I can’t say the usual New Year greeting. I just don’t see that much to be happy about when looking around the world right now. Neither at home, nor overseas. There was a lot of upbeat talk this morning about the “deal” made between Biden and the Senate. The problem is, there is no way that deal is going to be swallowed by the House radicals. The media were selling relief, but I don’t see it. The fateful line will be crossed, and the country will probably suffer another “recession”.
Maybe some good will come of Israel’s relaxation of restrictions on Gazans, but I suspect the gesture is a sop to the more liberal parts of Israeli society ahead of the election coming up this month. However, the ability to bring in more food, building materials, etc. for awhile could improve the lives of the Gazans a bit, without changing any of the major land issues.
Syria is still taking itself apart thanks to the stubbornness of its ruling elite. Hundreds of people are being killed daily; more are fleeing or trying to.
In Iraq more are being killed pretty much on a daily basis by bombs and bullets – an example of America’s inability to remake any country in what we fantasize as our image. Afghanistan will go the same way. All we do is create failed states.
Now, it is another day, and the House of Representatives surprised me. Even though the Deal puts off the serious questions people are asking about debts and taxes, we learned that Republicans can be scared enough to agree to a deal they hate.
Afghanistan will probably get left in the lurch, regardless of all the Obama talk of staying to help train. Some in the military seem finally to be getting the message that we aren’t wanted there and don’t know how to help.
The only place I see hope is in some musicians around the world like these:
They cheer the heart and remind us all that there can be spontaneous beauty and joy in the world. Just looking at the faces in the square with the children conducting and others participating in the singing remind me that Beethoven’s music is for everyone forever, and that maybe there’s hope afterall.