Joachim Gauck will not attend the Winter Games in Russia in February, despite Chancellor Angela Merkel’s opposition to a boycott; cats know when their owners are speaking to them, but still ignore them; meanwhile, Vermont has approved single-payer health care. These discoveries and more below.
On a regular basis, Truthdig brings you the news items and odds and ends that have found their way to Larry Gross, director of the USC Annenberg School for Communication. A specialist in media and culture, art and communication, visual communication and media portrayals of minorities, Gross helped found the field of gay and lesbian studies.
Syria: Whose Sarin?
Barack Obama did not tell the whole story this autumn when he tried to make the case that Bashar al-Assad was responsible for the chemical weapons attack near Damascus on 21 August.
Obama Takes Aim at Israeli Positions on Iran
President Obama sharply criticized as not viable several Israeli government postures on talks with Iran, but asserted that the military option remained on the table should those negotiations fail.