The fall of Ramadi to Islamic State troops last week was not a big deal. The city was deep inside IS-held territory, IS fighters had controlled 80% of it since March, and we already knew that the Iraqi army can't fight.
Early this month, North Korea claimed to have launched a ballistic missile from a submerged submarine.
The picture of the two Asian giants that most people carry around in their heads shows China racing ahead economically while India bumbles along, falling ever further behind.
''What's emerging is what we need, which is a comprehensive plan, going after the criminal gangs, going after the traffickers, going after the owners of the boats ... and stabilising the countries from which these people are coming.''
Once upon a time, big military operations were given obscure names so the enemy wouldn't guess what the plan was.
The first thing to do, if you want to cut the number of refugees from Africa and the Middle East dying while trying to cross the Mediterranean, is to drop leaflets all along the Libyan coast teaching them about ship stability.
''Killer robots'' is a dreadful name, don't you think? It reminds you of the killing machines in the Terminator series and the ''Battle Droids'' of Star Wars.
''The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable,'' said John Kenneth Galbraith, the wisest American economist of his generation. (''A paltry honour,'' he would have murmured.)
''I think, once a dictator, always a dictator,'' said Sonnie Ekwowusi, a columnist for Nigeria's This Day newspaper.
Midway through the election campaign, Israel's leading satirical TV show, Eretz Nehederet, came up with a new take on the man who has dominated the country's politics for the past 20 years.
If he just had the flu, why didn't they say that he just had the flu? We'd all have sent him get-well cards, and that would have been the end of it.
It's often a good idea, when faced with a really frightening situation, to model the ''worst case'' outcome and see how bad it could get.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has finally given his much ballyhooed speech to the United States Congress, and the heavens haven't fallen.
,'' Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov said recently, ''she gives me a talking-to: 'When will you stop being rude about Putin? He'll kill you'.''
''We're not waiting around here to die,'' said Johan Dumas, one of the survivors of the siege at the kosher supermarket during the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack in Paris in January.
Does democracy in Malaysia really depend on Anwar Ibrahim? If it does, Malaysia's 30 million people are in trouble.
Angela Merkel grew up under communist rule in the old East Germany.
Peak oil is so last year. Now we can worry about peak everything: peak food, peak soil, peak fertiliser, even peak bees.