The news that an elder from the community has passed away is apart from the deep immediate sorrow an event that causes many to look on the future with some trepidation. Death in this context is so much more than just the passing of an individual. It represents the severing of a link to times and sacrifices that are all too distant for many second, generation immigrants.
I think the pace of change has been greater during our lifetime than in any other period in history, and nowhere more so than in the media; papers, radio and TV active 24 hours a day, deadlines and regional borders effectively gone, news and comment largely fused, trends accelerated by social media which did not exist when I left Downing Street, let alone when I started. Mark Zuckerberg, 29, was not even born when I set out on the Daily Mirror.
The real-politik of the region is that Israel has never posed a threat to Islam or Arab nationalism. It's the possible spread of democracy from Israel that Arab leaders have long feared. Shiite Iran, on the other hand, sees itself as leader of the mainly Sunni Islamic world and wants to take that honour away from the Saudis. Israel now seems a much lesser of two evils to the Saudi Royal Family...one that could help them curb Iran's ambitions.
We need a party that will stand by trade unions, not cut them adrift as they face yet another damaging setback for workers' rights at Grangemouth. We need a socialist party, a party that will fight as vigorously to defend the rights of the oppressed as the Tories do to defend the pockets of the privileged. Labour used to be these things, but no more.
We've got used to the fact that our car industry is no longer British-owned; that much of our electricity, gas and water is provided by non-UK companies, and that Heathrow airport is owned by a consortium made up of Spanish railways, a Quebec pension fund, and a Singaporean sovereign wealth fund. But how do you feel about Britain's nuclear power stations being owned by China?
Over the last three months, I've been making a film for ITV's Exposure strand on Britain's cannabis industry. I wanted to take a different approach to the usual 'blue light', following the police style of law and order programming that we've seen a lot of on our screens in recent years and get inside the cannabis business to see it from the criminals point-of-view.
A cross-government audit is currently under way looking at where the EU has powers in the UK. The idea is that each will be examined to see whether it is necessary or whether the power could be "brought back" to the UK. This is Mr Cameron's proposed stance on Europe: take back control while still maintaining EU membership...
The destruction of Syrian chemical weapons (CW) has started. In a breakthrough moment in Iran-US relations, the two Presidents talked on the phone and the foreign ministers sat down to discuss Iran's nuclear programme. Though the connection has received little comment in the western news media, these two welcome developments are deeply linked and close to inter-dependent.
Inequality has been rising rapidly in Britain for the past 30 years. The gap between rich and poor has widened and the share of income going to the top 1% has doubled, from 6% to 14%. If the growth in inequality continues at its current rate, we are heading towards Victorian extremes in the next 20 years.
Then there are the many, many people who still think it's OK to use file sharing and pirate sites to download music for free with the justification that the record labels have been ripping us off for years. This "justification" conveniently side-steps the fact that if the record company doesn't get paid then neither does the artist...