Another 130 U.S. troops arrived in Iraq on Tuesday on what the Pentagon described as a temporary mission to assess the scope of the humanitarian crisis facing thousands of displaced Iraqi civilians trapped on Sinjar Mountain and evaluate options for getting them out to safety.

The United Nations has warned that a mass atrocity or genocide of refugees in the Mount Sinjar region of northern Iraq could still happen “within days or hours”.  The UN's special rapporteur who has been investigating the plight of 40,000 mainly Kurdish-speaking Yazidis who fled to the mountain fearing attacks from the extremist militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isis), said the world urgently needed to recognise the severity of the humanitarian crisis.

The Coordination Agency of Public Diplomacy (KDK) published some briefings on the humanitarian aid work carried out in Iraq and Palestine. Data is presented in an info-graphic prepared by the institution and is published in English, French and Arabic.

Ottawa is providing $5-million in new humanitarian assistance for the victims of the ongoing crisis in Iraq, vowing to come to the help of displaced civilians and religious minorities.  “Canada continues to stand by the people of Iraq in these difficult times and condemns the terrorist actions of ISIS and the killing of innocent civilians in northern Iraq in the strongest possible terms," International Development Minister Christian Paradis said in a statement on Sunday.

August 11, 2014

By the time Obama was sworn in in 2009, Democrats enjoyed a 10-point lead in trust on foreign policy, and Obama did not hesitate in implementing his foreign policy vision.  At every step along the way, Obama has been betrayed by his fervent faith in the effectiveness of soft power.

From the Israeli perspective, there’s some public diplomacy benefit here. The world is being somewhat distracted from what’s going on in Gaza, and now Israel is not the only country bombing Islamic extremists. But these are small comforts at best. Europe, in particular, seems to have gotten fed up with the IDF’s operations in Gaza, even as it declares its understanding for Israel’s right to defend itself. And despite the renewal of rocket fire, even the United States is expecting Israel to come to some long-term agreement with Hamas.

The political leader of Iraq's Kurds, Massoud Barzani, has appealed for international military aid to help defeat Islamist militants in the north.  The plea came as the US launched a fourth round of air strikes targeting Islamic State fighters near Irbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan.

One photographer's global travels recently captured a glimmer of hope within an otherwise bleak landscape in Iraq.  Brandon Stanton, known for his successful blog and best-selling book, "Humans of New York," partnered with the United Nations to venture on a 50-day tour of 10 countries and expand his storytelling series worldwide.