Posts Tagged ‘Washington’

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Daily International News 05.05.11

May 5, 2011

Daily International News
May 5, 2011

Osama bin Laden
Photos show three dead men at bin Laden raid house
[Reuters]
Pakistan army says US personnel to be cut
[AP]

Pakistan gives warning against further raids
[Al Jazeera]
Analysis – Legal questions remain over bin Laden killing
[Reuters]
U.S. will stand by Pakistan, Clinton says
[Reuters]
Obama Visits Ground Zero After Bin Laden Death
[Bloomberg]
Fidel Castro criticizes US for bin Laden kill
[AP]
China: Bin Laden burial ship applies to visit HK
[AP]

Northeast Asia
Japan
Workers enter Japan reactor for 1st time since blast
[Reuters]

China/Taiwan
Taiwan’s Ma: ‘Sooner or Later, Beijing Will Move Toward Democracy’
[Der Spiegel]

China boosts foreign investment in Latin America
[BBC]
Ship hijacked with 24 Chinese crew in Arabian Sea
[AP]
Pandas Tian Tian and Yang Guang to arrive in Edinburgh in July
[BBC]
Migrants push Beijing population to 19.6 million
[AP]
Koreas
S.Korean Buddhists Deliver Aid to N.Korea
[Chosun]
South Korea in final approval of EU trade deal
[BBC]
Korea’s 1st Female Navy Patrol Pilot Goes to Work
[Chosun]

Southeast Asia/Pacific
Vietnam quashes rare Hmong uprising lasting days
[AP]
Last WWI combat veteran Claude Choules dies aged 110 in Australia
[BBC]
Indonesia economy grows by 6.5% in the first quarter
[BBC]
Singapore leaders admit faults, face election test
[AP]

Middle East
Clinton Leaves Door Open After Palestinian Deal
[NYT]

Syrian troops ‘begin withdrawal’ from Deraa
[Al Jazeera]
Two mid-level al Qaeda leaders killed in Yemen
[Reuters]
Suicide bomber kills 20 policemen in central Iraq
[AP]

Africa
Allies offer Libyan rebels cash lifeline
[Reuters]
Egypt’s former interior minister sentenced
[Al Jazeera]

Egypt’s new diplomacy worries Washington
[Al Jazeera]
Red Cross finds mass grave in Ivorian city
[Al Jazeera]
Canadian HR Org: Albinos in Tanzania murdered or raped as AIDS “cure”
[Reuters]

Europe
Britain Votes on Changes to Election System
[NYT]

AMAP: study warns of mercury in Arctic
[AP]

Americas/Domestic
Earthquake rattles Mexico City and buildings shake
[Reuters]
A foreign policy void in GOP 2012 field
[AP]
Poll: Number of ‘birthers’ plummets
[WaPo]
AP, Reuters sitting out GOP S.C. debate
[POLITICO]
Obama Said to Consider Ambassador to India Roemer for Commerce Secretary
[Bloomberg]
Brooklyn Enclave Helps New York Top L.A. as Diversity Capital
[Bloomberg]

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Daily International News 01.18.11

January 18, 2011

Daily International News
January 18, 2011

Hu Jintao State Visit/Hu-Obama Summit 2011
Overall

Biden greets China’s Hu upon arrival in the US
[AP]
Obama holding first China state dinner in 13 years
[AP]

Hu Gets Full State Honors as Visit Displays Obama’s Dueling Views of China
[Bloomberg]
China’s Hu to engage in rare Q&A with media in US
[AP]
From 01/15 U.S.-China Relationship Difficult, Lugar Says Before Hu Visits White House [Bloomberg]
From 01/17 For Chinese Leader’s Visit, U.S. to Take a Bolder Tack [NYT]
Q&A with WaPo’s John Pomfret on Hu Visit
[WaPo]
Issues

Hu Jintao arriving for state visit focused on economics, security, human rights
[WaPo]

Editorial: The U.S. finds its voice on China and human rights
[WaPo]
On Faith: President Hu Jintao, Tibet, and the Dalai Lama
[WaPo]
Before meeting Obama, Hu positive on peninsula
[JoongAng]
Energy Could Be a Key Area of Cooperation for the U.S. and China
[TIME]
US companies expand goals as China leader arrives
[AP]

Northeast Asia
Koreas

2011’s Top Risks: Will North Korea spin out of control?
[FP]
UN Should Discuss North Korean Uranium, South Korea’s President Lee Says
[Bloomberg]

