by A. Joseph Lynch
I. POPE FRANCIS AND THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
SWISS CATHOLIC MASS: First in 500 years.
MEXICAN BISHOPS ACCUSED: Four bishops in Mexico have been referred for investigation. Will there be more?
LITURGICAL EXPERIMENT: Taylor Marshall interviews an engineer who put his math skills to work and proved that communion at the rail is faster than in a line. This is one experiment in the liturgy AoA can get behind.
II. PRESIDENT TRUMP AND AMERICA
AFGHAN PEACE DEAL: Secretary of State Pompeo was in Afghanistan to sign a historic peace deal with the Taliban, which if fully implemented will see Americans withdraw from Afghanistan next year. Despite the deal, fighting continues both at home and abroad. If only the president could make the same inroads with Iran as he's made North Korea, Afghanistan, and Russia. We also note the conspicuous absence of the gulf states, who, with the exception of Qatar, snubbed their invitation to the peace signing. Their absence is a sign of who our adversaries in the Mideast really are
THE ESTABLISHMENT STRIKES BACK: We suspected much would develop this week in the Democratic primary race. With Biden's victory in South Carolina and the surprising departure of Buttigieg and Klobachar from the race, enough votes moved Biden's way on Super Tuesday to put him in the delegate lead. And now that Bloomberg and Warren have bowed out, the race is shaping up to be a contest between Sanders (553 delegates) and Biden (621 delegates). The question remains: will there be a contested convention. More commentary from Pat Buchanan.
BIDEN IN 1988: This is Joe Biden's third attempt at the presidency. His 1988 campaign to a screeching halt due to plagiarism. It remains to be seen how his third attempt will come out.
AD BUYS: Bloomberg learned the hard way that money isn't everything. We don't expect that to keep candidates from ad buys, however. This chart reveals the presidential advertisements (the website will be updated through November).
HILARY TO TESTIFY: A judge has ordered Hilary Clinton to testify regarding her private email server. It appears the statute of limitations on crimes related to the server has passed, but she could still find herself in hot water if caught lying under oath.
III. THE NATIONS
MUBARAK DEAD AT 91: Hosni Mubarak, the ousted leader of Egypt, has died. More on his life and legacy. Here also is our Map on Monday post on Egypt.
OPEN BORDERS: As the Turkey's fight against Russia-backed Assad continues in Syria, Turkey attempts to pressure EU aid by opening its European borders for refugee migration. This time, however, Greece and Bulgaria are protecting their borders. The Greeks in particular are being praised - by open borders EU bureaucrats no less - as Europe's shield. What's more, millions of EU dollars are going to the border to hold back the newest wave of migration. Meanwhile it's no surprise the UN and Amnesty International oppose the self-defense of Bulgaria and Greece.
ALL TIME GREATEST LEADER: In a new UK poll, Sikh leader Maharajah Ranjit Singh was voted the greatest leader of all time. Singh build a Sikh empire with an emphasis on religious freedom. AoA may not be convinced he is the greatest of all time, but his name and story is one we should know. See also our 2012 post on south central Asia that includes a more on the Sikh faith.
IV. CULTURE OF LIFE, CULTURE OF PROTECTION
POLYGAMY IN UTAH: Polygamy is one step closer to decriminalization in Utah. This is what happens when "marriage equality" no longer means an equal opportunity for one man to marry one woman for life.
PROTECTING MARRIAGE & GENDER: Mormons in Utah may not yet see the disconnect between tacitly supporting polygamy and opposing gay marriage, but they continue to oppose homosexuality on the campus of BYU. Meanwhile the bishops of Minnesota have issued a statement that bans Catholic school students from using opposite sex bathrooms or playing on sports teams for the other gender. In Arizona the "Save Women's Sports Act" has passed the state's House - it too will keep transgenderism from impacting its sports teams.
REMOVING CONFEDERATE SYMBOLS: In a new directive, the order was given to remove all "Confederate-related paraphernalia" across all Marine bases. The directive also demanded more women in combat roles. The directive tells us exactly what the Corps now values: no to the warrior history and pride of the South and yes to sending child-bearing aged women to their needless deaths. The inversion continues.
BOY SCOUTS ARE BANKRUPT: In more ways than one.
A CHESS DIET: AoA encourages strategic thinking, especially in engaging activities like chess or go (wei qi). A recent study found that chess grandmasters can burn up to 6,000 calories per day while playing in chess tournaments. That takes strategic thinking to a whole new level.