó trung thành với Tàu cộng như đám cộng sản Ba Đình, chột mắt Hun Sen, thần kinh Duterte mới trung thành phò suy ôm mông Tàu cộng để chết nhục với nỗi nhục ngàn năm.



Tran Hung

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Chúc mừng Hong Kong thành công _ Donald Trump đại thắng

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Phát động chiến tranh thương mại với Tàu cộng, Donald Trump chỉ có một mục đích duy nhất là "đánh sập nền kinh tế" của Tàu cộng. Dân Hong Kong biểu tình cũng chỉ có một mục đích duy nhất là "các thế hệ con cháu mai sau không bị nhiễm bã độc của cncs Tam Vô" do Tàu cộng xâm thực, áp đặt.

Donald Trump và Hong Kong là hai thực thể riêng biệt nhưng lại có một mẫu số chung là nói không với CNXH quái thai, cho nên Donald Trump và Hong Kong đã "đồng thanh tương ứng, đồng khí tương cầu". Tuy nhiên, Donald Trump là nguồn cơn gây ra căn bệnh "loạn trí Trump" của đảng Dân chủ Mỹ, một chính đảng lớn luôn xem Tàu cộng là đối tác thân thiện mà theo Bill Clinton, Obama thì "sự lớn mạnh của Tàu cộng sẽ tác động hỗ tương cho Mỹ. Sẽ nguy hiểm cho toàn cầu và Nước Mỹ nếu để Tàu cộng suy yếu". Ngược lại, ngay từ khi ra tranh cử tổng thống, tỷ phú Donald Trump không ngừng lên án Tàu cộng, tuyên bố sẽ buộc Tàu cộng phải thay đổi để vận hành theo sự tiến bộ của nhơn loại với giá trị cốt lõi là "Tự Do - Công bằng - Dân chủ".

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Muốn là một chuyện, làm là chuyện khác. Vì Donald Trump đã gây ra căn bệnh "loạn trí Trump" trong đảng Dân chủ Mỹ nên Donald Trump phải nhận lãnh hậu quả là một vị tổng thống bị đảng Dân chủ tấn công mạnh mẽ nhất trong lịch sử Nước Mỹ. Gần như mọi quyết sách của tổng thống Trump đều bị đảng Dân chủ đánh phá từ lãnh vực đối nội, đối ngoại lẫn an ninh quốc phòng.

Nước Mỹ là hình mẫu của thể chế Tam quyền phân lập, không như những thể chế tập quyền, tổng thống đứng đầu cơ quan hành pháp Liên bang nhưng luôn chịu sự giám sát của cơ quan lập pháp là Lưỡng viện. Vì vậy, khi Hạ viện không đồng thuận với tổng thống, luôn tìm cách lật đổ tổng thống thì tổng thống sẽ không làm được gì ra trò nếu không biết vận dụng kế sách "gậy ông đập lưng ông" mà vấn đề Hong Kong và đàm phán thương mại Mỹ - Tàu cộng là điển hình để lột tả tài trí của quái kiệt Donald Trump.

Với quan điểm "Tàu cộng suy yếu sẽ là đại họa cho Nước Mỹ" và đi kèm với lối "ngoại giao khẩn khoản" của Obama đã vô tình làm cho đảng Dân chủ Mỹ nói riêng và phần lớn nhân loại toàn cầu nói chung đã nhiễm phải căn bệnh "tư duy nô lệ". Ngày nay, tư duy nô lệ mà nhân loại đang nhiễm nặng có xuất xứ từ thuyết giáo Khổng Khâu được các viện Khổng Khâu của Tàu cộng rải khắp Nước Mỹ, rải khắp năm châu. Hình tượng của tư duy nô lệ có thể nhận thấy thông qua hình tượng của con cu cườm bị nhốt trong lồng. 

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Những người bẫy cu cườm họ ra đồng, vào rừng giăng lưới, đặt bẫy để bẫy cu rừng, sau đó họ chọn những con cu rừng bẫy được mà theo họ sẽ là cu chiến để thuần hóa nó bằng cái lồng với đầy đủ thức ăn, nước uống. Qua thời gian con cu này sẽ trở thành công cụ để dụ dỗ những con cu tự do sa vào lồng, lưới. Nếu thời gian giam giữ trong lồng đủ lâu thì dù cho con cu trong lồng có được thả tự do, nó vẫn rụt rè, e sợ không dám bước ra khỏi lòng và khi đã bước ra khỏi lồng thì nó không dám bay xa ngay lập tức mà vẫn quanh đi quẩn lại quanh cái lồng mất một thời gian.

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Hình tượng tư duy nô lệ của con cu cườm cũng chính là hiện tượng tư duy nô lệ của đảng Dân chủ Mỹ và người dân tại các quốc gia bị độc tài, cộng sản cai trị. Mặc dù họ biết rằng cnxh quái thai là loài ký sinh trùng nhưng vì họ mang nặng cái tư duy nô lệ cho nên dù là một tổng thống siêu cường nhưng Obama lại thốt lên những câu nói hèn nhát trước Tàu cộng, cúi đầu đi cửa sau máy bay khi đến Bắc Kinh,... thì không trách được tại sao có nhiều kẻ thân là người Việt tị nạn cộng sản, bị Việt cộng bỏ tù vì tội âm mưu lật đổ cộng sản,... nhưng khi ra xứ sở tự do, đã và đang ở xứ sở tự do vẫn thể hiện cái tư duy nô lệ là "tui không lật đổ, tiêu diệt cộng sản mà tui chỉ mong cho cộng sản thay đổi, cộng sản ưu việt lắm sao phải chống nó,...". 

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Vì nhiễm nặng cái tư duy nô lệ nên khi thấy ông Trump tuyên chiến với Tàu cộng, tuyên bố sẽ xóa sổ CNXH quái thai thì lực lượng bệnh nhân của căn bệnh tư duy nô lệ đã lao vào cấu xé, đánh đập, chửi tui ông Trump và chửi luôn những ai ủng hộ ông Trump bằng những nhóm chữ xấc xược như "đồ cuồng Trump, đồ nhầy nhụa,...". Do đó, mọi quyết sách của ông Trump với mục tiêu đánh sập Tàu cộng, xóa sổ cnxh quái thai đều vấp phải sự kháng cự quyết liệt của những con bệnh tư duy nô lệ. Điển hình là chiến tranh thương mại với Tàu cộng và vấn đề nhân quyền - dân chủ cho Hong Kong dưới giác độ của thằng tui dưới đây.

Khi ông Trump phát động thương chiến với Tàu cộng, đám con bệnh tư duy nô lệ tru tréo "Donald Trump làm hại dân Mỹ, làm hại Nước Mỹ vì thuế quan gây ra và những đòn phản công tàn khốc của Tàu cộng". Trước lối "giả lộng thành chân" của lực lượng bệnh nhân tư duy nô lệ hùng hậu, nhiều người không am tường, thiếu lập trường tỏ ra lo lắng,  bi quan, không tin tưởng vào tài trí của Donald Trump rồi sau đó tỏ ra vô vọng, tắt ngấm khát vọng Tự Do, phó mặc cho con tạo vần xoay.

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Khi Hong Kong biểu tình quyết liệt và vấp phải đàn áp khốc liệt của chính quyền thân cộng Carrie Lam, với nghĩa cử hiển nhiên trong tình đồng loại và cũng là đền đáp nghĩa tình vì Hong Kong đã từng cưu mang cho hàng vạn người Việt Nam vượt biên tị nạn cộng sản. Bên cạnh rất đông người Việt Nam đã chia sớt nổi đau cùng Hong Kong bằng những hành động có thể trong khả năng thì cũng có không ít kẻ tiểu nhân bỉ ổi đã lợi dụng thảm trạng Hong Kong để trục lợi, để phát tán căn bệnh tư duy nô lệ. Chúng chỉ vào Hong Kong rồi lu loa, phỉ báng những người biểu tình là lực lượng phá nát hào hoa của Hong Kong.

Đặc biệt, trong khi các cường quốc đang gấp gáp tìm ra giải pháp bão vệ Hong Kong, Hạ viện Mỹ trình đang dự luật Nhân quyền và Tự do Hong Kong lên Thượng viện Mỹ, thì chúng lấy nổi đau thương, mất mát của Hong Kong để làm vũ khí tấn công lại Nước Mỹ, tấn công vào cá nhân tổng thống Donald Trump với giọng điệu "Nước Mỹ và Donald Trump đã bỏ rơi Hong Kong như đã từng bỏ rơi Việt Nam Cộng Hòa và vừa rồi là người Kurd ở Syria. Donald Trump chỉ vì Nước Mỹ là trên hết,...".

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Chuyện Mỹ can thiệp vào Hong Kong đâu phải chuyện làng, chuyện xã, đâu giống như chuyện thằng súc vật Đàm Vĩnh Hưng đăng lên FB treo thưởng ai xử lý Đoàn Văn Tí ở Tiền Giang, kẻ say rượu đánh đập con thơ. Khi Donald Trump tấn công tới tấp Tàu cộng trên chiến trường thương mại thì Hong Kong cũng là một khiêng chắn mà Tàu cộng dụng tới để tự vệ, chia lửa cho Tàu cộng. Đàn áp Hong Kong để Mỹ can thiệp vào Hong Kong là một trong những kế "mưu sinh thoát hiểm" của Tàu cộng và đồng thời cũng là cách làm mất uy tín Donald Trump trong mùa bầu cử tổng thống năm 2020. Bởi vì như chúng ta biết, phát động thương chiến với Tàu cộng, ông Trump buộc Tàu cộng phải lựa chọn:

1. Hoặc Tàu cộng phải ký vào bãn thỏa thuận thương mại với Mỹ để thay đổi cấu trúc kinh tế. Khi thay đổi cấu trúc kinh tế thì Tàu cộng phải cải cách thể chế, khi Tàu cộng cải cách thể chế thì hàng loạt mâu thuẫn nội tại nảy sinh do xung đột giữa hai luồng tư tưởng là tư duy nô lệ và tư duy cấp tiến. Kết quả tất yếu là Tàu cộng sẽ đổ sập như Liên Sô trước đây.

2. Hoặc Tàu cộng sẽ đấu với Mỹ tới cùng theo phương pháp "vừa đánh vừa đàm" và "vừa đấu vừa chờ hậu bầu cử tổng thống Mỹ năm 2020".

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Ở giải pháp thứ nhất, Tàu cộng sẽ rất đau đớn khi phải đặt bút ký vào bản thỏa thuận thương mại do ông Trump áp đặt mặc dù đây là giải pháp chết từ từ mà Tàu cộng phải nhận lãnh. Bởi vì khi Tàu cộng ký vào bãn thỏa thuận thương mại với Mỹ thì nền kinh tế của Tàu cộng sẽ không sụp đổ ngay mà sẽ rệu rã từ từ trước khi chính thức sụp đổ nhưng uy vũ của Tàu cộng sẽ mất sạch trong mắt chư hầu và khủng khiếp hơn cho Tàu cộng là những kẻ mang căn bệnh tư duy nô lệ sẽ mau chóng khỏi bệnh vì con virus lây lan căn bệnh này đã bị mất khả năng lây bệnh tư duy nô lệ.

Ở giải pháp thứ hai, Tàu cộng sẽ chết ngay tức khắc nếu quyết đấu tới cùng với Donald Trump trên võ đài thương mại mà bằng chứng là cơn khủng hoảng thịt heo ở Tàu cộng hiện nay là chỉ dấu cho thấy Tàu cộng sẽ bể như trứng như tuyên bố của tổng thống Trump.

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Quyết định của Tàu cộng là đánh tiếp hay đầu hàng Mỹ trên võ đài thương mại đều ảnh hưởng tới chiếc ghế quyền lực của Tập Cận Bình. Tập Cận Bình chọn cách đánh tiếp với Donald Trump thì Tàu cộng lấy gì để đánh ? Tập Cận Bình đánh tiếp với Donald Trump thì vấp phải sự phản đối, chỉ trích của phe cấp tiến. Nếu Tập Cận Bình chọn cách đầu hàng là ký vào bãn thỏa thuận thương mại do ông Trump áp đặt thì uy tín của Tập Cận Bình mất sạch trong mắt chư hầu, nguy hiểm hơn là đám bão thủ sẽ phản đối, tìm cách hạ bệ Tập Cận Bình.

Vì vậy, dù cho đánh tiếp hay hàng thì Tập Cận Bình cũng phải có được một lý do chính đáng để làm "chỗ chỉ" khi hậu quả xảy ra mà Hong Kong là một "chỗ chỉ" hợp lý nhất vì đặc thù chính trị của Hong Kong. Tập Cận Bình chỉ đạo Carrie Lam đàn áp Hong Kong để tạo cớ cho Mỹ can thiệp vào Hong Kong theo kịch bản đã soạn sẵn có sự tham dự của đảng Dân chủ Mỹ thông qua Dự luật nhân quyền và Tự do Hong Kong. Khi chính quyền Donald Trump can thiệp vào Hong Kong theo Đạo luật này thì Tập Cận Bình có lý do thoái thác việc ký vào bãn thỏa thuận thương mại mà ông Trump đang kỳ vọng với lý do "Mỹ không chơn thành, Mỹ can thiệp thô bạo vào Hong Kong,...". 

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Một người biểu tình dùng cung tên bắn về phía cảnh sát sáng 17/11

Nếu chính quyền ông Trump vì muốn có được thỏa thuận thương mại với Tàu cộng thì sẽ không can thiệp vào Hong Kong, điều này sẽ làm cho hình ảnh Donald Trump xấu đi trong lòng cử tri Mỹ vì phe Dân chủ và lực lượng Fake News sẽ trích dẫn câu nói của cây Mác là "chỉ có loài súc vật mới quay lưng lại nỗi đau của đồng loại để chăm chút cho bộ da của mình". 

Nhưng nếu chính quyền của ông Trump thực thi Đạo luật nhân quyền và dân chủ Hong Kong thì kỳ vọng có được một thỏa thuận thương mại với Tàu cộng sẽ tan thành mây khói và lúc đó đảng Dân chủ và lực lượng Fake News hùng hậu lại thổi phồng lên rằng "dân Mỹ bị tổn thương nghiêm trọng bởi thương chiến Mỹ - Tàu cộng do Ông Trump phát động", chúng sẽ làm suy yếu, phá sản lời hứa của ông Trump trước cử tri Mỹ là sẽ san bằng thâm hụt thương mại với Tàu cộng nhưng không làm tổn thương Nước Mỹ.

Chà, coi bộ cái Đạo luật bảo vệ nhân quyền và Dân chủ Hong Kong đang làm khó cho ông Trump ghê gớm. Tuy nhiên thấy vậy chớ không phải vậy. Trước bẫy chông của Tập Cận Bình và đảng Dân chủ Mỹ đặt trong Đạo luật bão vệ Hong Kong, Donald Trump cười thầm trong bụng "tụi mày ngu lắm, bị sập bẫy do tụi mày giăng ra mà không hay biết". Bởi vì như nhiều lần ông Trump khoe, Nước Mỹ sẽ thu về cả trăm tỷ Mỹ kim nhờ đánh thuế lên hàng hóa của Tàu cộng. 

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Đánh thuế lên hàng hóa Tàu cộng chỉ là "SON", đánh thuế lên hàng hóa Tàu cộng để Tập Cận Bình ký vào bãn thỏa thuận thương mại áp đặt là "SON THẾP VÀNG". Vì vậy, khi Mỹ thực thi Đạo luật bão vệ Hong Kong thì Tập Cận Bình có lý do để từ chối ký vào bãn thỏa thuận thương mại áp đặt đã vô tình trao "SON" cho ông Trump vì ông Trump có lý do nện thêm thuế quan lên hàng hóa Tàu cộng, đem về cho ngân sách Mỹ cả trăm tỷ Mỹ kim nữa nhưng đảng Dân chủ sẽ "có họng ăn mà không có họng nói" vì nói ra sẽ bị ông Trump chỉ vô cái Đạo luật bão vệ Hong Kong mà phán: Tại nó mà ra, tại nó mà Tập Cận Bình không ký thỏa thuận thương mại nên phải đánh thêm thuế cho nó biết mặt.

Sau khi can thiệp vào Hong Kong theo Đạo luật bảo vệ Hong Kong, sau khi đánh mạnh thuế lên hàng hóa Tàu cộng do Tập Cận Bình không ký kết thỏa thuận thương mại áp đặt với lý do Mỹ can thiệp vào Hong Kong và quan trọng hơn cả la sau khi trò vu cáo luận tội phá sản, Hiệp định thương mại USMCA buộc Hạ viện phải thông qua thì chắc chắn Tập Cận Bình sẽ phải quay lại ký vào bãn thỏa thuận thương mại áp đặt để vớt vát chút đỉnh cho nền kinh tế của Tàu cộng. Lúc này thì Tập Cận Bình dù đã thoát vạ nhưng má đã sưng ú ù, chính quyền Carrie Lam thì tan nát vì Đạo luật bão vệ Hong Kong. Riêng Donald thì có cả "SON THẾP VÀNG".

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Tóm lại, đảng Dân chủ và Tàu cộng muốn Tập Cận Bình không ký vào thỏa thuận thương mại áp đặt của Donald Trump hòng lấy đó làm vũ khí tấn công ông Trump trong mùa bầu cử tổng thống năm 2020 nên đã gài ông Trump bằng cái Đạo luật bão vệ Hong Kong. 

Tóm lại, đảng Dân chủ và Tàu cộng muốn Tập Cận Bình không ký vào thỏa thuận thương mại áp đặt của Donald Trump hòng lấy đó làm vũ khí tấn công ông Trump trong mùa bầu cử tổng thống năm 2020 nên đã gài ông Trump bằng cái Đạo luật bảo vệ Hong Kong. Nhưng ông Trump lại dụng chiêu "gậy ông đập lưng ông" khi ông lấy lý do Tập Cận Bình không chịu ký vào bản thỏa thuận thương mại áp đặt do Mỹ can thiệp vào Hong Kong bằng Đạo luật bảo vệ Hong Kong nên ông Trump ra lệnh đánh thuế lút khung lên hàng hóa của Tàu cộng và hủy diệt chuỗi cung ứng của Tàu cộng, nền kinh tế của Tàu cộng bể như trứng mà những tổn thương nếu có cho Nước Mỹ là do đảng Dân chủ gây ra bởi cái tội trì hoãn Hiệp định USMCA và sốt sắng thông qua Đạo luật bảo vệ Hong Kong.

Cuộc "chiến tranh chính trị" đang diễn ra ở Hong Kong ở nửa hiệp 1 nhưng HONG KONG ĐÃ THÀNH CÔNG, DONALD TRUMP SẼ ĐẠI THẮNG. Chúc mừng và chia buồn.



Tran Hung

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Advocaat van teruggekeerde IS-vrouw zegt dat zijn cliënte “totaal gedesillusioneerd” is

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Een dag na de terugkeer van twee IS-vrouwen naar ons land, is een van de zussen Benmezian al urenlang door federale speurders ondervraagd. “Mijn cliënte is een zeer frêle, uitgehongerde jongedame die een zeer gedetailleerde en geloofwaardige verklaring over haar vertrek, verblijf en terugkeer uit Syrië heeft afgelegd”, zegt haar advocaat Abderrahim Lahlali.


          

IS-vrouw Fatima B. urenlang verhoord in Antwerpen

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De door Turkije teruggestuurde IS-vrouw Fatima B. is zaterdag bijna zes uur lang verhoord door de federale gerechtelijke politie in Antwerpen. Volgens haar advocaat, Abderrahim Lahlali, heeft ze er tekst en uitleg gegeven over haar vertrek naar, verblijf in en vlucht uit Syrië. Er zouden haar voorlopig geen nieuwe zaken ten laste worden gelegd buiten de feiten waarvoor ze eerder al bij verstek werd veroordeeld tot vijf jaar cel. Of zijn cliënte in verzet zal gaan tegen die veroordeling, zou ze nog niet beslist hebben.


          

From refugee to entrepreneur: How a UNESCO scholarship helped a Syrian in Jordan

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English

          

AS dukung hak Israel bangun permukiman Yahudi di Tepi Barat Palestina

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Amerika Serikat pada Senin (18/11) secara resmi menyatakan mendukung hak Israel untuk membangun permukiman Yahudi di Tepi Barat, wilayah Palestina yang diduduki Israel.Dengan pemberian dukungan tersebut, AS berarti ...


          

Syria: Civilians Abused in ‘Safe Zones’

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Fighters of the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (also called the Syrian National Army) enter the town of Tal Abyad.

© 2019 AP Images
 
(Beirut, November 27, 2019) – Factions of the Syrian National Army (SNA), a Syrian non-state armed group backed by Turkey in northeast Syria, have summarily executed civilians and failed to account for aid workers who disappeared while working in the ‘safe zone,’ Human Rights Watch said today. The armed group has also apparently refused to allow the return of Kurdish families displaced by Turkish military operations and looted and unlawfully appropriated or occupied their property.

Turkey should investigate human rights abuses, in many cases potential war crimes, in territory over which they currently exercise effective control, press SNA forces to end these abuses, and ensure that those responsible are held to account. Local commanders of the group should also investigate and hold individuals responsible for the abuses accountable.

“Executing individuals, pillaging property, and blocking displaced people from returning to their homes is damning evidence of why Turkey’s proposed ‘safe zones’ will not be safe,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Contrary to Turkey’s narrative that their operation will establish a safe zone, the groups they are using to administer the territory are themselves committing abuses against civilians and discriminating on ethnic grounds.”

On October 9, 2019, Turkish Armed Forces and the armed group invaded territory in northeast Syria that since 2012 had been under the control of the Syrian Democratic Forces, made up primarily of the Kurdish-led People’s Protection Units (YPG). Since the incursion began, Turkey and the factions it supports have indiscriminately shelled civilian areas, carried out at least seven summary killings, unlawfully occupied private civilian homes and shops and looted the owners’ property, and have not accounted for aid workers who may have been forcibly disappeared while working in their zones.

Human Rights Watch interviewed 10 individuals, including 2 doctors and 3 relatives of victims, to document these abuses. Human Rights Watch also reviewed footage and images provided by activists and relatives that corroborate these abuses. On October 11, videos and images, including some posted by the SNA itself, have emerged on social media showing its members shooting at a person who was lying down without moving and appeared to pose no threat and standing atop the dead body of another person in a degrading manner. Human Rights Watch also documented the execution of a Kurdish political activist, Hevrin Khalaf, and researched what happened to three Kurdish Red Crescent aid workers who disappeared in SNA-controlled territory, including the apparent unlawful killing of at least one of them. Human Rights Watch interviewed three relatives and colleagues who verified the victims’ identities and the circumstances of their deaths.

Human Rights Watch also interviewed five Kurdish civilians between November 6 and 11 who said that the armed group’s forces were occupying their homes and other property and had arbitrarily prevented them or their relatives from returning. A Reuters journalist of Kurdish origin posted pictures of his house on October 30, claiming that the group had occupied it. In another case the group’s forces killed three Kurdish men who had been trying to return to the city of Ras al-Ayn, witnesses and relatives said, and prevented another Kurdish man from returning while allowing Arab residents to return.

Both international humanitarian law and human rights law prohibit unlawful killings and any arbitrary deprivation of life, which includes targeting civilians. International humanitarian law also strictly prohibits, and deems a war crime, the deliberate killing of injured, surrendered, or captured combatants (people deemed hors de combat) and enforced disappearances.

Under the laws of war, pillaging or forcibly taking private property for personal use is prohibited and can also constitute a war crime. Combatants are not allowed to seize property for personal use, which is a war crime, and the laws of war also prohibit destruction of property not justified by military necessity. International norms require protecting the property of displaced people against destruction and arbitrary and illegal appropriation, occupation, or use.

International law further stipulates that civilians who were forcibly displaced during a conflict should be allowed to return home as soon as possible without conditions. If forces have security concerns, then they should conduct individual assessments of residents, impose temporary, limited restrictions if justified, and not seek to impose blanket or indefinite bans to prevent them from returning. Occupiers are prohibited from moving segments of the population out of their homes for non-security reasons and seeking to replace them with populations from other territory.

All parties to a conflict are obliged to investigate alleged war crimes by their members and ensure that those responsible are appropriately punished. Commanders who knew or should have known about crimes committed by their subordinates but took no action to prevent or prosecute them can be held criminally liable as a matter of command responsibility.

The de facto authorities in the areas where Human Rights Watch has documented these abuses should ensure that those responsible are held to account, that it is safe for people to return if they wish, and that no one is refused the right to return on the basis of their ethnicity or identity, Human Rights Watch said. The Turkish government should also end its military assistance to SNA factions responsible for these abuses.

“Turkey is turning a blind eye to the reprehensible behaviour displayed by the factions it arms,” Whitson said. “So long as Turkey is in control of these areas, it has a responsibility to investigate and end these violations.”

Since the incursion into northern Syria started, Turkish Armed Forces and the SNA have taken control of the area between Tal Abyad (Gire Spi) and Ras al-Ayn (Serekaniye) and part of the international highway (the M4) running between southeast Turkey and northeast Syria. Despite an October 22 ceasefire and safe zone agreement between Russia and Turkey, clashes between the Syrian Democratic Forces – the Kurdish-led forces once backed by the United States-led coalition against the Islamic State (also known as ISIS) – and the SNA continue.

According to the United Nations, the incursion initially displaced at least 200,000 people, and about 100,000 are now returning. Almost half have returned to areas controlled by the Turkish-backed factions and the Turkish Armed Forces in Tal Abyad, Ein Issa, and Suluk.

Summary Killings and Enforced Disappearances

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Syrian non-state armed groups executed nine civilians, including the Kurdish-Syrian politician Hevrin Khalaf, on October 12. Videos of Khalaf’s execution surfaced online on October 13. The videos Human Rights Watch reviewed show armed men standing over the body of a woman, which relatives and activists confirmed was Khalaf.

In another video, armed men who identify themselves as members of the SNA are seen shooting automatic weapons at a figure lying unmoving on the side of a road. Bellingcat, an open source investigative site, identified Ahrar al-Sharqiyeh forces, a faction of the SNA, as having been at both the Khalaf execution and the killing that appears in the second video. Ahrar al-Sharqiyeh denied its involvement in the killings.

In another case, a relative and two colleagues of the three Kurdish Red Crescent volunteers said an SNA faction that they could not identify advised them that they had detained the volunteers on October 11. A doctor who worked at the hospital with which they were associated told Human Rights Watch that he lost contact with the volunteer team – an ambulance driver and two nurses – who had gone to Suluk in response to an attack on October 11.

The driver’s uncle said that the driver’s brother had sent a text to the driver’s phone on October 14 and a person who identified himself as part of the SNA responded by text saying that the driver was dead and shared a photograph of the body. Both the relative and his colleague verified that the image was of the ambulance driver.

In photos on his Facebook account, the driver is dressed in a military uniform and a YPG flag is draped over his body in the pictures provided by his relatives. His relatives did not receive the body. Human Rights Watch could not determine whether the man was a volunteer with the Kurdish Red Crescent and simultaneously a member of the Kurdish armed group, or whether the Facebook photos were from an earlier period. Even if he was or had also been a member of the armed group, there is no indication that on October 11 he was engaged in anything other than humanitarian activities, Human Rights Watch said.

The circumstances of the two female nurses in the ambulance remain unknown, but their last known whereabouts was in SNA territory and people believed to be from an SNA faction informed the Kurdish Red Crescent aid group that SNA factions had detained them. The Kurdish Red Crescent has publicly called on all parties to the conflict to allow them access to injured people.

Property Confiscation, Looting, and Blocking Return of Kurdish Residents

Human Rights Watch interviewed two people who said that forces they identified as the SNA had occupied their property and looted their possessions. Three people said that they or their Kurdish relatives had attempted to return to their homes in areas under Turkish control but that the armed factions had blocked them. SNA forces also killed three men who were trying to return to their homes in Ras al-Ayn.

A doctor whose home is in Tanhuza, a village eight kilometers from Tal Abyad, said that his family had left their village on October 9 due to shelling and airstrikes and are now scattered across northeast Syria. He said that his Arab neighbor told him that members of the Ahrar al-Sharqiya faction were occupying his family’s five houses. A photo that SNA members posted on November 1 showing them praying in front of one of the houses served as confirmation. He shared with Human Rights Watch pictures of the house before and after to verify that it was his family’s.

In another case, a Kurdish-Syrian man said that his family fled to the city of Raqqa after a Turkish airstrike killed his parents and wounded his brother on October 9 in his village of Kayuta, nine kilometers from Tal Abyad. He said he also learned from neighbors that his home has been unlawfully occupied. He said that on about October 11, his Arab neighbors who had returned to Kayuta told him that a local Arab family had occupied his house, followed by members of Ahrar al-Shaqiyeh.

He said his uncles communicated with Ahrar al-Sharqiyeh about the house, and that the armed group shared pictures of them occupying the house. One of his uncles attempted to return to the village at least five times but the SNA faction turned him away at the entrance and told him it was a military area. However, he saw that his Arab neighbors who had told him his house was occupied were allowed in the village.

Three other Kurdish residents of Tal Abyad displaced by the hostilities on October 9 confirmed that their property also was illegally occupied. They said that their Arab neighbors had contacted them and told them that their houses had been looted, and that SNA fighters had installed themselves or displaced Arab families in their houses between October 14 and 18. One displaced Kurdish Syrian man who owns a shop in Tal Abyad said that on October 18, he saw photographs of his shop marked “seized for the benefit of Ahrar al-Shariqyeh” and that an Arab neighbor whom the fighters had offered some of the man’s wares told him that Ahrar al-Shariqyeh had looted everything and tried to sell it.

