There are two recent events that have been on my mind that I haven’t written about before: the death of Henry Kissinger and the war in Gaza.

The fact that Kissinger lived to be 100 proves Lewis Black’s “The good die young, but pricks live forever.”  When secretary of state Anthony Blinken praised Kissinger, I wondered how awkward his next meeting with the leaders of Argentina, East Timor, or Cambodia are going to be. Moe Elleithee on the show “Left Right and Center” put it the best I have heard: “Kissinger saw the world as a giant chess set.. between the United States and democracy vs the Soviet Union and communism. Everything he did was in the context of that chess match… He was willing to sacrifice every single pawn in order to win the chess match.”(starting at 43:30 minutes). I would add some of those pawns were thousands of innocent people.

The war in Gaza is a tragedy. I will admit upfront I am not an expert and don’t know all the details of the history with Hamas and Gaza. But this war highlights two things can be true at the same time. Hamas is a terrorist organization, and Israel is justified in going to war after the attack. Israel’s war on Gaza is killing innocent civilians and making life in Gaza unbearable for people who had nothing to do with the attack on Israel, and the Israeli government doesn’t seem to be too concerned about it or trying to mitigate the harm to civilians.

At this point, the best outcome is for the war to be end quickly and Gaza to be rebuilt. I don’t think peace is happening anytime soon. But there are several charities working within Gaza that need support, and I am linking to an NPR story listing several choices. Also, contact your member of Congress to support a ceasefire.

To try not to end on a depressing note, Happy 2024!

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