North Korea willing to resume U.S. missions to recover remains of MIAs
[CNN]
N. Korea’s actual military spending estimated at US$8.77 bln in 2009
[Yonhap]
China/Taiwan

Taiwan Stages Missile Tests on Eve of U.S.-China Meeting
[NYT] and Video: Taiwan in live-fire missile tests [BBC]
Senators accuse China of violating sanctions against Iran
[FP]

China’s Military Comes Into Its Own
[StratFor]
China commercial nuclear fuel reprocessing far off
[AP]
China sees importance of trilateral cooperation with Japan, ROK
[Xinhua]
Summary Box: China rare earths exports up in 2010
[AP]
China, Russia to hold fifth strategic security negotiations
[Xinhua]
“Experience China” debuts at NYC’s Times Square
[Xinhua]

South/Central Asia
Major earthquake hits SW Pakistan
[AP]
Pakistani troops search homes in Karachi crackdown
[AP]
Nobel laureate Yunus in Bangladesh court
[AFP]

Southeast Asia
Vietnam reshuffles leaders, but policy seen consistent
[Reuters]
Top UN official to visit Sri Lanka’s war victims
[AFP]

Middle East
Palestinian resolution on Israel to be put to UN council
[AFP]

Palestinians raise flag at Washington office
[AP]
Russia reaffirms recognition of Palestinian state
[BBC]
Palestinian killed along Gaza-Israel border
[AP]
Va. teen detained in Kuwait sues U.S.
[WaPo]
Netanyahu rewards Barak with Israel cabinet seats
[Reuters]
Suicide bombing in Iraq kills 52 police recruits [AP]
Turkey to join Lebanon ‘contact group’ to help solve political crisis
[Hurriyet]

Iran suspends hanging sentence in stoning case: MP
[Reuters]
Pirates seized record 1,181 hostages in 2010 – report
[BBC]

Africa
UN team examines seized Iranian weapons in Nigeria
[AP]
Officials: 4 ministers quit new Tunisia government
[AP]
Rwanda issues arrest warrant for dissent exiles
[BBC]

Europe
Spain holds 10 in first anti-Eta raids since ceasefire
[BBC]
Iraq inquiry: Notes from Tony Blair to George Bush will not be published
[Guardian]

Berlusconi urged to resign over latest sex probe
[Reuters]
EU to detail objections to Hungary media law in letter
[Reuters]
Irish Prime Minister Cowen wins confidence vote
[AP]
Vatican warned Irish bishops not to report abuse
[AP]
UK gay couple wins discrimination case against Christian hoteliers – video
[Guardian]

Americas
Paraguay leader tells police to shut down rebels
[AP]
‘Baby Doc’ Duvalier charged with corruption in Haiti
[Guardian]
Mexico police: founding member of Zetas captured
[AP]

Domestic
Inside Holbrooke’s War With the White House
[Daily Beast]
Obama Launches Rule Review, Pledging to Spur Jobs, Growth
[WSJ]
Supreme Court refuses to revive effort to put D.C. same-sex marriage law to vote
[WaPo]
Videos show Tucson shooting in detail, sources say
[WaPo]
Release Nears for Giffords
[WSJ]
Sarah Palin Defends “Blood Libel” Phrase, Says Liberals Can’t “Shut Me Up”
[CBS]
Dick Cheney on ‘Today’: I may need a heart transplant (VIDEO)
[WaPo]
From 01/17 Apple boss Steve Jobs takes ‘medical leave’ [BBC]
Facebook U-turns on phone and address data sharing
[BBC]

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Daily International News 12.03.10

December 3, 2010

Daily International News
December 3, 2010

WikiLeaks
Wikileaks warrant ‘issued to UK’
[BBC]
German party urges US to recall envoy over Wikileaks
[BBC]

WikiLeaks cables on Cuba show links to terrorists from Colombia, Spain
[Miami Herald]
Hillary Clinton rejects Wikileaks criticism of UK
[BBC]
Wikileaks cables: US Mexico drugs war fears revealed
[BBC]
WikiLeaks Struggles to Stay Online After Cyberattacks
[NYT]

Northeast Asia
Koreas
U.S. Sees Greater North Korea Nuclear Threat
[WSJ] and UN ‘concerned’ over North Korea uranium enrichment [BBC]
South Korean Outlines Muscular Military Posture
[NYT]
U.S., Korea Agree on Free-Trade Pact
[WSJ]