Activists and relatives in northeast Syria and Europe shared with Human Rights Watch images of the bodies of the three people they said SNA factions had killed when they tried to return to Ras al-Ayn. They identified them as Sheyar Mahmoud Othman, Rezan Khalil Julou, and Mustafa Hisso. The images were later circulated on social media.

Human Rights Watch spoke with Hisso’s uncle, who was with his nephew when the SNA killed him. The uncle said that he and three of his companions had been returning to Ras al-Ayn on October 17 to check on their property. His nephew owned a large cafeteria and was concerned that it would be looted. Hisso’s cousin, whom Human Rights Watch interviewed, said that about 200 meters from an arch near the Ras al-Ayn entrance an armed group that the family believed was a faction of the SNA began firing at Hisso’s van. The uncle threw himself out of the car and ran but his nephew and his two companions in the car were killed.


          

Prophetic Actions

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A prophetic action (prophetic act) is something done (at God's directions) in the natural (physical) realm that supports God's workings in the spiritual realm, to bring forth results that would be manifested in the natural realm. Such prophetic ministry becomes the forerunner of that move of God that opens the channel for His glory and power to be released that will affect our natural environment.

The prophetic act or activity is usually displayed or demonstrated or communicated in a dimension or language that is thought to be easily understood by those to whom the revealed prophetic actions is intended.

Prophetic acts that might have yielded fruits of great glory are of no special significance if not ordered by God.

THREE KINDS OF PROPHETIC ACTIONS

1.PROPHETIC ACTIONS PERFORMED BY GOD HIMSELF

The Prophetic acts of God often convey His love for His people. But many times these prophetic acts also communicated God’s disappointment, correction, and rebuke.

Genesis 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them

This is a prophetic act of enormous prophetic portion. God provides a covering for them in the form of a prophetic act of the redemption. God made them coats of skin to now cover them. The coats were not to shield them from the elements as we use coats today, but they were to cover them in their now perceived nakedness. Our sin exposes us not to God but to ourselves and to the perceptions of others.

2. PROPHETIC ACTIONS PERFORMED BY A PROPHET

Acts 21:10,11 10 And as we tarried there many days, there came down from Judaea a certain prophet, named Agabus 11 And coming to us, • he took Paul’s belt and bound his own feet and hands and said, “Thus says the Holy Spirit, ‘This is how the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns * this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.’”

Agabus revealed to Paul and the disciples that the road ahead wouldn’t be easy for the owner of the belt (Paul).

3. PROPHETIC ACTIONS PERFORMED BY A BELIEVER

The best example of a prophetic act performed by a believer is water baptism. A prophetic action enables the recipients to see what they are unwilling to accept through mere words due to their frightened or hardened hearts. If they reject the physical act, then the state of their hearts is exposed. Water Baptism is a Symbolical enactment of death to self and resurrection to a new life with Christ.

Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

Baptism will not save you but the prophetic act of obedience to God’s commandment will place you on the path of salvation.

Prophetic acts can break accepted cultural, ethical, and religious norms.

  1. Jeremiah was told not to marry or have children in order to live out a prophetic action before God’s people (Jer.16:1-13). God’s prophetic words to His people were all the more potent as they came through this bachelor-prophet: as Jeremiah had no offspring, so the children born to Jewish parents would die from disease and by the hand of their enemies.
  2. Ezekiel was ordered toshave his beard and head (a disgrace for a Jewish man; see II Sam.10:4-5), and then to burn one third of it in the center of Jerusalem, strike one third with a sword throughout the city, and scatter the remaining third to the wind (Ez.5:1-17). He was then to explain to the people in Jerusalem how his actions represented the judgments that were coming upon them.
  3. The prophet Hosea was divinely directed twice to marry prostitutes (Hos.1:2-9; 3:1-5). His marriages, and the children he fathered in the first marriage, were prophetic actions to Israel.
  4. The prophet Zechariah was commanded to place a kingly crown upon the head of the high priest Joshua (Zech.6:9-15). His act was noteworthy because priests were forbidden from ruling as kings, and vice versa (see II Chr.26:16-21; Num.3:10; 16:39-40).This violation of the written word was followed by a prophetic word that foretold the Priest-King, Jesus Christ, who would rebuild Jerusalem’s temple and rule on the throne of Israel – a true priest on His throne.

Moses ROD

  1. Moses was always carrying out prophetic acts with his rod, he was always prophesying with his rod. God chose Moses, knowing he had a speech impediment (see Exodus 4:10), so He (God) could speak through him; so He could do signs, wonders and miracles through him; so He could do prophetic acts through him. God chose a man who now knew how to LEAN ON HIM. God said to Moses in Exodus 4:2, “What’s that in your hand? . . . USE IT!” His rod became his point of contact for prophetic acts.

  2. In Exodus 14, after the Israelites fled from Egypt, we read about the Egyptians pursuing them with vengeance; they wanted to retrieve their slaves; the exodus of the Israelites had humiliated them; they were all devastated at the loss of their firstborn. In verses 15, 16 & 21 we see that Moses had to DO something, not SAY something. “Don’t speak . . . ACT! Stop praying, stop crying out to Me and get the people moving forward. Stretch out your rod over the sea and divide it . . .”

Elisha & King Joash's Arrow

2 Kings 13:14-19 14 Now Elisha was fallen sick of his sickness whereof he died. And Joash the king of Israel came down unto him, and wept over his face, and said, O my father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof. 15 And Elisha said unto him, Take bow and arrows. And he took unto him bow and arrows. 16 And he said to the king of Israel, Put thine hand upon the bow. And he put his hand upon it: and Elisha put his hands upon the king’s hands. 17 And he said, Open the window eastward. And he opened it. Then Elisha said, Shoot. And he shot. And he said, The arrow of the LORD’S deliverance, and the arrow of deliverance from Syria: for thou shalt smite the Syrians in Aphek, till thou have consumed them. 18 And he said, Take the arrows. And he took them. And he said unto the king of Israel, Smite upon the ground. And he smote thrice, and stayed. 19 And the man of God was wroth with him, and said, Thou shouldest have smitten five or six times; then hadst thou smitten Syria till thou hadst consumed it: whereas now thou shalt smite Syria but thrice.

  1. Elisha the prophet instructed the king to release arrows eastwards from a bow. Apparently, this was a prophetic act that meant that Israel would triumph over her enemies, the Syrians, who were occupying Israel's land in the east of Jordan.
  2. Following that, Elisha gave instructions for another prophetic act: "The arrow of the Lord's deliverance and the arrow of deliverance from Syria; for you must strike the Syrians at Aphek till you have destroyed them". Having said that to the king, Elisha instructed the King to strike the ground with arrows. King Joash dealt only three blows to the ground - to the reproach of Elisha who told him that because he struck the ground only three times, therefore Syria would suffer defeat not more than three times; while had the king struck the ground repeatedly Syria would have been rendered beyond recovery and would cease to be of any further threat to Israel.

The measure of victory we gain over our enemies comes from the obedience we give to divine instructions.

Your obedience + God's faithfulness = Great Things

Can you be trusted with more?

Luke 16:10 New American Standard "He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.


          

Fame Spreads Fast for Eight-Year-Old Yemeni Singer

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It is a dangerous time to be a child in Yemen. Besides facing war, hunger and poverty, more than 25 percent of children are not in school. But eight-year-old singer Amr Muqbel, known as "The Water Seller," is different. He attends school in the morning. In the afternoons, he used to sell water to help support his family. Now, he makes extra money singing for weddings, fans and several major Arabic news channels. “I’m proud he has become a singer,” said Ahmed Muqbel, Amr’s 70-year-old father, with tears in his eyes. One of their relatives is a soldier, he added, and Amr used to sing war songs. Now, he sings about love and peace in a country where other children can be forced to join military groups. "Children out of school face increased risks of all forms of exploitation, including being forced to join the fighting, child labor, and early marriage," said Sara Nyanti, UNICEF’s representative in Yemen, in a statement. Teachers in the schools have not been paid in more than two years. As the war continues, danger for children outside of the school system deepens, workers for aid organizations say. Growing fame Amr first became well-known this year when a local hiker recorded him singing to a group of people. The hiker posted the recording on Facebook, where it received 20,000 likes, loves and sad faces. Since then, the boy appears on Arab media regularly. He has appeared on BBC Arabic, Al Jazeera Arabic and RT Arabic. Amr’s family remains poor, however. He, his mother and his four siblings still struggle to survive in a small house. But as Amr gains the attention of music professionals, the family hopes his voice will help lift them further out of poverty. "I didn't even know Amr was singing for the drivers," said Amr’s mother, Muneerah, near her Sanaa home. "He sells water so he can earn money to pay for his private school fees. I used to reprimand Amr for singing while he did his homework.” Sobhi Mohammed is a renowned Syrian Kurdish music writer from Lebanon. He has expressed interest in mentoring Amr, inviting him through an online video to visit Lebanon. Mohammed has mentored other young people with musical skills, like Nomer El Beik and Amir Amuri from Syria. “I was like Amr while still a little boy,” Mohammed said in an online report. “I promised myself that I would assist every talented child who had no one.” Amr has not gone to Lebanon because of passport delays and competing ideas about his future. His father wants to go to Lebanon so Amr can try to get into the professional music business. His mother wants Amr to continue to be mentored locally, so he can sing more often at weddings to increase the family’s income. “I believe Amr will become a star," added Mohammed. "He has the voice and charisma." Yemenis hesitancy Publicly, Amr has accepted Mohammed’s invitation in an online video. Some of his local fans do not want him to leave. "His songs come out from his heart," said Mohammed al-Adaimi, a 23-year-old who listens to Amr’s songs on YouTube. "He should stay and sing for us and we will support him." Like other fans, al-Adaimi is concerned Amr’s musical style might change if he trains in Lebanon. He might learn a more common Lebanese style of Arab music. Other local people said they are proud that a young Yemeni is getting international attention. “He is a talented boy,” said Mabrouk al-Baqash, who has been listening to Amr sing for eight months.  “It’s fine to travel to Lebanon.” I’m Caty Weaver.   Naseh Shaker and Gabrielle Resnick wrote this report for VOA News. Caty Weaver adapted it for Learning English. Mario Ritter, Jr. was the editor. ____________________________________________________________ Words in This Story   exploitation - n. the act of to use (someone or something) in a way that helps you unfairly​ hiker - n. someone who walks a long distance especially for pleasure and/or exercise reprimand - v. to speak in an angry and critical way to (someone who has done something wrong, disobeyed an order, etc.)​ mentor - v. to teach or give advice or guidance to (someone, such as a less experienced person or a child) : to act as a mentor for (someone)​ talented - adj. having a special ability to do something well : having talent​ charisma - n. a special charm or appeal that causes people to feel attracted and excited by someone (such as a politician)​ style - n. a particular way in which something is done, created, or performed​   We want to hear from you. Write to us in the Comments section, and visit our Facebook page.
          

NATO's birthday summit risks highlighting splits not unity

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A birthday celebration for NATO this week is set to be overshadowed by rows about Turkey's offensive in Syria, France's declaration the alliance is brain dead and uncertainty over US commitment to trans-Atlantic defence.
          

What a Sock Business Can Teach Health Care Companies

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By KOUSIK KRISHNAN, MD As recent events in northeastern Syria make clear, the number of displaced people in the world is rising — as are their health needs.  In 2018 I wentContinue reading...

The post What a Sock Business Can Teach Health Care Companies appeared first on The Health Care Blog.


          

Town hall clock’s time capsule a striking reminder of modern Leeds

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For more than 160 years it’s been a stalwart of the Leeds skyline, marking off some of the most important moments in the city’s history.

Now a new addition to the iconic Leeds Town Hall clock will capture a moment in the life of modern Leeds for future generations as the building’s landmark refurbishment reaches a new stage.

Earlier today, a group of young people working with Leeds Museums and Galleries, installed a time capsule on the imposing timepiece, more than 200 feet above ground level.

The group, all aged 14-24, brought together a collection of objects which they feel encapsulate both their own personalities and the character of the city they live in in 2019.

Included in the capsule was a ‘Leeds Owl’ artwork by Holly Lanforth, a display about teenage life during the 2010s, nine Lego Mini Figure avatars created by nine of the Preservative Party, a ‘Cheeky Nando’s’ menu, a mobile phone and a Refugee Education Training Advice Service (RETAS) cookery book donated by Maria Abdulaziz who move to Leeds from Syria and 2018.

Ellie Smith, 24, a committed vegan whose Lego avatar shows her holding an apple, said: “It’s as close to putting ourselves into the time capsule as we can get.”

Fellow curator Callum Rushworth, 20, added: “It feels interesting to be preserved in a time capsule, in a good way! I don’t really want to be a chicken nugget scientist, I just thought it would be funny for people in the future to read it!”

Opened by Queen Victoria back in 1858, Leeds Town hall is currently undergoing extensive improvement work, including the creation of exciting new events spaces and facilities.

The refurbishment will also include new seating and enhanced sound proofing in the beautiful Victoria Hall, two new bars, a new event space for smaller events, more toilet facilities and a completely new interior decoration scheme for all public areas.

Leeds City Centre Box Office will also relocate to the Victoria Hall level of the town hall and a large, fully accessible reception area will be created.

Funding for the project, which will secure a key heritage asset, will come from Leeds City Council’s capital fund, with some of the costs of the interior refurbishments, including the organ and seating, funded by a public campaign.

Award winning architects Page\Park are now designing the scheme, with work expected to start in 2021. The building is scheduled to reopen in 2022 in time for the Leeds 2023 city-wide cultural festival.

Councillor Judith Blake, leader of Leeds City Council, met the young people at the installation said: “The redevelopment of Leeds Town Hall is a landmark moment in the history of this beautiful heritage asset and it’s fitting that we capture exactly what it will mean to the city and the people who live here.

“This imaginative group of passionate young history-lovers have worked hard to capture what Leeds means to them and I hope in decades to come, when this time capsule is opened, it will give future generations an impression of the vibrant and diverse city that Leeds is in 2019.”

Matthew Sims, head of arts, events and venues at Leeds City Council added: “It’s been 150 years since the first roof was first installed. And if it was another 150 years before work needed to be done again the world will be a very different place. So, as a fun way to engage young people with the on-going development of this great building and help future historians in their work to understand the past we invited this brilliant group of young people from across Leeds to capture this moment in time for us.”

ENDS

For further information, images and media requests contact:

Stuart Robinson

Communications Officer

Leeds City Council

Tel: 0113 378 9182

Email: stuart.robinson@leeds.gov.uk

www.leeds.gov.uk

or

Shona Galletly,

Communications Manager, Arts, Events & Venues, Leeds City Council

T: 0113 378 4948

e: shona.galletly@leeds.gov.uk

www.leedstownhall.co.uk @leedstownhall

 

 

Notes to editors:

• Roof Refurbishment work on replacing and refurbishing the roof and iconic clock tower of Leeds Town Hall began in October 2018 and will continue until November 2020. The current roof dates back to the original structure of the Town Hall which was completed in 1858.

• The design work for the roof project was created by NPS Leeds and the construction is being carried out by Bermar Building.

• The architectural renovation plan for Leeds Town Hall is being delivered by PagePark, an award-winning architectural practice undertaking work across the UK from their studios in Glasgow and Leeds. Current projects include Leeds Playhouse and Hyde Park Picture House

www.pagepark.co.uk

• Funding for the 17 million pound project comprises £5m for the ongoing work on the roof and £10m for interior refurbishments. The remaining £2m for interior refurbishments, including the organ and seating, will be raised by a public campaign. The refurbishment, which is funded from the council’s capital funds, delivers on its responsibilities for future generations to take care of this Grade 1 listed public asset.

Capital funding is separate from the annual revenue funding of council activities. Therefore investing in this refurbishment does not involve taking money away from other vital council services.


          

Implementation of a labour companionship model in three public hospitals in Arab middle-income countries.

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Related Articles

Implementation of a labour companionship model in three public hospitals in Arab middle-income countries.

Acta Paediatr. 2018 12;107 Suppl 471:35-43

Authors: Kabakian-Khasholian T, Bashour H, El-Nemer A, Kharouf M, Elsheikh O, Labour Companionship Study Group

Abstract
AIM: To assess the feasibility, acceptability, effectiveness and cost of the integration of a tailored labour companionship model in three public hospitals in Egypt, Lebanon and Syria.
METHODS: Phased implementation research using mixed methods. Implementation strategies consisted of steering committees in hospitals, seminars for healthcare providers, information, education and communication materials, and adjustments in labour rooms. The labour companionship model consisted of (i) identification of a female relative as labour companion by women; (ii) provision of information, education and communication materials to women and companions; and (iii) allowing companions to accompany women throughout the first stage of labour. Semi-structured interviews with women, labour companions and healthcare providers were used to assess feasibility and acceptability of the model. Effectiveness was assessed through structured interviews with women, information abstracted from medical records and cost data. The comparison was made between the pre-implementation and the implementation phases.
RESULTS: This model was found to be feasible, acceptable, effective and cost-beneficial. Women's satisfaction and perception of control improved and caesarean section rates were reduced significantly.
CONCLUSION: This model can be adopted for these countries and elsewhere with comparable health systems. It enhances the quality of care and the provision of equitable and respectful maternity services.

PMID: 30570794 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


          

ISIS takes responsibility for London Bridge Attack

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The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria ( ISIS) has claimed responsibility for the deadly knife-attack in London on Friday, November 29, 2019. The terrorist organisation said Usman Khan, 28, who killed two and injured five others when he went on a knife ra
          

How A Mexican Drug Cartel Nearly Triggered War Between The U.S. And Iran

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The massacre of nine dual-citizen American Mexican Mormons less than 100 miles from the border with the United States serves as a reminder of the dangers the cartels pose and the existence of one of the worldÂ’s deadliest wars in AmericaÂ’s own neighborhood.The Mexican drug war and cartels donÂ’t preoccupy the national security/foreign policy establishment and the media the same way the Syrian civil war and Middle East militants do. But the conflict south of the border isnÂ’t only getting worse, Latin America stands to pose a greater (if not the greatest) national security challenge for the United States...
          

Basics

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Some basic facts to mull over:

A new study from Brown University’s Costs of War project puts that terror into stark relief. It estimates that 800,000 people have been killed in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Pakistan, and Yemen in the wars we’ve launched since 9/11, with local civilians representing the largest share of that total.
But that’s a conservative estimate. When you add those who died from preventable causes thanks to decimated health care, food, and sanitation systems in our many war zones, American University’s David Vine writes, the figure climbs to 3.1 million. The vast majority are civilians.
That’s over 1,000 times the number of innocents who died on 9/11—an almost incomprehensible toll.


Americans have also paid dearly for these wars: $6.4 trillion, plus significant losses of life and limb. Some 7,000 U.S. troops have died in these conflicts. 


Maybe toss out that when you're passing the turkey around the table.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):
Tuesday, November 26, 2019.  More problems for Joe Biden and the protests continue in Iraq as another protesters is shot dead.


Starting in the US where the race for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination continues.  What also continues?  War Hawk Joe Biden's struggling campaign.  As Kat noted, Joe's lost a key staffer.  Vanessa Cardenas.  Marc Caputo (POLITICO) reports:


A senior Joe Biden campaign staffer in charge of outreach to Latino, African-American and women’s groups has quit her post, telling two allies she was frustrated over her lack of input and with the presidential candidate’s immigration rhetoric.

Vanessa Cárdenas, the most senior Latina Biden staffer, had been serving as national coalitions director since the campaign formally announced its existence April 25. She resigned last week and has since changed her bio on Twitter to say she was “formerly with @joebiden.”
Cárdenas did not return a call or text message, but two friends familiar with her thinking told POLITICO that she felt the campaign wasn’t heeding her advice on immigration as she tried to reach out to Latino groups that have had longstanding concerns with the former vice president’s rhetoric and record stemming from the Obama administration.  



Adrian Carrasquillo adds a few thoughts.

Important scoop by . Here’s some additional context I just found out. 1/x






  • According to someone with knowledge of Vanessa Cardenas frustration from her time within Biden camp, there was concern the campaign is not welcoming on any suggestions on tone, immigration messaging, and they’re defensive on Obama deportations.





  • Again, there was mention of how frustrated they were with Jorge Ramos pummeling from September debate. The thing is Latino staff/activists know Ramos would ask Qs like this since he did of Obama.





  • A feeling from people who have spoken with Vanessa Cardenas was also the belief that Biden camp is taking Latinos for granted.


    Biden telling a Latino immigration activist “You should vote for Trump” came after Vanessa Cardenas decided to leave but like Caputo said it underscored the reasons for leaving.


    As it was said to me, you don’t have to hit Obama to say to activists “you’re right, DHS and ICE have been weaponized against Latinos, I will clean house and will review orders of deportation,” even if you won’t say you will end them all.
              

    There is no Deep State, by Scott Sumner

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    I’ll eventually get around to discussing the Trump administration. Because this issue is so emotionally charged, however, it might be helpful to start with a less controversial analogy.

    At the end of 2018, the Fed announced that it was likely to boost interest rates several times during 2019. In fact, they cut rates on three occasions. Were their intentions thwarted by a “deep state”?

    The answer is clearly no. Rather, the Fed is under enormous pressure to “follow the market”, to set policy rates at a level close to the underlying equilibrium interest rate, which changes over time. On any given day, they have discretion as to whether they follow the market.  But over long periods of time, a decision to ignore the market will produce severe economic problems and ultimately lead to a loss of Fed independence.

    I suppose you could call the market a sort of “deep state”, but it’s clearly not a Deep State in the sense of a secretive conspiracy to control the course of events. Each trader is just trying to make some money.

    The political equivalent of the market is the zeitgeist, the general sense of what sort of policies are sensible. Over at TheMoneyIllusion, I recently did a post pointing out that presidents were far less powerful than most people assume. I used the example of President Trump’s recent decision to bring troops back to Syria.

    One commenter pointed out that Trump gave the order to bring the troops back to Syria:

    I agree with your larger point that Presidents powers are overrated, but I don’t see how this article is an example of that. In the fifth paragraph of the article, it specifically says:

    “Separately, several hundred other troops, some with armored Bradley fighting vehicles, arrived in Syria from Iraq and Kuwait under a subsequent order from Mr. Trump”

    The President made both orders, the order to withdraw and the order to put troops back in. It’s an example of Trump using his powers erratically, not that he doesn’t have power.

    In my view, this is analogous to claiming that because the Fed determines the fed funds rate on any given day, we can think of the Fed as determining the path of interest rates over time.

    I certainly agree that presidents (like the Fed) have some power, some policy discretion.  But I also believe that people underrate the extent to which their actions are circumscribed by the zeitgeist.  So why can’t we call this mysterious “zeitgeist” a sort of Deep State?

    Words matter.  The term “deep state” has clear implications that go well beyond the prevailing views of various people, or the hassles of dealing with a bureaucracy.  As we saw in the Syrian case, Trump did issue the specific order, it wasn’t that the bureaucracy refused to carry out his order to withdraw from Syria.

    In addition, many of the Deep State theories revolve around people that Trump himself appointed, such as the heads of organizations like the FBI, CIA, NSA, etc.  The leaders of these organizations occasionally directly contradict Trump on questions such as whether Russia meddled in the 2016 election.  If that’s the Deep State, then Trump appointed its leaders.

    But there are much bigger problems with the Deep State theory.  The zeitgeist is much more than government bureaucrats.  Trump also needs the support of Republicans in the Senate, which will soon act as jury in an impeachment trial.  It’s not surprising that Trump cares about their opinions on foreign policy.  Many were opposed to his decision to withdraw from Syria.  On other occasions, Trump has been impacted by complaints from media outlets such as Fox News, and has subsequently adjusted his policies.  And yet I rarely hear Deep State theorists complain that Fox News is part of the conspiracy.  It seems that the Deep State metaphor only applies when the president’s views are altered in a direction that his supporters don’t happen to like.

    Many people believe that the world is like a Hollywood movie, where evil masterminds concoct grand conspiracies.  The actual world is much messier.  There is no organized conspiracy to undercut Trump, rather there are a myriad of individual interest groups, some pressuring Trump to be even more Trumpian, and some pressuring Trump to be more of an establishment Republican.

    All presidents face similar pressures.  If Trump is being undercut by a Deep State, then all previous presidents have also been thwarted by a Deep State.  But that drains the metaphor of all significance.  It’s like when people say, “everything is political”.  OK, then what should I infer from the statement that event X is political?

    There’s another irony here.  When Trump ran for president, one of his strongest arguments was that only he could tame the government.  He claimed that other Republicans such as Jeb Bush were “weak”, and that America needed a strong leader that would force Congress to do his bidding.  In fact, even with the GOP controlling both houses of Congress, Trump was completely unable to get Obamacare repealed.  You could argue that this is because health care is a tricky issue.  But he couldn’t even get the GOP controlled Congress to fund a wall on the Mexican border, even though that was a signature issue in the election.

    We now know that this was all just empty rhetoric.  Trump does have a more forceful personality than Jeb Bush, but Bush would have gotten a tax cut through the GOP Congress and would have appointed two conservatives to the Supreme Court.  And Bush would have failed in many other policy initiatives, just as Trump has failed.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

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    One False Move by Israel or Iran Will Lead to War

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    Israel has been monitoring Iranian entrenchment in Syria, weapons transfers that move to Iraq and also to Hezbollah in Lebanon, as well as Iranian-backed groups in Gaza. On November 12 Jerusalem put in motion operation 'Black Belt,' the attack on a
              

    The Fighting Continues in Northern Syria

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    Normal life remains a distant dream in northern Syria. From Jonathan Spyer.
              

    Comment on Bennett Says ‘Israel’ Must Take Advantage of Protests to Strike Iranian Troops in Syria: Hezbollah Can’t Engage in War Now by roberthstiver

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    This psychotic bas*ard's words, just as the words and actions of the rest of the psychotic Ziomonster and its agent, must be heeded with alarm. I sense the Ziopsychosis building to eruption stage in periodic fashion. Be very wary, Syria, Lebanon, Gaza (and all of Illegally Occupied Palestine), in the coming weeks.... (I admit that, when I saw the headline, I thought initially of Michael Bennett, who purports to run for POTUS in 2020. I heard these words from his mouth a few months ago: "Israel is the most important country on earth." I knew then that he was/is bad news, and so is the rest of the Democratic Party and its sham candidates. If Trump weren't such an egomaniacal teen-aged bully, I'd even consider voting for him...but America has no more "leaders" of any stripe ready to mind America's own business and get away from the "exceptional nation" and "full-spectrum global domination" mindset/bulls*it. All that of course is driven by the "entangled alliance" with the Ziomonster so-called 'Israel' -- an "alliance" that favors and acts for only one party to it).
              

    Jordan says fire has killed 13 Pakistanis in farming village

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    Jordan says fire has killed 13 Pakistanis in farming villageJordanian officials say a fire has killed 13 people in a farming community along the border with Israel and Syria. The Jordanian civil defense says in a statement that the fire broke out early Monday in a shack where two Pakistani families live in the village of al-Shuna al-Janobia. It says the dead included eight children, four women and a man — all said to be Pakistani nationals.



