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Hello everyone. Yesterday marked my official first anniversary with Firedoglake. I am thankful for everyone, from the staff to the readers, who have supported the Roundup in the previous year. It has been quite a journey so far and I hope the Roundup can continue to improve in the future.

Is there anything you would like to see change or things that have improved so far?

International Politics

Overall

– The rise of the Islamic State is due to the actions of the West in their incessant meddling in Middle East affairs. In fact, it reflects a complex political situation in the region where powers only seek control and resources.

– U.S. officials state Arab countries offered to fire air strikes against the ISIL to contribute to the war (I must warn readers there is a slightly graphic photo in the second link.)

Middle East

– Where are the moderate Syrian rebels? Journalist Patrick Cockburn believes they cannot be found and are a myth the Obama administration relies on in their war against the ISIL.

– The ISIL stated it beheaded a British aid worker in a new video released. There is a photo of the aid worker next to the guard but it is not graphic.

– Human Rights Watch called for an investigation into air strikes by the Iraqi government after civilians were killed in a recent strike.

– While Iran may side with the U.S. in order to stop the Islamic State from making more gains, it worries that such a decision will jeopardize the stability of its ally in Syria.

– In Falluja, Iraq, residents are returning to their houses after a halt of bombings and hope peace can finally come.

– Juan Cole: “Middle East ‘allies’ decline to commit forces and resources against ISIL.”

Asia and Oceania

– Bad news as 11 people died in Pakistan as a result of the horrible flooding persisting there.

Africa

– Libyan Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni accused Qatar of sending military equipment to rebels in Tripoli.

Europe

– The myth of socialism in Sweden with a squeaky-clean image that should be emulated in the U.S. omits the problems that can be found in Swedish art.

– It should be noted the left in Sweden returned to power in a recent election, yet the far-right made some alarming gains.

– With France somewhat likely to see the far-right gain power if things become worse, it jeopardizes the entire European Union.

– With more fighting reported between government and rebel forces in Ukraine, it reveals how fragile the truce is.

– The Queen of England told Scottish citizens to “think very carefully” about a vote of independence.

– NATO members are sending military equipment to the Kiev government to fight rebels in the east.

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– It seems FIFA officials, when the World Cup started, received luxurious watches from the Brazilian government; Priorities!

Surveillance Planet

– New documents find the NSA and the GCHQ spied on German satellite companies.

– Jason Leopold: “The NSA Has Revealed New Details About Its Exhaustive Search of Edward Snowden’s Emails“; Very revealing of the NSA.

Financial Matters

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Brandon Jordan

Brandon Jordan

Brandon Jordan is a freelance journalist in Queens, NY and written for publications such as The Nation, In These Times, Truthout and more.