Iraq (Update)

 Iraq is arguably at its worst low ever, having been taken over by the extremist Islamist group i.S.I.S.  Next door, Syria too is also arguably at its worst low ever, with Assad newly “elected” while continuing to slaughter his own subjects.

The Guardian reported: “The UN has warned that the Isis fighters have committed  summary executions and rape on their irresistible advance”.  So they have not been listening, then, to the anti-rape in war conference this week hosted by Angelina Jolie and William Hague.


 I.S.I.S. (The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) whose army are marching steadily towards Baghdad, are apparently even more extreme in their outlook and methods than Alkaida.  Last week they “took” Mosul and Tikrit.

The chart for Isis shows a successful use of force (Mars sextile Pluto) while current transits show Isis being dealt a free will hand currently with Jupiter exactly trine its North Node.

U.S. and Iran

 Meanwhile, ironically, the U.S. and Iran talk of co-operation in rushing to help Iraq.  Suddenly the two countries, at loggerheads over Syria and nuclear weaponry, find themselves on the same page.  An air campaign is under consideration.

President Obama is deliberating how much intervention,  or non-intervention, he can get away with.  Hillary Clinton published her second volume of memoirs this week, entitled “Hard Choices”.  I bought a cut price copy from a supermarket, but it is as yet pristine and unread.  She tends to infer that in the past, as in the choice to go to war in Iraq,  she has favoured intervention, but has learned to respect and negotiate with Obama, whose choices have been more restrained.

Tony Blair

 Tony Blair tells the same old story, reportedly “amazed” that the current situation has been blamed on the act of war taken by himself and George W. Bush in 2003.  His interview on the Andrew Marr show this morning showed an increasing tendency towards cognitive dissonance, or denial.  Goodness knows what he says in the confessional box.  Meanwhile the Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq war and Tony Blair’s role rumbles on.

Current Transits

 For such a dire situation the coming week’s transits are surprisingly tame, though sitting between the activation by Mars of the Uranus-Pluto square.  Mars squared Pluto yesterday, with tension mounting in the area.  Mars will oppose Uranus on Wednesday 25th June.  This week is a hiatus wherein may lie more hope and more negotiation, and it may be back to a show of force next week.

Toby Dodge, writing in the Guardian yesterday, states:  “Those who want to see a stable, democratic Iraq should support the heroic people within the country who are still there, trying to build a new country from the ground up.”

The South Node is currently transiting the Mars (warriorship) of old Iraq, so there is old karma going down.  For Maliki, current president of Iraq, Neptune is transiting his Jupiter and squaring his Mercury, so he faces a period of confusion and uncertainty and a reorientation of his faith at this time.



 Four of the five astrological features this week carry the morning energy, and can be used to seize the working week early on.  If you are wanting to make headway at work, this could be a week to do so.  The aspects are kind, and not as disruptive as some we have had of late.

First up is Mercury re-entering Gemini from Cancer on Tuesday (17th) morning.  You may have gathered important emotional information while Mercury has been in Cancer, but now you can re-examine the facts in the cold light of day.  In the office, you may be called to re-examine those facts or data, as part of a project, and understand how the meaning and the statistics can come together.

On Wednesday (18th) morning, there is a chance to consolidate achievements and push towards success, with Venus sextile Jupiter.  There may be a chance to network from one Office to another, as this aspect is excellent for socializing and P.R.  You may introduce creativity or artistry into your working practice.

If you are retired, Wednesday would be an excellent time for a coffee morning, to bring people together,  in a self-help group, or to raise funds for charity.

Loving relationships could take a step towards the altar, with an informal engagement party (attended only by friends and family who are retired or on benefits or can spare the day off work).

The aspect occurring on Thursday (19th) partakes of evening energy, occurring just over an hour before midnight. The Sun conjuncts Mercury at 28 degrees Gemini. The Sun conjunct Mercury, especially placed in Gemini, is a superb point of focus.    Depending where it falls in your chart, i.e. which House, you may have scintillating insights.  It falls for example in my 2nd House of Finance, so I should be able in theory to come up with an efficient money-making scheme…  As an evening aspect, you may be in emotional mood and pour out the insights into a poem or creative piece.