Another option for undermining North Korea
[WaPo Op-ed] and Unification costs will be huge [JoongAng Op-ed]
China expects Washington trilateral meeting to ease tensions on Korean Peninsula
[Xinhua]
China
China says it will tighten monetary policy in 2011
[AP]

Rio, Chinalco to explore for minerals in China
[AP]
Japan
Japan, U.S. begin joint military exercises
[CNN]

Kan cements ties with ruling bloc partner amid political challenges
[Mainichi]

South/east/Central Asia
Obama in Afghanistan but bad weather blocks Karzai meeting
[Reuters]
Philippines and communist rebels to hold talks
[BBC]
Bhopal: India wants compensation doubled
[BBC]

Middle East
EU: No breakthrough expected in Iran nuclear talks
[AP]
Saudi king in good shape after surgery – prince
[Reuters]

Africa
Council declares Gbagbo winner of Ivory Coast vote
[AP]
Diallo concedes after Conde named Guinea president
[Reuters]
Activist: Civilian deaths in Nigeria’s oil delta
[AP]

Europe
Spain OKs new austerity measures to calm markets
[AP]
Student protest threat forces Lib Dem meeting to cancel
[BBC]

Americas
Brazil changes oil drilling rules
[BBC]
US says Cuba detention of contractor hurts ties
[AP]
Army captures U.S. teen hitman in Mexico
[Reuters]
UN: Cholera could affect 650,000 in Haiti
[AP]
UN threatens to pull out of Haiti

Domestic
US unemployment rate hits seven-month high
[BBC]
X-37B US military spaceplane returns to Earth
[BBC]
Obama, GOP in quiet talks to extend tax cuts
[WaPo]
U.S. military chiefs urge against ending gay ban
[Reuters]

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Daily International News 10.27.10

October 27, 2010

Daily International News
October 27, 2010

Global
Global extinction crisis looms, new study says
[WaPo]

Northeast Asia
Clinton heads to Asia to assure China’s neighbors
[AP]
Clinton Starts Asia Trip to Build Trade, Alliances [Bloomberg]

China
China holds first live-fire joint drills in Tibet
[AP]
China looms large over Clinton’s Asia-Pacific tour
[Reuters]
China to expand fleet to patrol disputed seas
[Reuters]
CPC Central Committee’s proposal for 12th 5-year plan
[Xinhua]
Analysis: Rare earths next big thing or will the bubble burst?
[Reuters]
Beijing Plans to Boost Product-Safety Rules
[WSJ]

Koreas
Aid Request Snags Korea Talks
[NYT]

Japan
Kan’s desire to join Trans-Pacific Partnership talks sparks spat within DPJ
[Mainichi]
With UN nature talks stalling, Japan offers $2 bln
[AP]

Southeast Asia/Pacific
Philippines calls Myanmar elections a ‘farce’
[AP]
Cambodia rebuffs UN chief on Khmer Rouge trials
[AP]
Indonesia’s twin disasters kill more than 300
[Reuters]

South/Central Asia
India signs nuclear liability pact, a U.S. demand
[Reuters]
India says fears militant attack during Obama visit
[Reuters]
Afghan contractor deadline delayed
[Al Jazeera]
NATO Can’t Stop Flow Of Bomb Materials From Pakistan
[National Journal]
Suspected US missile strikes kill 7 in Pakistan
[AP]

Middle East
Washington pushes prospect of Middle East peace deal
[FT]
Iran acknowledges it funds Afghan government
[AP]
Sanctions widen gap between Iranian poor and rich
[Reuters]
Turkey seizes al-Qaeda suspects
[BBC]
Clashes as nationalists march in Israeli Arab town
[BBC]
Anbar Province, Once a Hotbed of Iraqi Insurgency, Demands a Say on Resources
[NYT]
Ruler of UAE’s Ras al Khaimah emirate dies
[AP]

Africa
Sudan president on safer ground as summit shifted
[BBC]
Jailed Eritrean journalist wins press freedom award
[BBC]

Europe
Report: Russia seeks to limit new NATO members
[AP]
Bin Laden warns France over Afghan war, veil ban
[AP]
French MPs adopt pension reform
[BBC]
Romania’s government survives no-confidence vote
[AP]
Germany hopes to make forced marriage a crime
[AP]

