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Foreign Affairs (News/Activism)

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  • Newsprint tariffs hit newspapers hard

    05/20/2018 12:51:14 PM PDT · by artichokegrower · 21 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | May 20, 2018 | John Diaz
    Never pick a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel,” the saying goes. Yet the Trump administration is picking a fight with American newspapers over something they buy at even greater cost and quantity: newsprint.
  • Venezuela's Maduro eyes second term despite economic crisis

    05/20/2018 1:07:49 PM PDT · by RedMonqey · 19 replies
    AFP ^ | 20 MAY 2018 | Gianrigo Marletta
    Venezuelans, reeling under a devastating economic crisis, began voting Sunday in an election boycotted by the opposition and condemned by much of the international community but expected to hand deeply unpopular President Nicolas Maduro a new mandate. Maduro, the political heir to the late leftist firebrand Hugo Chavez, has presided over an implosion of once wealthy oil producer Venezuela's economy since taking office in 2013. Hyperinflation, food and medicine shortages, rising crime and broken water, power and transportation networks have sparked violent unrest, and left Maduro with a 75-percent disapproval rating.
  • Democrats may be approaching a turning point on Israel

    05/20/2018 11:32:48 AM PDT · by ameribbean expat · 18 replies
    This year, 27% of Democrats said their sympathies lied with the Israel over the Palestinians in their conflict, while 25% said the Palestinians. The rest said both or neither. Just two years ago (when the Democrats adopted more pro-Palestinian positions in their plank), 43% of Democrats said their sympathies aligned with Israel compared with 29% who said the Palestinians. It's not just that Democrats are split, it's how they're split. Establishment Democrats have been fighting off an insurgent progressive wing, and it's not any different on this issue. Liberal Democrats who pushed for the more pro-Palestinian language are far more...
  • Editorial: Dishonest Dems, media ignore Trump’s triumphs

    05/20/2018 10:12:11 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 6 replies
    The Boston Herald ^ | May 20, 2018 | Staff
    Anyone expecting President Trump supporters to soften up on their allegiance to the president heading into the November midterm elections is sadly mistaken. This past week, Democrats, the FBI and the liberal elite media gave Team Trump strong reasons to remain solidly behind the Republican commander in chief and his “drain the swamp” cause. One can also argue that women voters and independents are getting tired of the incessant Trump bashing — especially when the president and his supposedly short-staffed administration (excluding the “traitorous” leakers) are piling up significant victories in domestic and foreign affairs, i.e., tax reform, employment gains,...
  • Royal Wedding Emblematic of the Decline of the Church of England

    05/20/2018 9:46:25 AM PDT · by Para-Ord.45 · 73 replies
    https://pjmedia.com ^ | MAY 19, 2018 | BY PAULA BOLYARD
    The ceremony itself featured an African-American bishop who cited the American civil rights movement and quoted Martin Luther King Jr. as often as he did Jesus. The couple opted for a secular song, “Stand by Me,” performed by a predominantly black gospel choir—jaws literally dropped—in addition to old-school Christian hymns sung by the congregation. The traditional Anglican vows were altered slightly to allow the outspoken feminist Markle to opt out of the traditional promise to obey her husband. While the acceptance of people of color into the royal fold is a welcome and long-overdue change, the acceptance of divorce and...
  • The Latest: Venezuelans line up to vote in Sunday's election

    05/20/2018 7:13:09 AM PDT · by BBell · 13 replies
    The Latest on Sunday's presidential election in Venezuela (all times local): 9:22 a.m.The leafy streets in the opposition stronghold of eastern Caracas were largely empty on Sunday, but voters in other parts of the city headed to the polls.Near Petare, Caracas' biggest slum, festive revolutionary music played as a few dozen voters stood in a long line to flash their so-called "fatherland cards" to socialist party volunteers. A woman wearing a Sports Ministry jacket in the red, yellow and blue colors of Venezuela's flag scanned each card with her phone —a form of verifying that cardholders had done their patriotic...
  • Mayor of Greek city hospitalized after mob attack

    05/20/2018 5:00:28 AM PDT · by BBell · 15 replies
    The mayor of Greece’s second-largest city, Thessaloniki, was treated in hospital after he was beaten up by nationalist extremists. Mayor Boutaris had been at an event commemorating the killing of ethnic Greeks by Turks.Boutaris was being escorted from an event that commemorated the massacre of Black Sea Greeks, when members of the crowd turned violent. Footage showed the 75-year-old Thessaloniki mayor being heckled by dozens of people as he left the event on Saturday evening. Bottles were thrown at Boutaris, who is known for his strong anti-nationalist stance, before he fell down and was kicked and punched in the head...
  • This Is What A Boeing F-32 Would've Looked Like If Lockheed Lost The JSF Competition

    05/20/2018 5:00:03 AM PDT · by sukhoi-30mki · 25 replies
    The Drive ^ | MAY 19, 2018 | TYLER ROGOWAY
    In 2001, Boeing's X-32 stood off against Lockheed's X-35 in a fly-off for the massively lucrative Joint Strike Fighter contract. Making a stealth fighter capable of carrying a significant payload while also having a version that can take off in short distances and land vertically was quite the task, and both companies went about solving the problem very differently. In the end, the X-32 lost to the X-35 for a number of reasons that we will get into in a future post, but many who were taken aback by the X-32's 'unique' looks didn't realize that Boeing had already planned...
  • Ukraine should blow up Putin's Crimea bridge

