Roundup #159

No. 159—May 3, 2019—sent to 1,400+
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Survey Question

I'm exploring new blog entries and content possibilities. Here's a question I'd love your take on: What are the biggest challenges and problems faced, and mistakes made, by new long-term workers (of any nationality) in the first 30 to 90 days on the field? Hit Reply and give me your feedback. Depending on how much I get back, this could become a new blog post next week.

New events

North Africa

Algeria: Officials show signs of desperation as protests push on - Link
... China complete’s Africa’s largest mosque in Algeria - Link

Egypt: Anti-Christian violence surges, prompting exodus - Link

Libya: Battles intensify, airstrikes on Tripoli - Link

West Africa

Burkina Faso: new martyrs: 6 killed in church attack - Link
... Analysis: Terror attacks in Burkina Faso on the rise - Link

Analysis: Conflict in Nigeria is more complicated than just "Christians vs Muslims" - Link

East Africa/Horn

Djibouti: How Djibouti became the linchpin of China's Belt & Road - Link
... at the gateway to Suez Canal: 10% of world's oil, 20% of all commercial goods travel

Sudan: What future for the country's Islamists? - Link
... "It is evidence, observers say, that the long influence of Sudan’s political Islamists is being challenged as never before"

S Sudan: Warring parties to hold talks to salvage peace deal - Link

Kenya: Chinese Christians find religious freedom - Link

Central Asia

Uzbekistan: Seeks lifting of cotton boycott - Link
… but forced labor in Uzbekistan's cotton fields hasn't ended - Link

West Asia/Gulf

Iraq: Explosive hazards a threat in Mosul for years to come - Link

Lebanon: What is coming for Christians and other minorities - Link

Saudi Arabia: Trump pressed to punish Saudi for religious intolerance - Link

Syria: Christians in northeast seek to revive Easter spirit after IS ouster - Link

Turkey: Food prices in Turkey have risen 30% - Link

South Asia

Afghanistan: no longer counting how many districts are controlled by who - Link

Iran: escalates targeting of non-Muslim minorities - Link
… People have lost everything in devastating floods - Link
… Public mistrust with state grows over flood management - Link

India: ~65 million women missing from politics due to skewed sex ratio - Link
... represents 20% of the electorate

Nepal: 5 Christians incl 1 American arrested over anti-conversion law - Link
… other reports say they were later released
… “Nepal’s Christians need new laws as cults wreak havoc” - Link
… “Application of religious policies in Nepal remains fluid” - Link

Pakistan: plans to bring 30k madrasas under government control - Link

“Fear and loathing in Balochistan” - Link
… terror attacks, violence plague the province, and Hazaras bear the brunt

Sri Lanka: Turns out the death toll was more like 250 - Link
… “Sri Lanka’s Christians and Muslims weren’t enemies” - Link
Bombings are a new pattern of transnational terror - Link
... "among the deadliest terror attacks since 9/11"
... "Churches and Christians are much-favored topics of IS"
On the alert for additional attacks - Link

East Asia

China: Welcome to Shanghai, the capital of the future - Link

A small collection of photos of Easter services in China - Link

Tiananmen Square protests and China's fight for control of the Internet - Link

Jackson Wu: 7 reasons why Scinization of religion is not rhetoric this time - Link

China’s fertility woes - Link

China's army of migrant workers is becoming older, less mobile - Link
... will impact Gospel spread through migrant workers

Japan: A new emperor and a new era for Japan - Link
… Royals and the demographic crisis: precious few heirs left - Link

Mongolia: What is it like to be a missionary in Mongolia: a Catholic perspective - Link
Bonebreaking, horseback archery, scrummaging: How rugby came to Mongolia - Link
… for those interested in sports ministry

Southeast Asia

Indonesia: Might we move the capital? - Link
... and, election workers die of overwork-related illnesses - Link

Laos: Police allegedly arrest a citizen for practicing Christianity - Link

Myanmar: Pop-up clinics lend a hand in Nagaland - Link

How Myanmar’s Kachin Baptists keep the faith far from the homeland - Link

Also


In Western European countries w/church taxes, support for tradition remains strong - Link

Data

People who know Muslims personally are more likely to have less "Islamophobia" - Link

Reading

Steven Sinofsky: "New things in new ways": a 2x2 framework for evaluating innovation in your product (or program, or...) - Link

Book Review: The surprising science of meetings - Link

What hawker food stalls can teach us about niching - Link

How to write a followup email after you meet someone - Link

Teach children risk benefit management - Link
… how to assess the real dangers and risks and make decisions

ISIS reasserts its global reach during Ramadan - Link

Chernobyl is springing back to life - Link

Future, Tech

China to Chat Admins: you can be arrested for what happens in your group chat - Link

HRW reverse-engineers China police app, reveals profiling, monitoring strategies - Link
... "Many—perhaps all—of the mass surveillance practices described in this report appear to be contrary to Chinese law. They violate the internationally guaranteed rights to privacy, to be presumed innocent until proven guilty, and to freedom of association and movement. Their impact on other rights, such as freedom of expression and religion, is profound."

COBOL: The long life of a standard - Link
... 95% of ATM transactions pass through COBOL programs; 80% of in-person transactions rely on them. This is a case study in why it's sometimes better to start completely fresh: it's hard to get away from these standards once established.

Facebook unveils redesign as it tries to move past privacy scandals - Link
… will be interesting to see how this impacts mission agencies and mobilizers, etc.

The EU wants to build one of the world's largest biometric databases - Link
… what could possibly go wrong?

Internet shutdowns:
Chad: living without the Internet for over a year - Link
Benin shuts down Internet in advance of no-opposition elections - Link
Russia: Putin signs bill to create tightly controlled Russian internet - Link
Infographic: Internet shutdowns in recent history - Link

Amazon AI watches workers, identifies those who should be fired - Link

AI: Forget about artificial intelligence, extended intelligence is the future - Link

Inside the team at Facebook that dealt with the Christchurch shooting - Link

The government may appoint a privacy regulator for Facebook - Link

New privacy controls at Google: will soon let you automatically scrub information about you - Link

Quotable

“What we see in eternity we see first in history.” ~Yvonne Huneycutt

"If you don't find areas where God disagrees with you every once in a while, you're worshiping a god you've made in your own image rather than God, who made you in His image." ~Caleb Crider (I've heard lots of variations of this key principle)

“If you absolutely can't tolerate critics, then don't do anything new or interesting.” ~Jeff Bezos

"I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do." ~Leonardo da Vinci

"We cannot attain the presence of God. We're already totally in the presence of God. What's absent is awareness." ~Richard Rohr