Americas
Latin leaders question move to legalize marijuana
[AP]
Venezuela announces takeover of U.S. glass-making plants
[CNN]
Cuba sets out rules and taxes for self-employed workers
[BBC]
Rousseff lead widens to 15 points in Brazil race
[Reuters]
Former Argentine President Nestor Kirchner dies
[AP]

Domestic
Democrats Say Jon Stewart Rally Will Spur Enthusiasm to Vote
[Bloomberg]
Obama to appear on ‘The Daily Show’
[AP]
Path for vote on New START this year goes through Kyl
[FP]
Soros gives $1M to Calif. pot legalization measure
[AP]
U.S. Deports Record Number of Illegal Aliens in 2010
[LAHT]
Fed Gears Up for Stimulus
[WSJ] and Fed looks set for new round of monetary easing [Reuters]
Rockefeller Presses Facebook, MySpace on Privacy; May Write Bill
[Bloomberg]
Bloody Video Games May Get Same Age Curbs as Porn
[Bloomberg]

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Daily International News 10.13.10

October 13, 2010

Daily International News
October 13, 2010

Northeast Asia
China
Norway slams restrictions on Nobel winner’s wife
[AP] and Chinese Nobel laureate’s wife slams ‘illegal house arrest’[AFP]
Former Chinese Officials Demand Media Freedom
[NYT] and  Chinese Communist elders issue free speech appeal [AP]
EPA: Hope for progress with China despite friction
[AP]
China court ‘hears first HIV job discrimination case’
[BBC]

Koreas
Experts meet ahead of naval drills in South Korea
[AP]
Former US envoy pessimistic on N.Korea nuclear weapons
[AFP]
N. Korean interpreter to six-party talks promoted in foreign ministry: source
[Yonhap]
Late top N. Korean defector to be buried at Seoul national cemetery
[Yonhap]
NKorea appeals underage ban from gymnastics worlds
[AP]
China warned N. Korea to leave Kim Jong Il’s eldest son alone: report
[Mainichi]

Japan
Japan has no plan to lodge protest over U.S. subcritical nuclear test
[Kyodo]
A-bomb survivors outraged at Obama over subcritical nuclear test
[Mainichi]

Southeast Asia
Burma’s Aung San Suu Kyi ‘will not vote’
[BBC]
Thai police hold 15 Pakistanis, probe possible terror link
[AFP]

South/Central Asia
Gains in Afghan Training, but Struggles in War
[NYT]
Afghan firms “pay off Taliban with foreign cash”
[Reuters]
More Taliban could be removed from UN blacklist: US
[Dawn]
NATO: 4 service members killed in Afghan blast
[AP]
Pakistan flood damage at $9.5 billion
[Reuters]
Kyrgyzstan parties agree vote recount
[BBC]

Middle East
Israel could reconsider presence in Jordan Valley
[AP]
Opposition Mounts Against Abbas
[WSJ]
Ammunition explosion at Iranian Guards base kills 18
[WaPo]
Ahmadinejad begins Lebanon trip
[Al-Jazeera] and Ahmadinejad boosts Hezbollah with Lebanon visit [AP]
Assad tells visiting Maliki new Iraq govt will help ties
[AFP]

Africa
Sudan FM says ‘won’t object’ to independence vote
[AP]
Sudan: UN-Backed Demobilization Process Kicks Off in South
[All Africa]
Tsvangirai asks international help in Zimbabwe ‘constitutional crisis’
[CNN]
Nigerian military deploys to northern city
[AP]
S.Africa eyes competitive FX rate ‘over time’: Finance Minister
[Reuters]

UK/Europe
EU to accept extension of Kyoto Protocol
[Mainichi]
Britain and Russia urge thaw after deep freeze in ties
[Reuters]
Miliband urges PM to rethink benefit cuts on debut
[BBC]
Royal Mail privatisation bill unveiled by Vince Cable
[BBC]
Liverpool granted leave to sell to new owners
[BBC]

Americas
And on the 69th day, one by one the Phoenix capsule delivers trapped miners
[MercoPress]
Mexican police chief investigating missing American killed
[BBC]

Domestic
Judge Orders U.S. Military to Stop ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
[NYT]
Defendant in Court for Hearing at Ft. Hood
[NYT]
White House lifts ban on deepwater drilling
[WaPo] and
Michelle Rhee to announce resignation as D.C. schools chancellor on Wednesday
[WaPo]
California governor debate turns into verbal brawl
[Reuters]
Obama Distant Kin to Palin, Limbaugh, Bush, Ancestry.com Says
[Bloomberg]

