Do U.S. Troops need to be in Saudi Arabia?

Do U.S. troops need to be in Saudi Arabia?

I mean need is a hard word, they're doing a lot of work. But certainly after the attacks on Saudi oil processing, taking half of their oil off the market, they wanted some form of show that the United States are supporting them. And they are, by the way, the world's largest purchasers of American defense equipment. So I'm not at all surprised that the U.S. wanted to provide some level of support, threatening the Iranians: "don't do this again we're gonna hit you back." But Trump wants to avoid a war. On balance, I think this was the right decision to make. Keep in mind though, they will be seen as a target.

Are India and Pakistan on the brink of war?

I'm gonna say no. We're not going farther with that.

Will the protests against Egyptian President el-Sisi spread?

The Problem with Pragmatism

I think so, because they have been pushed ahead by someone who was very involved in the military sphere. Big contractors showing a lot of corruption. He's got information that no one else has. You've had big demonstrations across the country. There's been some violence and responding to them. I expect they'll expand.

What sank British tour company Thomas Cook?

Well they've gone bankrupt. But they've also left like six hundred thousand people stranded all over the world. That's a disaster. And the U.K. is going to have to do something to actually repatriate them, support them at a time when the U.K. can't get anything right. Watch for all sorts of people getting really angry, even angrier than they were before, at prime minister Boris Johnson. He kind of brings that out in people.

The scientific consensus is clear. The world confronts an urgent carbon problem. The world's climate experts agree that the world must take urgent action to bring down emissions. Ultimately, we must reach "net zero" emissions, meaning that humanity must remove as much carbon as it emits each year.

While the world will need to reach net zero, those of us who can afford to move faster and go further should do so. That's why last week we announced an ambitious goal and a new plan to reduce and ultimately remove Microsoft's carbon footprint. By 2030 Microsoft will be carbon negative, and by 2050 Microsoft will remove from the environment all the carbon the company has emitted either directly or by electrical consumption since it was founded in 1975. We are also launching an initiative to use Microsoft technology to help our suppliers and customers around the world reduce their own carbon footprints and a new $1 billion climate innovation fund to accelerate the global development of carbon reduction, capture, and removal technologies.

Read more on the Official Microsoft Blog.

A potentially deadly new coronavirus that can be transmitted from one person to another is now spreading across China. Chinese state media say it has infected about 300 people and killed six, but the number of undetected or unreported cases is certain to be much higher. Complicating containment efforts, millions of people are on the move across the country this week to celebrate the Chinese New Year with family and friends.


Norway's government breaks up over ISIS returnee – Norway's right-wing Progress Party said it will resign from the country's four-party coalition government over the prime minister's decision to bring home a Norwegian woman affiliated with the Islamic State in Syria. The woman, who left Norway for the conflict zone in 2013, was arrested shortly after arriving in Oslo with her two children, on suspicion of being a member of ISIS. Prior to her return, she had been held in the Al-Hol refugee camp in northeastern Syria, along with thousands of other family members of ISIS fighters. The defection of Norway's anti-immigrant Progress Party undercuts Prime Minister Erna Solberg's parliamentary majority, likely making it hard for her to pass laws in parliament. This case reflects an increasingly common problem for European countries: the Islamic State's self-proclaimed caliphate has largely collapsed but what should countries do about the return of former fighters and their families to societies that don't want them?


20,000: Sri Lanka's president has acknowledged for the first time that some 20,000 people who disappeared during the country's brutal civil war are dead, dashing the hopes of families who had held out hope that their relatives were alive and in military custody. The conflict, which ended in 2009, split the country according to ethnicities, killing around 100,000 people, mostly Tamil rebels.


Since Martin Luther King Jr delivered his iconic "I have a dream" speech in August 1963, the number of Black Americans elected to the United States Congress has dramatically increased. Still, it wasn't until last year, more than half a century later, that the share of Black members serving in the House of Representatives reflected the percentage of Black Americans in the broader population —12 percent. To date, only six states have sent a Black representative to serve in the US Senate, and many states have never elected a Black representative to either house of Congress. Here's a look at Black representation in every US Congress since 1963.