25 November 2020 04:34
Recaps of 2020 that will be written in dozens of respected periodicals around the world in the coming weeks will surely not be positive.The coronavirus pandemic this year will be widely panned as an annus horribilis, a term meaning a year of disaster or misfortune made famous by Queen Elizabeth II when she used it to characterize 1992, the year when the marriages of three of her four children fell apart and Windsor Castle was badly damaged by fire.In Israel, too, media reviews of 2020 will surely not place it in a positive light, especially given the loss of nearly 3,000 lives to COVID-19 and the havoc that the pandemic has wrought on people's livelihoods and the country's economy. This year will also go down in Israeli history as the one when the Jewish state took enormous strides, via peace and normalization treaties with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Sudan, to further break out of its long regional isolation.For a few weeks back in September, it seemed to be raining peace agreements. The message to Biden is simple: the Mideast table has been reset – including a spanking new Israel-UAE-Saudi place setting – that he and his new administration will need to take into account when re-assessing Washington's Iran policy.It is no coincidence that this meeting took place now, a few weeks before Biden is set to move into the Oval Office, just as it was no coincidence that the deals with the UAE and Bahrain were consummated just before the US elections.Israel and these Gulf countries are banding together now, in the waning days of the Trump administration, so that if the Biden Administration would want to roll back Trump's policies on Iran and take a much softer stand, it will come up against a firm wall of opposition from America's main allies in the region. This time, it will not only be Netanyahu squaring off against the president of the United States, as was the case when Barack Obama pushed the Iranian nuclear deal during his presidency.Another key audience for whom the meeting was aimed is Iran itself. The cooperation between Israel and Saudi Arabia is currently in the diplomatic and intelligence/security realms, but Iran's leaders – after this meeting – must be asking themselves whether that cooperation could quickly turn into military cooperation as well.To the domestic Saudi audience, the publication of the meeting – despite an official denial by the Saudi foreign minister – signals that while the Palestinian issue may be of great importance to the older generation of Saudi leaders, such as King Salman, the new generation, represented by MBS, is unwilling to sacrifice its future interests on the Palestinian alter.
SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korean boy band BTS on Tuesday snagged the first ever Grammy nomination for a K-pop band, taking the worldwide sensation a step closer to winning the music award. FILE PHOTO: Members of K-pop boy band BTS pose for photographs during a news conference promoting their new album "BE(Deluxe Edition)" in Seoul, South Korea, November 20, 2020. Since their debut in 2013, the seven-member band has been at the forefront of South Korean pop music, recently notching their first ever Number One hit single on the Billboard charts in the United States with "Dynamite". The first-time nominees shared on Twitter their livestreamed reactions to their 2021 Grammy nomination in the best pop group performance field. "Above all, ARMYs are the ones who helped this miracle come true - of us getting the Grammy nomination.
The movie was initially set for an April 2020 release, but due to the pandemic, it has now been pushed back by a year – scheduled for release on the 2nd of April 2021. The cast of the film sees Daniel Craig returning as James Bond with Rami Malek as Safin, Léa Seydoux as Dr Madeleine Swann and many other stars that the people might find familiar. Craig has previously been a part of four Bond films and No Time to Die will be his fifth stint – an interesting point to factor in. The plot of No Time to Die follows five years after the capture of Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the last Bond villain and shows James Bond leading a life away from his past shenanigans as he retires from service. The year 2021 has a lot of exciting films waiting for us, but No Time to Die will definitely be the reason for a big deal of excitement when the time for its premiere draws close.