Saturday (21st) brings the Summer Solstice, the celebration of the peak of the light in the year.  Here in the U.K. it again partakes of morning energy, with full appreciation of the light illuminating nature.  A woodland or forest venue would be ideal, to see all the trees in full leaf and enjoy all the shades of green.

But first, Chiron turns retrograde and throws a curveball in the shape of a healing initiation.  Perhaps you literally are stung by a nettle and find a dock leaf nearby, or something similar and suitably symbolic, after which you are free to celebrate the onset of Summer, and unpack your picnic. Wasps may not be celebrating with you, as it is not their season.  So enjoy your Summer Solstice celebration, even if it is under the guise of a music or beer festival!


 The majority of the aspects or astrological features happen in the late evening in the night before in the U.S., and so may take on a different hue in that continent.

Monday evening (16th) will see the re-entry of Mercury into Gemini.  You may have started the working week in an emotional vein, but on reflection on Monday evening may see things in more rational terms, and formulate a new plan accordingly to work towards for Tuesday morning.  As Mercury is retrograde, you may need to wait until the beginning of July to implement a new beginning, but can start to see things differently now and understand how to implement new understandings in an informal way.

Your mind may not at all be on the workplace on Monday evening, in which case the new understanding which incorporates emotion and rationality together can be applied to your personal life, for example in instituting new personal boundaries.

If you are having an early night, you may be subject to deep insights in the hypnagogic state between wakefulness and sleeping.

Tuesday evening (17th) will see you making merry, with Venus sextile Jupiter.  This could be an anniversary party or an engagement party.  Hopefully, you can let your hair down without a care in the world.  Even Barack Obama may find an outlet for relaxation between responsibilities.

Thursday (19th)  mid-afternoon the Sun conjuncts Gemini, and work ethics are blessed.  Here is a chance for real concentration, getting the job done, and making progress through application.

Friday (20th) in the early evening brings a chance to honour the Summer Solstice, the Sun’s entry into the sign of Cancer.  Here the focus may be Moon gazing, just over its half-Moon phase.  The Summer Solstice is as much about the Moon as the Sun, marking the Sun’s entry into the Moon’s sign.  Any social event on Saturday night may illustrate in some way its connection with this seasonal event.  Just before this revelation, look out for an incident of healing significance or challenge, with Chiron turning retrograde.  It highlights something as yet unhealed, which will mark a new healing journey.  Once that is understood, you can let the wine flow!


Please excuse me in advance, dear antipodean reader, for although hubby Mike has been to Australia once, and my youngest daughter has been three times, I have not visited your fair land.  My stereotypical vision therefore consists of having watched Neighbours for its first few years, and I am almost bound to mention the word barbecue at least once.  Here goes:

Your main planetary energies this week are going to be expressed mainly in early evening energies and events.

On Tuesday (17th) early evening Mercury enters Gemini from Cancer in retrograde motion.  You may start the evening with new insights and ways of perception, having garnered emotional input recently which you can put together with a satisfying intellectual structure.  Thus you may have put in your diary a casual social arrangement, but change your mind as there is a new idea you want to work on.

Wednesday (18th) early evening is the one to socialize.  It is party time, with Venus sextile Jupiter, so you can invite the Neighbours round if you had to put them off the evening before.   It may be that you had planned for some time an engagement or anniversary party.  If you are not a party animal, the evening is perfect for artistic, musical or creative pursuits.

Late morning on Friday (20th) is the time to enjoy the Sun’s conjunction with Mercury in late Gemini.  So if you are ending your working week in the office, on a winter’s day,  you will be able to concentrate, perhaps doing a whole week’s work in one day.

Saturday (21st ) in the early evening the Sun enters Cancer in Australia.  Here the focus may be watching the emerging Moon, just over its half-Moon phase, as it comes into full splendour towards the night.  It is the best day for a barbecue. You may reflect on the week past as a period of balm, with Wednesday as social icing on the cake.  As Chiron turns retrograde, you may become aware of a healing mission, which lasts at least until 24th November when Chiron turns direct again.

Next Week: Wimbledon

The week in bullet points (see U.S. and Aussie timings above):

  • Tuesday –  retracing your steps mentally
  • Wednesday – divine for social events
  • Thursday – pinpointing the truth
  • Saturday – attending to healing and celebrating the Solstice