              

    It’s No Longer Just Donald Trump Questioning What NATO Does

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    It’s No Longer Just Donald Trump Questioning What NATO Does(Bloomberg) -- What was conceived as a celebration for one of the world’s most important military alliances risks becoming a show of disunity -- and this time it’s not because of anything Donald Trump has said or done.Meeting in London this week, leaders of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization have two other presidents to worry about: France’s Emmanuel Macron, who recently has openly questioned the collective defense clause at NATO’s heart, and Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has troubled alliance members with his decisions to send troops into Syria and buy a Russian anti-missile system.To make matters worse, Macron and Erdogan are now trading insults in public.In fact, so much has changed since then-Prime Minister Theresa May offered to host the two-day commemoration of NATO’s 70th anniversary that her successor, Boris Johnson could be forgiven for wishing she hadn’t.“I will tell you again at NATO, first check your own brain death,” Erdogan said, addressing Macron in a speech from Istanbul on Friday. He was referring to an interview the French leader gave last month in which he not only criticized Turkey, but described the alliance as brain dead.With three significant member states bringing conflicting agendas to the table at a gathering that takes place in the closing stretch of a charged U.K. election campaign, the event risks fanning concern about NATO’s future, rather than celebrating what alliance officials and leaders routinely call the most successful military grouping in history.Why NATO, at 70, Is Facing New Doubt and CriticismOfficials from the U.S. and Britain were at pains last week to highlight NATO’s successes, including a renewed sense of purpose since Russia’s 2014 aggression in Ukraine. Defense spending is on the rise and NATO is expanding into counter-terrorism, cyber security, and now even space.NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg pushed back against Macron’s portrayal of the alliance as ailing. The two met in Paris last week.And the alliance does continue to attract. North Macedonia, set to join next year, will bring the leaders at the table this week to 30, up from 15 when the Berlin Wall fell in 1989.Such accomplishments however are being drowned out by the increasingly public dispute over what NATO should focus on, and what it should stand for. In an apparent attempt to contain the debate, Germany has proposed forming an expert group to report on the future political shape of the alliance.Macron drove Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel to make a spirited defense of the alliance last week, telling lawmakers in Berlin that “Europe cannot currently defend itself alone.” Long part of the glue that has solidified NATO, Merkel’s position is now under threat at home, however, after her center-left coalition partner elected a new, more radical leadership.Erdogan May Seek EU Money Even as He Trades Insults With MacronA senior U.S. official said on Friday that Trump would prioritize enlisting NATO to push back against China’s growing influence. The official said Trump would also press allies to increase defense spending and to exclude Chinese companies from the construction of 5G mobile networks, something many have been unwilling to do.Instead of containing China, Macron wants NATO to prioritize the fight against terrorism. Thirteen French soldiers died in Mali last week and a lone terrorist on Friday killed two people in London. A French official said Macron also plans to press for greater “operational” burden-sharing as a way of complementing Trump’s push for Europe to carry more of the alliance’s financial burden.Erdogan, meanwhile, is demanding acceptance of Turkish goals in northern Syria, including classifying as a terrorist threat the Kurdish militias that have fought Islamic State alongside other NATO allies. He also rubbed salt into another open wound in Turkey’s ties with Western allies, by unpacking and testing the NATO non-compatible S-400 air defense system he recently bought from Russia.NATO Foresees More Europe Defense Outlays as It Braces for TrumpAnd that’s all before Trump makes his first tweet at the event. The U.S. president will arrive distracted by pressures at home, where he is the subject of impeachment proceedings.“It will be a great tribute to how much all the NATO allies value the institution if we manage to get through this leaders meeting without President Trump, President Macron or President Erdogan doing something damaging to the alliance,” said Kori Schake, a former National Security Council official in the George W. Bush administration who is now deputy director of the International Institute for Strategic Studies.The shortened time frame –- formal sessions will take only about four hours -- may limit the potential for damage. Long term NATO watchers also caution against exaggerating the dangers of intra-alliance tensions, which aren’t new to an organization that includes countries with differing geographies and security priorities.Macron’s questioning of the collective defense commitment at NATO’s heart is dangerous, but in many ways he is simply reverting to France’s traditionally semi-detached status. President Charles De Gaulle pulled out of the organization’s military command structure in 1966, and France rejoined only in 2009.Macron Says NATO Should Shift Its Focus Away From Russia“It’s not a fashionable view, I know,” said Sir Adam Thomson, the U.K.’s envoy to NATO from 2014-2016, but NATO “has been pursuing a new vision since the end of the Cold War and, to some extent, it’s already got a lot of the material.”He cited three new roles since the Cold War: Crisis management in places like Afghanistan, keeping a lid on potential disputes between members in eastern Europe, and building partnerships with dozens of non-member countries.As the site of NATO’s first headquarters, London was a natural choice for this week’s anniversary. It was also supposed to make a statement on the global stature of a new post-Brexit Britain.Johnson Plans Major Review of U.K.’s Defense, Foreign PolicyBrexit, however, has since been delayed. Johnson also called a snap election for Dec. 12. With anti-Trump protests planned, the opposition Labour Party hopes to capitalize on the U.S. president’s unpopularity and friendship with Johnson.Were Johnson to lose to Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn, that would give NATO yet another individual to worry about at its next summit, due in 2021.Over his career the socialist firebrand has called NATO “a danger to world peace and a danger to world security”. He has more recently fallen into line with party policy, which is for the U.K. to stay in the alliance, but he’d likely prove another awkward partner.The last time Britain hosted NATO leaders, in 2014, he told an anti-NATO rally the end of the Cold War “should have been the time for NATO to shut up shop, give up, go home and go away.”\--With assistance from Onur Ant, Geraldine Amiel and Justin Sink.To contact the reporters on this story: Marc Champion in London at mchampion7@bloomberg.net;Jonathan Stearns in Brussels at jstearns2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Rosalind Mathieson at rmathieson3@bloomberg.net, Flavia Krause-JacksonFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



              

    The U.S. Army’s Worst Tradition: Never Ready for the Next War

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    The U.S. Army’s Worst Tradition: Never Ready for the Next WarGettySince the end of the Cold War, the U.S. Army has been consistently ranked as the most capable land force on the globe by defense analysts of all stripes. So why are so many people in the American military community today worried about the Army’s ability to deter conflicts with likely adversaries or prevail against those adversaries in future wars?The short answer is that warfare, always a mysterious amalgam of art, science, and guts, has become an increasingly complicated and unpredictable enterprise. America’s leading potential adversaries, China and Russia, have shown no small measure of imagination and dexterity in identifying the U.S. armed forces’ vulnerabilities, and exploiting them through the development of subtle yet aggressive geopolitical strategies, and increasingly lethal armed forces.Both “near peer competitors” may well be ahead of the U.S. military in applying newly emerging technologies—artificial intelligence, machine learning, autonomous systems, hypersonic weapons, and nanotechnology—to the ancient military problems of constricting an adversary’s maneuver, neutralizing its offensive weapons, and disrupting its command and control.These cutting-edge technologies, writes Christian Brose, Senior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, “will enable new battle networks of sensors and shooters to rapidly accelerate the process of detecting, targeting, and striking threats, what the military calls the ‘kill chain.’”Mattis: ‘No Enemy’ Has Done More Harm to Military Readiness Than CongressHow is it that “the most lethal land force in world history” finds itself in this unenviable position? While the Army exhausted itself fighting two frustrating and inconclusive wars in Afghanistan and Iraq over the last 19 years, both Russia and China embarked on grand strategies of regional hegemony designed to undermine the rules-based international order that emerged after World War II under American leadership. Both of these rising powers have developed myriad ways to sew discord and dissent in America’s network of alliances and to expand their spheres of influence.Beijing presents its ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as the best path for underdeveloped countries in Asia and Africa to gain access to modern infrastructure, capital, and prosperity. In practice, it’s plain that under the guise of building ports, roads, and communications infrastructure around the globe, China is engaged in predatory lending practices meant to gain political leverage and privileged access to foreign assets.In the South China Sea, Beijing has militarized seven hotly disputed islets, and is attempting to pinch the U.S. forces out of this strategically sensitive area entirely, even though international courts have declared China’s claims to these waters to be without foundation.Meanwhile, Vladimir Putin has run rings around the Obama and Trump administrations in the chess game of international politics. He successfully annexed the Crimea in 2014 from Ukraine, and interfered in the presidential election of 2016 via “active measures,” i.e., information warfare aimed at creating confusion and conflict in the American body politic. Moscow also successfully intervened on behalf of the brutal Assad regime in Syria, and Russia is now a major player in the Middle East.As demonstrated in the Ukraine, the Russians are the master practitioners of “hybrid warfare,” in which conventional military operations—and the threat of such operations—are closely integrated with propaganda, proxy campaigns, cyber warfare, coercive diplomacy, and economic threats.Both Russia and China have revitalized creaky and obsolete military establishments into first-class warfighting organizations. The consensus among Western military analysts is that in their respective spheres of influence, both countries have sufficiently sophisticated “anti-access area denial” (A2AD) capabilities to inflict severe punishment on American forces attempting to penetrate those spheres in order to challenge aggression or come to the aid of an ally. According to Army General Mark Milley, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, both Russia and China are “deploying capabilities to fight the United States through multiple levels of standoff in all domains—space, cyber, air, sea, and land. The military problem we face is defeating multiple levels of standoff… in order to maintain the coherence of our operations.”Gen. Milley and the rest of the Army’s top brass are well aware that their service is currently a rusty instrument for carrying out high intensity operations warfare against either potential adversary. The Army Strategy, an 11-page, single-spaced document published in October 2018, provides a rough blueprint for the service’s plan to transform itself from a counterinsurgency-oriented organization into the leading practitioner of high intensity war by 2028.It won’t be easy. The Army Strategy calls for truly sweeping, even revolutionary, changes in doctrine, training, and organization of forces.For the first time since the Cold War, the Army has to reconfigure itself to be able to fight and win in a contested environment, where it will not have undisputed control over the air and sea. At the same time, it must prepare to engage potential adversaries more or less continuously in “gray zone conflict.” General Joseph Votel, the recently retired head of Special Operations Command, succinctly defines this concept as “conflicts characterized by intense political, economic, informational, and military competition more fervent in nature than normal diplomacy, yet short of conventional war.”The Army Strategy describes four lines of effort to reach the service’s chief objective by 2028, in this order of priority: Readiness, modernization, department reform, and building alliances and partnerships. The last two lines are more or less pro forma in every American military strategy document I’ve read over the last 30 years: reduce waste and inefficiency, and work with allies to insure military interoperability. The first two lines are worth a close look, for they illuminate the broad contours of the service’s quest to regain its pre-eminence in great power conflict. The quest to enhance readiness begins with plans to increase the size of the regular army to over half a million men from its current level of 476,000. In a departure from recent practice, all units earmarked for contingency operations and overseas deployments will be fully manned and given state of the art equipment before deploying. In order to increase the size of the service, the quality and quantity of recruiters and instructors will be increased.The focus of Army unit training will shift from counterinsurgency operations to high intensity fighting, where the adversary is assumed to have cutting edge A2AD, offensive weapons, and cyber systems.Deployments of Army units around the world will be less predictable and more rapid that they’ve been to date, as the Army and the other armed services begin to put the “Dynamic Force Deployment” concept to work. This concept is closely associated with former Secretary of Defense James Mattis. It’s also classified, and few details have been released for public consumption. But the core idea, as Mattis explained in 2018, is for the U.S. military to “stop telegraphing its punches.” Combat forces and their support units will be moving in and out of potential flashpoint areas more frequently and at unpredictable intervals in order to proactively shape the strategic environment.Improving readiness also involves important upgrades in the Army’s defensive missile systems to counter China and Russia’s formidable A2AD systems. A new lower-tier air and missile defense sensor project will enhance the ability of Patriot missiles to identify and track targets at long range by 2022. Beginning in 2021, Stryker light armored vehicles will be equipped with a new air defense system to protect mechanized battalions and brigades as they maneuver in harm’s way.Missile system upgrades, coupled with an entirely new generation of combat vehicles, both manned and unmanned, will allow the Army of the future to penetrate adversary defenses with an acceptable degree of loss.Ensuring readiness to fight is the top priority of the Army until 2022. After that date, the service plans to turn close attention to implementing entirely new operational concepts and “technologically mature” systems that are currently in the research and development phase.The overarching goal is to be able to conduct sustained “multi-domain operations” against either potential adversary, and win, by 2028. In the modernization phase, the Army plans to introduce a host of new long-range precision weapons, including hypersonic missiles that travel at more than five times the speed of sound. An entirely new generation of combat vehicles and vertical lift aircraft, i.e., new helicopters and aircraft with capabilities similar to those of the V-22 Osprey, both manned and unmanned, are currently in the works.The new Army Network will be an integrated system of hardware, software, and infrastructure capable of withstanding formidable cyber assaults.The leading war-fighting concept at the foundation of the Army’s modernization effort, though, is clearly “multi-domain operations (MDO).” The first thing to be said about the concept is that it’s very much inchoate. Discussions with several active-duty Army officers suggest even those “in the know” about this classified concept have only a hazy idea of how such operations will work in the field, for the simple reason that many of the systems such operations hope to integrate are still in the early stages of development.The Army has only one experimental MDO unit on active duty. It is deployed in the Indo-Pacific Command and built around a conventional rocket and missile brigade. The brigade contains a unique battalion devoted to intelligence, information, cyber, electronic warfare and space operations (I2CEWS). According to Sydney J. Freedberg Jr., an editor at Breaking Defense, the I2CEWS battalion “appears to not only pull together data from outside sources—satellites, drones, spy planes—to inform friendly forces of threats and targets, it also wages war in cyberspace and across the electronic spectrum, hacking and jamming the sensors and networks that tell the enemy where to shoot.”The commander of Army forces in the Indo-Pacific, Gen. Robert Brown, recently told reporters that his experimental brigade has performed brilliantly “in at least ten war games” against what are presumably Chinese and Russian forces. Before the advent of the new unit, American forces repeatedly failed to penetrate either rivals’ anti-access area denial systems with acceptable casualties in war games. Another experimental brigade is expected to enter service in Europe soon.The U.S. Army has a long and unenviable history of being ill-prepared to fight the next war. The French and British had to train U.S. Army units before they were deployed in World War I. The Army entered World War II as the 17th largest army in the world, with underpowered tanks, airplanes, and ancient rifles. The Army that went to Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan had trained long and hard to engage in conventional operations against nation states, but was ill-prepared, psychologically or organizationally, for counter-insurgency war. The Army’s ability to adapt to new developments has long been hampered by infighting and excessive conservatism in the upper reaches of the service’s hierarchy.To remedy this problem, in July 2018 the Army created the Futures Command (AFC). Its purpose is to unify the service-wide modernization effort under a single command, and oversee the development of new doctrine, equipment, organization, and training. According to Gen. John Murray, its head, the AFC “will conduct war-fighting and technology experimentation together, producing innovative, field-informed war-fighting concepts and working prototypes of systems that have a low risk of… being rejected by future war fighters. There are no game-changing technologies. There are only game-changing combinations of war-fighting concepts, technologies and organizations.”To say that General Murray has his work cut out for him is a massive understatement. He surely has one of the most difficult and important assignments in modern military history. Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



              

    Ministers fear repatriation of children and wives of Isil suspects could pave way for return of dozens of Jihadis using human rights laws

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    Country: 
    United Kingdom (UK)
    News Date: 
    29/11/2019
    Summary: 

    Ministers fear the repatriation of children and wives of Islamic state suspects from Syria could pave the way for dozens of jihadis to use human rights laws to return to the UK, sources have disclosed.


              

    Turkish forces are “heroes of the Mohammadian Army,” mosques recite “Conquest” chapter of Qur’an

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    Country: 
    Turkey
    News Date: 
    26/11/2019
    Summary: 

    “Across Turkey’s mosques, the Diyanet, or the directorate of religious affairs, organized calls to prayer and recitation of the ‘Conquest’ chapter in the Quran, broadcasting it over loudspeakers. Turkish mainstream media, including state-run Anadolu Agency, broadcast Islamic clerics telling followers the northeast Syria operation was ordained by God. The pro-government media outlet shared dozens of posts allegedly showing Muslims from around the world reciting the ‘Conquest’ chapter of the Quran in support of the Turkish military.”


              

    Reviews from Michael_Novakhov (3 sites): Michael Novakhov from Michael_Novakhov (17 sites): Michael Novakhov - SharedNewsLinks℠: the organisation needs to build bridges with Russia

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    Michael_Novakhov shared this story .

    Nato is not “brain dead” as president Emmanuel Macron of France claimed, nor indeed is the president himself brain dead as his opposite number in Turkey, president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, suggested on Friday. The offensive language is childish, but it has served its purpose. All the members of the organisation that has since 1949 been the keystone of European defence, need to think about its future.

    The event that pushed the allies into founding the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation was the blockade by the Soviet Union of West Berlin in 1948. Berlin was an island in the middle of Soviet-dominated East Germany. The land corridors to the western sections were closed and the only way its people could be supplied with food and fuel was by air. The Berlin people nearly starved and froze, and it was thanks only to the gigantic effort with what we now call the Berlin Airlift, and an unusually mild winter, that prevented the city being taken over.

    America showed Russia that it would protect western Europeans as, despite Britain also contributing to the airlift, more than two-thirds of the supplies came in on US planes. Russia backed off, and while the threat from the east has receded, that protective umbrella has lasted to this day.

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    mikenov on Twitter: US, Russia Cooperating In Syria Despite Disagreements - OpEd - Eurasia Review eurasiareview.com/02122019-us-ru…

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    US, Russia Cooperating In Syria Despite Disagreements - OpEd - Eurasia Review eurasiareview.com/02122019-us-ru…




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    Reviews from Michael_Novakhov (3 sites): Michael Novakhov from Michael_Novakhov (17 sites): Michael Novakhov - SharedNewsLinks℠: US, Russia Cooperating In Syria Despite Disagreements - OpEd

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    Michael_Novakhov shared this story from Eurasia Review.

    By Yasar Yakis*

    Russia’s involvement in the Syrian crisis may have changed several paradigms for the US but, after a while, Washington acquiesced to Moscow becoming a party to the conflict, if not a partner.

    There has been one major difference between Moscow and Washington in their handling of the Syrian crisis: US policy was to overthrow the Assad regime while Russia was trying to save it and thwart the American efforts.

    The fight against Daesh ushered in a new situation. Protracted deliberations took place within the Obama administration on whether the priority should be given to fighting Daesh or Al-Qaeda and Al-Nusra-linked groups. From autumn 2014, the Pentagon gave first priority to destroying Daesh. The US would continue fighting Daesh while Russia could fight in areas out of the reach of US forces, such as Palmyra and Deir Ezzor. The US could thus keep the Russian forces away from what was called the “useful Syria” — the west of the country. The moderate armed opposition factions were strong in these areas and, therefore, the US could support their fight against the regime.

    At that time, a Russian proposal to set up a joint operation center in Jordan was rejected by the US. In retrospect, this rejection may have helped the US to further harass the Syrian regime and weaken it, while on the other it prolonged the elimination of the armed opposition and caused additional civilian casualties.

    Today, there is cooperation between the US and Russia, especially in northeast Syria. The ambiguity in the US attitude renders this cooperation difficult. This ambiguity is due to the lack of full agreement between the major powerhouses in Washington, especially the White House and the Pentagon.

    As Turkey in October launched the military operation dubbed “Peace Spring,” the US withdrew its soldiers from the region. One of its abandoned bases was the Metras military airfield, 30 kilometers south of Ain Al-Arab.

    On Nov. 1, US troops returned to the base, with American leaders saying they would use the airfield for the delivery of supplies needed to establish new military bases in the region. They left again before the Russian military police arrived at the airport on Nov. 15.

    There may be a tacit or even an explicit agreement between the US and Russia. Two major actors in a crisis area will have converging and diverging interests and it is only natural they do their best to avoid unnecessary confrontations.

    There are two other areas in the Syrian crisis on which the US and Russia disagree. One is how to end the conflict. The US prefers a solution that refuses any role to Bashar Assad in Syria’s future, while Russia supports Assad’s regime.

    The other disagreement is about the future status of the Kurds in Syria. On this issue, their respective policies are close but not identical. They both want to hold the Kurdish card because it provides important leverage in a tumultuous region fraught with risks. The US is eager to promote the Kurdish identity and use it to put pressure on the Syrian government for a solution that it prefers. It prefers to let the Kurds maintain their existing self-declared cantons — Jazira, Kobani and Afrin — and let the Kurdish cause evolve in the direction of regional autonomy, like the one in the north of Iraq. In a longer-term perspective, the US is eager to see an independent Kurdistan that may contribute to the security of Israel.

    Russia is in favor of the recognition of Kurdish identity within the territorial integrity of Syria. This may be in the form of devolution of power to the municipalities inhabited predominantly by the Kurdish population. Russia does not have a strong position on the long-term future on this subject and seems to want to leave it to evolve under its own dynamics.

    On the Kurdish issue, Turkey is also a player. Its various military operations in Syria were aimed at interrupting the emergence of a Kurdish belt on its southern frontier. Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that, if the area is not entirely cleared of the Kurdish fighters of the People’s Protection Units (YPG), Ankara may launch yet another military operation. This defiant statement was later negated by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who said: “Ankara assured Moscow that Turkey was not seeking a new military operation in Syria.” So Ankara denied its own minister’s statement.

    Turkey’s Syria policy differs to a great extent from that of the US and Russia. In light of these divergent positions, it is difficult to expect an early solution to the Syrian crisis. Unfortunately, the Syrian people may suffer as long as the foreign actors do not agree on a workable common position.

    • Yasar Yakis is a former foreign minister of Turkey and founding member of the ruling AK Party. Twitter: @yakis_yasar

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    Michael Novakhov - SharedNewsLinks℠

    Michael Novakhov from Michael_Novakhov (17 sites)

    Reviews from Michael_Novakhov (3 sites)
              

    These are your allies…

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    you Republican trash. History will place you alongside Himmler and Eichmann. You will burn in hell. “Sent candy.” That’s how a Russian pilot confirmed his airstrike on a busy Syrian street this July. Our new investigation reveals evidence showing how Russian warplanes carried out two of the deadliest strikes on Syrian civilians this year: https://t.co/15VopnUBTU […]
              

    'Islamic State bride' arrested on suspicion of terror offences after arriving back in Ireland from Syria

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    From the Irish TimesA former member of the Irish Defence Forces who became a so called Islamic State bride in Syria has been arrested on suspicion of terror offences after arriving back in Ireland.Lisa Smith (38) once accompanied former president Mary Robinson and then taoiseach Bertie Ahern on foreign trips as a member of the military but went to the war torn Middle Eastern country in 2015 after converting to Islam and becoming radicalised.Ms Smith had been living with her two year old daughter in a Syrian refugee camp. The child is being cared for by her family in Ireland while her mother is questioned at a Dublin police station.Ms Smith was deported from Turkey and put on the first scheduled Turkish Airlines flight to Ireland, which landed shortly before 10.30am on Sunday.Ms Smith has denied being involved in violence.RT said she was accompanied by three consular officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs, members of the Army Ranger Wing, and a Turkish security officer on the...
              

    mikenov on Twitter: Pentagon to ‘press NATO allies to sanction Turkey’ over Syrian op, blames Erdogan for potential ‘war crimes & ISIS resurgence’ | Denton Daily dentondaily.com/pentagon-to-pr…

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    Pentagon to ‘press NATO allies to sanction Turkey’ over Syrian op, blames Erdogan for potential ‘war crimes & ISIS resurgence’ | Denton Daily dentondaily.com/pentagon-to-pr…




    1 like


    mikenov on Twitter
              

    Reviews from Michael_Novakhov (3 sites): Michael Novakhov from Michael_Novakhov (17 sites): Michael Novakhov - SharedNewsLinks℠: Pentagon to ‘press NATO allies to sanction Turkey’ over Syrian op, blames Erdogan for potential ‘war crimes & ISIS resurge

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    Michael_Novakhov shared this story from Denton Daily.

    Pentagon to ‘press NATO allies to sanction Turkey’ over Syrian op, blames Erdogan for potential ‘war crimes & ISIS resurgence’ Turkey’s operation in northeast Syria has “undermined” the US-led campaign against Islamic State terrorists, the Pentagon has claimed, warning that Washington will be “pressing” their NATO allies to sanction Ankara.

    Blaming Turkey for “undermining the successful multinational ‘Defeat ISIS’ mission in Syria,” US Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced a “deliberate withdrawal” of US forces from northeast Syria.

    I will be visiting NATO next week in Brussels, where I plan to press our other NATO allies to take collective and individual diplomatic and economic measures in response to these egregious Turkish actions.

    “President Erdogan bears full responsibility” for “a potential ISIS resurgence, possible war crimes, and a growing humanitarian crisis,” Esper warned, pinning the responsibility for “widespread casualties, refugees, destruction, insecurity, and a growing threat to US military forces” exclusively on Turkey.

    While Turkey had given the US and regional powers weeks of advance notice of its plans to create a so-called “safe zone” in northeast Syria before launching ‘Operation Peace Spring‘ last week, the US has framed the campaign as a reckless and irresponsible operation, threatening Ankara with hefty sanctions and announcing a 50 percent increase on steel tariffs.

    After withdrawing a small contingent of US forces from the Syrian-Turkish border last week, President Donald Trump threatened to “destroy” Turkey’s economy if the country stepped out of line, without explaining exactly what actions on Ankara’s part would trigger that destruction.

    As a member of NATO, Turkey is supposed to be protected from unilateral sanctions and other seemingly arbitrary punishments. However, Germany and France have already halted weapons sales to the country, and it’s unlikely other members of the alliance will defy Washington‘s “pressure.”  

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pledged on Friday that he would not “stop this fight, no matter what anyone says,” emphasizing that Turkey’s quarrel is not with the Kurds as a people, but with “terrorist” militias.

    Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!



    Michael Novakhov - SharedNewsLinks℠

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    The death of James Le Mesurier

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    The death of former British intelligence officer turned humanitarian activist, James Le Mesurier, still raises many questions among the international and intelligence communities. The co-founder of the controversial "White-Helmets" (also known as Syrian Civil Defense) was found dead on November 11th near his apartment in central Istanbul's Beyoğlu neighbourhood at around 4.30am. Turkish media reports said he was found with fractures to his head and legs and appeared to have fallen from a balcony. Two days later the Turkish authorities revealed that none of the acquired elements could lead to a homicide-hypothesis. The dynamics of the accident recall the one of Ashraf Marwan, the Egyptian double agent who worked for Egypt and Israel during the Yom Kippur war and who was found dead on June 27th 2007 after falling from the balcony of his fifth-floor apartment in London. On April 29th 2014 another "accident" occurred in Cairo when 31-year old Egyptian journalist and  civil rights activist Bassem Sabry fell from the balcony of a Giza apartment complex, dying on the spot.  A series of deaths that add up to previous other cases occurred in the 1970's such as the ones regarding Egyptian ambassador to Britain, General Leithy Nassif, who also fell from a balcony in London and the case of Ali Shafik, an alleged arms dealer and secretary in the office of former Egyptian Vice President Abdel Hakim Amer.
              

    Macron, Erdogan go head-to-head in 'brain death' row

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    Paris (AFP) Nov 29, 2019
    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out on Friday at Emmanuel Macron over his criticism of Turkey's military intervention in Syria, saying the French president was suffering "brain death", a phrase Macron recently used to describe NATO. Erdogan used a televised speech to launch a stunning attack on Macron, just days before the two men join other NATO leaders in England for events t
              

    VA - Sounds Of New Generation / 2919 / МР3

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    Категория: Музыка
    Размер: 1.81 GB
    Траффик: Раздают (отдают): 0, Скачивают (качают): 0
    Добавлен: 2019-11-28 09:54:18
    Описание: Исполнитель: VA
    Название альбома: Sounds Of New Generation
    Год выпуска: 2019
    Жанр: Electronic


    001. Three Women In Charge - Dilly Dally
    002. Mentallo & The Fixer - Sacrilege
    003. Low Tape - Walking The Streets
    004. Beatamines - I Got (Original Mix)
    005. Dopplereffekt - Eukaryotic Chromosomes
    006. Kirlian Camera - Travelers' Testament
    007. Exeplos!V3 - Oh Fock!
    008. Omega Danzer - Play The Future
    009. The Field - It's Up There
    010. Anabel Sigel - Shecret
    011. Markus Gibb - Kuru
    012. Nitelight - Afterglow
    013. Noclu - Thoughts In Stereo
    014. Dynamic Illusion - Solace
    015. The Electro Society - Melancolia
    016. Robert Parker - End Of The Night
    017. Init - Copycat
    018. Spreading Point - The Blitz Kids
    019. Vision Of Colour - Never To Been Seen Again
    020. Sensarial - Operntiger (Original Mix)
    021. Eddy Pradelles - High Hopes
    022. KmSm - Related Methods
    023. Istari Lasterfahrer - Carbon
    024. Elegant Machinery - Wheels In Motion
    025. Albird - Mauersegler
    026. Paul Booth - Snuff Film (Feat. Eve Minor)
    027. Infected Mushroom - Guitarmass
    028. Otnicka - Reflection (Original Mix)
    029. Mlada Fronta - Magnus The Avenger
    030. Palisded - Intermission (Original Mix)
    031. Sarin - Control
    032. Erasure - Over The Rainbow
    033. S.B. - Stranger Beasts
    034. Frankyeffe - Aviator
    035. Cajama - Leave Me
    036. Alexander Aurel - Sorry Its Over
    037. Kikro - Rebellion
    038. Spicy Octopus - Sun Error
    039. Paradroid - Stolen Documents
    040. Alberto Remondini - Double Bacon
    041. Takemi Voyage - S.O.D.
    042. Dj Goman - Angels (Original Mix)
    043. Jfo - Mind Control
    044. Human League - Shameless
    045. Bill B. Wintermute - Cold Fire
    046. Tone Of Arc - Magnify (Original Mix)
    047. Diesein - Without You
    048. Team Rush Hour - Loesoe
    049. Luiz Depalma - Harvest
    050. Mark Ashley - Cheek To Cheek
    051. Nicola Noir - Shish To Go (Original Mix)
    052. The Soft Moon - Ill (Sarin Remix)
    053. Robyn - Because It's In The Music
    054. Dafuqex - Aeon
    055. Scialadance - Intention
    056. Jason Miller - My City
    057. Pet Shop Boys - Left To My Own Devices
    058. Love Letters - Bedroom Community
    059. Lower Synth Department - Bicycle Day
    060. Martin Eyerer - Point Zero
    061. Bizz O.D. - Funk
    062. Sonicforce - Sandstorm
    063. Jakub Mildner - You In My Mind
    064. Future Lied To Us - Born In Silence
    065. Form - Lies
    066. Rufus - Cleopatra's Library
    067. Straplocked - The Fall From Below
    068. Governmentfun - Praecox
    069. Magnetron - Never Enough Thought
    070. Adriatique - Random Notes Orchestra
    071. Trebor Sx - Party Time
    072. Aeck - Neverending Antenna
    073. Various Artists - Ultrablackness
    074. Trampique - Red
    075. Norderney - Remember
    076. S L F - Grey Vision
    077. Veil Of Light - Holy Wars
    078. Dark Subtemper - Big Lights (Original Mix)
    079. Galaxy Hunter - Quest Of Galileo
    080. Nyppy - Bennu
    081. Mastergan - Franzine I Miss You
    082. Siegfried Kaercher - Frankfurter Wellen
    083. Demdike Stare - At It Again
    084. Jiggler - Way Out
    085. Anti Lunatic Squad - Hell Is Your Kingdom
    086. Dj Roc - Michael Myers
    087. Sono - Trip
    088. Annedroid - Chell
    089. Geomatic - Back From The Dark
    090. Brothers Dreamers - Midnight (Original Mix)
    091. Klangkuenstler - Close The Door
    092. John Tejada - Ceol
    093. Rrks - Insanity
    094. Eloquent - Foreign Love Affair
    095. Serionist - Soul Seeker
    096. KmSm - Dvd Future
    097. Iszoloscope - All Is Immensity
    098. Bulgemaster - The Woom Of Make Bewieve
    099. Vital Sonic Image - Book This
    100. Noamm - Ruhestimmung
    101. James My & Criss - Talking Loud (Original Mix)
    102. James Av - Security
    103. Ben Champell - Shadows
    104. B-Com - Hang On Face B (Original Mix)
    105. Rog Ras - Merlin Dehydrated
    106. Aftc - Huh Huh Huh
    107. Viks Lander - Red Eagle
    108. Indian Wells - Closer
    109. London Lazers - Juliet
    110. Kadasarva - Alien Vs. Human
    111. Stars Crusaders - Prologue
    112. Syrian - Ninja Warrior
    113. Rimedag - Dust (Original Mix)
    114. Halo Acid - Pleasure Hotline Nineteen
    115. Groost - Ritual
    116. Deniss Kondratjevs - Walking Between Stars
    117. Peter Heppner - Good Things Break
    118. Darkness Before Dawn - Hell Calls
    119. Type-303 - Acid Earth
    120. Neon Talk - Overachiever
    121. Telekon - Lost For The First Time
    122. The Crüxshadows - Home
    123. A Midnight Society - Wake Up
    124. Metroland - Memorabilia
    125. Rubeck - This Leak
    126. Alien Vampires - Ready To Die
    127. Stine M. - In The Woods
    128. Marc Miroir - Thule
    129. Daniel Bortz - Arrival
    130. Hans Polo - Musterschooler


    Аудио: MP3, 320 Кбит/с
    Продолжительность: 13:43:12
              

    Nesten 100 døde i kampar i Idlib i Syria

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    96 menneske har dei siste to dagane mista livet i kampar mellom regimestyrkar og væpna grupper i opprørskontrollerte Idlib i Syria.
              