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Daily International News 10.12.10

October 12, 2010

Daily International News
October 12, 2010

Northeast Asia
China/Taiwan
US concern for wife of Nobel winner Liu Xiaobo
[BBC]
From 10/11 Dalai Lama criticises China over its Nobel opposition [BBC]
China cancels second meeting with Norway minister over Nobel Prize
[Reuters]
Obama loosens sanctions on C-130s to China
[WashTimes]
Asian military ties warm at Hanoi defence meeting
[BBC]
Gates: U.S. has ‘national interest’ in Asian sea disputes
[WaPo]
U.S. sees crisis fears easing over South China Sea
[Reuters]
From 10/11 Why Taiwan finds Washington unreliable [FP]
From 10/11 U.S. Alarmed by Harsh Tone of China’s Military [NYT]

Koreas
North Korea leader’s eldest son ‘opposes dynasty’
[BBC]
NKorean defector Hwang may be buried at National Cemetery
[JoongAng]
N. Korea’s power transfer may dent South’s credit rating: S&P
[Yonhap]
Cabbage shortage in South Korea
[BBC]

Japan
India rejects clause on nuke tests in civilian pact with Japan
[Mainichi]
Inquest panel’s decision to indict Ozawa is test of public’s boosted role in justice system
[Mainichi]

South/Southeast/Central Asia
Cambodia denies Thai assassination plot allegation
[AP]
India Adds Economic Power to UN Bloc Skeptical on Iran Pressure
[Bloomberg]
Pakistan crucial to Afghan peace talks, says Gilani
[Dawn]
Blast inside NATO helicopter kills one in Afghanistan
[Reuters]
From 10/11 Kyrgyzstan votes and surprises the world [WaPo]

Middle East
Lebanon, neighbors brace for Ahmadinejad visit
[LAT]
Iran holds 2 Germans linked to stoning case
[AP]
Iran’s Economy Feels Sting of Sanctions
[WSJ]
Two Yemen bombings strike Aden
[BBC]
Palestinians reject Israeli offer on settlement freeze
[BBC]

Africa
Zimbabwe PM: Don’t recognize our 6 ambassadors
[AP]
Abyei future talks fail, south Sudan says
[Reuters]
Somali troops in bid to rescue minister from pirates
[BBC]
Nigeria police station destroyed in ‘Boko Haram attack’
[BBC]

Europe
Clinton off to Balkans to push EU integration
[WashTimes]
UK court rejects challenge to North Cyprus flight ban
[Reuters]
Petraeus orders probe into failed UK aid worker rescue
[BBC]
Iceland ‘best country for gender equality’
[BBC]
France: Strikes over pension reform begin
[AP]
Hungary dam nearly ready to prevent second toxic spill
[Reuters]
Ukraine train and bus collision kills 40
[BBC]

Americas
Chile awaits start of mine rescue
[BBC]
Hurricane Paula forms, heads to Yucatan Peninsula
[AP]

Domestic
First patient treated in stem cell study
[WaPo]
For Democrats, Even ‘Safe’ Seats Are Shaky
[NYT]
States to Probe Mortgage Mess
[WSJ]
After mortgage meltdown, Barney Frank gets another chance to remake housing finance
[WaPo]
Democrats Aim to Curb GOP Donors
[WSJ]
Wall Street Pay: A Record $144 Billion
[WSJ]
Stocks dip as traders await Fed meeting details
[AP]

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Daily International News 07.01.10

July 1, 2010

Happy July and officially one year since I started my job!
Daily International News
July 1, 2010

Koreas
S.Korea rejects North’s offer for direct talks
[AFP]
2 NKoreans get prison terms for assassination plot
[AP]
Rockets hit SKorean Afghan reconstruction base
[AP]

China
China welcomes Gates visit at appropriate time
[AP]
Google says China partially blocks search service
[AP]
China launches global 24-hour English TV news
[AP]
New Data Show China’s Rise Slowing
[NYT]
China “gravely concerned” over EU’s trade probe into modems from China
[Xinhua]

AfPak
After Afghan Shift, Top U.S. Civilians Face Tricky Future
[NYT]
US chief Petraeus vows to protect Afghan civilians
[BBC]
US to cut $4bn in Afghan aid over corruption fears
[BBC]
Some Afghan military officers to get training in Pakistan
[WaPo]|
Vengeful new militant group emerges in Pakistan
[AP]
Taliban rules out Nato talks
[Telegraph]

