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*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:26:24 PM EST
EU to reject Mugabe's ambassadors | EurActiv
A consensus is emerging among the EU institutions to reject Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe's ambassadors-designate to the European Union, after the country's prime minister, Morgan Tsvangirai, called on the bloc not to recognise Mugabe's unilateral appointment.


*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:26:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 - Congolese govt troops are raping and killing civilians, UN says
Civilians in eastern Congo who were the targets of mass rapes by rebel militias in recent months are now being raped and killed by Congolese government troops, the UN said on Thursday, calling the continuing violence "unimaginable".


*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:26:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Election campaigning kicks off in Côte d'Ivoire | RFI
Presidential campaigning officially kicks off on Friday in Côte d'Ivoire. Fourteen candidates are in the running, but all eyes are on the three front runners: incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo, former President Henri Konan Bedié and former Prime Minister Alassane Ouattara. The campaigning will last two weeks and officially end 24 hours before the vote, slated for 31 October.


*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:26:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 - UN troops move to north-south border as secession vote looms
The semi-autonomous Government of South Sudan has pledged to hold a long-awaited referendum on independence in January despite Khartoum's objections, prompting international alarm over the prospect of another civil war.


*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:27:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Johann Hari: Obama's robot wars endanger us all - Johann Hari, Commentators - The Independent

Imagine if, an hour from now, a robot-plane swooped over your house and blasted it to pieces. The plane has no pilot. It is controlled with a joystick from 7,000 miles away, sent by the Pakistani military to kill you. It blows up all the houses in your street, and so barbecues your family and your neighbours until there is nothing left to bury but a few charred slops. Why? They refuse to comment. They don't even admit the robot-planes belong to them. But they tell the Pakistani newspapers back home it is because one of you was planning to attack Pakistan. How do they know? Somebody told them. Who? You don't know, and there are no appeals against the robot.

Now imagine it doesn't end there: these attacks are happening every week somewhere in your country. They blow up funerals and family dinners and children. The number of robot-planes in the sky is increasing every week. You discover they are named "Predators", or "Reapers" - after the Grim Reaper. No matter how much you plead, no matter how much you make it clear you are a peaceful civilian getting on with your life, it won't stop. What do you do? If there was a group arguing that Pakistan was an evil nation that deserved to be violently attacked, would you now start to listen?

This sounds like a sketch for the next James Cameron movie - but it is in fact an accurate description of life in much of Pakistan today, with the sides flipped. The Predators and Reapers are being sent by Barack Obama's CIA, with the support of other Western governments, and they killed more than 700 civilians in 2009 alone - 14 times the number killed in the 7/7 attacks in London. The floods were seen as an opportunity to increase the attacks, and last month saw the largest number of robot-plane bombings ever: 22. Over the next decade, spending on drones is set to increase by 700 per cent.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:27:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Clinton warns UK defence cuts may undermine Nato - Home News, UK - The Independent

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last night voiced fears that the Coalition Government's determination to slash defence spending may threaten the capabilities of Nato.

Backed by her Defence Secretary Robert Gates, Mrs Clinton went on to suggest that the cutbacks could mean Britain fails in its commitment by falling short of contributing its fair share.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:27:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
don't worry, Cameron has already announced that our bloated military overspend is safe from any form of reining in.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Oct 16th, 2010 at 05:15:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 - Ahmadinejad speaks to pro-Hezbollah rally on Israeli border
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, on a two-day trip to Lebanon, arrived to a hero's welcome on Thursday in Bint Jbeil, a Hezbollah stronghold close to the border with Israel.

...The main square in the village, destroyed by Israeli strikes in the Jewish state's 2006 war with Hezbollah, was festooned with banners hailing Iran's assistance in rebuilding roads, bridges, hospitals and schools.

Pictures of overturned Israeli tanks and weeping Israeli soldiers were also posted at the entrance to Bint Jbeil.