    Kurds accuse Turkey of targeting medics

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    CNN's Clarissa Ward reports from Tel Tamr, Syria, where medics are coming under attack as they try aid the victims wounded in Turkey's invasion in Northern Syria.
              

    Steve Gruber, Mayor Pete, talks climate change. It's one of the root causes of the War in Syria.

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    Host Steve Gruber discusses news and headlines.

     

    Mayor Pete, talks climate change. It's one of the root causes of the War in Syria.


              

    Russia and Syria to Restore Ancient Syrian City Desecrated by ISIS

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    Russia and Syria have signed an agreement declaring their intention to work together to restore the ancient city of Palmyra, which was gravely damaged by ISIS during the militant group’s occupation of
              

    La guerre nucléaire est déjà en marche… L’AIEA confirme l’utilisation d’armes nucléaires tactiques (VT)

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    Arme Nucléaire Tactique Yémen   Histoire nucléaire : L’AIEA confirme l’utilisation continuelle d’armes nucléaires contre la Syrie (et les Etats-Unis)   Ian Greenhalgh et James Smith (ex-inspecteur de l’AIEA)   27 novembre 2019   url de l’article original (avec vidéos, photos et graphiques): https://www.veteranstoday.com/2019/11/27/nuclear-history-iaea-confirms-israels-continual-use-of-nukes-against-syria-and-the-us/   ~ Traduit de l’anglais par Résistance 71 ~   Tard […]
              

    Reviewing the Temple of the Winged Lions (TWL), Petra: Digging through Forty Years of Archives

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    Dr. Pauline Piraud-Fournet is an archaeologist, architect, and associate researcher at the French Institute of the Near East.  In 2019, she was the recipient of a six month TWL Publication Fellowship at ACOR. In 2016, she received her Ph.D. in Archaeology on the topic of ‘the city of Bosra’ (Southern Syria) in Late Antiquity from […]

    The post Reviewing the Temple of the Winged Lions (TWL), Petra: Digging through Forty Years of Archives appeared first on Acor Jordan.


              

    Idlib: 70 doden onder regime en huurlingen Turkse staat – Rojava\Noord-Syrië

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    Volgens het Syrisch Observatorium voor de Mensenrechten zijn 36 mensen behorend tot de strijdkrachten van het regime en 33 mensen behorende tot de huursoldaten die verbonden zijn met Turkije, gedood tijdens gevechten in Idlib. “Het is het meest gewelddadige conflict in de provincie Idlib sinds het staakt-het-vuren van kracht werd”, vertelde Rami Abdul Rahman, directeur […]
              

    Twee awards voor vermoorde Koerdische politicus Hevrin Xelef – Italië

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    In Italië werden twee prijzen werden  toegekend aan wijlen Koerdische vrouwelijke politicus Hevrin Xelef, die op brute wijze werd vermoord door aan de Turkse staat verbonden huursoldaten in Noord-Syrië. Hevrin Xelef ontving de Margherita Troili-prijs die jaarlijks door de Italiaanse gemeente Capua wordt uitgereikt. De prijs ‘Een vrouw voor vrouwen’ wordt uitgereikt ter nagedachtenis aan […]
              

    Christelijke Khabur-commandant: “Turkije wil ons vernietigen” – Rojava\Noordoost-Syrië

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    Madeleine Khamis is de commandant van de christelijke ‘Khabur Guardians’ in Noordoost-Syrië. Ze waarschuwt dat Turkije de gewelddadige verdrijving van christenen wil voortzetten in navolging van de genocide van 1915. Gedurende meer dan zeven weken heeft Turkije de zelfbesturende gebieden van Noord- en Oost-Syrië aangevallen in strijd met het internationale recht. Met de goedkeuring van […]
              

    Nog geen internationale hulp voor vluchtelingen Turkse invasie – Rojava\Noord-Syrië

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    Sinds het begin van de Turkse bezettingsoorlog in Noord-Syrië op 9 oktober hebben meer dan 300.000 mensen hun vaderland moeten ontvluchten. Volgens het Bureau Sociale Diensten van de Autonome Regering van Noord- en Oost-Syrië kwamen 478 burgers om het leven en raakten 1.070 anderen gewond als gevolg van de aanslagen, terwijl maar liefst 300.000 ontheemden […]
              

    Iraakse vluchteling gevonden met 38 steekwonden in het al-Hol kamp – Rojava\Noord-Syrië

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    De ISIS-leden in het al-Hol kamp bij Heseke, vormen nog steeds een groot gevaar voor het kamp waar 71.000 mensen verblijven In het al-Hol kamp nabij Hesekê in het noordoosten van Syrië raakte een vluchteling uit Irak ernstig gewond met 38 steekwonden. De 23-jarige Hesen Cemil is zaterdag gewond aangetroffen in het kamp  en wordt […]
              

    Nesten 100 døde i kampar i Idlib i Syria

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    96 menneske har dei siste to dagane mista livet i kampar mellom regimestyrkar og væpna grupper i opprørskontrollerte Idlib i Syria.
              

    Video: IS bride Lisa Smith arrested after arriving in Ireland from Syria

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    Lisa Smith, a former member of the Irish military who became a so-called Islamic State bride in Syria has been arrested on suspicion of terror offences as she arrived back in Ireland.
              

    US Official: ISIS Terror Tactics Being Exported To Southeast Asia

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    b2ap3_thumbnail_Isis-Terror-Tactics-Being-Exported-To-Southeast-Asia-US-Official-Says.JPG

    South China Morning Post

    ISIS Terror Tactics Being Exported To Southeast Asia, US Official Says


        Isis fighters are not going to Southeast Asia en masse, but the US has seen a rise of Isis-inspired plans, including suicide bombings, in the region

        Counterterrorism official Nathan Sales says Washington will target the various flows of terror financing to curb the efforts of terrorists in Southeast Asia

    by Amy Chew

    Islamic State militants are not heading to Southeast Asia “in droves” following the fall of the Caliphate even though the terror group has been encouraging its fighters in Syria
    to take the fight to other regions, according to the US State Department’s top counterterrorism official.

    “We have seen a few indications of an interest in travelling to Southeast Asia, but truth be told, it’s not one of the regions that Isis fighters seem to be heading to in droves,” Nathan Sales told a press briefing in Manila on Friday.

    “So far we haven’t seen a huge problem, but we have to make sure we keep it that way,” Sales said. He added that the United States
    was working with the Philippines to boost cooperation on border security, to prevent people from exploiting the maritime environment to gain access to countries in the region.

    Read more: https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/politics/article/3039037/isis-terror-tactics-being-exported-southeast-asia-us-official


    Read More
              

    [BLOG] Some Thursday links

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    • Bad Astronomy notes the very odd structure of galaxy NGC 2775.

    • Dangerous Minds reports on the 1987 riot by punks that wrecked a Seattle ferry.

    • Bruce Dorminey reports on a new suggestion from NASA that the massive dust towers of Mars have helped dry out that world over eons.

    • The Everyday Sociology Blog looks at how changing technologies have led to younger people spending more social capital on maintaining relationships with friends over family.

    • This forum hosted at Gizmodo considers the likely future causes of death of people in coming decades.

    • In Media Res' Russell Arben Fox reports on the debate in Wichita on what to do with the Century II performance space.

    • Joe. My. God. reports on the decision of Hungary to drop out of Eurovision, apparently because of its leaders' homophobia.

    • JSTOR Daily reports on the debunking of the odd theory that the animals and people of the Americas were degenerate dwarfs.

    • Language Hat reports on how the classics can be served by different sorts of translation.

    • Robert Farley at Lawyers, Guns and Money considers how Trump's liberation of war criminals relates to folk theories about just wars.

    • The LRB Blog reports from the ground in the Scotland riding of East Dunbartonshire.

    • Marginal Revolution shares a paper suggesting that, contrary to much opinion, social media might actually hinder the spread of right-wing populism.

    • The NYR Daily looks at the nature of the proxy fighters in Syria of Turkey. Who are they?

    • Drew Rowsome interviews Sensational Sugarbum, star of--among other things--the latest Ross Petty holiday farce.

    • Starts With A Bang's Ethan Siegel explains why we still need to be able to conduct astronomy from the Earth.

    • Strange Maps explains the odd division of Europe between east and west, as defined by different subspecies of mice.

    • Window on Eurasia notes how Chinese apparently group Uighurs in together with other Central Asians of similar language and religion.

    • Arnold Zwicky explores the concept of onomatomania.



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    The man who laughed at al-Qaeda

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    Raed Fares, founder of Syria's legendary Radio Fresh FM, was mowed down by unknown gunmen as he left his studios in rebel-held Idlib in November 2018. The death of the man who fought hatred with humour and laughed in the faces of President Assad, ISIS and al-Qaeda, sent shockwaves way beyond his troubled homeland. When ordered by Islamist extremists to stop broadcasting music he had replied with bird song and clucking chickens. On being told to take his female presenters off air, he put their voices through software to make them sound like men. In tribute to its founder, Raed Fares's radio station has refused to die with him. One year on from his killing it continues to broadcast the comedy programmes he loved, as Assad's troops close in and bombs fall around it. Presenter: Mike Thomson Producer: Joe Kent (Image: Raed Fares standing outside Radio Fresh. Credit: Radio Fresh)
              

    The 31 Best Things to Do in Portland This Week: Dec 2-5

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    by Mercury EverOut Staff

    Hello, December 2019. It looks like you're getting off to a very lively start so far, and Portland is definitely benefitting from a whole bunch of amazing Things to Do this week, including the start of the Holiday Ale Fest, another installment of the I, Anonymous Show, the Christmas Ships are coming through, and (checks notes) KENNY G IS HERE!?!? As always, that's only the BEGINNING—hit the links below and plan your week accordingly


    Jump to: Monday | Tuesday | Wednesday | Thursday

    Monday, Dec 2

    Battles, Palm
    Of the experimental New York foursome that were Battles, only two remain: Ian Williams and John Stanier. No, they didn’t actually battle each other (although they should say they did). It’s funny to think of their 2006 track “Tras”—which sounded like a metal song that became a math equation—as this group’s hit single, but that’s what we were nodding our heads to on the way to shows. Over the past few albums, Battles has fooled with incorporating vocals into their complex and symmetrical “bleep bloop” compositions, and on their new album Juice B Crypts they include one-off collaborations with singers like Xenia Rubinos, rappers like Shabazz Palaces, and groups like Tune-Yards. But I still like their instrumental tracks like “A Loop So Nice” best. (Mon Dec 2, 8 pm, Hawthorne Theatre, $20-25) SUZETTE SMITH

    Takács Quartet
    The folks at Friends of Chamber Music have been welcoming world-class players to Portland for more than 75 years, and tonight and tomorrow, they host four of the best with a sublime program tucked up their collective sleeve. The Takács Quartet, having performed in legendary concert halls around the globe for several decades, is what's known in certain classical music circles as "the shit." (Mon-Tues Dec 2-3, 7:30 pm, PSU Lincoln Performance Hall, $32-57) BRIAN HORAY

    Daughters, Lingua Ignota
    It almost goes without saying that Rhode Island noise rock band Daughters comes with a lot of baggage. Even as they debuted in 2003, with their much-lauded Canada Songs, they were seeking to cast off their past lives as the grindcore group As the Sun Sets. Canada Songs was a controlled chaos of screams and blistering guitar licks; by the time you could tell the songs apart, they had you. The band fell out around their third record, as bands do, but reformed to release 2018’s You Won’t Get What You Want which collects a variety of discordant music styles into an interesting and controlled catalog. These days it seems like Daughters frontman Alexis Marshall wants to employ more throbbing-noise and altar calls than chaotic screaming freak-outs, which I would say is a sign of maturity if he hadn’t suggested last year that people should punch journalists they don’t agree with. (Mon Dec 2, 8 pm, Bossanova Ballroom, $20) SUZETTE SMITH

    Sir Woman
    Prolific Austin-based singer/songwriter Kelsey Wilson (Wild Child, Glorietta) brings her newly-minted funk project to the Doug Fir Lounge for a headlining show supporting her solo debut, Party City. (Mon Dec 2, 9 pm, Doug Fir, $15)

    The Benson's Annual Gingerbread Unveiling
    Pulling back the sheet on a 40-plus year-old Portland tradition, a tradition made out of 200 pounds of gingerbread, 30 pounds of white chocolate, 15 pounds of dark chocolate, and 30 pounds of marzipan. Attendeeds are encourage to not only marvel at this feat of baking, and enjoy delicious gingerbread treats, but to donate new, unwrapped toys for the Children's Cancer Association. (Mon Dec 2, 4 pm, The Benson Hotel, free, all ages)

    The Tenors Christmas
    The renowned vocal group consisting of Victor Micallef, Fraser Walters, and Clifton Murray return to Portland to spread some holiday cheer with backing from conductor Raúl Gómez and the Oregon Symphony. (Mon Dec 2, 7:30 pm, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, $35 & Up, all ages)

    Pizza Night
    The two words in the title alone should be enough to capture your attention and hold it there, but in the interest of fully informing you: Olympia Provisions, home of godlike meats, has a night dedicated to making meaty pizzas, as well as a wine menu featuring selections perfectly paired with the flavors available, and only local bands on the speakers. (Mon Dec 2, 5 pm, Olympia Provisions, free)


    Tuesday, Dec 3

    It's a Tony Starlight Christmas
    If you like your holiday swinging with a dose of cocktails, check out It's a Tony Starlight Christmas, in which Portland's fave crooner is joined by a rat pack of talented singers to perform classic holiday hits (and comedy) in the style of Frank, Dino, Liza, Bing, and more. (Tues Dec 3, 7:30 pm, The Tony Starlight Showroom, $27-75)

    Kenny G: Celebrating 25 Years of Miracles
    GET READY FOR SOME KENNY G FACTS IN YOUR FACE, MOTHERFORKERS! Fact one: Kenny G grew up in Seattle and studied accounting at the University of Washington! WHAT. Fact two: In 1997, Kenny G held the world record for playing the longest continual note on a saxophone (an E-flat for 45 minutes and 47 seconds). BANG! Fact three: Kenny G is super popular in China! His song “Going Home” is played at the end of business days at many shopping malls, health clubs, and train stations. SLAMMA-JAMMA! And Fact four: Kenny G’s Miracles: The Holiday Album is one of the most successful holiday albums of all time, selling eight million copies, which he’ll be playing IN ITS ENTIRETY at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall for the luckiest, motherforking ears in the world—yours. BATHE IN HIS GLORIOUS MAJESTY, YOU UNDESERVING BUNGHOLES! (Tues Dec 3, 7:30 pm, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, $35 & Up, all ages) WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY

    Dreamers, Arrested Youth, American Teeth
    The NYC-based trio headed up by Nick Wold, Marc Nelson, and Jacob Lee Wick brings their indie pop and rock back through town for an all-ages show supporting their latest full-length, Launch Fly Land. (Tues Dec 3, 8 pm, Hawthorne Theatre, $17-20, all ages)

    Relentless Splendor's 99-Minute Comedy Fest
    Suki's plays host to this comedy smorgasbord from Relentless Splendor, packing a whole comedy festival's worth of entertainment into 99 minutes, with sets from Simon Gibson, Whitney Streed's Rants Off Dance Off, Chris Khatami's Spec Script, and more. (Tues Dec 3, 7:30 pm, Suki's Bar & Grill, $5)

    Flights for Your Rights: Planned Parenthood PAC of Oregon Holiday Wine Party
    Planned Parenthood PAC of Oregon is getting into the holidays the correct way: with lots and lots of wine. And because they're Planned Parenthood, not only will it be fun, but you'll be doing some good, with proceeds helping secure even more victories for reproductive rights in 2020. (Tues Dec 3, 6:30 pm, Southeast Wine Collective, $20)

    Jim Breuer
    Goat Boys never grow up, and Jim Breuer has been touring non-stop ever since leaving Saturday Night Live, with a resume containing successful radio shows and podcasts alongside more well known entries like his role in the stoner-classic Half Baked. He also is maybe the best one-man AC/DC impersonator who ever lived? Pretty specific niche, yes, but a very loud and entertaining one. (Tues Dec 3, 8 pm, Aladdin Theater, $32.50-50, all ages)

    Drag Queen Bingo: Benefit for Animal Aid and Project Pooch
    Poison Waters presents a special edition of Drag Queen Bingo benefitting Animal Aid and Project POOCH, because 'tis the season to give, and what better gift to give than to help puppers in need. Plus, you know, drag queens and bingo is always a recipe for good times. (Tues Dec 3, 6 pm, Rogue Eastside Pub & Pilot Brewery, free)

    French Vanilla, Conditioner, Plastic Weather
    Having visited Portland last year while supporting Detroit rocker Stef Chura, Los Angeles feminist art-punk outfit French Vanilla brings their shapeshifting sounds back to the stage at Mississippi Studios for a headlining set supporting their latest album, How Am I Not Myself? (Tues Dec 3, 9 pm, Mississippi Studios, $12-14)


    Wednesday, Dec 4

    The I, Anonymous Show
    If you love sick secrets, crazy rants, and side-splitting laughs, have we got a show for you! The I, Anonymous Show stars the fabulous Kate Murphy, who selects the wildest, strangest submissions from the beloved Mercury column and reads them live on stage. Joining Kate is a panel of whip-smart comedians—this month it’s Tory Ward, Jake Silberman, and Dylan Jenkins—who dissect these submissions with hilarious precision. If you’re looking for serious fun, the I, Anonymous Show is the place to be! (Wed Dec 4, 7:30 pm, Curious Comedy Theater, $10) WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY

    The Holiday Ale Festival
    For the 24th straight year, Pioneer Courthouse Square gets tented, heated, and filled with over 50 specialty winter ales from some of the best brewers in the country. Come down spread some holiday cheer while indulging in an array of delicious Belgians, barleywines, stouts, and sours you won't find at the supermarket, and capitalize on the opportunity to talk to the geniuses responsible for making all these delicious suds, too. (Wed-Sun Dec 4-8, Pioneer Courthouse Squre, $40-100)

    Mount Eerie, Julie Dorion
    It’s been over a decade since the release of Lost Wisdom, the beautifully sparse 2008 collaboration that saw Mount Eerie's Phil Elverum link up with his musical hero, Julie Doiron of Eric’s Trip, along with Canadian musician Fred Squire. Recorded in Elverum’s hometown of Anacortes while Doiron and Squire were on a brief layover between touring and recording sessions of their own, the album was embraced by fans and quickly tucked away, with Elverum moving on to experiment with black metal on Wind’s Poem and Doiron returning to her indie rock roots with I Can Wonder What You Did with Your Day. Fortunately, Elverum and Doiron have reunited for Lost Wisdom pt. 2; the accompanying tour gives Elverum another chance to share the stage with his favorite singer and fans an opportunity to witness these desolate, yet endearing songs in a live setting. (Wed Dec 4, 8 pm, Revolution Hall, $20, all ages) CHIPP TERWILLIGER

    Rupi Kaur
    The author of the acclaimed poetry collections milk and honey and the sun and her flowers returns to Portland for a guaranteed-to-be emotionally and intellectually stirring evening. (Wed Dec 4, 8 pm, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, $29-65)

    Spoon, Nicole Atkins
    Spoon, the preeminent indie ensemble of the aughts, has officially made enough albums to warrant a “best of” record—and they’re taking it on the road. The group’s compilation, Everything Hits at Once, will get you on the dancefloor with classics like “I Turn My Camera On,” “The Underdog,” and “The Way We Get By,” and a bonus new single “No Bullets Spent.” (Wed Dec 4, 8 pm, Crystal Ballroom, $38-42) ALEX ZIELINSKI

    Bedouine
    Syrian-born/Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter Azniv Korkejian, better known by her stage name Bedouine, brings her country- and funk-tinged folk music to the Doug Fir for a headlining show supporting her new album, Bird Songs of a Kiljoy. (Wed Dec 4, 9 pm, Doug Fir, $15-17)

    High On Fire, Power Trip, Devil Master, Creeping Death
    Sleep guitarist Matt Pike brings his sludge metal and psychedelic thrash band High on Fire back through town to split a co-headline show with Dallas hardcore thrashers Power Trip. Devil Master and Creeping Death round out the all-ages show. (Wed Dec 4, 8 pm, Wonder Ballroom, $22-25, all ages)

    Tents, Cataldo, Nyles Lannon
    Fresh off the release of their latest album, Medicine, local quintet Tents bring their synthy and soothing indie-pop through Holocene to head up a hometown show along with support from Seattle's Cataldo and San Francisco-based artist Nyles Lannon. (Wed Dec 4, 8:30 pm, Holocene, $8-10)


    Thursday, Dec 5

    Christmas Ships Parade
    Since 1954, the mighty waters of the Columbia and Willamette have been home to the ONLY Christmas tradition that’s worth a damn: THE CHRISTMAS SHIPS, a mighty fleet of delightfully decorated boats that patrol our land's dark, dangerous waves—bringing us boisterous light and joy, and banishing sinister sea lions and razor-toothed mer-people to the rotting, watery depths! Nearly every night until Christmas, this jaunty procession of slow-moving, light-spangled boats will valiantly cruise through all sorts of territory, from Milwaukie to Vancouver—AND there’ll be meet and greets, where you can cram your eye-holes with close-up views of the festive boats (!) and meet the fearless skippers (!!) who heroically navigate their vessels across our rivers and into our hearts. (Thurs Dec 5-Sun Dec 22, Tom McCall Waterfront Park, free, all ages) ERIK HENRIKSEN

    The Thesis
    The Thesis is known for consistently bringing together some of the most promising names in Portland hip-hop, and this month’s lineup is true to form: esoteric rapper Donte Thomas, R&B/pop crooner Kid Indigo, commanding MC Mickey Taelor, skilled sampler Trox, and locally beloved DJ Verbz. But my personal favorite artist on this month’s bill is Maarquii, the dynamic genderqueer rapper/performer whose latest singles feature a full, expertly produced sound and a good amount of lyrical swagger. “Won’t you bump that new Maarquii?” they ask on “Day Ones.” Indeed, won’t you? (Thurs Dec 5, 9 pm, Kelly's Olympian, $10) BLAIR STENVICK

    Jamie Lee
    Jamie Lee is best known for appearances on Girl Code, @Midnight, Chelsea Lately, and HBO's Crashing, but her stand-up is as good a place as any to be wowed by not just her punchlines but her presence. (Thurs Dec 5, 8 pm, Helium Comedy Club, $25-33)

    Madame Gandhi, MILCK, SassyBlack
    Los Angeles-based producer, drummer, and activist Madame Gandhi (AKA Madame Gandhi) brings her percussive electronic afrobeat sounds to the Doug Fir Lounge for a Portland show supporting her electrofeminist solo EP series. Fellow LA-based artist MILCK and Seattle's SassyBlack round out the bill. (Thurs Dec 5, 9 pm, Doug Fir, $15)

    The Chainsmokers, 5 Seconds of Summer, Lennon Stella
    The Chainsmokers' overblown, triumphantly loud type of EDM is perfectly curated for giant arenas and outdoor partying. Remember to stay hydrated since you'll be dancing to this set all night. (Thurs Dec 5, 7 pm, Moda Center, $14-119)

    Channel Tres, DJ Shi Shi, DJ Black Daria
    Having supported Vince Staples and JPEGMAFIA on a tour that hit the Roseland earlier this year, Compton-hailing DJ, producer, and musician Channel Tres brings his unique blend of house-infused hip-hop and R&B back to town for a headlining set of his own. (Thurs Dec 5, 8:30 pm, Holocene, $12-15)

    Whose Live Anyway?
    The cast of TV's Whose Line is it Anyway? bring their improvised comedy to the Revolution Hall stage. Featuring Ryan Stiles, Jeff B. Davis, Joel Murray, and special guest Dave Foley from the Kids in the Hall and Newsradio. (Thurs Dec 5, 8 pm, Revolution Hall, $35-55)

    Charlie Hunter & Lucy Woodward
    In-demand guitarist Charlie Hunter and vocalist Lucy Woodward team up for a night of blues, soul, and funk at Mississippi Studios when they roll through Portland in support of their collaborative debut, Music!Music!Music! (Thurs Dec 5, 8 pm, Mississippi Studios, $22-25)

    Don't forget to check out our Things To Do calendar for even more things to do!

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    SOHR: Ti sivile drept i luftangrep mot marked i Idlib

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    Minst ti sivile skal ha mistet livet i et luftangrep mot et marked i byen Maaret al-Numan, som ligger i den opprørskontrollerte Idlib-provinsen i Syria.
              

    Manx students petition Tynwald to accept Syrian refugees

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    Manx school pupils call on Tynwald to reassess its decision not to accept Syrian refugees.
              

    100 killed as fighting intensifies in Syria's Idlib province

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    October 22, 2019

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    Tune in to The Specialist Radio Hour as Guest Host Craig Hudgins highlights current news including Syria and Ukraine as well as touching on his numerous experiences while serving in the United States Marines. Dr. Joye, expert in Biblical prophecy and author joins our host for an hour of intense discussion on good and evil...
              

    SLU-Madrid: Guest Speaker

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    5:30 p.m. · Guest Speaker: Elgin Poyrazlar, Columnist at Cumhuriyet: "Erdogan and the Syrian Crisis" · SIH Auditorium


              

    December 2: 2 Chronicles 1; 1 John 1; Micah 7; Luke 16

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    With family: 2 Chronicles 1; 1 John 1

    2 Chronicles 1 (Listen)

    Solomon Worships at Gibeon

    Solomon the son of David established himself in his kingdom, and the LORD his God was with him and made him exceedingly great.

    Solomon spoke to all Israel, to the commanders of thousands and of hundreds, to the judges, and to all the leaders in all Israel, the heads of fathers' houses. And Solomon, and all the assembly with him, went to the high place that was at Gibeon, for the tent of meeting of God, which Moses the servant of the LORD had made in the wilderness, was there. (But David had brought up the ark of God from Kiriath-jearim to the place that David had prepared for it, for he had pitched a tent for it in Jerusalem.) Moreover, the bronze altar that Bezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, had made, was there before the tabernacle of the LORD. And Solomon and the assembly sought it1 out. And Solomon went up there to the bronze altar before the LORD, which was at the tent of meeting, and offered a thousand burnt offerings on it.

    Solomon Prays for Wisdom

    In that night God appeared to Solomon, and said to him, “Ask what I shall give you.” And Solomon said to God, “You have shown great and steadfast love to David my father, and have made me king in his place. O LORD God, let your word to David my father be now fulfilled, for you have made me king over a people as numerous as the dust of the earth. 10 Give me now wisdom and knowledge to go out and come in before this people, for who can govern this people of yours, which is so great?” 11 God answered Solomon, “Because this was in your heart, and you have not asked for possessions, wealth, honor, or the life of those who hate you, and have not even asked for long life, but have asked for wisdom and knowledge for yourself that you may govern my people over whom I have made you king, 12 wisdom and knowledge are granted to you. I will also give you riches, possessions, and honor, such as none of the kings had who were before you, and none after you shall have the like.” 13 So Solomon came from2 the high place at Gibeon, from before the tent of meeting, to Jerusalem. And he reigned over Israel.

    Solomon Given Wealth

    14 Solomon gathered together chariots and horsemen. He had 1,400 chariots and 12,000 horsemen, whom he stationed in the chariot cities and with the king in Jerusalem. 15 And the king made silver and gold as common in Jerusalem as stone, and he made cedar as plentiful as the sycamore of the Shephelah. 16 And Solomon's import of horses was from Egypt and Kue, and the king's traders would buy them from Kue for a price. 17 They imported a chariot from Egypt for 600 shekels3 of silver, and a horse for 150. Likewise through them these were exported to all the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Syria.

    Footnotes

    [1] 1:5 Or him
    [2] 1:13 Septuagint, Vulgate; Hebrew to
    [3] 1:17 A shekel was about 2/5 ounce or 11 grams

    (ESV)

    1 John 1 (Listen)

    The Word of Life

    That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life—the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us—that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. And we are writing these things so that our1 joy may be complete.

