A Palestinian boy cries as he stands beside his family in southern Gaza.
Καλό μήνα (happy month) as we embrace a new month in our new year. I'm very excited about February. We're hosting a great dinner this Thursday (we being the Oxford Gastronomy Society) at Christ Church College here in Oxford - with a 1920s gangster party theme, in the format of a murder mystery. I cannot wait. Next week, I'm off to Montreal for a scientific conference where I am presenting a poster, and then back to my base here in the UK.
On a more serious note, an important article in today's Observer magazine in the Guardian by Peter Beaumont on the situation in Gaza. Palestinians are in short supply of food, and based on the article, sources including the World Food Programme, the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation and Palestinian officials, are reporting that between 35% and 60% of the agriculture industry has been wrecked by the three-week Israeli bombing and shelling.
The greatest destruction seems to be in areas where the farming was most intensive (sigh), and the implications for this are very grave for both the short term and long term. What next? We are lucky bastards here in Europe for all we have. Let us never forget that.