Countries Turn To United Nations To Restrain NSA

By: Friday October 25, 2013 7:36 am

After news broke that the US government was monitoring the calls of at least 35 world leaders, many of whom were allies, the question of restraining US spying power became a pressing international issue. Aggrieved countries such as Brazil and Germany are now even turning to the United Nations to rein in the NSA. Both [...]

Disability Treaty Defeated in Senate Would Have Made No Changes to US Law

By: Tuesday December 4, 2012 1:56 pm

Harry Reid blasted out a reaction to the Senate defeat of an international treaty on disabilities, and the part that should jump out at you is this: It is a sad day when we cannot pass a treaty that simply brings the world up to the American standard for protecting people with disabilities because the [...]

UN to Investigate US Drone Program

By: Friday October 26, 2012 1:29 pm

The United Nations special rapporteur for counterterrorism will lead an inquiry into civilian deaths from US drone strikes around the world, to determine whether the strikes violate international human rights and humanitarian laws. The announcement was made by Ben Emmerson QC, a UN special rapporteur, in a speech to Harvard law school in which he [...]

Turkey Approves Military Action Against Syria as Cross-Border Attacks Continue

By: Friday October 5, 2012 7:35 am

Turkey’s Parliament approved military action against Syria yesterday, though they downplayed it as not a prelude to an invasion or a “war mandate.” But while Syria apologized for cross-border shelling that killed five in Turkey and drew this response, the Turkish military fired over the border for a second day, as the Turkish Prime Minister [...]

Governors Ask EPA to Suspend Corn-Based Ethanol Mandate

By: Thursday August 16, 2012 12:54 pm

Four states have asked the EPA to waive the renewable fuels standard that forces the nation to generate more corn-based ethanol at a time of significant drought and a corn shortage. The states all have Democratic Governors, though two of them come from the South. The worst drought in 50 years has sent corn prices [...]

UN Begs US to Stop Corn-Based Ethanol Production During Drought

By: Friday August 10, 2012 8:15 am

The USDA announced that this year’s corn yield will be the lowest since 1995. As a result corn prices are projected to reach a record high, between $7.50 to $8.90 a bushel. To add a contrarian anecdote, the corn at my farmer’s market remains steady at 3 ears for $2.00, but that could change as [...]

Annan Quits as Syria Mediator, as US Authorizes Covert Support

By: Thursday August 2, 2012 9:35 am

Kofi Annan has stepped down as the international crisis mediator for the UN on Syria, in an acknowledgement that without unity on the Security Council, nothing will be done at an international level. Former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan is stepping down as the U.N.-Arab League mediator in the 17-month-old Syria conflict at the end of [...]

Syria’s Civil War Intensifies With Fighting in Damascus

By: Tuesday July 17, 2012 9:35 am

Fighting in the Syrian capital of Damascus raged for a third straight day, the most sustained challenge to the seat of power of President Bashar al-Assad. The Syrian government has escalated their response as a result: Activists in the northern Damascus suburb of Qaboun said the Syrian forces were backed by helicopter gunships, an apparent [...]

Russia Hints at Giving Up on Syria

By: Tuesday July 10, 2012 1:38 pm

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s continued survival is predicated on their Russian patrons to a large extent. So this shift from Moscow is really a crushing blow: Russia will cease deliveries of arms and fighter planes to Syria until the situation in the country stabilises, an official said yesterday, a move that would ratchet up pressure [...]

Member of Assad’s Inner Circle Defects from Syria

By: Friday July 6, 2012 8:55 am

Brigadier General Manaf Tlass, a commander of the Republican Guard in Syria and a close confidant of President Bashar al-Assad, has defected to Turkey, French foreign minister Laurent Fabius confirmed today. The number of high-ranking officers quitting Mr. Assad’s forces has increased markedly in recent days as violence has mounted. But the departure of General [...]

Syria’s Assad Declares “State of War”

By: Wednesday June 27, 2012 7:35 am

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has essentially declared a civil war in a meeting with his new cabinet, which was broadcast on state-run TV. He did this as fighting raged just outside of the capital of Damascus, and as gunmen stormed a pro-government TV channel, killing seven. It’s hard not to agree with Assad that we [...]

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