Roundup 2016-12-16

New events

Syria: Aleppo Falls.
Reuters: Battle of Aleppo ends after years of bloodshed with rebel withdrawal
NYT: turning point: all key cities now under Syrian control
WPost: Timeline of key events since March 2011
WPost: Russia says all military action has stopped, Syrian govt now in control.
… Evacuation deals reached for last rebel zones in Aleppo
… Here’s what the end of Aleppo’s rebellion looks like (horrible)
NYT: ‘A complete meltdown of humanity’: Aleppo civilians gunned down as they flee
Atlantic: How Assad, Russia achieved major victory at devastating cost.
New Yorker: The battle for Aleppo, Syria’s Stalingrad, ends (longread)
Al Jazeera: a quick take on some key questions about what’s next for Syria’s war
… because it’s not quite over yet.

China vs. USA over Taiwan, could impact workers & work
BBC: China: Trump’s one-china comments risk Taiwan peace
Reuters: South China Sea tensions spike (Video).
… Chinese weapons systems on islandsUS admiral with strong words.
Chinese billionaire Wang JIanlin warns Donald Trump about losing US jobs
Keep the long view: 5 myths about US-China relations
NPR: Trump, China and a long history of misunderstandings.
At the same time, keep in the mix the new NGO management law:
Security message for US citizens as foreign NGO management law goes into effect 1/1
… ‘may face special scrutiny’

Africa, #War: The Islamic State is losing, and Al Qaeda is winning.
Afghanistan: Kunduz: Tending to the living & dead in a battle-torn Afghan city
China, #Connectedness: map shows how it’s building a global trade empire.
… Chinese airlines are flooding the world with super-cheap airfares.
… #Unrest: Xinjiang adopts strict Internet controls.
Egypt, #Unrest: Deadly bombing at Coptic CathedralIS group claims responsibility.
… FP: How Egypt’s Copts fell out of love with President Sisi
… Province Mag: A rough stretch in a season of waiting for Egyptian Christians: nuance.
… NYT: Egypt’s Christian-Muslim divide, from 2005 but still relevant.
India, #Corruption: just made a big mistake with its currency ban
… ‘without new measures to combat corruption… doubt… lasting benefits’
India: No questions please, you are the media
… ‘government monitors every word of journalists but dare them to question it’
Iran, #Connected: Boeing signs deal to provide 80 airplanes.
Indonesia: NYT, #1Religion: Jakarta governor issues tearful denial of insulting Islam.
… BBC: Emotional scenes as Ahok trial begins.
Nigeria: Deepening food crisis, imminent famine threaten northeast.
… UNICEF estimates 400,000 children at risk of starvation.
… Famine may have killed 2,000 in the northeast this year.
… ‘humanitarian crisis created by Boko Haram’s Islamic uprising…’
N Korea: with uncertainty in Washington & Seoul, what next for Pyongyang?
… and, How big is North Korea’s market economy?
Syria, #War: ISIS re-enters Palmyra.
Turkey, #Unrest: Suicide bombings in Istanbul near stadiums kill 44.
… Kurdish militant group claimed responsibility.
… Turkey arrests 200, mainly Pro-Kurd Party members.
Yemen, #War: the impact of the war on Yemeni diaspora beyond the borders.

New Data
CFR: Preventive Priorities Survey, 2017: top threats to watch out for
Pew: key findings on how world religions differ by education.
… Jews, Christians have most schooling; Muslims, Hindus have lowest.

Longer reads
EMQ ($): Piercing the Purdah.
… empowering women for active engagement in mission through entrepreneurship
… a case study of ECWA in northern Nigeria: purdah, poverty, persecution
EMQ: Fruitful near-culture church planters: a qualitative study.
… two most oft-mentioned fruitful practices: ‘persevering through suffering’
… and ‘engaging in regular, frequent prayer.’
EMQ: The Launch Survey: helps/hindrances for launching into long-term.
… Relationships matter, Millennials are different, much more
IJFM: Defining “Unreached”: A short history.
… From April-June 2016 issue, but if you haven’t seen it, you should.
IBMR: “Do not remember the former things.”
… a mild critique of people group thinking, captures the idea of ground complexity
… our people group lists can create boxes in our minds.
… we need ethnographic skills to exegete the complexities of local realities
IBMR: “Global Trends & the North American Church in Mission.”
… advocates N American role as “facilitator and servant” and partner.

Books mentioned
Donald A. McGavran: a biography of the 20th century’s premiere missiologist
… book review by George C. Hunter

Lifehacking, Tactics, Skills, Rules
How one founder went dark on social media, and the benefits
… importance of personal, face to face relationships & time management
Nir Eya: How to stay informed without losing your mind.
… ‘purveyors of online news profit most when we feel at our worst’
… ‘The internet never says, you’ve had enough, now go away’
Brad Feld: December Depression
… importance of “How am I?” and check-ins, relationships, personal health.
Sorry, you can’t speed read: about comprehension, not visual ability.

Pioneer Mission Startups, Strategy
“Give away your legos” and other commandments for scaling startups.
… ‘if you don’t manage scaling proactively, you can end up in trouble.’
… ‘if you personally want to grow as fast as your company,
… you have to give away your job every couple of months.’
Speed as a habit.
… ‘I’ve long believed that speed is the ultimate weapon…’
… ‘defining characteristic of the leader in virtually every industry…’
… ‘deciding on when a decision will be made is a profound change…’

UPG Profiles, Travelogues, Stories
Varanasi, India: air quality in holy city ‘most toxic in India’
South Sudan: ‘This fighting will continue to our children

Niv Dror: Moore’s Law, shown graphically and analyzed,
… and put in context of accelerating returns and exponential growth.
Silicon Valley engineers pledge to never build a Muslim registry.
#AI: The Great AI Awakening. Google, Translate, reinventing computing itself.
#Drones: Amazon flies package to customer in England.
Google Trusted Contacts: friendly peer surveillance to make sure you’re safe.
Facebook’s walled wonderland is inherently incompatible with news
… no objective interest in fixing its fake stories problem, and here’s why.
… ‘the last thing Facebook wants is to contradict you in any way.’
#Environment: 20 billionaires commit $1 billion to new cleantech fund
#Mobile: Benedict Evans on the future of mobile: all the slides, plus highlights
#Security: The periodic table of cybersecurity. Huge space, 120+ companies.
#Translation: Skype introduces first real-time voice translation.
2035. Next-generation combat vessels feature lasers, alternative energy.


“… often our chief snares are entwined with our blessings.” ~John Newton

“Plans are merely good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work.” ~Peter Drucker

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