Could The Regime In Syria Be Reaching An End?

Violence Unabated As Envoys Seek End Syrian War
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has dispatched an envoy to Russia for discussions on proposals proposed by UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi to end the conflict.

In a sign that the Assad could be losing grip of his regime, a high-ranking Arm general, Maj. Gen. Abdul-Aziz Jassem al-Shallal, announced his resignation and indicated others wish to, but are unable, to join him.

In another positive note for anti-regime forces, Syrian rebels made additional gains in towns near the northern border of Turkey as more than 20, including children, were killed in an attack by Syrian Army tanks.

Treasury Announces Debt Limit Will Be Reach At Year’s End
Congress might be focused on averting the fiscal cliff, but Treasury Secretary added another large item on their to-do list when he announced the US would reach the debt ceiling on December 31. In a letter to Congress, Geithner said Treasury “will shortly begin taking certain extraordinary measures authorized by law to temporarily postpone the date that the United States would otherwise default on its legal obligations.”

Literature Growing More Cosmopolitan
Joseph O’Neill, a winner of the 2009 PEN/Faulkner for fiction, contends in The Atlantic that the realities of today are making cosmopolitanism, particularly in literature, more relevant.

“The relevance of cosmopolitanism is fast becoming more than theoretical. As a matter of daily reality and to a degree previously unknown, we are faced with the experiences of others everywhere. This imposes new demands on consciences and nationalistic categories. Literature is not immune from such demands; one might even suggest, since we writers are concerned with reality and conscientiousness, that literature should be unusually interested in these demands,” he writes.

Where Will The World’s Attention Be In 2013?

2012 was dominated by crises in Syria, the Congo, and the Middle East, so what can we expect from coming year? The Atlantic provides a run-down of some of the areas around the globe that will demand our attention. Among the areas of concern: the possibility of a third intifada, a worsening instability in Ethiopia, and unrest resulting from the possible deaths of Venezu


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