Sometimes there is so much going on in the rest of the world that it is hard to keep up. The news tends to focus on the particulars, which makes it extremely difficult to see the big picture. That is why I was really excited when I came across this interactive timeline of unrest in the Middle East. If you’re a visual learner like me, this will definitely help you see a “big picture” of the region’s recent history.
Meanwhile, Japan’s recent earthquake is truly hard to watch. And the nuclear power plant disaster that is unfolding is confusing and scary at the same time. I found this simple diagram (also from Guardian’s website) that explains what’s going on visually.
Ultimately, there is only so much we can do from across the Pacific. One way of helping out is to donate money to charities that are working around the clock to help the earthquake victims. But it’s hard to know which charities to give to sometimes, because there are so many and their causes are all worthy. Here are two websites that might help you make your decision. They independently evaluate charities and give them a rating based on how well run and efficient their operation is, so that you know your money is going into capable hands.