2019-12

Abandoned By U.S. In Syria, Kurds Find New Ally In American Foe

Summary

  • Kurdish forces long allied with the United States in Syria announced a new deal on Sunday with the government in Damascus, a sworn enemy of Washington that is backed by Russia, as Turkish troops moved deeper into their territory and President Trump ordered the withdrawal of the American military from northern Syria.

  • The Turkish incursion has killed scores of people, and left Kurdish fighters accusing the United States of betrayal for leaving them at the Turks' mercy.

The World Economy: Markets Are Braced For A Global Downturn

Summary

  • The dominant mood in markets today, as it has been for much of the past decade, is not complacency but anxiety. And it is deepening by the day.

  • Yet a recession is so far a fear, not a reality. The world economy is still growing, albeit at a less healthy pace than in 2018.

  • What is more, there has been little sign of the heady exuberance that normally precedes a slump.

  • If there has been no boom and the world economy has not yet turned to bust, why then are markets so anxious? The best answer is that firms and markets are struggling to get to grips with uncertainty.

A Well-Deserved Physics Nobel

Summary

  • Over the past half century, it has been firmly established that our universe expanded over the past 13.8 billion years, emerging from the hot and dense state that we call the big bang.

  • Although three Nobels have been awarded for observations related to cosmology, the Nobel Commitee has never recognized the work of any of the theorists that built and developed the foundations of the big bang -- that is, until this year.

  • In October of this year, Jim Peebles was awared the Nobel Prize in Physics "for theoretical discoveries in physical cosmology".