    Walking in the Light

    This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

    Footnotes

    [1] 1:4 Some manuscripts your

    (ESV)

    In private: Micah 7; Luke 16

    Micah 7 (Listen)

    Wait for the God of Salvation

      Woe is me! For I have become
        as when the summer fruit has been gathered,
        as when the grapes have been gleaned:
      there is no cluster to eat,
        no first-ripe fig that my soul desires.
      The godly has perished from the earth,
        and there is no one upright among mankind;
      they all lie in wait for blood,
        and each hunts the other with a net.
      Their hands are on what is evil, to do it well;
        the prince and the judge ask for a bribe,
      and the great man utters the evil desire of his soul;
        thus they weave it together.
      The best of them is like a brier,
        the most upright of them a thorn hedge.
      The day of your watchmen, of your punishment, has come;
        now their confusion is at hand.
      Put no trust in a neighbor;
        have no confidence in a friend;
      guard the doors of your mouth
        from her who lies in your arms;1
      for the son treats the father with contempt,
        the daughter rises up against her mother,
      the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
        a man's enemies are the men of his own house.
      But as for me, I will look to the LORD;
        I will wait for the God of my salvation;
        my God will hear me.
      Rejoice not over me, O my enemy;
        when I fall, I shall rise;
      when I sit in darkness,
        the LORD will be a light to me.
      I will bear the indignation of the LORD
        because I have sinned against him,
      until he pleads my cause
        and executes judgment for me.
      He will bring me out to the light;
        I shall look upon his vindication.
    10   Then my enemy will see,
        and shame will cover her who said to me,
        “Where is the LORD your God?”
      My eyes will look upon her;
        now she will be trampled down
        like the mire of the streets.
    11   A day for the building of your walls!
        In that day the boundary shall be far extended.
    12   In that day they2 will come to you,
        from Assyria and the cities of Egypt,
      and from Egypt to the River,3
        from sea to sea and from mountain to mountain.
    13   But the earth will be desolate
        because of its inhabitants,
        for the fruit of their deeds.
    14   Shepherd your people with your staff,
        the flock of your inheritance,
      who dwell alone in a forest
        in the midst of a garden land;4
      let them graze in Bashan and Gilead
        as in the days of old.
    15   As in the days when you came out of the land of Egypt,
        I will show them5 marvelous things.
    16   The nations shall see and be ashamed of all their might;
      they shall lay their hands on their mouths;
        their ears shall be deaf;
    17   they shall lick the dust like a serpent,
        like the crawling things of the earth;
      they shall come trembling out of their strongholds;
        they shall turn in dread to the LORD our God,
        and they shall be in fear of you.

    God's Steadfast Love and Compassion

    18   Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity
        and passing over transgression
        for the remnant of his inheritance?
      He does not retain his anger forever,
        because he delights in steadfast love.
    19   He will again have compassion on us;
        he will tread our iniquities underfoot.
      You will cast all our6 sins
        into the depths of the sea.
    20   You will show faithfulness to Jacob
        and steadfast love to Abraham,
      as you have sworn to our fathers
        from the days of old.

    Footnotes

    [1] 7:5 Hebrew bosom
    [2] 7:12 Hebrew he
    [3] 7:12 That is, the Euphrates
    [4] 7:14 Hebrew of Carmel
    [5] 7:15 Hebrew him
    [6] 7:19 Hebrew their

    (ESV)

    Luke 16 (Listen)

    The Parable of the Dishonest Manager

    16 He also said to the disciples, “There was a rich man who had a manager, and charges were brought to him that this man was wasting his possessions. And he called him and said to him, ‘What is this that I hear about you? Turn in the account of your management, for you can no longer be manager.’ And the manager said to himself, ‘What shall I do, since my master is taking the management away from me? I am not strong enough to dig, and I am ashamed to beg. I have decided what to do, so that when I am removed from management, people may receive me into their houses.’ So, summoning his master's debtors one by one, he said to the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’ He said, ‘A hundred measures1 of oil.’ He said to him, ‘Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.’ Then he said to another, ‘And how much do you owe?’ He said, ‘A hundred measures2 of wheat.’ He said to him, ‘Take your bill, and write eighty.’ The master commended the dishonest manager for his shrewdness. For the sons of this world3 are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than the sons of light. And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of unrighteous wealth,4 so that when it fails they may receive you into the eternal dwellings.

    10 “One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much. 11 If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? 12 And if you have not been faithful in that which is another's, who will give you that which is your own? 13 No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”

    The Law and the Kingdom of God

    14 The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all these things, and they ridiculed him. 15 And he said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.

    16 “The Law and the Prophets were until John; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is preached, and everyone forces his way into it.5 17 But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one dot of the Law to become void.

    Divorce and Remarriage

    18 “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.

    The Rich Man and Lazarus

    19 “There was a rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. 20 And at his gate was laid a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, 21 who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man's table. Moreover, even the dogs came and licked his sores. 22 The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham's side.6 The rich man also died and was buried, 23 and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus at his side. 24 And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner bad things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’ 27 And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father's house—28 for I have five brothers—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’ 29 But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ 30 And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ 31 He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’”

    Footnotes

    [1] 16:6 About 875 gallons or 3,200 liters
    [2] 16:7 Between 1,000 and 1,200 bushels or 37,000 to 45,000 liters
    [3] 16:8 Greek age
    [4] 16:9 Greek mammon, a Semitic word for money or possessions; also verse 11; rendered money in verse 13
    [5] 16:16 Or everyone is forcefully urged into it
    [6] 16:22 Greek bosom; also verse 23

    (ESV)


              

    November 30: 1 Chronicles 28; 2 Peter 2; Micah 5; Luke 14

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    With family: 1 Chronicles 28; 2 Peter 2

    1 Chronicles 28 (Listen)

    David's Charge to Israel

    28 David assembled at Jerusalem all the officials of Israel, the officials of the tribes, the officers of the divisions that served the king, the commanders of thousands, the commanders of hundreds, the stewards of all the property and livestock of the king and his sons, together with the palace officials, the mighty men and all the seasoned warriors. Then King David rose to his feet and said: “Hear me, my brothers and my people. I had it in my heart to build a house of rest for the ark of the covenant of the LORD and for the footstool of our God, and I made preparations for building. But God said to me, ‘You may not build a house for my name, for you are a man of war and have shed blood.’ Yet the LORD God of Israel chose me from all my father's house to be king over Israel forever. For he chose Judah as leader, and in the house of Judah my father's house, and among my father's sons he took pleasure in me to make me king over all Israel. And of all my sons (for the LORD has given me many sons) he has chosen Solomon my son to sit on the throne of the kingdom of the LORD over Israel. He said to me, ‘It is Solomon your son who shall build my house and my courts, for I have chosen him to be my son, and I will be his father. I will establish his kingdom forever if he continues strong in keeping my commandments and my rules, as he is today.’ Now therefore in the sight of all Israel, the assembly of the LORD, and in the hearing of our God, observe and seek out all the commandments of the LORD your God, that you may possess this good land and leave it for an inheritance to your children after you forever.

    David's Charge to Solomon

    “And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will cast you off forever. 10 Be careful now, for the LORD has chosen you to build a house for the sanctuary; be strong and do it.”

    11 Then David gave Solomon his son the plan of the vestibule of the temple,1 and of its houses, its treasuries, its upper rooms, and its inner chambers, and of the room for the mercy seat; 12 and the plan of all that he had in mind for the courts of the house of the LORD, all the surrounding chambers, the treasuries of the house of God, and the treasuries for dedicated gifts; 13 for the divisions of the priests and of the Levites, and all the work of the service in the house of the LORD; for all the vessels for the service in the house of the LORD, 14 the weight of gold for all golden vessels for each service, the weight of silver vessels for each service, 15 the weight of the golden lampstands and their lamps, the weight of gold for each lampstand and its lamps, the weight of silver for a lampstand and its lamps, according to the use of each lampstand in the service, 16 the weight of gold for each table for the showbread, the silver for the silver tables, 17 and pure gold for the forks, the basins and the cups; for the golden bowls and the weight of each; for the silver bowls and the weight of each; 18 for the altar of incense made of refined gold, and its weight; also his plan for the golden chariot of the cherubim that spread their wings and covered the ark of the covenant of the LORD. 19 “All this he made clear to me in writing from the hand of the LORD, all the work to be done according to the plan.”

    20 Then David said to Solomon his son, “Be strong and courageous and do it. Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed, for the LORD God, even my God, is with you. He will not leave you or forsake you, until all the work for the service of the house of the LORD is finished. 21 And behold the divisions of the priests and the Levites for all the service of the house of God; and with you in all the work will be every willing man who has skill for any kind of service; also the officers and all the people will be wholly at your command.”

    Footnotes

    [1] 28:11 Hebrew lacks of the temple

    (ESV)

    2 Peter 2 (Listen)

    False Prophets and Teachers

    But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.

    For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell1 and committed them to chains2 of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly;3 and if he rescued righteous Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard); then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials,4 and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10 and especially those who indulge5 in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority.

    Bold and willful, they do not tremble as they blaspheme the glorious ones, 11 whereas angels, though greater in might and power, do not pronounce a blasphemous judgment against them before the Lord. 12 But these, like irrational animals, creatures of instinct, born to be caught and destroyed, blaspheming about matters of which they are ignorant, will also be destroyed in their destruction, 13 suffering wrong as the wage for their wrongdoing. They count it pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions,6 while they feast with you. 14 They have eyes full of adultery,7 insatiable for sin. They entice unsteady souls. They have hearts trained in greed. Accursed children! 15 Forsaking the right way, they have gone astray. They have followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved gain from wrongdoing, 16 but was rebuked for his own transgression; a speechless donkey spoke with human voice and restrained the prophet's madness.

    17 These are waterless springs and mists driven by a storm. For them the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved. 18 For, speaking loud boasts of folly, they entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error. 19 They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves8 of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved. 20 For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. 21 For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. 22 What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.”

    Footnotes

    [1] 2:4 Greek Tartarus
    [2] 2:4 Some manuscripts pits
    [3] 2:6 Some manuscripts an example to those who were to be ungodly
    [4] 2:9 Or temptations
    [5] 2:10 Greek who go after the flesh
    [6] 2:13 Some manuscripts love feasts
    [7] 2:14 Or eyes full of an adulteress
    [8] 2:19 For the contextual rendering of the Greek word doulos, see Preface

    (ESV)

    In private: Micah 5; Luke 14

    Micah 5 (Listen)

    The Ruler to Be Born in Bethlehem

      1 Now muster your troops, O daughter2 of troops;
        siege is laid against us;
      with a rod they strike the judge of Israel
        on the cheek.
      3 But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah,
        who are too little to be among the clans of Judah,
      from you shall come forth for me
        one who is to be ruler in Israel,
      whose coming forth is from of old,
        from ancient days.
      Therefore he shall give them up until the time
        when she who is in labor has given birth;
      then the rest of his brothers shall return
        to the people of Israel.
      And he shall stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the LORD,
        in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God.
      And they shall dwell secure, for now he shall be great
        to the ends of the earth.
      And he shall be their peace.
      When the Assyrian comes into our land
        and treads in our palaces,
      then we will raise against him seven shepherds
        and eight princes of men;
      they shall shepherd the land of Assyria with the sword,
        and the land of Nimrod at its entrances;
      and he shall deliver us from the Assyrian
        when he comes into our land
        and treads within our border.

    A Remnant Shall Be Delivered

      Then the remnant of Jacob shall be
        in the midst of many peoples
      like dew from the LORD,
        like showers on the grass,
      which delay not for a man
        nor wait for the children of man.
      And the remnant of Jacob shall be among the nations,
        in the midst of many peoples,
      like a lion among the beasts of the forest,
        like a young lion among the flocks of sheep,
      which, when it goes through, treads down
        and tears in pieces, and there is none to deliver.
      Your hand shall be lifted up over your adversaries,
        and all your enemies shall be cut off.
    10   And in that day, declares the LORD,
        I will cut off your horses from among you
        and will destroy your chariots;
    11   and I will cut off the cities of your land
        and throw down all your strongholds;
    12   and I will cut off sorceries from your hand,
        and you shall have no more tellers of fortunes;
    13   and I will cut off your carved images
        and your pillars from among you,
      and you shall bow down no more
        to the work of your hands;
    14   and I will root out your Asherah images from among you
        and destroy your cities.
    15   And in anger and wrath I will execute vengeance
        on the nations that did not obey.

    Footnotes

    [1] 5:1 Ch 4:14 in Hebrew
    [2] 5:1 That is, city
    [3] 5:2 Ch 5:1 in Hebrew

    (ESV)

    Luke 14 (Listen)

    Healing of a Man on the Sabbath

    14 One Sabbath, when he went to dine at the house of a ruler of the Pharisees, they were watching him carefully. And behold, there was a man before him who had dropsy. And Jesus responded to the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath, or not?” But they remained silent. Then he took him and healed him and sent him away. And he said to them, “Which of you, having a son1 or an ox that has fallen into a well on a Sabbath day, will not immediately pull him out?” And they could not reply to these things.

    The Parable of the Wedding Feast

    Now he told a parable to those who were invited, when he noticed how they chose the places of honor, saying to them, “When you are invited by someone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in a place of honor, lest someone more distinguished than you be invited by him, and he who invited you both will come and say to you, ‘Give your place to this person,’ and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest place. 10 But when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that when your host comes he may say to you, ‘Friend, move up higher.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at table with you. 11 For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

    The Parable of the Great Banquet

    12 He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers2 or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. 13 But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, 14 and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”

    15 When one of those who reclined at table with him heard these things, he said to him, “Blessed is everyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!” 16 But he said to him, “A man once gave a great banquet and invited many. 17 And at the time for the banquet he sent his servant3 to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’ 18 But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a field, and I must go out and see it. Please have me excused.’ 19 And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to examine them. Please have me excused.’ 20 And another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’ 21 So the servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in the poor and crippled and blind and lame.’ 22 And the servant said, ‘Sir, what you commanded has been done, and still there is room.’ 23 And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled. 24 For I tell you,4 none of those men who were invited shall taste my banquet.’”

    The Cost of Discipleship

    25 Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them, 26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. 27 Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. 28 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? 29 Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’ 31 Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32 And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. 33 So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.

    Salt Without Taste Is Worthless

    34 “Salt is good, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? 35 It is of no use either for the soil or for the manure pile. It is thrown away. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

    Footnotes

    [1] 14:5 Some manuscripts a donkey
    [2] 14:12 Or your brothers and sisters
    [3] 14:17 Or bondservant; also verses 21 (twice), 22, 23
    [4] 14:24 The Greek word for you here is plural

    (ESV)


              

    November 27: 1 Chronicles 23; 1 Peter 4; Micah 2; Luke 11

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 23; 1 Peter 4

    1 Chronicles 23 (Listen)

    David Organizes the Levites

    23 When David was old and full of days, he made Solomon his son king over Israel.

    David1 assembled all the leaders of Israel and the priests and the Levites. The Levites, thirty years old and upward, were numbered, and the total was 38,000 men. “Twenty-four thousand of these,” David said,2 “shall have charge of the work in the house of the LORD, 6,000 shall be officers and judges, 4,000 gatekeepers, and 4,000 shall offer praises to the LORD with the instruments that I have made for praise.” And David organized them in divisions corresponding to the sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.

    The sons of Gershon3 were Ladan and Shimei. The sons of Ladan: Jehiel the chief, and Zetham, and Joel, three. The sons of Shimei: Shelomoth, Haziel, and Haran, three. These were the heads of the fathers' houses of Ladan. 10 And the sons of Shimei: Jahath, Zina, and Jeush and Beriah. These four were the sons of Shimei. 11 Jahath was the chief, and Zizah the second; but Jeush and Beriah did not have many sons, therefore they became counted as a single father's house.

    12 The sons of Kohath: Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel, four. 13 The sons of Amram: Aaron and Moses. Aaron was set apart to dedicate the most holy things, that he and his sons forever should make offerings before the LORD and minister to him and pronounce blessings in his name forever. 14 But the sons of Moses the man of God were named among the tribe of Levi. 15 The sons of Moses: Gershom and Eliezer. 16 The sons of Gershom: Shebuel the chief. 17 The sons of Eliezer: Rehabiah the chief. Eliezer had no other sons, but the sons of Rehabiah were very many. 18 The sons of Izhar: Shelomith the chief. 19 The sons of Hebron: Jeriah the chief, Amariah the second, Jahaziel the third, and Jekameam the fourth. 20 The sons of Uzziel: Micah the chief and Isshiah the second.

    21 The sons of Merari: Mahli and Mushi. The sons of Mahli: Eleazar and Kish. 22 Eleazar died having no sons, but only daughters; their kinsmen, the sons of Kish, married them. 23 The sons of Mushi: Mahli, Eder, and Jeremoth, three.

    24 These were the sons of Levi by their fathers' houses, the heads of fathers' houses as they were listed according to the number of the names of the individuals from twenty years old and upward who were to do the work for the service of the house of the LORD. 25 For David said, “The LORD, the God of Israel, has given rest to his people, and he dwells in Jerusalem forever. 26 And so the Levites no longer need to carry the tabernacle or any of the things for its service.” 27 For by the last words of David the sons of Levi were numbered from twenty years old and upward. 28 For their duty was to assist the sons of Aaron for the service of the house of the LORD, having the care of the courts and the chambers, the cleansing of all that is holy, and any work for the service of the house of God. 29 Their duty was also to assist with the showbread, the flour for the grain offering, the wafers of unleavened bread, the baked offering, the offering mixed with oil, and all measures of quantity or size. 30 And they were to stand every morning, thanking and praising the LORD, and likewise at evening, 31 and whenever burnt offerings were offered to the LORD on Sabbaths, new moons, and feast days, according to the number required of them, regularly before the LORD. 32 Thus they were to keep charge of the tent of meeting and the sanctuary, and to attend the sons of Aaron, their brothers, for the service of the house of the LORD.

    Footnotes

    [1] 23:2 Hebrew He
    [2] 23:4 Hebrew lacks David said
    [3] 23:7 Vulgate (compare Septuagint, Syriac); Hebrew to the Gershonite

    (ESV)

    1 Peter 4 (Listen)

    Stewards of God's Grace

    Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh,1 arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God. For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery, and they malign you; but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. For this is why the gospel was preached even to those who are dead, that though judged in the flesh the way people are, they might live in the spirit the way God does.

    The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers. Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: 11 whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

    Suffering as a Christian

    12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. 14 If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory2 and of God rests upon you. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. 16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And

      “If the righteous is scarcely saved,
        what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”3

    19 Therefore let those who suffer according to God's will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.

    Footnotes

    [1] 4:1 Some manuscripts add for us; some for you
    [2] 4:14 Some manuscripts insert and of power
    [3] 4:18 Greek where will the ungodly and sinner appear?

    (ESV)

    In private: Micah 2; Luke 11

    Micah 2 (Listen)

    Woe to the Oppressors

      Woe to those who devise wickedness
        and work evil on their beds!
      When the morning dawns, they perform it,
        because it is in the power of their hand.
      They covet fields and seize them,
        and houses, and take them away;
      they oppress a man and his house,
        a man and his inheritance.
      Therefore thus says the LORD:
      behold, against this family I am devising disaster,1
        from which you cannot remove your necks,
      and you shall not walk haughtily,
        for it will be a time of disaster.
      In that day they shall take up a taunt song against you
        and moan bitterly,
      and say, “We are utterly ruined;
        he changes the portion of my people;
      how he removes it from me!
        To an apostate he allots our fields.”
      Therefore you will have none to cast the line by lot
        in the assembly of the LORD.
      “Do not preach”—thus they preach—
        “one should not preach of such things;
        disgrace will not overtake us.”
      Should this be said, O house of Jacob?
        Has the LORD grown impatient?2
        Are these his deeds?
      Do not my words do good
        to him who walks uprightly?
      But lately my people have risen up as an enemy;
      you strip the rich robe from those who pass by trustingly
        with no thought of war.3
      The women of my people you drive out
        from their delightful houses;
      from their young children you take away
        my splendor forever.
    10   Arise and go,
        for this is no place to rest,
      because of uncleanness that destroys
        with a grievous destruction.
    11   If a man should go about and utter wind and lies,
        saying, “I will preach to you of wine and strong drink,”
        he would be the preacher for this people!
    12   I will surely assemble all of you, O Jacob;
        I will gather the remnant of Israel;
      I will set them together
        like sheep in a fold,
      like a flock in its pasture,
        a noisy multitude of men.
    13   He who opens the breach goes up before them;
        they break through and pass the gate,
        going out by it.
      Their king passes on before them,
        the LORD at their head.

    Footnotes

    [1] 2:3 The same Hebrew word can mean evil or disaster, depending on the context
    [2] 2:7 Hebrew Has the spirit of the Lord grown short?
    [3] 2:8 Or returning from war

    (ESV)

    Luke 11 (Listen)

    The Lord's Prayer

    11 Now Jesus1 was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.” And he said to them, “When you pray, say:

      “Father, hallowed be your name.
      Your kingdom come.
      Give us each day our daily bread,2
      and forgive us our sins,
        for we ourselves forgive everyone who is indebted to us.
      And lead us not into temptation.”

    And he said to them, “Which of you who has a friend will go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves, for a friend of mine has arrived on a journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; and he will answer from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed. I cannot get up and give you anything’? I tell you, though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his impudence3 he will rise and give him whatever he needs. And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. 11 What father among you, if his son asks for4 a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; 12 or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

    Jesus and Beelzebul

    14 Now he was casting out a demon that was mute. When the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke, and the people marveled. 15 But some of them said, “He casts out demons by Beelzebul, the prince of demons,” 16 while others, to test him, kept seeking from him a sign from heaven. 17 But he, knowing their thoughts, said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and a divided household falls. 18 And if Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that I cast out demons by Beelzebul. 19 And if I cast out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. 20 But if it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. 21 When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are safe; 22 but when one stronger than he attacks him and overcomes him, he takes away his armor in which he trusted and divides his spoil. 23 Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

    Return of an Unclean Spirit

    24 “When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, and finding none it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ 25 And when it comes, it finds the house swept and put in order. 26 Then it goes and brings seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there. And the last state of that person is worse than the first.”

    True Blessedness

    27 As he said these things, a woman in the crowd raised her voice and said to him, “Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts at which you nursed!” 28 But he said, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!”

    The Sign of Jonah

    29 When the crowds were increasing, he began to say, “This generation is an evil generation. It seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah. 30 For as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh, so will the Son of Man be to this generation. 31 The queen of the South will rise up at the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, something greater than Solomon is here. 32 The men of Nineveh will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here.

    The Light in You

    33 “No one after lighting a lamp puts it in a cellar or under a basket, but on a stand, so that those who enter may see the light. 34 Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is full of light, but when it is bad, your body is full of darkness. 35 Therefore be careful lest the light in you be darkness. 36 If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, it will be wholly bright, as when a lamp with its rays gives you light.”

    Woes to the Pharisees and Lawyers

    37 While Jesus5 was speaking, a Pharisee asked him to dine with him, so he went in and reclined at table. 38 The Pharisee was astonished to see that he did not first wash before dinner. 39 And the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness. 40 You fools! Did not he who made the outside make the inside also? 41 But give as alms those things that are within, and behold, everything is clean for you.

    42 “But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and every herb, and neglect justice and the love of God. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. 43 Woe to you Pharisees! For you love the best seat in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces. 44 Woe to you! For you are like unmarked graves, and people walk over them without knowing it.”

    45 One of the lawyers answered him, “Teacher, in saying these things you insult us also.” 46 And he said, “Woe to you lawyers also! For you load people with burdens hard to bear, and you yourselves do not touch the burdens with one of your fingers. 47 Woe to you! For you build the tombs of the prophets whom your fathers killed. 48 So you are witnesses and you consent to the deeds of your fathers, for they killed them, and you build their tombs. 49 Therefore also the Wisdom of God said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and persecute,’ 50 so that the blood of all the prophets, shed from the foundation of the world, may be charged against this generation, 51 from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who perished between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, it will be required of this generation. 52 Woe to you lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge. You did not enter yourselves, and you hindered those who were entering.”

    53 As he went away from there, the scribes and the Pharisees began to press him hard and to provoke him to speak about many things, 54 lying in wait for him, to catch him in something he might say.

    Footnotes

    [1] 11:1 Greek he
    [2] 11:3 Or our bread for tomorrow
    [3] 11:8 Or persistence
    [4] 11:11 Some manuscripts insert bread, will give him a stone; or if he asks for
    [5] 11:37 Greek he

    (ESV)


              

    November 24: 1 Chronicles 19–20; 1 Peter 1; Jonah 3; Luke 8

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 19–20; 1 Peter 1

    1 Chronicles 19–20 (Listen)

    The Ammonites Disgrace David's Men

    19 Now after this Nahash the king of the Ammonites died, and his son reigned in his place. And David said, “I will deal kindly with Hanun the son of Nahash, for his father dealt kindly with me.” So David sent messengers to console him concerning his father. And David's servants came to the land of the Ammonites to Hanun to console him. But the princes of the Ammonites said to Hanun, “Do you think, because David has sent comforters to you, that he is honoring your father? Have not his servants come to you to search and to overthrow and to spy out the land?” So Hanun took David's servants and shaved them and cut off their garments in the middle, at their hips, and sent them away; and they departed. When David was told concerning the men, he sent messengers to meet them, for the men were greatly ashamed. And the king said, “Remain at Jericho until your beards have grown and then return.”

    When the Ammonites saw that they had become a stench to David, Hanun and the Ammonites sent 1,000 talents1 of silver to hire chariots and horsemen from Mesopotamia, from Aram-maacah, and from Zobah. They hired 32,000 chariots and the king of Maacah with his army, who came and encamped before Medeba. And the Ammonites were mustered from their cities and came to battle. When David heard of it, he sent Joab and all the army of the mighty men. And the Ammonites came out and drew up in battle array at the entrance of the city, and the kings who had come were by themselves in the open country.

    Ammonites and Syrians Defeated

    10 When Joab saw that the battle was set against him both in front and in the rear, he chose some of the best men of Israel and arrayed them against the Syrians. 11 The rest of his men he put in the charge of Abishai his brother, and they were arrayed against the Ammonites. 12 And he said, “If the Syrians are too strong for me, then you shall help me, but if the Ammonites are too strong for you, then I will help you. 13 Be strong, and let us use our strength for our people and for the cities of our God, and may the LORD do what seems good to him.” 14 So Joab and the people who were with him drew near before the Syrians for battle, and they fled before him. 15 And when the Ammonites saw that the Syrians fled, they likewise fled before Abishai, Joab's brother, and entered the city. Then Joab came to Jerusalem.

    16 But when the Syrians saw that they had been defeated by Israel, they sent messengers and brought out the Syrians who were beyond the Euphrates,2 with Shophach the commander of the army of Hadadezer at their head. 17 And when it was told to David, he gathered all Israel together and crossed the Jordan and came to them and drew up his forces against them. And when David set the battle in array against the Syrians, they fought with him. 18 And the Syrians fled before Israel, and David killed of the Syrians the men of 7,000 chariots and 40,000 foot soldiers, and put to death also Shophach the commander of their army. 19 And when the servants of Hadadezer saw that they had been defeated by Israel, they made peace with David and became subject to him. So the Syrians were not willing to save the Ammonites anymore.

    The Capture of Rabbah

    20 In the spring of the year, the time when kings go out to battle, Joab led out the army and ravaged the country of the Ammonites and came and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem. And Joab struck down Rabbah and overthrew it. And David took the crown of their king from his head. He found that it weighed a talent3 of gold, and in it was a precious stone. And it was placed on David's head. And he brought out the spoil of the city, a very great amount. And he brought out the people who were in it and set them to labor4 with saws and iron picks and axes.5 And thus David did to all the cities of the Ammonites. Then David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.

    Philistine Giants Killed

    And after this there arose war with the Philistines at Gezer. Then Sibbecai the Hushathite struck down Sippai, who was one of the descendants of the giants, and the Philistines were subdued. And there was again war with the Philistines, and Elhanan the son of Jair struck down Lahmi the brother of Goliath the Gittite, the shaft of whose spear was like a weaver's beam. And there was again war at Gath, where there was a man of great stature, who had six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot, twenty-four in number, and he also was descended from the giants. And when he taunted Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimea, David's brother, struck him down. These were descended from the giants in Gath, and they fell by the hand of David and by the hand of his servants.

    Footnotes

    [1] 19:6 A talent was about 75 pounds or 34 kilograms
    [2] 19:16 Hebrew the River
    [3] 20:2 A talent was about 75 pounds or 34 kilograms
    [4] 20:3 Compare 2 Samuel 12:31; Hebrew he sawed
    [5] 20:3 Compare 2 Samuel 12:31; Hebrew saws

    (ESV)

    1 Peter 1 (Listen)

    Greeting

    Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ,

    To those who are elect exiles of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood:

    May grace and peace be multiplied to you.

    Born Again to a Living Hope

    Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

    10 Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, 11 inquiring what person or time1 the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories. 12 It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.

    Called to Be Holy

    13 Therefore, preparing your minds for action,2 and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, 15 but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” 17 And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one's deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile, 18 knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. 20 He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you 21 who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

    22 Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, 23 since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God; 24 for

      “All flesh is like grass
        and all its glory like the flower of grass.
      The grass withers,
        and the flower falls,
    25   but the word of the Lord remains forever.”

    And this word is the good news that was preached to you.

    Footnotes

    [1] 1:11 Or what time or circumstances
    [2] 1:13 Greek girding up the loins of your mind

    (ESV)

    In private: Jonah 3; Luke 8

    Jonah 3 (Listen)

    Jonah Goes to Nineveh

    Then the word of the LORD came to Jonah the second time, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it the message that I tell you.” So Jonah arose and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the LORD. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city,1 three days' journey in breadth.2 Jonah began to go into the city, going a day's journey. And he called out, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” And the people of Nineveh believed God. They called for a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least of them.

    The People of Nineveh Repent

    The word reached3 the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, removed his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he issued a proclamation and published through Nineveh, “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything. Let them not feed or drink water, but let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let them call out mightily to God. Let everyone turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. Who knows? God may turn and relent and turn from his fierce anger, so that we may not perish.”

    10 When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil way, God relented of the disaster that he had said he would do to them, and he did not do it.

