- Posted July 1, 2014 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Kernels - Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Welcome to the latest edition of Kernels From the Cornfield - No Husks, No Hulls, No Shucks!
News with a dash of commentary to spice up your fare for Tuesday, July 1st, 2014.
Today's Kernels ran late as I was catching the exciting US-Belgium soccer match. This is so unusual for a non-sports fan. I had no choice, but bring this headline and current event to tonight's edition in item #10.
1. Fiery Furnace Getting Hotter - The fiery furnace known as the Mideast is getting hotter and hotter.
Will it soon engulf the world in brimstone and smoke?
Israel is striking back at Hamas in the Gaza Strip after Hamas lobbed shells into the Jewish homeland. Under discussion in the Israeli Cabinet is how to respond to three Israeli teens killed by Hamas in the West Bank after being snatched on their way home from school.
Hamas is a major player not only in Gaza, but Lebanon, which borders Syria.
Will Israel strike Hamas in Lebanon igniting a wider firestorm?
As the Syrian civil war and advance of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) spills out over borders and affecting its neighbors, could another World War be on the horizon?
With ISIS declaring a Caliphate and thus the successor of the Prophet Mohammed, how will the Sunni world, which comprise the majority of Muslims worldwide, react?
Is this a call to arms not only against the Shia Muslims, but also against what Muslims perceive as the Zionist problem?
2. Apocalypse? - Those who follow biblical prophecy are seeing the signs leading to the final war, Armageddon, in the current pressure cooker situation.
With Russia, traditionally thought to be the biblical Gog and Magog, siding with those who will only be satisfied with the destruction of Israel, is this the beginning of the end, as some Christians believe?
3. Fallout - Monday's decision in favor of Hobby Lobby by the US Supreme Court continues to see fallout as liberals and Democrats see the ruling as a way to excite its base and fire up young women to get out the vote for the November Midterm Elections.
The spector of a "war on women" has resurfaced as a major talking point. Those on the left are decrying the men who make up the Republican Party as waging war against those of the "gentler" sex.
Citing Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's 35-page dissent as Gospel, those opposed to the ruling are seeing boogey men behind every bush and under every rock. The Pandora's Box has been open and spells ill for women everywhere.
My thoughts on the decision are found in: Splitting Hairs Gets Right Decision.
Did the Supremes limit the impact in siding with Hobby Lobby or were the floodgates opened for the sky to fall?
4. Arthur for the Holiday - Arthur may make the Fourth of July anything, but festive for the Atlantic seaboard. No, I'm not talking about the cuddly, lovable Dudley Moore character, but the season's first named tropical storm which may become a hurricane before the weekend is over.
Arthur may hit its stride by the time it slams into the Outer Banks Thursday night just in time to put a damper on all those fireworks as it moves up the coast from Florida to Maine.
Time to start battening down the hatches.
5. Al Qaeda Not Running - Al Qaeda, at least not the one on the Arabian Peninsula, is not running. New worries that malls and airports may be subjected to a new breed of undetectable bombs is heightening security alerts.
A few months ago, the US had expressed hope either a drone attack or the Yemeni army had taken out the chief bomb maker for AQAP, Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri. Turns out he is alive and well and still building bombs. Reportedly he has now sworn allegiance to ISIS and the Islamic Caliphate.
6. Mission Creep - The vow of "no troops on the ground" seems to be put far back on the burner, as up to an additional 300 troops are sent to Iraq. There also 1,000 Marines waiting off the coast. Another 1,000 Marines are on their way to the Persian Gulf.
Military officials say the situation and need in Iraq for US involvement is under assessment. At this point it is unclear if additional American forces may be needed to protect the embassy and American citizens in Iraq.
Sounds similar to how we wormed our way into another no-win situation called Viet Nam.
7. Are There Potholes in Your Future? - States are receiving letters from the federal government warning that dollars for road construction after August 1 may not be there. That is if Congress doesn't find and appropriate money to replenish the federal trust fund and soon.
The trust is funded through federal gasoline taxes we each pay at the pump. The sluggish economy is being blamed for motorists traveling less and buying less fuel along with the higher cost of gasoline. This in turn has led to less gasoline tax being collected.
Congress can, as it has in the past, allocate more funds from the general account to prop up the leaking trust fund.
With summer upon us and the Midterm Elections five months away, will Congress act?
8. Fatal Explosion - An explosion in the Cornfield's northeastern city of Marion at a GM plant has resulted in the death of one and five injured. The chemical blast is still under investigation.
The plant was cited in 2009 for a serious safety violation which resulted in a fine.
Thoughts and prayers to our fellow Hoosier who passed on and to those who were injured.
9. Dominos Keep Falling - Add Kentucky to the list of states who have been on the losing end in banning equality to long-term, same-gender couples. Today a federal district judge ruled the Kentucky ban is unconstitutional and violates the constitutional guarantee of equal protection under the law.
The order that Kentucky begin to allow same-gender couples to obtain legal recognition is on stay until the 6th District Court of Appeals rules on the state's appeal of Judge John G. Heyburn II's decision.
Heyburn had ruled months ago that the state must recognize same-gender couples who had obtained legal recognition in other states. That order is also on hold pending the outcome of the appeal.
10. Two Bones for Sports Hounds - American tennis great Serena Williams took ill at Wimbledon today. This forced her and sister, Venus, to cede the doubles match in which they were engaged. Reportedly a virus has felled the pro.
USA or Belgium?
That's the big question.
After Fabian Johnson walked off the field with a strained, left hamstring, people wondered if the USA could hold on?
The final score was 1-2 Belgium in extra time.
This was a must win for Team USA to make it to the big game. Now the team must pack their bags for home and wait another four years.
On a high note of skillfulness, Tim Howard played the game of his life. The US goalie seemed to be the whole team for the 90 minutes of regulation play. When regulation time ended, the ref added 30 more mintues which allowed Johnson to prove He's the Man!
That's what caught my attention for Tuesday, July 1st, 2014.
Tune in tomorrow for another episode of Kernels From the Cornfield.
I am Mark Ivy.