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Showing posts from November 18, 2015


On several occasions over the last few years, I have mentioned the anti-immigration pressures that are spreading in Europe, and a few months ago I talked about how the refugee crisis was sparking more concern. 

I have also engaged my friend George Friedman, one of the truly world-class thought leaders on geopolitics, in numerous discussions on those issues.

A couple days after the Paris attacks, I picked up the phone to talk over the situation with George, and we had a very animated conversation for the next 20 minutes. 

I didn’t particularly like what I heard about the difficulties of dealing realistically with ISIS. 

The more I read – and the more I listen to people like George who have worked these issues for decades – the more uncomfortable I become. The simple truth is that we as a culture need to face reality.

I asked George if he would pour his thoughts into a short essay that I could send out as anOutside the Box, and he agreed.

Just a quick quote from his piece, which I just receiv…


The El Niño of 2015-2016




Crews end search of sunken El Faro without finding ship's black box


Published November 16, 2015

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Federal investigators said Monday that they are ending their search for the voyage data recorder of a cargo ship that sank in the Atlantic during a hurricane, but remained hopeful that they could determine what happened to the ship without it.

"Over the years we've completed many investigations without the aid of recorders and other investigative tools,"
National Transportation Safety Board Chairman Christopher Hart said in a statement.

Hart said investigators are disappointed the El Faro's "black box" was not found, but hopeful they can still find enough evidence to determine a probable cause of its sinking.

The 790-foot freighter sank on Oct. 1 after it lost engine power and was disabled in the path of a Category 4 hurricane. The ship, with 33 crew members on board, was on its way from Jacksonville to Puerto Rico. No survivors were found.

NTSB officials said recently that searchers had located the s…