    Footnotes

    [1] 3:3 Hebrew a great city to God
    [2] 3:3 Or a visit was a three days' journey
    [3] 3:6 Or had reached

    (ESV)

    Luke 8 (Listen)

    Women Accompanying Jesus

    Soon afterward he went on through cities and villages, proclaiming and bringing the good news of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with him, and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, and Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod's household manager, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them1 out of their means.

    The Parable of the Sower

    And when a great crowd was gathering and people from town after town came to him, he said in a parable, “A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell along the path and was trampled underfoot, and the birds of the air devoured it. And some fell on the rock, and as it grew up, it withered away, because it had no moisture. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up with it and choked it. And some fell into good soil and grew and yielded a hundredfold.” As he said these things, he called out, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

    The Purpose of the Parables

    And when his disciples asked him what this parable meant, 10 he said, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God, but for others they are in parables, so that ‘seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.’ 11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12 The ones along the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 And the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy. But these have no root; they believe for a while, and in time of testing fall away. 14 And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. 15 As for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patience.

    A Lamp Under a Jar

    16 “No one after lighting a lamp covers it with a jar or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a stand, so that those who enter may see the light. 17 For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light. 18 Take care then how you hear, for to the one who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he thinks that he has will be taken away.”

    Jesus' Mother and Brothers

    19 Then his mother and his brothers2 came to him, but they could not reach him because of the crowd. 20 And he was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, desiring to see you.” 21 But he answered them, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”

    Jesus Calms a Storm

    22 One day he got into a boat with his disciples, and he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side of the lake.” So they set out, 23 and as they sailed he fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water and were in danger. 24 And they went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and the raging waves, and they ceased, and there was a calm. 25 He said to them, “Where is your faith?” And they were afraid, and they marveled, saying to one another, “Who then is this, that he commands even winds and water, and they obey him?”

    Jesus Heals a Man with a Demon

    26 Then they sailed to the country of the Gerasenes,3 which is opposite Galilee. 27 When Jesus4 had stepped out on land, there met him a man from the city who had demons. For a long time he had worn no clothes, and he had not lived in a house but among the tombs. 28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell down before him and said with a loud voice, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, do not torment me.” 29 For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. (For many a time it had seized him. He was kept under guard and bound with chains and shackles, but he would break the bonds and be driven by the demon into the desert.) 30 Jesus then asked him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Legion,” for many demons had entered him. 31 And they begged him not to command them to depart into the abyss. 32 Now a large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, and they begged him to let them enter these. So he gave them permission. 33 Then the demons came out of the man and entered the pigs, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and drowned.

    34 When the herdsmen saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country. 35 Then people went out to see what had happened, and they came to Jesus and found the man from whom the demons had gone, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid. 36 And those who had seen it told them how the demon-possessed5 man had been healed. 37 Then all the people of the surrounding country of the Gerasenes asked him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. So he got into the boat and returned. 38 The man from whom the demons had gone begged that he might be with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, 39 “Return to your home, and declare how much God has done for you.” And he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done for him.

    Jesus Heals a Woman and Jairus's Daughter

    40 Now when Jesus returned, the crowd welcomed him, for they were all waiting for him. 41 And there came a man named Jairus, who was a ruler of the synagogue. And falling at Jesus' feet, he implored him to come to his house, 42 for he had an only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she was dying.

    As Jesus went, the people pressed around him. 43 And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, and though she had spent all her living on physicians,6 she could not be healed by anyone. 44 She came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, and immediately her discharge of blood ceased. 45 And Jesus said, “Who was it that touched me?” When all denied it, Peter7 said, “Master, the crowds surround you and are pressing in on you!” 46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me, for I perceive that power has gone out from me.” 47 And when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling, and falling down before him declared in the presence of all the people why she had touched him, and how she had been immediately healed. 48 And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.”

    49 While he was still speaking, someone from the ruler's house came and said, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the Teacher any more.” 50 But Jesus on hearing this answered him, “Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.” 51 And when he came to the house, he allowed no one to enter with him, except Peter and John and James, and the father and mother of the child. 52 And all were weeping and mourning for her, but he said, “Do not weep, for she is not dead but sleeping.” 53 And they laughed at him, knowing that she was dead. 54 But taking her by the hand he called, saying, “Child, arise.” 55 And her spirit returned, and she got up at once. And he directed that something should be given her to eat. 56 And her parents were amazed, but he charged them to tell no one what had happened.

    Footnotes

    [1] 8:3 Some manuscripts him
    [2] 8:19 Or brothers and sisters. In New Testament usage, depending on the context, the plural Greek word adelphoi (translated “brothers”) may refer either to brothers or to brothers and sisters; also verses 20, 21
    [3] 8:26 Some manuscripts Gadarenes; others Gergesenes; also verse 37
    [4] 8:27 Greek he; also verses 38, 42
    [5] 8:36 Greek daimonizomai (demonized); elsewhere rendered oppressed by demons
    [6] 8:43 Some manuscripts omit and though she had spent all her living on physicians
    [7] 8:45 Some manuscripts add and those who were with him

    (ESV)


              

    November 23: 1 Chronicles 18; James 5; Jonah 2; Luke 7

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 18; James 5

    1 Chronicles 18 (Listen)

    David Defeats His Enemies

    18 After this David defeated the Philistines and subdued them, and he took Gath and its villages out of the hand of the Philistines.

    And he defeated Moab, and the Moabites became servants to David and brought tribute.

    David also defeated Hadadezer king of Zobah-Hamath, as he went to set up his monument1 at the river Euphrates. And David took from him 1,000 chariots, 7,000 horsemen, and 20,000 foot soldiers. And David hamstrung all the chariot horses, but left enough for 100 chariots. And when the Syrians of Damascus came to help Hadadezer king of Zobah, David struck down 22,000 men of the Syrians. Then David put garrisons2 in Syria of Damascus, and the Syrians became servants to David and brought tribute. And the LORD gave victory to David3 wherever he went. And David took the shields of gold that were carried by the servants of Hadadezer and brought them to Jerusalem. And from Tibhath and from Cun, cities of Hadadezer, David took a large amount of bronze. With it Solomon made the bronze sea and the pillars and the vessels of bronze.

    When Tou king of Hamath heard that David had defeated the whole army of Hadadezer, king of Zobah, 10 he sent his son Hadoram to King David, to ask about his health and to bless him because he had fought against Hadadezer and defeated him; for Hadadezer had often been at war with Tou. And he sent all sorts of articles of gold, of silver, and of bronze. 11 These also King David dedicated to the LORD, together with the silver and gold that he had carried off from all the nations, from Edom, Moab, the Ammonites, the Philistines, and Amalek.

    12 And Abishai, the son of Zeruiah, killed 18,000 Edomites in the Valley of Salt. 13 Then he put garrisons in Edom, and all the Edomites became David's servants. And the LORD gave victory to David wherever he went.

    David's Administration

    14 So David reigned over all Israel, and he administered justice and equity to all his people. 15 And Joab the son of Zeruiah was over the army; and Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud was recorder; 16 and Zadok the son of Ahitub and Ahimelech the son of Abiathar were priests; and Shavsha was secretary; 17 and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was over the Cherethites and the Pelethites; and David's sons were the chief officials in the service of the king.

    Footnotes

    [1] 18:3 Hebrew hand
    [2] 18:6 Septuagint, Vulgate, 2 Samuel 8:6 (compare Syriac); Hebrew lacks garrisons
    [3] 18:6 Hebrew the Lord saved David; also verse 13

    (ESV)

    James 5 (Listen)

    Warning to the Rich

    Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days. Behold, the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, are crying out against you, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in self-indulgence. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered the righteous person. He does not resist you.

    Patience in Suffering

    Be patient, therefore, brothers,1 until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains. You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. Do not grumble against one another, brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing at the door. 10 As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. 11 Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.

    12 But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other oath, but let your “yes” be yes and your “no” be no, so that you may not fall under condemnation.

    The Prayer of Faith

    13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.2 17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. 18 Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.

    19 My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, 20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.

    Footnotes

    [1] 5:7 Or brothers and sisters; also verses 9, 10, 12, 19
    [2] 5:16 Or The effective prayer of a righteous person has great power

    (ESV)

    In private: Jonah 2; Luke 7

    Jonah 2 (Listen)

    Jonah's Prayer

    Then Jonah prayed to the LORD his God from the belly of the fish, saying,

      “I called out to the LORD, out of my distress,
        and he answered me;
      out of the belly of Sheol I cried,
        and you heard my voice.
      For you cast me into the deep,
        into the heart of the seas,
        and the flood surrounded me;
      all your waves and your billows
        passed over me.
      Then I said, ‘I am driven away
        from your sight;
      yet I shall again look
        upon your holy temple.’
      The waters closed in over me to take my life;
        the deep surrounded me;
      weeds were wrapped about my head
        at the roots of the mountains.
      I went down to the land
        whose bars closed upon me forever;
      yet you brought up my life from the pit,
        O LORD my God.
      When my life was fainting away,
        I remembered the LORD,
      and my prayer came to you,
        into your holy temple.
      Those who pay regard to vain idols
        forsake their hope of steadfast love.
      But I with the voice of thanksgiving
        will sacrifice to you;
      what I have vowed I will pay.
        Salvation belongs to the LORD!”

    10 And the LORD spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah out upon the dry land.

    (ESV)

    Luke 7 (Listen)

    Jesus Heals a Centurion's Servant

    After he had finished all his sayings in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. Now a centurion had a servant1 who was sick and at the point of death, who was highly valued by him. When the centurion2 heard about Jesus, he sent to him elders of the Jews, asking him to come and heal his servant. And when they came to Jesus, they pleaded with him earnestly, saying, “He is worthy to have you do this for him, for he loves our nation, and he is the one who built us our synagogue.” And Jesus went with them. When he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends, saying to him, “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof. Therefore I did not presume to come to you. But say the word, and let my servant be healed. For I too am a man set under authority, with soldiers under me: and I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” When Jesus heard these things, he marveled at him, and turning to the crowd that followed him, said, “I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.” 10 And when those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the servant well.

    Jesus Raises a Widow's Son

    11 Soon afterward3 he went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a great crowd went with him. 12 As he drew near to the gate of the town, behold, a man who had died was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow, and a considerable crowd from the town was with her. 13 And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her and said to her, “Do not weep.” 14 Then he came up and touched the bier, and the bearers stood still. And he said, “Young man, I say to you, arise.” 15 And the dead man sat up and began to speak, and Jesus4 gave him to his mother. 16 Fear seized them all, and they glorified God, saying, “A great prophet has arisen among us!” and “God has visited his people!” 17 And this report about him spread through the whole of Judea and all the surrounding country.

    Messengers from John the Baptist

    18 The disciples of John reported all these things to him. And John, 19 calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to the Lord, saying, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” 20 And when the men had come to him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to you, saying, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?’” 21 In that hour he healed many people of diseases and plagues and evil spirits, and on many who were blind he bestowed sight. 22 And he answered them, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers5 are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have good news preached to them. 23 And blessed is the one who is not offended by me.”

    24 When John's messengers had gone, Jesus6 began to speak to the crowds concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? 25 What then did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who are dressed in splendid clothing and live in luxury are in kings' courts. 26 What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. 27 This is he of whom it is written,

      “‘Behold, I send my messenger before your face,
        who will prepare your way before you.’

    28 I tell you, among those born of women none is greater than John. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he.” 29 (When all the people heard this, and the tax collectors too, they declared God just,7 having been baptized with the baptism of John, 30 but the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected the purpose of God for themselves, not having been baptized by him.)

    31 “To what then shall I compare the people of this generation, and what are they like? 32 They are like children sitting in the marketplace and calling to one another,

      “‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance;
        we sang a dirge, and you did not weep.’

    33 For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ 34 The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ 35 Yet wisdom is justified by all her children.”

    A Sinful Woman Forgiven

    36 One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee's house and reclined at table. 37 And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, 38 and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.” 40 And Jesus answering said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he answered, “Say it, Teacher.”

    41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.” 44 Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. 46 You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. 47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” 48 And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” 49 Then those who were at table with him began to say among8 themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?” 50 And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

    Footnotes

    [1] 7:2 Or bondservant; also verses 3, 8, 10
    [2] 7:3 Greek he
    [3] 7:11 Some manuscripts The next day
    [4] 7:15 Greek he
    [5] 7:22 Leprosy was a term for several skin diseases; see Leviticus 13
    [6] 7:24 Greek he
    [7] 7:29 Greek they justified God
    [8] 7:49 Or to

    (ESV)


              

    November 21: 1 Chronicles 16; James 3; Obadiah; Luke 5

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 16; James 3

    1 Chronicles 16 (Listen)

    The Ark Placed in a Tent

    16 And they brought in the ark of God and set it inside the tent that David had pitched for it, and they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before God. And when David had finished offering the burnt offerings and the peace offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the LORD and distributed to all Israel, both men and women, to each a loaf of bread, a portion of meat,1 and a cake of raisins.

    Then he appointed some of the Levites as ministers before the ark of the LORD, to invoke, to thank, and to praise the LORD, the God of Israel. Asaph was the chief, and second to him were Zechariah, Jeiel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Mattithiah, Eliab, Benaiah, Obed-edom, and Jeiel, who were to play harps and lyres; Asaph was to sound the cymbals, and Benaiah and Jahaziel the priests were to blow trumpets regularly before the ark of the covenant of God. Then on that day David first appointed that thanksgiving be sung to the LORD by Asaph and his brothers.

    David's Song of Thanks

      Oh give thanks to the LORD; call upon his name;
        make known his deeds among the peoples!
      Sing to him, sing praises to him;
        tell of all his wondrous works!
    10   Glory in his holy name;
        let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice!
    11   Seek the LORD and his strength;
        seek his presence continually!
    12   Remember the wondrous works that he has done,
        his miracles and the judgments he uttered,
    13   O offspring of Israel his servant,
        children of Jacob, his chosen ones!
    14   He is the LORD our God;
        his judgments are in all the earth.
    15   Remember his covenant forever,
        the word that he commanded, for a thousand generations,
    16   the covenant that he made with Abraham,
        his sworn promise to Isaac,
    17   which he confirmed to Jacob as a statute,
        to Israel as an everlasting covenant,
    18   saying, “To you I will give the land of Canaan,
        as your portion for an inheritance.”
    19   When you were few in number,
        of little account, and sojourners in it,
    20   wandering from nation to nation,
        from one kingdom to another people,
    21   he allowed no one to oppress them;
        he rebuked kings on their account,
    22   saying, “Touch not my anointed ones,
        do my prophets no harm!”
    23   Sing to the LORD, all the earth!
        Tell of his salvation from day to day.
    24   Declare his glory among the nations,
        his marvelous works among all the peoples!
    25   For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised,
        and he is to be feared above all gods.
    26   For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols,
        but the LORD made the heavens.
    27   Splendor and majesty are before him;
        strength and joy are in his place.
    28   Ascribe to the LORD, O families of the peoples,
        ascribe to the LORD glory and strength!
    29   Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;
        bring an offering and come before him!
      Worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness;2
    30     tremble before him, all the earth;
        yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved.
    31   Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice,
        and let them say among the nations, “The LORD reigns!”
    32   Let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
        let the field exult, and everything in it!
    33   Then shall the trees of the forest sing for joy
        before the LORD, for he comes to judge the earth.
    34   Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
        for his steadfast love endures forever!

    35 Say also:

      “Save us, O God of our salvation,
        and gather and deliver us from among the nations,
      that we may give thanks to your holy name
        and glory in your praise.
    36   Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel,
        from everlasting to everlasting!”

    Then all the people said, “Amen!” and praised the LORD.

    Worship Before the Ark

    37 So David left Asaph and his brothers there before the ark of the covenant of the LORD to minister regularly before the ark as each day required, 38 and also Obed-edom and his3 sixty-eight brothers, while Obed-edom, the son of Jeduthun, and Hosah were to be gatekeepers. 39 And he left Zadok the priest and his brothers the priests before the tabernacle of the LORD in the high place that was at Gibeon 40 to offer burnt offerings to the LORD on the altar of burnt offering regularly morning and evening, to do all that is written in the Law of the LORD that he commanded Israel. 41 With them were Heman and Jeduthun and the rest of those chosen and expressly named to give thanks to the LORD, for his steadfast love endures forever. 42 Heman and Jeduthun had trumpets and cymbals for the music and instruments for sacred song. The sons of Jeduthun were appointed to the gate.

    43 Then all the people departed each to his house, and David went home to bless his household.

    Footnotes

    [1] 16:3 Compare Septuagint, Syriac, Vulgate; the meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain
    [2] 16:29 Or in holy attire
    [3] 16:38 Hebrew their

    (ESV)

    James 3 (Listen)

    Taming the Tongue

    Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things.

    How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life,1 and set on fire by hell.2 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers,3 these things ought not to be so. 11 Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water? 12 Can a fig tree, my brothers, bear olives, or a grapevine produce figs? Neither can a salt pond yield fresh water.

    Wisdom from Above

    13 Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. 15 This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. 18 And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

    Footnotes

    [1] 3:6 Or wheel of birth
    [2] 3:6 Greek Gehenna
    [3] 3:10 Or brothers and sisters; also verse 12

    (ESV)

    In private: Obadiah; Luke 5

    Obadiah (Listen)

    The vision of Obadiah.

    Edom Will Be Humbled

      Thus says the Lord GOD concerning Edom:
      We have heard a report from the LORD,
        and a messenger has been sent among the nations:
      “Rise up! Let us rise against her for battle!”
      Behold, I will make you small among the nations;
        you shall be utterly despised.1
      The pride of your heart has deceived you,
        you who live in the clefts of the rock,2
        in your lofty dwelling,
      who say in your heart,
        “Who will bring me down to the ground?”
      Though you soar aloft like the eagle,
        though your nest is set among the stars,
        from there I will bring you down,
          declares the LORD.
      If thieves came to you,
        if plunderers came by night—
        how you have been destroyed!—
        would they not steal only enough for themselves?
      If grape gatherers came to you,
        would they not leave gleanings?
      How Esau has been pillaged,
        his treasures sought out!
      All your allies have driven you to your border;
        those at peace with you have deceived you;
      they have prevailed against you;
        those who eat your bread3 have set a trap beneath you—
        you have4 no understanding.
      Will I not on that day, declares the LORD,
        destroy the wise men out of Edom,
        and understanding out of Mount Esau?
      And your mighty men shall be dismayed, O Teman,
        so that every man from Mount Esau will be cut off by slaughter.

    Edom's Violence Against Jacob

    10   Because of the violence done to your brother Jacob,
        shame shall cover you,
        and you shall be cut off forever.
    11   On the day that you stood aloof,
        on the day that strangers carried off his wealth
      and foreigners entered his gates
        and cast lots for Jerusalem,
        you were like one of them.
    12   But do not gloat over the day of your brother
        in the day of his misfortune;
      do not rejoice over the people of Judah
        in the day of their ruin;
      do not boast5
        in the day of distress.
    13   Do not enter the gate of my people
        in the day of their calamity;
      do not gloat over his disaster
        in the day of his calamity;
      do not loot his wealth
        in the day of his calamity.
    14   Do not stand at the crossroads
        to cut off his fugitives;
      do not hand over his survivors
        in the day of distress.

    The Day of the Lord Is Near

    15   For the day of the LORD is near upon all the nations.
      As you have done, it shall be done to you;
        your deeds shall return on your own head.
    16   For as you have drunk on my holy mountain,
        so all the nations shall drink continually;
      they shall drink and swallow,
        and shall be as though they had never been.
    17   But in Mount Zion there shall be those who escape,
        and it shall be holy,
      and the house of Jacob shall possess their own possessions.
    18   The house of Jacob shall be a fire,
        and the house of Joseph a flame,
        and the house of Esau stubble;
      they shall burn them and consume them,
        and there shall be no survivor for the house of Esau,
          for the LORD has spoken.

    The Kingdom of the Lord

    19   Those of the Negeb shall possess Mount Esau,
        and those of the Shephelah shall possess the land of the Philistines;
      they shall possess the land of Ephraim and the land of Samaria,
        and Benjamin shall possess Gilead.
    20   The exiles of this host of the people of Israel
        shall possess the land of the Canaanites as far as Zarephath,
      and the exiles of Jerusalem who are in Sepharad
        shall possess the cities of the Negeb.
    21   Saviors shall go up to Mount Zion
        to rule Mount Esau,
        and the kingdom shall be the LORD's.

    Footnotes

    [1] 1:2 Or Behold, I have made you small among the nations; you are utterly despised
    [2] 1:3 Or of Sela
    [3] 1:7 Hebrew lacks those who eat
    [4] 1:7 Hebrew he has
    [5] 1:12 Hebrew do not enlarge your mouth

    (ESV)

    Luke 5 (Listen)

    Jesus Calls the First Disciples

    On one occasion, while the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he was standing by the lake of Gennesaret, and he saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon's, he asked him to put out a little from the land. And he sat down and taught the people from the boat. And when he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.” And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish that they had taken, 10 and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.”1 11 And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him.

    Jesus Cleanses a Leper

    12 While he was in one of the cities, there came a man full of leprosy.2 And when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and begged him, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” 13 And Jesus3 stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 And he charged him to tell no one, but “go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as Moses commanded, for a proof to them.” 15 But now even more the report about him went abroad, and great crowds gathered to hear him and to be healed of their infirmities. 16 But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray.

    Jesus Heals a Paralytic

    17 On one of those days, as he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with him to heal.4 18 And behold, some men were bringing on a bed a man who was paralyzed, and they were seeking to bring him in and lay him before Jesus, 19 but finding no way to bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down with his bed through the tiles into the midst before Jesus. 20 And when he saw their faith, he said, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.” 21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to question, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 22 When Jesus perceived their thoughts, he answered them, “Why do you question in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he said to the man who was paralyzed—“I say to you, rise, pick up your bed and go home.” 25 And immediately he rose up before them and picked up what he had been lying on and went home, glorifying God. 26 And amazement seized them all, and they glorified God and were filled with awe, saying, “We have seen extraordinary things today.”

    Jesus Calls Levi

    27 After this he went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax booth. And he said to him, “Follow me.” 28 And leaving everything, he rose and followed him.

    29 And Levi made him a great feast in his house, and there was a large company of tax collectors and others reclining at table with them. 30 And the Pharisees and their scribes grumbled at his disciples, saying, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?” 31 And Jesus answered them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 32 I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”

    A Question About Fasting

    33 And they said to him, “The disciples of John fast often and offer prayers, and so do the disciples of the Pharisees, but yours eat and drink.” 34 And Jesus said to them, “Can you make wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them? 35 The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast in those days.” 36 He also told them a parable: “No one tears a piece from a new garment and puts it on an old garment. If he does, he will tear the new, and the piece from the new will not match the old. 37 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the new wine will burst the skins and it will be spilled, and the skins will be destroyed. 38 But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. 39 And no one after drinking old wine desires new, for he says, ‘The old is good.’”5

    Footnotes

    [1] 5:10 The Greek word anthropoi refers here to both men and women
    [2] 5:12 Leprosy was a term for several skin diseases; see Leviticus 13
    [3] 5:13 Greek he
    [4] 5:17 Some manuscripts was present to heal them
    [5] 5:39 Some manuscripts better

    (ESV)


              

    November 20: 1 Chronicles 15; James 2; Amos 9; Luke 4

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 15; James 2

    1 Chronicles 15 (Listen)

    The Ark Brought to Jerusalem

    15 David1 built houses for himself in the city of David. And he prepared a place for the ark of God and pitched a tent for it. Then David said that no one but the Levites may carry the ark of God, for the LORD had chosen them to carry the ark of the LORD and to minister to him forever. And David assembled all Israel at Jerusalem to bring up the ark of the LORD to its place, which he had prepared for it. And David gathered together the sons of Aaron and the Levites: of the sons of Kohath, Uriel the chief, with 120 of his brothers; of the sons of Merari, Asaiah the chief, with 220 of his brothers; of the sons of Gershom, Joel the chief, with 130 of his brothers; of the sons of Elizaphan, Shemaiah the chief, with 200 of his brothers; of the sons of Hebron, Eliel the chief, with 80 of his brothers; 10 of the sons of Uzziel, Amminadab the chief, with 112 of his brothers. 11 Then David summoned the priests Zadok and Abiathar, and the Levites Uriel, Asaiah, Joel, Shemaiah, Eliel, and Amminadab, 12 and said to them, “You are the heads of the fathers' houses of the Levites. Consecrate yourselves, you and your brothers, so that you may bring up the ark of the LORD, the God of Israel, to the place that I have prepared for it. 13 Because you did not carry it the first time, the LORD our God broke out against us, because we did not seek him according to the rule.” 14 So the priests and the Levites consecrated themselves to bring up the ark of the LORD, the God of Israel. 15 And the Levites carried the ark of God on their shoulders with the poles, as Moses had commanded according to the word of the LORD.

    16 David also commanded the chiefs of the Levites to appoint their brothers as the singers who should play loudly on musical instruments, on harps and lyres and cymbals, to raise sounds of joy. 17 So the Levites appointed Heman the son of Joel; and of his brothers Asaph the son of Berechiah; and of the sons of Merari, their brothers, Ethan the son of Kushaiah; 18 and with them their brothers of the second order, Zechariah, Jaaziel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Benaiah, Maaseiah, Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, and Mikneiah, and the gatekeepers Obed-edom and Jeiel. 19 The singers, Heman, Asaph, and Ethan, were to sound bronze cymbals; 20 Zechariah, Aziel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Unni, Eliab, Maaseiah, and Benaiah were to play harps according to Alamoth; 21 but Mattithiah, Eliphelehu, Mikneiah, Obed-edom, Jeiel, and Azaziah were to lead with lyres according to the Sheminith. 22 Chenaniah, leader of the Levites in music, should direct the music, for he understood it. 23 Berechiah and Elkanah were to be gatekeepers for the ark. 24 Shebaniah, Joshaphat, Nethanel, Amasai, Zechariah, Benaiah, and Eliezer, the priests, should blow the trumpets before the ark of God. Obed-edom and Jehiah were to be gatekeepers for the ark.

    25 So David and the elders of Israel and the commanders of thousands went to bring up the ark of the covenant of the LORD from the house of Obed-edom with rejoicing. 26 And because God helped the Levites who were carrying the ark of the covenant of the LORD, they sacrificed seven bulls and seven rams. 27 David was clothed with a robe of fine linen, as also were all the Levites who were carrying the ark, and the singers and Chenaniah the leader of the music of the singers. And David wore a linen ephod. 28 So all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the LORD with shouting, to the sound of the horn, trumpets, and cymbals, and made loud music on harps and lyres.

    29 And as the ark of the covenant of the LORD came to the city of David, Michal the daughter of Saul looked out of the window and saw King David dancing and celebrating, and she despised him in her heart.

    Footnotes

    [1] 15:1 Hebrew He

    (ESV)

    James 2 (Listen)

    The Sin of Partiality

    My brothers,1 show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, and if you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, “You sit here in a good place,” while you say to the poor man, “You stand over there,” or, “Sit down at my feet,” have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? Listen, my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him? But you have dishonored the poor man. Are not the rich the ones who oppress you, and the ones who drag you into court? Are they not the ones who blaspheme the honorable name by which you were called?

    If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well. But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors. 10 For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it. 11 For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. 12 So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty. 13 For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.

    Faith Without Works Is Dead

    14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good2 is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

    18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! 20 Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; 23 and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. 24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25 And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.

    Footnotes

    [1] 2:1 Or brothers and sisters; also verses 5, 14
    [2] 2:16 Or benefit

    (ESV)

    In private: Amos 9; Luke 4

    Amos 9 (Listen)

    The Destruction of Israel

    I saw the Lord standing beside1 the altar, and he said:

      “Strike the capitals until the thresholds shake,
        and shatter them on the heads of all the people;2
      and those who are left of them I will kill with the sword;
        not one of them shall flee away;
        not one of them shall escape.
      “If they dig into Sheol,
        from there shall my hand take them;
      if they climb up to heaven,
        from there I will bring them down.
      If they hide themselves on the top of Carmel,
        from there I will search them out and take them;
      and if they hide from my sight at the bottom of the sea,
        there I will command the serpent, and it shall bite them.
      And if they go into captivity before their enemies,
        there I will command the sword, and it shall kill them;
      and I will fix my eyes upon them
        for evil and not for good.”
      The Lord GOD of hosts,
      he who touches the earth and it melts,
        and all who dwell in it mourn,
      and all of it rises like the Nile,
        and sinks again, like the Nile of Egypt;
      who builds his upper chambers in the heavens
        and founds his vault upon the earth;
      who calls for the waters of the sea
        and pours them out upon the surface of the earth—
      the LORD is his name.
      “Are you not like the Cushites to me,
        O people of Israel?” declares the LORD.
      “Did I not bring up Israel from the land of Egypt,
        and the Philistines from Caphtor and the Syrians from Kir?
      Behold, the eyes of the Lord GOD are upon the sinful kingdom,
        and I will destroy it from the surface of the ground,
        except that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob,”
          declares the LORD.
      “For behold, I will command,
        and shake the house of Israel among all the nations
      as one shakes with a sieve,
        but no pebble shall fall to the earth.
    10   All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword,
        who say, ‘Disaster shall not overtake or meet us.’

    The Restoration of Israel

    11   “In that day I will raise up
        the booth of David that is fallen
      and repair its breaches,
        and raise up its ruins
        and rebuild it as in the days of old,
    12   that they may possess the remnant of Edom
        and all the nations who are called by my name,”3
        declares the LORD who does this.
    13   “Behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD,
        “when the plowman shall overtake the reaper
        and the treader of grapes him who sows the seed;
      the mountains shall drip sweet wine,
        and all the hills shall flow with it.
    14   I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel,
        and they shall rebuild the ruined cities and inhabit them;
      they shall plant vineyards and drink their wine,
        and they shall make gardens and eat their fruit.
    15   I will plant them on their land,
        and they shall never again be uprooted
        out of the land that I have given them,”
          says the LORD your God.