Middle East
Abbas wants negotiations with Israelis, but not with Netanyahu
[Haaretz]
Turkey and Israel hold first talks since flotilla raid
[BBC]
Iran leader to visit Nigeria as it takes UN post
[AP]
Iran warns EU of “dire consequences” over sanctions
[Reuters]
Iran Arms Syria With Radar
[WSJ]
Turkish Aid From Flotilla Begins Arriving in Gaza
[NYT]
Turkey Kurdish clashes ‘kill 17’
[BBC]

Africa
Sudan frees opposition leader Hassan al-Turabi
[BBC]
Nigeria: Sect leader threatens retaliation
[AP]
New row over colonial past as Congo marks independence
[Guardian]
Somali Islamists urge boycott of independence anniversary
[SA Times]
17 Somalis die in battle between gov’t, insurgents
[AP]

Europe
Cyprus hunts for alleged Russian spy who fled
[AP]
Icelandic leader in milestone gay marriage
[AP]
Italy sees intermediate steps at UN climate summit
[AP]
German government struggles for unity after poll
[AP]

Americas/Domestic
Lindsey Graham, This Year’s Maverick
[NYT]
House passes Wall Street regulations
[USA Today]
Obama calls for comprehensive immigration bill at American University
[WaPo]
Pentagon recommends Medal of Honor for a living soldier
[WaPo]
Washington begins paying final respects to Robert Byrd
[WaPo]
Economies in Latin America Race Ahead
[NYT]
Hurricane Alex drenches northern Mexico, Texas
[AP]

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Culture of Mutual Validation: AIPAC Policy Convention 2010

March 25, 2010

This past week, DC’s otherwise morbidly silent Convention Center saw the influx of over 7500 conference attendees. The agenda included rousing speeches by pastors, multiple standing ovations, and much raising of hands in the praise of speakers. But no, this was not an assemblage of self-help or a burgeoning baptist conclave. It was the 2010 American Israel Public Affair Committee Policy Convention. Speakers at the event included Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, as well as Jewish and non-Jewish pro-Israel lobbyists.

Outside the Convention Center, it was business as usual for the annual AIPAC Conference. Code Pink, an outspoken, anti-war women’s group that grew out of a desire to oppose former President GW Bush’s invasion of Iraq, made a new name for itself as the most creative group of the pro-peace movement. Starting its Monday morning by issuing a fake AIPAC press release calling on the cessation of all settlement building in East Jerusalem, they continued by fashioning themselves as apartment buildings – in case we all forgot the recent contentious announcement by the Israeli government to build a spate of housing units on the current site of the Shepherd’s Hotel in a predominantly Arab neighborhood.

But inside the Center, recent tensions in the US-Israel relationship colored the Convention. Speakers rallied behind the indelible US-Israel relationship. Even Secretary Clinton stated that the U.S. “commitment to Israel’s security and Israel’s future is rock solid, unwavering, enduring, and forever.” But Clinton combined praise of the relationship with further condemnation of settlement construction, stating that she has always stood by “the longstanding American policy that does not accept the legitimacy of continued settlements.  As Israel’s friend, it is our responsibility to give credit when it is due and to tell the truth when it is needed.” And just a few hours later, Prime Minister Netanyahu didn’t do himself any favors when he stayed intransigent on settlements, stating”the Jews have been building in Jerusalem for 3,000 years,” adding, “Jerusalem is not a Jewish settlement.”

And in the press pit, where yours truly was stationed for much of the action, the confusion continued. Stalwart champions for journalistic impartiality were stunned to see other members of the Fourth Estate jumping to their feet in praise of speakers condemnations of Palestinian “agression” and even a few waiving US, Israeli, and yes, even British flags to correspond to different speakers national loyalties. At the end of the day (literally, as Bibi’s speech started late and went long), the display was enough to surprise and, more than anything, tire any seemingly unbiased journalist into submission.

Obviously, this was a Convention of pro-Israel lobbyists. So one might ask, why be surprised by the overt displays of partiality among press and crowd? Isn’t  a complacent and unquestioning support of all Israeli government actions part of parcel of being a pro-Israel lobby? But, if one takes newly formed and much less funded J-Street as a comparison point, I think that question answers itself.

