Monthly Archives: December 2013

Here’s my list of the Top Five most important events in the Mideast in 2013.

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

Middle-East-Satellite-View(Washington, D.C.) — It was a dramatic year in the Middle East. Here is my list of the Top Five most important events in the epicenter in 2013:

  1. Syrian death toll keeps climbing amidst horrific civil war & chemical weapons use in Damascus.
  2. Iran beguiles West with “charm offense” as it moves closer to the Bomb.
  3. Saudis preparing to purchase Pakistani nuclear warheads.
  4. Egypt’s counter-revolution brings down the Muslim Brotherhood.
  5. Israeli leader declares Bible prophecies coming true in our lifetime.

What follows is a brief explanation of each development and why I believe they are so significant.

1.) SYRIAN DEATH TOLL KEEPS CLIMBING AMIDST HORRIFIC CIVIL WAR & CHEMICAL WEAPONS USEIN DAMASCUS — Far and away, the greatest tragedy and humanitarian disaster in 2013 in the epicenter was the continued implosion of Syria.

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2013 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 440,000 times in 2013. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 19 days for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Merry Christmas, Everyone!

ImageOne of the families of the PCO (Protestant Church in Oman) lighting the 4th candle of Advent season: the candle of LOVE.  There are a few church services going on over the next few days to celebrate Christmas here in Muscat.  Tonight at 6pm in Ghala (Family Christmas Eve service with communion) and also later at 11pm (Candle Christmas Eve service with communion).  There is also a Christmas morning service in Ruwi church tomorrow at 9am (Christmas Day Worship Service with communion.ImageLet’s not forget that “Jesus is the reason for the season”!ImageImageImageLast Friday was a nice celebration through music at the PCO.  We even had the Muscat Singers pay us a visit to sing a few carols, including “Angels We Have Heard on High” which I am adding here for your enjoyment:  One young girl, Christy Roy, did a fabulous job singing “Mary Did You Know?”

We hope you all have a safe and joyous Christmas!

Hugs…huggy huggyImage…and kisses from Andy in Oman and family! 🙂

Great Call by the Shura Council of Oman to Reject Taxing Remittances by Expatriates!

It was good to read this article titled ”


by Shaddad Al Musalmy at Muscat Daily.  (Click on the title to view the entire article posted in yesterday’s Muscat Daily.)

Some of us were concerned about the recommendation to impose a 2% tax on remittances by expatriates in Oman.  That would have affected many in Oman, especially low paid workers from countries such as India, Pakista, Bangladesh, Nepal and the Philippines who send a large portion of their paychecks to their home countries to support their families.

Nice to hear that this proposal who put on hold for now and hopefully not brought up again for some time.

The proposal needs more research,” said Salim al Ghattami, member of the State Council and head of its economic committee. “As Oman is strategically located and considering the good relations that we have with other countries, whatever major decision we make will definitely have an impact. It is always good to conduct proper research before taking action.”

At the moment, I don’t think it is the right time to introduce remittance tax on expatriates workers in Oman because it will create a bad image of the country. Everyone will talk about it, including embassies and human rights bodies. There is a need to study the issue more with regard to its impact.” (Dr. Ibrahim al Subhi)

The tax may be good in some ways as the money generated would help in funding the services offered by the government. But if we are to introduce it, it should target everyone and not just expatriates.” (Sayyid Hamad al Busaidi)

Nice to hear such words of wisdom coming from Oman’s State Council members!

Contrails or Chemtrails?