    Footnotes

    [1] 9:1 Or on
    [2] 9:1 Hebrew all of them
    [3] 9:12 Hebrew; Septuagint (compare Acts 15:17) that the remnant of mankind and all the nations who are called by my name may seek the Lord

    (ESV)

    Luke 4 (Listen)

    The Temptation of Jesus

    And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry. The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone.’” And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, “To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.” And Jesus answered him, “It is written,

      “‘You shall worship the Lord your God,
        and him only shall you serve.’”

    And he took him to Jerusalem and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, 10 for it is written,

      “‘He will command his angels concerning you,
        to guard you,’

    11 and

      “‘On their hands they will bear you up,
        lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”

    12 And Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’” 13 And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time.

    Jesus Begins His Ministry

    14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and a report about him went out through all the surrounding country. 15 And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all.

    Jesus Rejected at Nazareth

    16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read. 17 And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written,

    18   “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
        because he has anointed me
        to proclaim good news to the poor.
      He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives
        and recovering of sight to the blind,
        to set at liberty those who are oppressed,
    19   to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.”

    20 And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21 And he began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 And all spoke well of him and marveled at the gracious words that were coming from his mouth. And they said, “Is not this Joseph's son?” 23 And he said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, ‘“Physician, heal yourself.” What we have heard you did at Capernaum, do here in your hometown as well.’” 24 And he said, “Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his hometown. 25 But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heavens were shut up three years and six months, and a great famine came over all the land, 26 and Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. 27 And there were many lepers1 in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.” 28 When they heard these things, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. 29 And they rose up and drove him out of the town and brought him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they could throw him down the cliff. 30 But passing through their midst, he went away.

    Jesus Heals a Man with an Unclean Demon

    31 And he went down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee. And he was teaching them on the Sabbath, 32 and they were astonished at his teaching, for his word possessed authority. 33 And in the synagogue there was a man who had the spirit of an unclean demon, and he cried out with a loud voice, 34 “Ha!2 What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God.” 35 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be silent and come out of him!” And when the demon had thrown him down in their midst, he came out of him, having done him no harm. 36 And they were all amazed and said to one another, “What is this word? For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits, and they come out!” 37 And reports about him went out into every place in the surrounding region.

    Jesus Heals Many

    38 And he arose and left the synagogue and entered Simon's house. Now Simon's mother-in-law was ill with a high fever, and they appealed to him on her behalf. 39 And he stood over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her, and immediately she rose and began to serve them.

    40 Now when the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to him, and he laid his hands on every one of them and healed them. 41 And demons also came out of many, crying, “You are the Son of God!” But he rebuked them and would not allow them to speak, because they knew that he was the Christ.

    Jesus Preaches in Synagogues

    42 And when it was day, he departed and went into a desolate place. And the people sought him and came to him, and would have kept him from leaving them, 43 but he said to them, “I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns as well; for I was sent for this purpose.” 44 And he was preaching in the synagogues of Judea.3

    Footnotes

    [1] 4:27 Leprosy was a term for several skin diseases; see Leviticus 13
    [2] 4:34 Or Leave us alone
    [3] 4:44 Some manuscripts Galilee

    (ESV)


              

    November 18: 1 Chronicles 11–12; Hebrews 13; Amos 7; Luke 2

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 11–12; Hebrews 13

    1 Chronicles 11–12 (Listen)

    David Anointed King

    11 Then all Israel gathered together to David at Hebron and said, “Behold, we are your bone and flesh. In times past, even when Saul was king, it was you who led out and brought in Israel. And the LORD your God said to you, ‘You shall be shepherd of my people Israel, and you shall be prince over my people Israel.’” So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the LORD. And they anointed David king over Israel, according to the word of the LORD by Samuel.

    David Takes Jerusalem

    And David and all Israel went to Jerusalem, that is, Jebus, where the Jebusites were, the inhabitants of the land. The inhabitants of Jebus said to David, “You will not come in here.” Nevertheless, David took the stronghold of Zion, that is, the city of David. David said, “Whoever strikes the Jebusites first shall be chief and commander.” And Joab the son of Zeruiah went up first, so he became chief. And David lived in the stronghold; therefore it was called the city of David. And he built the city all around from the Millo in complete circuit, and Joab repaired the rest of the city. And David became greater and greater, for the LORD of hosts was with him.

    David's Mighty Men

    10 Now these are the chiefs of David's mighty men, who gave him strong support in his kingdom, together with all Israel, to make him king, according to the word of the LORD concerning Israel. 11 This is an account of David's mighty men: Jashobeam, a Hachmonite, was chief of the three.1 He wielded his spear against 300 whom he killed at one time.

    12 And next to him among the three mighty men was Eleazar the son of Dodo, the Ahohite. 13 He was with David at Pas-dammim when the Philistines were gathered there for battle. There was a plot of ground full of barley, and the men fled from the Philistines. 14 But he took his2 stand in the midst of the plot and defended it and killed the Philistines. And the LORD saved them by a great victory.

    15 Three of the thirty chief men went down to the rock to David at the cave of Adullam, when the army of Philistines was encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. 16 David was then in the stronghold, and the garrison of the Philistines was then at Bethlehem. 17 And David said longingly, “Oh that someone would give me water to drink from the well of Bethlehem that is by the gate!” 18 Then the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate and took it and brought it to David. But David would not drink it. He poured it out to the LORD 19 and said, “Far be it from me before my God that I should do this. Shall I drink the lifeblood of these men? For at the risk of their lives they brought it.” Therefore he would not drink it. These things did the three mighty men.

    20 Now Abishai, the brother of Joab, was chief of the thirty.3 And he wielded his spear against 300 men and killed them and won a name beside the three. 21 He was the most renowned4 of the thirty5 and became their commander, but he did not attain to the three.

    22 And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was a valiant man6 of Kabzeel, a doer of great deeds. He struck down two heroes of Moab. He also went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen. 23 And he struck down an Egyptian, a man of great stature, five cubits7 tall. The Egyptian had in his hand a spear like a weaver's beam, but Benaiah went down to him with a staff and snatched the spear out of the Egyptian's hand and killed him with his own spear. 24 These things did Benaiah the son of Jehoiada and won a name beside the three mighty men. 25 He was renowned among the thirty, but he did not attain to the three. And David set him over his bodyguard.

    26 The mighty men were Asahel the brother of Joab, Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem, 27 Shammoth of Harod,8 Helez the Pelonite, 28 Ira the son of Ikkesh of Tekoa, Abiezer of Anathoth, 29 Sibbecai the Hushathite, Ilai the Ahohite, 30 Maharai of Netophah, Heled the son of Baanah of Netophah, 31 Ithai the son of Ribai of Gibeah of the people of Benjamin, Benaiah of Pirathon, 32 Hurai of the brooks of Gaash, Abiel the Arbathite, 33 Azmaveth of Baharum, Eliahba the Shaalbonite, 34 Hashem9 the Gizonite, Jonathan the son of Shagee the Hararite, 35 Ahiam the son of Sachar the Hararite, Eliphal the son of Ur, 36 Hepher the Mecherathite, Ahijah the Pelonite, 37 Hezro of Carmel, Naarai the son of Ezbai, 38 Joel the brother of Nathan, Mibhar the son of Hagri, 39 Zelek the Ammonite, Naharai of Beeroth, the armor-bearer of Joab the son of Zeruiah, 40 Ira the Ithrite, Gareb the Ithrite, 41 Uriah the Hittite, Zabad the son of Ahlai, 42 Adina the son of Shiza the Reubenite, a leader of the Reubenites, and thirty with him, 43 Hanan the son of Maacah, and Joshaphat the Mithnite, 44 Uzzia the Ashterathite, Shama and Jeiel the sons of Hotham the Aroerite, 45 Jediael the son of Shimri, and Joha his brother, the Tizite, 46 Eliel the Mahavite, and Jeribai, and Joshaviah, the sons of Elnaam, and Ithmah the Moabite, 47 Eliel, and Obed, and Jaasiel the Mezobaite.

    The Mighty Men Join David

    12 Now these are the men who came to David at Ziklag, while he could not move about freely because of Saul the son of Kish. And they were among the mighty men who helped him in war. They were bowmen and could shoot arrows and sling stones with either the right or the left hand; they were Benjaminites, Saul's kinsmen. The chief was Ahiezer, then Joash, both sons of Shemaah of Gibeah; also Jeziel and Pelet, the sons of Azmaveth; Beracah, Jehu of Anathoth, Ishmaiah of Gibeon, a mighty man among the thirty and a leader over the thirty; Jeremiah,10 Jahaziel, Johanan, Jozabad of Gederah, Eluzai,11 Jerimoth, Bealiah, Shemariah, Shephatiah the Haruphite; Elkanah, Isshiah, Azarel, Joezer, and Jashobeam, the Korahites; And Joelah and Zebadiah, the sons of Jeroham of Gedor.

    From the Gadites there went over to David at the stronghold in the wilderness mighty and experienced warriors, expert with shield and spear, whose faces were like the faces of lions and who were swift as gazelles upon the mountains: Ezer the chief, Obadiah second, Eliab third, 10 Mishmannah fourth, Jeremiah fifth, 11 Attai sixth, Eliel seventh, 12 Johanan eighth, Elzabad ninth, 13 Jeremiah tenth, Machbannai eleventh. 14 These Gadites were officers of the army; the least was a match for a hundred men and the greatest for a thousand. 15 These are the men who crossed the Jordan in the first month, when it was overflowing all its banks, and put to flight all those in the valleys, to the east and to the west.

    16 And some of the men of Benjamin and Judah came to the stronghold to David. 17 David went out to meet them and said to them, “If you have come to me in friendship to help me, my heart will be joined to you; but if to betray me to my adversaries, although there is no wrong in my hands, then may the God of our fathers see and rebuke you.” 18 Then the Spirit clothed Amasai, chief of the thirty, and he said,

      “We are yours, O David,
        and with you, O son of Jesse!
      Peace, peace to you,
        and peace to your helpers!
        For your God helps you.”

    Then David received them and made them officers of his troops.

    19 Some of the men of Manasseh deserted to David when he came with the Philistines for the battle against Saul. (Yet he did not help them, for the rulers of the Philistines took counsel and sent him away, saying, “At peril to our heads he will desert to his master Saul.”) 20 As he went to Ziklag, these men of Manasseh deserted to him: Adnah, Jozabad, Jediael, Michael, Jozabad, Elihu, and Zillethai, chiefs of thousands in Manasseh. 21 They helped David against the band of raiders, for they were all mighty men of valor and were commanders in the army. 22 For from day to day men came to David to help him, until there was a great army, like an army of God.

    23 These are the numbers of the divisions of the armed troops who came to David in Hebron to turn the kingdom of Saul over to him, according to the word of the LORD. 24 The men of Judah bearing shield and spear were 6,800 armed troops. 25 Of the Simeonites, mighty men of valor for war, 7,100. 26 Of the Levites 4,600. 27 The prince Jehoiada, of the house of Aaron, and with him 3,700. 28 Zadok, a young man mighty in valor, and twenty-two commanders from his own fathers' house. 29 Of the Benjaminites, the kinsmen of Saul, 3,000, of whom the majority had to that point kept their allegiance to the house of Saul. 30 Of the Ephraimites 20,800, mighty men of valor, famous men in their fathers' houses. 31 Of the half-tribe of Manasseh 18,000, who were expressly named to come and make David king. 32 Of Issachar, men who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do, 200 chiefs, and all their kinsmen under their command. 33 Of Zebulun 50,000 seasoned troops, equipped for battle with all the weapons of war, to help David12 with singleness of purpose. 34 Of Naphtali 1,000 commanders with whom were 37,000 men armed with shield and spear. 35 Of the Danites 28,600 men equipped for battle. 36 Of Asher 40,000 seasoned troops ready for battle. 37 Of the Reubenites and Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh from beyond the Jordan, 120,000 men armed with all the weapons of war.

    38 All these, men of war, arrayed in battle order, came to Hebron with a whole heart to make David king over all Israel. Likewise, all the rest of Israel were of a single mind to make David king. 39 And they were there with David for three days, eating and drinking, for their brothers had made preparation for them. 40 And also their relatives, from as far as Issachar and Zebulun and Naphtali, came bringing food on donkeys and on camels and on mules and on oxen, abundant provisions of flour, cakes of figs, clusters of raisins, and wine and oil, oxen and sheep, for there was joy in Israel.

    Footnotes

    [1] 11:11 Compare 2 Samuel 23:8; Hebrew thirty, or captains
    [2] 11:14 Compare 2 Samuel 23:12; Hebrew they . . . their
    [3] 11:20 Syriac; Hebrew three
    [4] 11:21 Compare 2 Samuel 23:19; Hebrew more renowned among the two
    [5] 11:21 Syriac; Hebrew three
    [6] 11:22 Syriac; Hebrew the son of a valiant man
    [7] 11:23 A cubit was about 18 inches or 45 centimeters
    [8] 11:27 Compare 2 Samuel 23:25; Hebrew the Harorite
    [9] 11:34 Compare Septuagint and 2 Samuel 23:32; Hebrew the sons of Hashem
    [10] 12:4 Hebrew verse 5
    [11] 12:5 Hebrew verse 6
    [12] 12:33 Septuagint; Hebrew lacks David

    (ESV)

    Hebrews 13 (Listen)

    Sacrifices Pleasing to God

    13 Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body. Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we can confidently say,

      “The Lord is my helper;
        I will not fear;
      what can man do to me?”

    Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings, for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not by foods, which have not benefited those devoted to them. 10 We have an altar from which those who serve the tent1 have no right to eat. 11 For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the holy places by the high priest as a sacrifice for sin are burned outside the camp. 12 So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood. 13 Therefore let us go to him outside the camp and bear the reproach he endured. 14 For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. 15 Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name. 16 Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.

    17 Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.

    18 Pray for us, for we are sure that we have a clear conscience, desiring to act honorably in all things. 19 I urge you the more earnestly to do this in order that I may be restored to you the sooner.

    Benediction

    20 Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, 21 equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us2 that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

    Final Greetings

    22 I appeal to you, brothers,3 bear with my word of exhortation, for I have written to you briefly. 23 You should know that our brother Timothy has been released, with whom I shall see you if he comes soon. 24 Greet all your leaders and all the saints. Those who come from Italy send you greetings. 25 Grace be with all of you.

    Footnotes

    [1] 13:10 Or tabernacle
    [2] 13:21 Some manuscripts you
    [3] 13:22 Or brothers and sisters

    (ESV)

    In private: Amos 7; Luke 2

    Amos 7 (Listen)

    Warning Visions

    This is what the Lord GOD showed me: behold, he was forming locusts when the latter growth was just beginning to sprout, and behold, it was the latter growth after the king's mowings. When they had finished eating the grass of the land, I said,

      “O Lord GOD, please forgive!
        How can Jacob stand?
        He is so small!”
      The LORD relented concerning this:
        “It shall not be,” said the LORD.

    This is what the Lord GOD showed me: behold, the Lord GOD was calling for a judgment by fire, and it devoured the great deep and was eating up the land. Then I said,

      “O Lord GOD, please cease!
        How can Jacob stand?
        He is so small!”
      The LORD relented concerning this:
        “This also shall not be,” said the Lord GOD.

    This is what he showed me: behold, the Lord was standing beside a wall built with a plumb line, with a plumb line in his hand. And the LORD said to me, “Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said,

      “Behold, I am setting a plumb line
        in the midst of my people Israel;
        I will never again pass by them;
      the high places of Isaac shall be made desolate,
        and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste,
        and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.”

    Amos Accused

    10 Then Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent to Jeroboam king of Israel, saying, “Amos has conspired against you in the midst of the house of Israel. The land is not able to bear all his words. 11 For thus Amos has said,

      “‘Jeroboam shall die by the sword,
        and Israel must go into exile
        away from his land.’”

    12 And Amaziah said to Amos, “O seer, go, flee away to the land of Judah, and eat bread there, and prophesy there, 13 but never again prophesy at Bethel, for it is the king's sanctuary, and it is a temple of the kingdom.”

    14 Then Amos answered and said to Amaziah, “I was1 no prophet, nor a prophet's son, but I was a herdsman and a dresser of sycamore figs. 15 But the LORD took me from following the flock, and the LORD said to me, ‘Go, prophesy to my people Israel.’ 16 Now therefore hear the word of the LORD.

      “You say, ‘Do not prophesy against Israel,
        and do not preach against the house of Isaac.’

    17 Therefore thus says the LORD:

      “‘Your wife shall be a prostitute in the city,
        and your sons and your daughters shall fall by the sword,
        and your land shall be divided up with a measuring line;
      you yourself shall die in an unclean land,
        and Israel shall surely go into exile away from its land.’”

    Footnotes

    [1] 7:14 Or am; twice in this verse

    (ESV)

    Luke 2 (Listen)

    The Birth of Jesus Christ

    In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when1 Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed,2 who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.3

    The Shepherds and the Angels

    And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

    14   “Glory to God in the highest,
        and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”4

    15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. 17 And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

    21 And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

    Jesus Presented at the Temple

    22 And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every male who first opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”) 24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the Law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.” 25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ. 27 And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the Law, 28 he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said,

    29   “Lord, now you are letting your servant5 depart in peace,
        according to your word;
    30   for my eyes have seen your salvation
    31     that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,
    32   a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
        and for glory to your people Israel.”

    33 And his father and his mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is appointed for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is opposed 35 (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.”

    36 And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, 37 and then as a widow until she was eighty-four.6 She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. 38 And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.

    The Return to Nazareth

    39 And when they had performed everything according to the Law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. 40 And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom. And the favor of God was upon him.

    The Boy Jesus in the Temple

    41 Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the Passover. 42 And when he was twelve years old, they went up according to custom. 43 And when the feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents did not know it, 44 but supposing him to be in the group they went a day's journey, but then they began to search for him among their relatives and acquaintances, 45 and when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem, searching for him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48 And when his parents7 saw him, they were astonished. And his mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been searching for you in great distress.” 49 And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?”8 50 And they did not understand the saying that he spoke to them. 51 And he went down with them and came to Nazareth and was submissive to them. And his mother treasured up all these things in her heart.

    52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature9 and in favor with God and man.

    Footnotes

    [1] 2:2 Or This was the registration before
    [2] 2:5 That is, one legally pledged to be married
    [3] 2:7 Or guest room
    [4] 2:14 Some manuscripts peace, good will among men
    [5] 2:29 Or bondservant
    [6] 2:37 Or as a widow for eighty-four years
    [7] 2:48 Greek they
    [8] 2:49 Or about my Father's business
    [9] 2:52 Or years

    (ESV)


              

    November 16: 1 Chronicles 7–8; Hebrews 11; Amos 5; Luke 1:1–38

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 7–8; Hebrews 11

    1 Chronicles 7–8 (Listen)

    Descendants of Issachar

    The sons1 of Issachar: Tola, Puah, Jashub, and Shimron, four. The sons of Tola: Uzzi, Rephaiah, Jeriel, Jahmai, Ibsam, and Shemuel, heads of their fathers' houses, namely of Tola, mighty warriors of their generations, their number in the days of David being 22,600. The son2 of Uzzi: Izrahiah. And the sons of Izrahiah: Michael, Obadiah, Joel, and Isshiah, all five of them were chief men. And along with them, by their generations, according to their fathers' houses, were units of the army for war, 36,000, for they had many wives and sons. Their kinsmen belonging to all the clans of Issachar were in all 87,000 mighty warriors, enrolled by genealogy.

    Descendants of Benjamin

    The sons of Benjamin: Bela, Becher, and Jediael, three. The sons of Bela: Ezbon, Uzzi, Uzziel, Jerimoth, and Iri, five, heads of fathers' houses, mighty warriors. And their enrollment by genealogies was 22,034. The sons of Becher: Zemirah, Joash, Eliezer, Elioenai, Omri, Jeremoth, Abijah, Anathoth, and Alemeth. All these were the sons of Becher. And their enrollment by genealogies, according to their generations, as heads of their fathers' houses, mighty warriors, was 20,200. 10 The son of Jediael: Bilhan. And the sons of Bilhan: Jeush, Benjamin, Ehud, Chenaanah, Zethan, Tarshish, and Ahishahar. 11 All these were the sons of Jediael according to the heads of their fathers' houses, mighty warriors, 17,200, able to go to war. 12 And Shuppim and Huppim were the sons of Ir, Hushim the son of Aher.

    Descendants of Naphtali

    13 The sons of Naphtali: Jahziel, Guni, Jezer and Shallum, the descendants of Bilhah.

    Descendants of Manasseh

    14 The sons of Manasseh: Asriel, whom his Aramean concubine bore; she bore Machir the father of Gilead. 15 And Machir took a wife for Huppim and for Shuppim. The name of his sister was Maacah. And the name of the second was Zelophehad, and Zelophehad had daughters. 16 And Maacah the wife of Machir bore a son, and she called his name Peresh; and the name of his brother was Sheresh; and his sons were Ulam and Rakem. 17 The son of Ulam: Bedan. These were the sons of Gilead the son of Machir, son of Manasseh. 18 And his sister Hammolecheth bore Ishhod, Abiezer, and Mahlah. 19 The sons of Shemida were Ahian, Shechem, Likhi, and Aniam.

    Descendants of Ephraim

    20 The sons of Ephraim: Shuthelah, and Bered his son, Tahath his son, Eleadah his son, Tahath his son, 21 Zabad his son, Shuthelah his son, and Ezer and Elead, whom the men of Gath who were born in the land killed, because they came down to raid their livestock. 22 And Ephraim their father mourned many days, and his brothers came to comfort him. 23 And Ephraim went in to his wife, and she conceived and bore a son. And he called his name Beriah, because disaster had befallen his house.3 24 His daughter was Sheerah, who built both Lower and Upper Beth-horon, and Uzzen-sheerah. 25 Rephah was his son, Resheph his son, Telah his son, Tahan his son, 26 Ladan his son, Ammihud his son, Elishama his son, 27 Nun4 his son, Joshua his son. 28 Their possessions and settlements were Bethel and its towns, and to the east Naaran, and to the west Gezer and its towns, Shechem and its towns, and Ayyah and its towns; 29 also in possession of the Manassites, Beth-shean and its towns, Taanach and its towns, Megiddo and its towns, Dor and its towns. In these lived the sons of Joseph the son of Israel.

    Descendants of Asher

    30 The sons of Asher: Imnah, Ishvah, Ishvi, Beriah, and their sister Serah. 31 The sons of Beriah: Heber, and Malchiel, who fathered Birzaith. 32 Heber fathered Japhlet, Shomer, Hotham, and their sister Shua. 33 The sons of Japhlet: Pasach, Bimhal, and Ashvath. These are the sons of Japhlet. 34 The sons of Shemer his brother: Rohgah, Jehubbah, and Aram. 35 The sons of Helem his brother: Zophah, Imna, Shelesh, and Amal. 36 The sons of Zophah: Suah, Harnepher, Shual, Beri, Imrah. 37 Bezer, Hod, Shamma, Shilshah, Ithran, and Beera. 38 The sons of Jether: Jephunneh, Pispa, and Ara. 39 The sons of Ulla: Arah, Hanniel, and Rizia. 40 All of these were men of Asher, heads of fathers' houses, approved, mighty warriors, chiefs of the princes. Their number enrolled by genealogies, for service in war, was 26,000 men.

    A Genealogy of Saul

    Benjamin fathered Bela his firstborn, Ashbel the second, Aharah the third, Nohah the fourth, and Rapha the fifth. And Bela had sons: Addar, Gera, Abihud, Abishua, Naaman, Ahoah, Gera, Shephuphan, and Huram. These are the sons of Ehud (they were heads of fathers' houses of the inhabitants of Geba, and they were carried into exile to Manahath): Naaman,5 Ahijah, and Gera, that is, Heglam, who fathered6 Uzza and Ahihud. And Shaharaim fathered sons in the country of Moab after he had sent away Hushim and Baara his wives. He fathered sons by Hodesh his wife: Jobab, Zibia, Mesha, Malcam, 10 Jeuz, Sachia, and Mirmah. These were his sons, heads of fathers' houses. 11 He also fathered sons by Hushim: Abitub and Elpaal. 12 The sons of Elpaal: Eber, Misham, and Shemed, who built Ono and Lod with its towns, 13 and Beriah and Shema (they were heads of fathers' houses of the inhabitants of Aijalon, who caused the inhabitants of Gath to flee); 14 and Ahio, Shashak, and Jeremoth. 15 Zebadiah, Arad, Eder, 16 Michael, Ishpah, and Joha were sons of Beriah. 17 Zebadiah, Meshullam, Hizki, Heber, 18 Ishmerai, Izliah, and Jobab were the sons of Elpaal. 19 Jakim, Zichri, Zabdi, 20 Elienai, Zillethai, Eliel, 21 Adaiah, Beraiah, and Shimrath were the sons of Shimei. 22 Ishpan, Eber, Eliel, 23 Abdon, Zichri, Hanan, 24 Hananiah, Elam, Anthothijah, 25 Iphdeiah, and Penuel were the sons of Shashak. 26 Shamsherai, Shehariah, Athaliah, 27 Jaareshiah, Elijah, and Zichri were the sons of Jeroham. 28 These were the heads of fathers' houses, according to their generations, chief men. These lived in Jerusalem.

    29 Jeiel7 the father of Gibeon lived in Gibeon, and the name of his wife was Maacah. 30 His firstborn son: Abdon, then Zur, Kish, Baal, Nadab, 31 Gedor, Ahio, Zecher, 32 and Mikloth (he fathered Shimeah). Now these also lived opposite their kinsmen in Jerusalem, with their kinsmen. 33 Ner was the father of Kish, Kish of Saul, Saul of Jonathan, Malchi-shua, Abinadab and Eshbaal; 34 and the son of Jonathan was Merib-baal; and Merib-baal was the father of Micah. 35 The sons of Micah: Pithon, Melech, Tarea, and Ahaz. 36 Ahaz fathered Jehoaddah, and Jehoaddah fathered Alemeth, Azmaveth, and Zimri. Zimri fathered Moza. 37 Moza fathered Binea; Raphah was his son, Eleasah his son, Azel his son. 38 Azel had six sons, and these are their names: Azrikam, Bocheru, Ishmael, Sheariah, Obadiah, and Hanan. All these were the sons of Azel. 39 The sons of Eshek his brother: Ulam his firstborn, Jeush the second, and Eliphelet the third. 40 The sons of Ulam were men who were mighty warriors, bowmen, having many sons and grandsons, 150. All these were Benjaminites.

    Footnotes

    [1] 7:1 Syriac (compare Vulgate); Hebrew And to the sons
    [2] 7:3 Hebrew sons; also verses 10, 12, 17
    [3] 7:23 Beriah sounds like the Hebrew for disaster
    [4] 7:27 Hebrew Non
    [5] 8:7 Hebrew and Naaman
    [6] 8:7 Or Gera; he carried them into exile and fathered
    [7] 8:29 Compare 9:35; Hebrew lacks Jeiel

    (ESV)

    Hebrews 11 (Listen)

    By Faith

    11 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.

    By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks. By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.

    By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God. 11 By faith Sarah herself received power to conceive, even when she was past the age, since she considered him faithful who had promised. 12 Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born descendants as many as the stars of heaven and as many as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.

    13 These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14 For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15 If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.

    17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was in the act of offering up his only son, 18 of whom it was said, “Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” 19 He considered that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which, figuratively speaking, he did receive him back. 20 By faith Isaac invoked future blessings on Jacob and Esau. 21 By faith Jacob, when dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, bowing in worship over the head of his staff. 22 By faith Joseph, at the end of his life, made mention of the exodus of the Israelites and gave directions concerning his bones.

    23 By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they were not afraid of the king's edict. 24 By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, 25 choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them.

    29 By faith the people crossed the Red Sea as on dry land, but the Egyptians, when they attempted to do the same, were drowned. 30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. 31 By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.

    32 And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets—33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. 35 Women received back their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. 36 Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. 37 They were stoned, they were sawn in two,1 they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated—38 of whom the world was not worthy—wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

    39 And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40 since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.

    Footnotes

    [1] 11:37 Some manuscripts add they were tempted

    (ESV)

    In private: Amos 5; Luke 1:1–38

    Amos 5 (Listen)

    Seek the Lord and Live

    Hear this word that I take up over you in lamentation, O house of Israel:

      “Fallen, no more to rise,
        is the virgin Israel;
      forsaken on her land,
        with none to raise her up.”

    For thus says the Lord GOD:

      “The city that went out a thousand
        shall have a hundred left,
      and that which went out a hundred
        shall have ten left
        to the house of Israel.”

    For thus says the LORD to the house of Israel:

      “Seek me and live;
        but do not seek Bethel,
      and do not enter into Gilgal
        or cross over to Beersheba;
      for Gilgal shall surely go into exile,
        and Bethel shall come to nothing.”
      Seek the LORD and live,
        lest he break out like fire in the house of Joseph,
        and it devour, with none to quench it for Bethel,
      O you who turn justice to wormwood1
        and cast down righteousness to the earth!
      He who made the Pleiades and Orion,
        and turns deep darkness into the morning
        and darkens the day into night,
      who calls for the waters of the sea
        and pours them out on the surface of the earth,
      the LORD is his name;
      who makes destruction flash forth against the strong,
        so that destruction comes upon the fortress.
    10   They hate him who reproves in the gate,
        and they abhor him who speaks the truth.
    11   Therefore because you trample on2 the poor
        and you exact taxes of grain from him,
      you have built houses of hewn stone,
        but you shall not dwell in them;
      you have planted pleasant vineyards,
        but you shall not drink their wine.
    12   For I know how many are your transgressions
        and how great are your sins—
      you who afflict the righteous, who take a bribe,
        and turn aside the needy in the gate.
    13   Therefore he who is prudent will keep silent in such a time,
        for it is an evil time.
    14   Seek good, and not evil,
        that you may live;
      and so the LORD, the God of hosts, will be with you,
        as you have said.
    15   Hate evil, and love good,
        and establish justice in the gate;
      it may be that the LORD, the God of hosts,
        will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.

