Sound journalism, grounded in facts and Biblical truth

A momentous week

President Trump follows up the State of the Union and acquittal with prayer breakfast speech

President Donald Trump holds up a newspaper with a headline announcing his acquittal of impeachment charges at the annual National Prayer Breakfast in Washington on Thursday. Associated Press/Photo by Evan Vucci

A momentous week

UNITED STATES: President Donald Trump addressed the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington on Thursday morning during a momentous week that saw him acquitted on impeachment charges and take part in a public stand-off with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi at his State of the Union address. Pelosi sat four chairs away onstage at the breakfast as the president held up copies of The Washington Post and USA Today with their acquittal headlines and took on conservative author Arthur Brooks, the event’s keynote speaker, for saying political opponents should not be treated as “enemies.”

UKRAINE: Russian forces this week resupplied rebels fighting in eastern Ukraine, delivering ammunition, weapons, and other military equipment across the border in an area not under Kyiv control.

Ukrainian groups along with an American pastor working in the country petitioned U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to remove U.S. Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch in 2018, according to BuzzFeed, for her support of LGBTQ rights in Ukraine and leading a delegation of 60 embassy staff members in a gay pride march. Yovanovitch, whom Trump fired from the post last year, formally retired this week and wrote about it in The Washington Post on Thursday.

CHINA: The nightmare for hundreds of Americans leaving Wuhan includes 16 hours of paperwork and processing before boarding a long flight to California, where the evacuees face 14 days quarantined for coronavirus. In the United States, 12 people have been diagnosed with the virus, with a global death toll reaching 600 and 27,000 ill.

SYRIA: Idlib, one of the last areas outside Assad regime control, has been almost entirely in the hands of al-Qaeda and Turkish-backed militias (supported by the United States and the U.K.). On Wednesday, with backing from Russian warplanes and Iranian troops, Syrian forces captured the strategic town of Saraqeb along with six other towns, pressing into the central area of the last rebel stronghold in the country. Idlib fighting has displaced an estimated 500,000 Syrians in two months.

ISIS took advantage of Turkey’s October invasion of northeast Syria, increasing attacks by 20 percent, according to the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (I felt one of those).

BANGLADESH will provide formal education for Rohingya refugee children 14 and under—a long-awaited move that comes more than two years after Myanmar’s attacks on Rohingya villages forced nearly 1 million to flee. Last month, the International Court of Justice ordered Myanmar, also known as Burma, to take steps to protect the largely Muslim Rohingya population as it prosecutes genocide charges on their behalf.

I’M READING Inside the Church of Almighty God: The Most Persecuted Religious Movement in China by Massimo Introvigne.

Sign up to receive Globe Trot via email.

Mindy Belz

Mindy wrote WORLD Magazine's first cover story in 1986 and went on to serve as international editor, editor, and now senior editor. She has covered wars in Syria, Afganistan, Africa, and the Balkans, and she recounts some of her experiences in They Say We Are Infidels: On the Run from ISIS with Persecuted Christians in the Middle East. Mindy resides with her husband, Nat, in Asheville, N.C.



Please wait while we load the latest comments...


Please register or subscribe to comment on this article.


It says something not very reassuring about the National Prayer Breakfast that it has been coopted for the purposes of political boasting and sparring.