Also see Lebanon Redux and Lebanon Redux 2 for what happened back then.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:27:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Dreaming of Snow Leopards: Nazarbayev Dictates a Bright Future for Kazakhstan - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News - International

Kazakhstan has oil, coal and uranium -- and a capital full of stunning architecture. President Nursultan Nazarbayev hopes his country can become the region's leading economy, but his heavy-handed cult of personality is not universally welcomed. Others worry about China's growing influence.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 02:28:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Colombia Reports: A land restitution plan to return land to over 130,000 families is announced by Colombian Agriculture Minister Juan Camilo Restrepo, reports Caracol Radio. The government plans to implement a series of measures to start the process before the legislation is approved by Congress.  "From now until April 2011, interventions will be made to restore land to over 130,000 families who have been dispossessed by violence or should be formally granted ownership of their land" said Restrepo.

Colombia Reports: Indigenous leader Rodolfo Aricate Amaya was killed by two gunmen outside his home in the Cauca department, south-western Colombia. Amaya, a leader in the Paez community, had been receiving threats for many months before he was gunned down.

Cuba, HAVANA - Several former political prisoners and the family of a dissident who died behind bars earlier this year are being given the opportunity to leave Cuba, members of the internal opposition said Thursday. The Catholic Archdiocese of Havana conveyed the government's offer to Reina Luisa Tamayo, mother of the late Orlando Zapata, a spokesperson for the Ladies in White group of political prisoners' relatives told Efe.

LAHT, LONDON - Survival International warned the United Nations of "massive oil operations" in the northern Peruvian Amazon that could "decimate" uncontacted tribal people. "By permitting companies to operate in this region, Peru's government is flagrantly violating international law," the London-based group said in a letter to the U.N. special rapporteur on indigenous peoples,
According to this right wing ideologue, developments like the above are helping Peru become one of Latin America's most promising countries.

VALPARAISO, Chile - The Chilean Congress has approved a new tax, or "royalty" fee, on the largest mining firms to help cover reconstruction costs after a massive earthquake earlier this year.  The legislation pushes the highest royalty rate to 9 percent initially. Starting in 2017, royalties will range from 5 percent for companies with an operating margin equal to or less than 35 percent up to 14 percent when a firm's operating margin climbs to as high as 85 percent.

LA Times Blog: As metal prices rise and companies continue to seek Latin America's rich deposits of minerals and coal, the industry grows faster than some countries can regulate it, says a Forbes report. There are regular conflicts with workers over pay and safety conditions, as well as numerous reports of illegal mining operations -- with hardly any safety oversight or regulations -- in so-called wildcat mines.

NACLA, Cuba's Crossroads: On September 13, the Cuban government made a stunning announcement: Within the next six months, state payrolls will shed half a million workers. Additionally, the government will allow a great expansion of self-employment - known in Cuba as cuentapropismo - which it hopes will offset the planned layoffs. The new measures mark a sea change in Cuba. They signal the end of full employment as a right of citizenship and the arrival of a new relationship of the state and private sectors. In a way, they will turn the clock back to the mixed and undoubtedly more vibrant economy of the 1960s, when small, privately-owned shops and kiosks still dotted Cuban streets, until the 1968 "revolutionary offensive" nationalized all small businesses. And while these measures clearly come at a time of great economic hardship for Cuba, there is no indication they are meant to be temporary. A small and growing private sector within the Cuban economy is here to stay.

BELMOPAN, Belize -- The Belize government is trying to get to the bottom of a human trafficking racket in the country. The latest is the arrival of 33 Chinese who deplaned at the Phillip Goldston International Airport on chartered flights from Port au Prince, Haiti, on September 18, 19 and October 3.  Reports state that they presented Japanese passports that were not authentic and the Belizean visas on these passports were also not genuine.


"Beware of the man who does not talk, and the dog that does not bark." Cheyenne
by maracatu on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 08:59:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC - Adam Curtis Blog
Back in 1960 the travel writer James Morris went to Afghanistan. He watched American and Soviet diplomats jockeying for influence, both convinced they could persuade the Afghans to support them in the Cold War.

But, wrote Morris, the world the diplomats entered was a strange one:

While the Afghan climate is  clear, brisk and extreme, the political atmosphere is blurred, inconstant and soggy.

Afghanistan is like the fairy wood in A Midsummer Night's Dream, and many a confident diplomat, striding briskly into its groves has come out with a donkey's head.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Oct 15th, 2010 at 10:02:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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