    16 Therefore thus says the LORD, the God of hosts, the Lord:

      “In all the squares there shall be wailing,
        and in all the streets they shall say, ‘Alas! Alas!’
      They shall call the farmers to mourning
        and to wailing those who are skilled in lamentation,
    17   and in all vineyards there shall be wailing,
        for I will pass through your midst,”
          says the LORD.

    Let Justice Roll Down

    18   Woe to you who desire the day of the LORD!
        Why would you have the day of the LORD?
      It is darkness, and not light,
    19     as if a man fled from a lion,
        and a bear met him,
      or went into the house and leaned his hand against the wall,
        and a serpent bit him.
    20   Is not the day of the LORD darkness, and not light,
        and gloom with no brightness in it?
    21   “I hate, I despise your feasts,
        and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies.
    22   Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings,
        I will not accept them;
      and the peace offerings of your fattened animals,
        I will not look upon them.
    23   Take away from me the noise of your songs;
        to the melody of your harps I will not listen.
    24   But let justice roll down like waters,
        and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.

    25 “Did you bring to me sacrifices and offerings during the forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel? 26 You shall take up Sikkuth your king, and Kiyyun your star-god—your images that you made for yourselves, 27 and I will send you into exile beyond Damascus,” says the LORD, whose name is the God of hosts.

    Footnotes

    [1] 5:7 Or to bitter fruit
    [2] 5:11 Or you tax

    (ESV)

    Luke 1:1–38 (Listen)

    Dedication to Theophilus

    Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.

    Birth of John the Baptist Foretold

    In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah,1 of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.

    Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. 11 And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. 13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. 14 And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, 15 for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb. 16 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, 17 and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”

    18 And Zechariah said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years.” 19 And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. 20 And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day that these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time.” 21 And the people were waiting for Zechariah, and they were wondering at his delay in the temple. 22 And when he came out, he was unable to speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision in the temple. And he kept making signs to them and remained mute. 23 And when his time of service was ended, he went to his home.

    24 After these days his wife Elizabeth conceived, and for five months she kept herself hidden, saying, 25 “Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.”

    Birth of Jesus Foretold

    26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed2 to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!”3 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

    34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”4

    35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born5 will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant6 of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

    Footnotes

    [1] 1:5 Greek Zacharias
    [2] 1:27 That is, legally pledged to be married
    [3] 1:28 Some manuscripts add Blessed are you among women!
    [4] 1:34 Greek since I do not know a man
    [5] 1:35 Some manuscripts add of you
    [6] 1:38 Greek bondservant; also verse 48

    (ESV)


              

    November 15: 1 Chronicles 5–6; Hebrews 10; Psalms 148–150; Amos 4

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 5–6; Hebrews 10

    1 Chronicles 5–6 (Listen)

    Descendants of Reuben

    The sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel (for he was the firstborn, but because he defiled his father's couch, his birthright was given to the sons of Joseph the son of Israel, so that he could not be enrolled as the oldest son; though Judah became strong among his brothers and a chief came from him, yet the birthright belonged to Joseph), the sons of Reuben, the firstborn of Israel: Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi. The sons of Joel: Shemaiah his son, Gog his son, Shimei his son, Micah his son, Reaiah his son, Baal his son, Beerah his son, whom Tiglath-pileser1 king of Assyria carried away into exile; he was a chief of the Reubenites. And his kinsmen by their clans, when the genealogy of their generations was recorded: the chief, Jeiel, and Zechariah, and Bela the son of Azaz, son of Shema, son of Joel, who lived in Aroer, as far as Nebo and Baal-meon. He also lived to the east as far as the entrance of the desert this side of the Euphrates, because their livestock had multiplied in the land of Gilead. 10 And in the days of Saul they waged war against the Hagrites, who fell into their hand. And they lived in their tents throughout all the region east of Gilead.

    Descendants of Gad

    11 The sons of Gad lived over against them in the land of Bashan as far as Salecah: 12 Joel the chief, Shapham the second, Janai, and Shaphat in Bashan. 13 And their kinsmen according to their fathers' houses: Michael, Meshullam, Sheba, Jorai, Jacan, Zia and Eber, seven. 14 These were the sons of Abihail the son of Huri, son of Jaroah, son of Gilead, son of Michael, son of Jeshishai, son of Jahdo, son of Buz. 15 Ahi the son of Abdiel, son of Guni, was chief in their fathers' houses, 16 and they lived in Gilead, in Bashan and in its towns, and in all the pasturelands of Sharon to their limits. 17 All of these were recorded in genealogies in the days of Jotham king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam king of Israel.

    18 The Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh had valiant men who carried shield and sword, and drew the bow, expert in war, 44,760, able to go to war. 19 They waged war against the Hagrites, Jetur, Naphish, and Nodab. 20 And when they prevailed2 over them, the Hagrites and all who were with them were given into their hands, for they cried out to God in the battle, and he granted their urgent plea because they trusted in him. 21 They carried off their livestock: 50,000 of their camels, 250,000 sheep, 2,000 donkeys, and 100,000 men alive. 22 For many fell, because the war was of God. And they lived in their place until the exile.

    The Half-Tribe of Manasseh

    23 The members of the half-tribe of Manasseh lived in the land. They were very numerous from Bashan to Baal-hermon, Senir, and Mount Hermon. 24 These were the heads of their fathers' houses: Epher,3 Ishi, Eliel, Azriel, Jeremiah, Hodaviah, and Jahdiel, mighty warriors, famous men, heads of their fathers' houses. 25 But they broke faith with the God of their fathers, and whored after the gods of the peoples of the land, whom God had destroyed before them. 26 So the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria, the spirit of Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, and he took them into exile, namely, the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, and brought them to Halah, Habor, Hara, and the river Gozan, to this day.

    4

    Descendants of Levi

    The sons of Levi: Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. The sons of Kohath: Amram, Izhar, Hebron, and Uzziel. The children of Amram: Aaron, Moses, and Miriam. The sons of Aaron: Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar. Eleazar fathered Phinehas, Phinehas fathered Abishua, Abishua fathered Bukki, Bukki fathered Uzzi, Uzzi fathered Zerahiah, Zerahiah fathered Meraioth, Meraioth fathered Amariah, Amariah fathered Ahitub, Ahitub fathered Zadok, Zadok fathered Ahimaaz, Ahimaaz fathered Azariah, Azariah fathered Johanan, 10 and Johanan fathered Azariah (it was he who served as priest in the house that Solomon built in Jerusalem). 11 Azariah fathered Amariah, Amariah fathered Ahitub, 12 Ahitub fathered Zadok, Zadok fathered Shallum, 13 Shallum fathered Hilkiah, Hilkiah fathered Azariah, 14 Azariah fathered Seraiah, Seraiah fathered Jehozadak; 15 and Jehozadak went into exile when the LORD sent Judah and Jerusalem into exile by the hand of Nebuchadnezzar.

    16 5 The sons of Levi: Gershom, Kohath, and Merari. 17 And these are the names of the sons of Gershom: Libni and Shimei. 18 The sons of Kohath: Amram, Izhar, Hebron and Uzziel. 19 The sons of Merari: Mahli and Mushi. These are the clans of the Levites according to their fathers. 20 Of Gershom: Libni his son, Jahath his son, Zimmah his son, 21 Joah his son, Iddo his son, Zerah his son, Jeatherai his son. 22 The sons of Kohath: Amminadab his son, Korah his son, Assir his son, 23 Elkanah his son, Ebiasaph his son, Assir his son, 24 Tahath his son, Uriel his son, Uzziah his son, and Shaul his son. 25 The sons of Elkanah: Amasai and Ahimoth, 26 Elkanah his son, Zophai his son, Nahath his son, 27 Eliab his son, Jeroham his son, Elkanah his son. 28 The sons of Samuel: Joel6 his firstborn, the second Abijah.7 29 The sons of Merari: Mahli, Libni his son, Shimei his son, Uzzah his son, 30 Shimea his son, Haggiah his son, and Asaiah his son.

    31 These are the men whom David put in charge of the service of song in the house of the LORD after the ark rested there. 32 They ministered with song before the tabernacle of the tent of meeting until Solomon built the house of the LORD in Jerusalem, and they performed their service according to their order. 33 These are the men who served and their sons. Of the sons of the Kohathites: Heman the singer the son of Joel, son of Samuel, 34 son of Elkanah, son of Jeroham, son of Eliel, son of Toah, 35 son of Zuph, son of Elkanah, son of Mahath, son of Amasai, 36 son of Elkanah, son of Joel, son of Azariah, son of Zephaniah, 37 son of Tahath, son of Assir, son of Ebiasaph, son of Korah, 38 son of Izhar, son of Kohath, son of Levi, son of Israel; 39 and his brother Asaph, who stood on his right hand, namely, Asaph the son of Berechiah, son of Shimea, 40 son of Michael, son of Baaseiah, son of Malchijah, 41 son of Ethni, son of Zerah, son of Adaiah, 42 son of Ethan, son of Zimmah, son of Shimei, 43 son of Jahath, son of Gershom, son of Levi. 44 On the left hand were their brothers, the sons of Merari: Ethan the son of Kishi, son of Abdi, son of Malluch, 45 son of Hashabiah, son of Amaziah, son of Hilkiah, 46 son of Amzi, son of Bani, son of Shemer, 47 son of Mahli, son of Mushi, son of Merari, son of Levi. 48 And their brothers the Levites were appointed for all the service of the tabernacle of the house of God.

    49 But Aaron and his sons made offerings on the altar of burnt offering and on the altar of incense for all the work of the Most Holy Place, and to make atonement for Israel, according to all that Moses the servant of God had commanded. 50 These are the sons of Aaron: Eleazar his son, Phinehas his son, Abishua his son, 51 Bukki his son, Uzzi his son, Zerahiah his son, 52 Meraioth his son, Amariah his son, Ahitub his son, 53 Zadok his son, Ahimaaz his son.

    54 These are their dwelling places according to their settlements within their borders: to the sons of Aaron of the clans of Kohathites, for theirs was the first lot, 55 to them they gave Hebron in the land of Judah and its surrounding pasturelands, 56 but the fields of the city and its villages they gave to Caleb the son of Jephunneh. 57 To the sons of Aaron they gave the cities of refuge: Hebron, Libnah with its pasturelands, Jattir, Eshtemoa with its pasturelands, 58 Hilen with its pasturelands, Debir with its pasturelands, 59 Ashan with its pasturelands, and Beth-shemesh with its pasturelands; 60 and from the tribe of Benjamin, Gibeon,8 Geba with its pasturelands, Alemeth with its pasturelands, and Anathoth with its pasturelands. All their cities throughout their clans were thirteen.

    61 To the rest of the Kohathites were given by lot out of the clan of the tribe, out of the half-tribe, the half of Manasseh, ten cities. 62 To the Gershomites according to their clans were allotted thirteen cities out of the tribes of Issachar, Asher, Naphtali and Manasseh in Bashan. 63 To the Merarites according to their clans were allotted twelve cities out of the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and Zebulun. 64 So the people of Israel gave the Levites the cities with their pasturelands. 65 They gave by lot out of the tribes of Judah, Simeon, and Benjamin these cities that are mentioned by name.

    66 And some of the clans of the sons of Kohath had cities of their territory out of the tribe of Ephraim. 67 They were given the cities of refuge: Shechem with its pasturelands in the hill country of Ephraim, Gezer with its pasturelands, 68 Jokmeam with its pasturelands, Beth-horon with its pasturelands, 69 Aijalon with its pasturelands, Gath-rimmon with its pasturelands, 70 and out of the half-tribe of Manasseh, Aner with its pasturelands, and Bileam with its pasturelands, for the rest of the clans of the Kohathites.

    71 To the Gershomites were given out of the clan of the half-tribe of Manasseh: Golan in Bashan with its pasturelands and Ashtaroth with its pasturelands; 72 and out of the tribe of Issachar: Kedesh with its pasturelands, Daberath with its pasturelands, 73 Ramoth with its pasturelands, and Anem with its pasturelands; 74 out of the tribe of Asher: Mashal with its pasturelands, Abdon with its pasturelands, 75 Hukok with its pasturelands, and Rehob with its pasturelands; 76 and out of the tribe of Naphtali: Kedesh in Galilee with its pasturelands, Hammon with its pasturelands, and Kiriathaim with its pasturelands. 77 To the rest of the Merarites were allotted out of the tribe of Zebulun: Rimmono with its pasturelands, Tabor with its pasturelands, 78 and beyond the Jordan at Jericho, on the east side of the Jordan, out of the tribe of Reuben: Bezer in the wilderness with its pasturelands, Jahzah with its pasturelands, 79 Kedemoth with its pasturelands, and Mephaath with its pasturelands; 80 and out of the tribe of Gad: Ramoth in Gilead with its pasturelands, Mahanaim with its pasturelands, 81 Heshbon with its pasturelands, and Jazer with its pasturelands.

    Footnotes

    [1] 5:6 Hebrew Tilgath-pilneser; also verse 26
    [2] 5:20 Or they were helped to prevail
    [3] 5:24 Septuagint, Vulgate; Hebrew and Epher
    [4] 5:26 Ch 5:27 in Hebrew
    [5] 6:16 Ch 6:1 in Hebrew
    [6] 6:28 Septuagint, Syriac (compare verse 33 and 1 Samuel 8:2); Hebrew lacks Joel
    [7] 6:28 Hebrew and Abijah
    [8] 6:60 Septuagint, Syriac (compare Joshua 21:17); Hebrew lacks Gibeon

    (ESV)

    Hebrews 10 (Listen)

    Christ's Sacrifice Once for All

    10 For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have any consciousness of sins? But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.

    Consequently, when Christ1 came into the world, he said,

      “Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired,
        but a body have you prepared for me;
      in burnt offerings and sin offerings
        you have taken no pleasure.
      Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come to do your will, O God,
        as it is written of me in the scroll of the book.’”

    When he said above, “You have neither desired nor taken pleasure in sacrifices and offerings and burnt offerings and sin offerings” (these are offered according to the law), then he added, “Behold, I have come to do your will.” He does away with the first in order to establish the second. 10 And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

    11 And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But when Christ2 had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. 14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.

    15 And the Holy Spirit also bears witness to us; for after saying,

    16   “This is the covenant that I will make with them
        after those days, declares the Lord:
      I will put my laws on their hearts,
        and write them on their minds,”

    17 then he adds,

      “I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more.”

    18 Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin.

    The Full Assurance of Faith

    19 Therefore, brothers,3 since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, 20 by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

    26 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. 28 Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. 29 How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has trampled underfoot the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know him who said, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge his people.” 31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

    32 But recall the former days when, after you were enlightened, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings, 33 sometimes being publicly exposed to reproach and affliction, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. 34 For you had compassion on those in prison, and you joyfully accepted the plundering of your property, since you knew that you yourselves had a better possession and an abiding one. 35 Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. 36 For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised. 37 For,

      “Yet a little while,
        and the coming one will come and will not delay;
    38   but my righteous one shall live by faith,
        and if he shrinks back,
      my soul has no pleasure in him.”

    39 But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.

    Footnotes

    [1] 10:5 Greek he
    [2] 10:12 Greek this one
    [3] 10:19 Or brothers and sisters

    (ESV)

    In private: Psalms 148–150; Amos 4

    Psalms 148–150 (Listen)

    Praise the Name of the Lord

    148   Praise the LORD!
      Praise the LORD from the heavens;
        praise him in the heights!
      Praise him, all his angels;
        praise him, all his hosts!
      Praise him, sun and moon,
        praise him, all you shining stars!
      Praise him, you highest heavens,
        and you waters above the heavens!
      Let them praise the name of the LORD!
        For he commanded and they were created.
      And he established them forever and ever;
        he gave a decree, and it shall not pass away.1
      Praise the LORD from the earth,
        you great sea creatures and all deeps,
      fire and hail, snow and mist,
        stormy wind fulfilling his word!
      Mountains and all hills,
        fruit trees and all cedars!
    10   Beasts and all livestock,
        creeping things and flying birds!
    11   Kings of the earth and all peoples,
        princes and all rulers of the earth!
    12   Young men and maidens together,
        old men and children!
    13   Let them praise the name of the LORD,
        for his name alone is exalted;
        his majesty is above earth and heaven.
    14   He has raised up a horn for his people,
        praise for all his saints,
        for the people of Israel who are near to him.
      Praise the LORD!

    Sing to the Lord a New Song

    149   Praise the LORD!
      Sing to the LORD a new song,
        his praise in the assembly of the godly!
      Let Israel be glad in his Maker;
        let the children of Zion rejoice in their King!
      Let them praise his name with dancing,
        making melody to him with tambourine and lyre!
      For the LORD takes pleasure in his people;
        he adorns the humble with salvation.
      Let the godly exult in glory;
        let them sing for joy on their beds.
      Let the high praises of God be in their throats
        and two-edged swords in their hands,
      to execute vengeance on the nations
        and punishments on the peoples,
      to bind their kings with chains
        and their nobles with fetters of iron,
      to execute on them the judgment written!
        This is honor for all his godly ones.
      Praise the LORD!

    Let Everything Praise the Lord

    150   Praise the LORD!
      Praise God in his sanctuary;
        praise him in his mighty heavens!2
      Praise him for his mighty deeds;
        praise him according to his excellent greatness!
      Praise him with trumpet sound;
        praise him with lute and harp!
      Praise him with tambourine and dance;
        praise him with strings and pipe!
      Praise him with sounding cymbals;
        praise him with loud clashing cymbals!
      Let everything that has breath praise the LORD!
      Praise the LORD!

    Footnotes

    [1] 148:6 Or it shall not be transgressed
    [2] 150:1 Hebrew expanse (compare Genesis 1:6–8)

    (ESV)

    Amos 4 (Listen)

      “Hear this word, you cows of Bashan,
        who are on the mountain of Samaria,
      who oppress the poor, who crush the needy,
        who say to your husbands, ‘Bring, that we may drink!’
      The Lord GOD has sworn by his holiness
        that, behold, the days are coming upon you,
      when they shall take you away with hooks,
        even the last of you with fishhooks.
      And you shall go out through the breaches,
        each one straight ahead;
        and you shall be cast out into Harmon,”
          declares the LORD.
      “Come to Bethel, and transgress;
        to Gilgal, and multiply transgression;
      bring your sacrifices every morning,
        your tithes every three days;
      offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving of that which is leavened,
        and proclaim freewill offerings, publish them;
        for so you love to do, O people of Israel!”
          declares the Lord GOD.

    Israel Has Not Returned to the Lord

      “I gave you cleanness of teeth in all your cities,
        and lack of bread in all your places,
      yet you did not return to me,”
          declares the LORD.
      “I also withheld the rain from you
        when there were yet three months to the harvest;
      I would send rain on one city,
        and send no rain on another city;
      one field would have rain,
        and the field on which it did not rain would wither;
      so two or three cities would wander to another city
        to drink water, and would not be satisfied;
      yet you did not return to me,”
          declares the LORD.
      “I struck you with blight and mildew;
        your many gardens and your vineyards,
        your fig trees and your olive trees the locust devoured;
      yet you did not return to me,”
          declares the LORD.
    10   “I sent among you a pestilence after the manner of Egypt;
        I killed your young men with the sword,
      and carried away your horses,1
        and I made the stench of your camp go up into your nostrils;
      yet you did not return to me,”
          declares the LORD.
    11   “I overthrew some of you,
        as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah,
        and you were as a brand2 plucked out of the burning;
      yet you did not return to me,”
          declares the LORD.
    12   “Therefore thus I will do to you, O Israel;
        because I will do this to you,
        prepare to meet your God, O Israel!”
    13   For behold, he who forms the mountains and creates the wind,
        and declares to man what is his thought,
      who makes the morning darkness,
        and treads on the heights of the earth—
        the LORD, the God of hosts, is his name!

    Footnotes

    [1] 4:10 Hebrew along with the captivity of your horses
    [2] 4:11 That is, a burning stick

    (ESV)


              

    November 14: 1 Chronicles 3–4; Hebrews 9; Psalms 146–147; Amos 3

     Cache   

    With family: 1 Chronicles 3–4; Hebrews 9

    1 Chronicles 3–4 (Listen)

    Descendants of David

    These are the sons of David who were born to him in Hebron: the firstborn, Amnon, by Ahinoam the Jezreelite; the second, Daniel, by Abigail the Carmelite, the third, Absalom, whose mother was Maacah, the daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur; the fourth, Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith; the fifth, Shephatiah, by Abital; the sixth, Ithream, by his wife Eglah; six were born to him in Hebron, where he reigned for seven years and six months. And he reigned thirty-three years in Jerusalem. These were born to him in Jerusalem: Shimea, Shobab, Nathan and Solomon, four by Bath-shua, the daughter of Ammiel; then Ibhar, Elishama, Eliphelet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Eliada, and Eliphelet, nine. All these were David's sons, besides the sons of the concubines, and Tamar was their sister.

    10 The son of Solomon was Rehoboam, Abijah his son, Asa his son, Jehoshaphat his son, 11 Joram his son, Ahaziah his son, Joash his son, 12 Amaziah his son, Azariah his son, Jotham his son, 13 Ahaz his son, Hezekiah his son, Manasseh his son, 14 Amon his son, Josiah his son. 15 The sons of Josiah: Johanan the firstborn, the second Jehoiakim, the third Zedekiah, the fourth Shallum. 16 The descendants of Jehoiakim: Jeconiah his son, Zedekiah his son; 17 and the sons of Jeconiah, the captive: Shealtiel his son, 18 Malchiram, Pedaiah, Shenazzar, Jekamiah, Hoshama and Nedabiah; 19 and the sons of Pedaiah: Zerubbabel and Shimei; and the sons of Zerubbabel: Meshullam and Hananiah, and Shelomith was their sister; 20 and Hashubah, Ohel, Berechiah, Hasadiah, and Jushab-hesed, five. 21 The sons of Hananiah: Pelatiah and Jeshaiah, his son1 Rephaiah, his son Arnan, his son Obadiah, his son Shecaniah. 22 The son2 of Shecaniah: Shemaiah. And the sons of Shemaiah: Hattush, Igal, Bariah, Neariah, and Shaphat, six. 23 The sons of Neariah: Elioenai, Hizkiah, and Azrikam, three. 24 The sons of Elioenai: Hodaviah, Eliashib, Pelaiah, Akkub, Johanan, Delaiah, and Anani, seven.

    Descendants of Judah

    The sons of Judah: Perez, Hezron, Carmi, Hur, and Shobal. Reaiah the son of Shobal fathered Jahath, and Jahath fathered Ahumai and Lahad. These were the clans of the Zorathites. These were the sons3 of Etam: Jezreel, Ishma, and Idbash; and the name of their sister was Hazzelelponi, and Penuel fathered Gedor, and Ezer fathered Hushah. These were the sons of Hur, the firstborn of Ephrathah, the father of Bethlehem. Ashhur, the father of Tekoa, had two wives, Helah and Naarah; Naarah bore him Ahuzzam, Hepher, Temeni, and Haahashtari. These were the sons of Naarah. The sons of Helah: Zereth, Izhar, and Ethnan. Koz fathered Anub, Zobebah, and the clans of Aharhel, the son of Harum. Jabez was more honorable than his brothers; and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.”4 10 Jabez called upon the God of Israel, saying, “Oh that you would bless me and enlarge my border, and that your hand might be with me, and that you would keep me from harm5 so that it might not bring me pain!” And God granted what he asked. 11 Chelub, the brother of Shuhah, fathered Mehir, who fathered Eshton. 12 Eshton fathered Beth-rapha, Paseah, and Tehinnah, the father of Ir-nahash. These are the men of Recah. 13 The sons of Kenaz: Othniel and Seraiah; and the sons of Othniel: Hathath and Meonothai.6 14 Meonothai fathered Ophrah; and Seraiah fathered Joab, the father of Ge-harashim,7 so-called because they were craftsmen. 15 The sons of Caleb the son of Jephunneh: Iru, Elah, and Naam; and the son8 of Elah: Kenaz. 16 The sons of Jehallelel: Ziph, Ziphah, Tiria, and Asarel. 17 The sons of Ezrah: Jether, Mered, Epher, and Jalon. These are the sons of Bithiah, the daughter of Pharaoh, whom Mered married;9 and she conceived and bore10 Miriam, Shammai, and Ishbah, the father of Eshtemoa. 18 And his Judahite wife bore Jered the father of Gedor, Heber the father of Soco, and Jekuthiel the father of Zanoah. 19 The sons of the wife of Hodiah, the sister of Naham, were the fathers of Keilah the Garmite and Eshtemoa the Maacathite. 20 The sons of Shimon: Amnon, Rinnah, Ben-hanan, and Tilon. The sons of Ishi: Zoheth and Ben-zoheth. 21 The sons of Shelah the son of Judah: Er the father of Lecah, Laadah the father of Mareshah, and the clans of the house of linen workers at Beth-ashbea; 22 and Jokim, and the men of Cozeba, and Joash, and Saraph, who ruled in Moab and returned to Lehem11 (now the records12 are ancient). 23 These were the potters who were inhabitants of Netaim and Gederah. They lived there in the king's service.

    Descendants of Simeon

    24 The sons of Simeon: Nemuel, Jamin, Jarib, Zerah, Shaul; 25 Shallum was his son, Mibsam his son, Mishma his son. 26 The sons of Mishma: Hammuel his son, Zaccur his son, Shimei his son. 27 Shimei had sixteen sons and six daughters; but his brothers did not have many children, nor did all their clan multiply like the men of Judah. 28 They lived in Beersheba, Moladah, Hazar-shual, 29 Bilhah, Ezem, Tolad, 30 Bethuel, Hormah, Ziklag, 31 Beth-marcaboth, Hazar-susim, Beth-biri, and Shaaraim. These were their cities until David reigned. 32 And their villages were Etam, Ain, Rimmon, Tochen, and Ashan, five cities, 33 along with all their villages that were around these cities as far as Baal. These were their settlements, and they kept a genealogical record.

    34 Meshobab, Jamlech, Joshah the son of Amaziah, 35 Joel, Jehu the son of Joshibiah, son of Seraiah, son of Asiel, 36 Elioenai, Jaakobah, Jeshohaiah, Asaiah, Adiel, Jesimiel, Benaiah, 37 Ziza the son of Shiphi, son of Allon, son of Jedaiah, son of Shimri, son of Shemaiah—38 these mentioned by name were princes in their clans, and their fathers' houses increased greatly. 39 They journeyed to the entrance of Gedor, to the east side of the valley, to seek pasture for their flocks, 40 where they found rich, good pasture, and the land was very broad, quiet, and peaceful, for the former inhabitants there belonged to Ham. 41 These, registered by name, came in the days of Hezekiah, king of Judah, and destroyed their tents and the Meunites who were found there, and marked them for destruction to this day, and settled in their place, because there was pasture there for their flocks. 42 And some of them, five hundred men of the Simeonites, went to Mount Seir, having as their leaders Pelatiah, Neariah, Rephaiah, and Uzziel, the sons of Ishi. 43 And they defeated the remnant of the Amalekites who had escaped, and they have lived there to this day.

    Footnotes

    [1] 3:21 Septuagint (compare Syriac, Vulgate); Hebrew sons of; four times in this verse
    [2] 3:22 Hebrew sons
    [3] 4:3 Septuagint (compare Vulgate); Hebrew father
    [4] 4:9 Jabez sounds like the Hebrew for pain
    [5] 4:10 Or evil
    [6] 4:13 Septuagint, Vulgate; Hebrew lacks Meonothai
    [7] 4:14 Ge-harashim means valley of craftsmen
    [8] 4:15 Hebrew sons
    [9] 4:17 The clause These are . . . married is transposed from verse 18
    [10] 4:17 Hebrew lacks and bore
    [11] 4:22 Vulgate (compare Septuagint); Hebrew and Jashubi-lahem
    [12] 4:22 Or matters

    (ESV)

    Hebrews 9 (Listen)

    The Earthly Holy Place

    Now even the first covenant had regulations for worship and an earthly place of holiness. For a tent1 was prepared, the first section, in which were the lampstand and the table and the bread of the Presence.2 It is called the Holy Place. Behind the second curtain was a second section3 called the Most Holy Place, having the golden altar of incense and the ark of the covenant covered on all sides with gold, in which was a golden urn holding the manna, and Aaron's staff that budded, and the tablets of the covenant. Above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. Of these things we cannot now speak in detail.

    These preparations having thus been made, the priests go regularly into the first section, performing their ritual duties, but into the second only the high priest goes, and he but once a year, and not without taking blood, which he offers for himself and for the unintentional sins of the people. By this the Holy Spirit indicates that the way into the holy places is not yet opened as long as the first section is still standing (which is symbolic for the present age).4 According to this arrangement, gifts and sacrifices are offered that cannot perfect the conscience of the worshiper, 10 but deal only with food and drink and various washings, regulations for the body imposed until the time of reformation.

    Redemption Through the Blood of Christ

    11 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come,5 then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) 12 he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify6 for the purification of the flesh, 14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our7 conscience from dead works to serve the living God.

    15 Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.8 16 For where a will is involved, the death of the one who made it must be established. 17 For a will takes effect only at death, since it is not in force as long as the one who made it is alive. 18 Therefore not even the first covenant was inaugurated without blood. 19 For when every commandment of the law had been declared by Moses to all the people, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water and scarlet wool and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people, 20 saying, “This is the blood of the covenant that God commanded for you.” 21