In light of the recent bloody chaos, it is legitimate to ask again: what is going on in Syria?
We have known from the beginning who the victim is in this war. Between 400 and 500 thousand people have been killed in Syria since 2011, while 4.8 million Syrians have fled the country and 6.6 million people are displaced internally, as of March 2016. Last year, just over a million Syrians escaped terror and death by fleeing to Europe. When they ran for their lives, they were deterred and humiliated by barbed wires that some small countries installed in their desperate attempts to protect their identity and defend their territory. Syrian refugees couldn’t care less about this last humiliation. They managed to escape from much worse — they were alive! They escaped a gruesome reality that Ben Taub has described in harshly vivid language. His words capture the Syria that we refuse to see. We pledged that Rwanda would never happen again, but here it is — happening again:
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On September 14th, Nate Silver, the pollster and founder of the blog FiveThirtyEight, tweeted that, “Without those states, Clinton has 273 electoral votes, but there is no margin for error. Lose any one of NH/PA/WI/CO/VA and Trump is POTUS.”
In other words, according to FiveThirtyEight’s poll, Hillary Clinton will win enough electoral votes (273) to win the elections. But that’s barely over the 270 that are needed to win the presidency. So if Clinton loses just one of the five states — New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Colorado or Virginia — then the next president of the United States will be Donald Trump.
This sounds like hazardous prediction, since there are many more ways to win or lose this election than Silver’s tweet indicated. However, the tweet’s message is quite positive for Clinton, since it implies that, nearly two months before the elections, her prospects for getting the necessary number of electoral votes are looking good.
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