It’s been exactly one month since I last posted. When I did, it was from the Israeli city of Zefat, which is known as a center for Jewish mysticism. I wasn’t there for the Kabbalah though. I was there because it’s in the middle of the Galilean wine region and I wanted to visit some wineries, including this one called Rimon, which makes an amazing wine made entirely from pomegranates. You can order a bottle online.
I returned to Iraq about two weeks ago and rather than blogging decided to catch up on work, finish reading a couple books on the run up to the Iraq war, and tried to figure out if I really wanted to do the blogging thing. It’s been more work than I thought. And unlike articles or a book, it’s unpaid.
What I do like about blogging is it forces you to think more deeply about the subjects you are covering. And I believe it will help improve my writing and ability to communicate verbally my thoughts on war, post-conflict stabilization and international development. So I plan to continue with it, but am thinking just one post a week at most.
One final note: I decided while in Tel Aviv to accept an offer to attend Duke University for a Master’s in International Development. I’m doing the M.A. in part because the grad degree is the new bachelor’s, and because I need one to get where I eventually want to be professionally, which is help make government policy and hold leadership positions related to international development and national security. After 4.5 years in Iraq and over 7.5 years living abroad, I’m also looking for a break and a chance to relax in the States for an extended time period. I think Durham, North Carolina, which is where Duke is, will be a great place to live. I’m looking forward to spending two years there, and then moving on to DC where I hope to settle permanently.
So this blog will survive, and I suspect when classes start, will probably focus more on the state-building (international development) side of things more than anything else. It may go dark for a while during certain periods when I go on vacation again or am overloaded with school work, but I hope to keep it going at least until I graduate.
Then we’ll see what happens.