Israel’s Operation Pillar of Cloud refers to Exodus, in which the Israeli army was protected from approaching Egyptian forces by a pillar of cloud that separated them “so neither went near the other all night long.” Two days ago, one of Israel’s Deputy Prime Ministers said “The goal of the operation is to send Gaza back to the Middle Ages.” Here, in Gaza City, pillars of cloud are erected by F-16s.

theatlantic:

In Focus: Destruction Comes to Aleppo

Warfare and chaos have come to the ancient streets of Aleppo, Syria’s largest city. Rebel groups battling Syrian government forces moved into the metropolis in recent weeks, in an effort to liberate it from the control of Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad. Fierce street battles and air attacks followed, leaving behind a shattered city, strewn with charred rubble and bodies in many places. An estimated 30,000 Syrians have already been killed in the past 18 months of civil war, and as many as 700,000 will have fled the country by the end of 2012, according to the United Nations. 

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