EVERYONE should support planting more TREES

No matter what your opinion on CO2 levels higher than they  been for at least the past three million years, you can support planting more trees.

Trees are good in many ways.

Jimmy “MrBeast” Donaldson, some guy who got popular on YouTube, started a campaign that raised enough money for more than 20 million trees to be planted across the United States, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Haiti, Indonesia, Ireland, Madagascar, Mozambique, Nepal, and the United Kingdom.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Secondly, we should STOP subsidizing fossil fuel industries. One study calculated $5 trillion / year in subsidy worldwide.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Greta Thunberg has inspired millions of students to become environmental activists for climate change.

I love to see how some previously unknown teenager scares so many of the rich and powerful worldwide.

She’s the youngest individual Time Person of the Year.

Thunberg was also nominated for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize.

The Guardians by John Grisham (2019)

Went directly to #1 on The New York Times Bestseller List.

I recommend it.

“The Guardians” is Grisham’s 40th novel; he’s now 64 …

Such creative longevity is not that unusual in the suspense genre, but what is rare is Grisham’s feat of keeping up the pace of producing, on average, a novel a year (in 2017 he published two) without a notable diminishment of ingenuity or literary quality. Dame Agatha Christie, who barely paused between books to sharpen pencils during her near-50-year marathon mystery career, is another such marvel. …

Grisham’s main character here is a so-called “innocence lawyer,” a workaholic attorney-and-Episcopal-priest named Cullen Post. Post has trimmed his life down to the barest of essentials, living in spartan quarters above the nonprofit Guardian Ministries, his workplace in Savannah, Ga. The book focuses on Post’s investigation into the wrongful conviction of a black man named Quincy Miller who was set up to take the fall for the murder of a white lawyer in a small Florida town some 22 years before …

WaPo review 

Grisham is a member of the board of directors of the Innocence Project, which campaigns to free and exonerate unjustly convicted people. This book is laser focused on that topic.

This novel was inspired by Jim McCloskey and Centurion Ministries. That organization has freed dozens of wrongfully accused.

When Truth Is All You Have: A Memoir of Faith, Justice, and Freedom for the Wrongly Convicted

Japanese war crimes in Manchukuo

I was in Nuremberg recently. The Nazi war crimes are well documented.

Human experimentation in concentration camps was performed by volunteer Nazi doctors against Romani, Sinti, ethnic Poles, Soviet POWs, disabled Germans, and Jews.

Typically, the experiments resulted in death, trauma, disfigurement or permanent disability, and as such are considered examples of medical torture.

But I’d never heard of Unit 731, a covert biological and chemical warfare research and development unit of the Imperial Japanese Army that undertook lethal human experimentation during the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945) of World War II.

Estimates of those killed by Unit 731 and its related programs range up to half a million people.

WHY don’t we know more? The researchers involved in Unit 731 were secretly given immunity by the U.S. in exchange for the data they gathered through human experimentation.

The Japanese government has never admitted it happened nor apologised.

There is a museum in Harbin which displays some of the horrible historical artefacts.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.



The New Girl by Daniel Silva

The 19th book in the Gabriel Allon series. It’s excellent. I listened to it twice, in fact.

Published July 16, 2019, it’s up-to-date with current world politics. A Jewish perspective. For example, a stable Saudi Arabia is better for Israel than a reckless Kingdom.

It starts with a kidnapping of the daughter of Khalid bin Mohammed, the much-maligned crown prince of Saudi Arabia.

He’s a fictionalized version of Mohammad bin Salman. In the book, responsible for the assassination of a journalist, similar to Jamal Khashoggi.

That murder  is compared with Henry II of England who had Thomas Becket killed.

Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?

Bizarrely, the next King of Saudi Arabia turns to Gabriel Allon, legendary chief of Israeli intelligence to solve the abduction. An interesting plot device — but totally unbelievable.

Who’s behind the kidnapping? 

What’s their real motivation?

Daniel Silva returns most of our favourite characters from the past few books.