Friday, September 25, 2015


* 'Death to the Saudi dynasty,' Iranians chant as anger rises over hajj stampede Saudi Arabia, under growing pressure to account for a crush that killed more than 700 people at the haj pilgrimage, on Friday suggested pilgrims failing to follow crowd control rules bore some blame for the worst disaster at the event for 25 years.

* Cyber-suspicion strains US-China relations In Cold War days, nuclear arms control might have topped the agenda of a major summit - but now when leaders meet, they are looking at how to avoid an escalating cyber-arms race.

* Pope Francis Supports Iran Deal as 'Political Goodwill' Pope Francis threw his support behind Iran's accord with major powers as he backed a goal of global abolition of nuclear weapons, AFP reports Friday.

* In NY meeting, Obama to ask Putin for clarity on Russian involvement in Syria US President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet in New York on Monday at a time of high tension in Europe and the Middle East, but the Kremlin and the White House disagreed on Thursday over the top priority for the talks.

* Netanyahu urges Muslims: 'Don't be led astray by anti-Israel incitement' Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recorded a special holiday greeting to Muslims on Friday, insisting that claims Israel was upsetting the delicate interfaith balance on Temple Mount were false.

* Netanyahu says Israel will keep Temple Mount order amid report Abdullah won't talk to him The Prime Minister's Office refused comment Thursday on a spate of reports that Jordan's King Abdullah II is refusing to take phone calls or meet secretly with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu because of the tension around the Temple Mount.

* US Speaker John Boehner to leave Congress Mr Boehner made the decision while praying on Friday morning - a day after hosting Pope Francis at Congress.

* Europeans Rush to Invest in Iran Iranian and European business leaders gathered in Geneva Thursday to explore the massive opportunities expected to open up when years of biting sanctions against Tehran end, although experts warned huge challenges remained.

* The pope, the Israeli prime minister and Moses in Congress The marble visages of 23 historic lawgivers overlook the US House of Representatives chamber: 11 on the east side, 11 on the west and Moses in the center - with all 22 others facing north toward him.

* The Danger of the Blood Moon Phenomenon A good friend called me this week to ask what I thought of the Year of Shemitah and what some are saying is the beginning of the end of the world.