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Why the Google.cn Issue Won’t Ruin Sino-US Relations

January 21, 2010

Among China watchers in Washington, DC , the big news today revolved around Secretary of State Hillary Clinton‘s speech on Internet Freedom. Given at the Newseum in downtown DC, Clinton railed lambasted governments and individuals who use communication networks like the Internet to lessen personal freedoms, human rights, and incite racial and political hatred. While some saw it as especially salient this week as Google decides whether or not it’s “Don’t Be Evil” motto can be upheld in its China operations, the bottom line is that no amount of verbal rhetoric or posturing can ultimately weaken the economic and regional security partnership of China and the United States.

Hillary Clinton has her ear to the ground on internet freedom.

Anticipating the Secretary’s speech today, the Vice Foreign Minister of China, He Yafei, tried to disentangle the Google.cn issue from overall Sino-US Relations. “The Google case should not be linked with relations between the two governments and countries; otherwise, it’s an over-interpretation,” he said, addressing a press conference in Beijing, then adding that “If foreign companies have different viewpoints with this regard, they should also seek solutions according to the law.”

But is this nothing new? Is the Vice FM correct in saying that this won’t hamper future relations? I think so and for a multitude of reasons. Primarily, President Obama has been extremely careful to lay down a good foundation upon which to build better Sino-US ties during his Presidency. I would think his scuttling of the human rights issue in Beijing, gentle refusal to meet the Dalai Lama before he met with Chinese leadership, and lengthy Asia trip extolling the virtues of the, what State Department Spokesman P.J. Crowley characterizes as a “broad, deep, expanding and durable relationship.”

Also, we must consider the implications for a negative turn in Sino-US relations. Even coming from a hippie optimist like myself, a dip in relations would affect our domestic economic situation (China increased its foreign reserves by $453 billion last year alone), regional security situation (China is the chair of the Six-Party Talks, aimed at bringing North Korea back to the table on nuclear weapons talks), and cultural influence (the US benefits just as much from cheap Chinese imports as the Chinese do from McDonald’s, Nike, and knock-off Playboy t-shirts…they’re more popular than you think).

Clinton today made several strong statements. She said “We stand for a single internet, where all of humanity has equal access to knowledge and ideas and we recognize that the world’s information infrastructure will become what we and others make of it.” But, she also said that “the United States and China have different views on this issue and we intend to address those differences candidly and consistently in the context of our positive, cooperative, and comprehensive relationship [italics mine].” Strong statement and Global Internet Initiatives aside, the U.S. is, and will remain, willing to work cooperatively with China on issues as seemingly black-and-white as human rights. The bottom line is that the U.S. has to – considering global and regional power relationships, there is no other choice.

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POST: They Lie, Reform Dies

September 15, 2009

This past weekend, the Tea Party “Patriots” descended, like a plague of Biblical locusts, upon Washington, filling the streets and the National Mall with slander and bigotry. Because of this and other issues, it’s been hard for me to read or watch domestic news lately. But tonight, as I took a nice, evening run on that same politically hallowed ground on which they had stomped the night before, I couldn’t help but start to think about it.

On my way to my local bank on the weekend, I passed by a few of these teabaggers, a self-appointed term by these “patriots” of which not only I have noted the hilarity. With signs and obligatory American flags, they stomped to fight Obamacare and his, as Rachel Maddow sardonically notes, “secret plan to kill old people.” One marcher was quoted, in front of a news camera, the following:

“We think we are losing our country. We think the Muslims are moving in and taking over. We do not believe our President is a Christian.”

The sign reads, "Obama-nomics. Monkey See. Monkey Spend." What else is this but pure, disgusting bigotry.

The sign reads, "Obama-nomics. Monkey See. Monkey Spend." What else is this but pure, disgusting bigotry.

There are so, so many things wrong with this statement, the least of which is my hope that in my lifetime, our freedom-loving, free speech-defending citizens will realize one can be moral, intelligent…and not Christian.  But what really hits home is the pure ignorance of the crowd and the lightly veiled (and sometimes even blatant) bigotry. It utterly, deeply scares me. In all of this melee, it’s difficult for me to even imagine these sentiments coming from the mouths of real people.

My question is, where is the ANTI-tea party, PRO-health care march? Can someone please get on that?

The bottom line – it is okay to march, to protest, and to voice your opinion.

But, now, the debate is CLEARLY not about health care anymore.