    05/20/2018 4:54:33 AM PDT · by McGruff · 70 replies
    Washington Examiner ^ | May 15, 2018 | Tom Rogan
    Russian President Vladimir Putin opened the Kerch Strait Bridge connecting Crimea, Ukraine, with mainland Russia on Tuesday. Putin did so by in a typical show of bravado by leading a column of transport vehicles across the bridge. Ukraine should now destroy elements of the bridge. While that course of action would be an escalation against Putin and one that would almost certainly spark Russian retaliation, this bridge is an outrageous affront to Ukraine's very credibility as a nation. Of course, from Putin's perspective that's the whole point. The bridge cost Russia's near-bankrupt government billions of dollars, but it offers Putin...
  • Ukraine withdraws all envoys from CIS bodies

    05/20/2018 4:34:53 AM PDT · by BBell · 14 replies
    https://www.kyivpost.com ^ | 5/19/18 | Illia Ponomarenko
    Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko has signed a decree to withdraw all Ukrainian envoys from the statutory bodies of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), a loose political and economic confederation of nine post-Soviet nations heavily dominated by Russia. The decision was announced on Poroshenko’s Twitter page in tribute to Europe Day, celebrated in Ukraine on May 19. “For us, the CIS is completely and entirely gone to the past,” the message on the presidential page also reads. “Our future is in Europe only!” The CIS was formed by a group of former Soviet republics in the agonizing final days of...
  • Russian Defector Gave Novichok Sample To Germany In 90s: Report

    05/20/2018 4:11:11 AM PDT · by BBell · 7 replies
    Germany's intelligence service BND had in the 1990s obtained from a Russian informer a sample of the poison used against ex-double agent Sergei Skripal, German media reported Thursday, drawing a link to Moscow as the origin of the toxin. Britain has accused Russia of carrying out the nerve agent attack against Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March, but Moscow has denied the claims and argued that the country never had any programmes to develop the chemical weapon, known as Novichok. But German newspapers Sueddeutsche Zeitung and Die Zeit as well as regional public broadcasters NDR and WDR said their...
  • Santa Fe High School shooting victims identified as exchange student, beloved teacher

    05/20/2018 2:05:59 AM PDT · by Berlin_Freeper · 27 replies
    cbsnews.com ^ | May 20, 2018 | Caroline Linton, Justin Carissimo
    ... The Pakistani Embassy in Washington, D.C., confirmed that exchange student Sabika Sheikh was killed in the shooting. Sabika was an exchange student with YES, which is funded by the U.S. State Department. It provides scholarships for secondary school students from countries with significant Muslim populations to spend one academic year in the U.S. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sent his "deepest condolences" to her friends and family in a statement Saturday.
  • Doomed? Why Iran's Economic Mess Will Get Worse

    05/20/2018 1:37:48 AM PDT · by TigerLikesRooster · 21 replies
    The Baghdad Post ^ | May 19 2018 | Simon Constable
    Doomed? Why Iran's Economic Mess Will Get Worse Simon Constable The matter at hand is the decision earlier this month by the Trump administration not to certify the so-called nuclear deal, and that means Iran will soon be subject to harsh U.S. sanctions. Overall the result will be a squeezed economy. Current situation Even the latest official statistics for the Iranian economy don't look good. The unemployment rate stands at 11.9% and the inflation rate at 8.3%, according to TradingEconomics.com. However, at least some of the government figures may be more aspirational than actual. Take, for instance, the inflation rate....
  • China lands bombers on South China Sea isles

    05/19/2018 9:51:28 PM PDT · by Oscar in Batangas · 12 replies
    Philippine Star ^ | <ay 20,2017 | Marvin Sy & Jaime Laude
    ....State-run Chinese newspaper People’s Daily on Friday posted on its Twitter account a video of a long-range bomber landing in an island in the disputed waters. Washington-based Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI) said the video was taken at Woody Island, China’s largest base in the Paracel Islands that is also being claimed by Vietnam. “Chinese bombers including the H-6K conduct takeoff and landing training on an island reef at a southern sea area,”read the Twitter post by People’s Daily. With its deployment in the Paracels, AMTI said the bombers could now reach almost the entire South China Sea. “Nearly all...
  • Cambridge professor outed as FBI informant inside Trump campaign

    05/19/2018 8:47:47 PM PDT · by Mariner · 118 replies
    The New York Post ^ | May 19th, 2018 | By Mary Kay Linge
    A Cambridge professor with deep ties to American and British intelligence has been outed as an agent who snooped on the Trump presidential campaign for the FBI. Multiple media outlets have named Stefan Halper, 73, as the secret informant who met with Trump campaign advisers Carter Page and George Papadopoulos starting in the summer of 2016. The American-born academic previously served in the Nixon, Ford and Reagan administrations. The revelation, stemming from recent reports in which FBI sources admitted sending an agent to snoop on the Trump camp, heightens suspicions that the FBI was seeking to entrap Trump campaign aides....
  • How Will Meghan Markle's Finances Change Now that She Married Harry?

    05/19/2018 8:32:28 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 68 replies
    Investopedia ^ | 05/19/2018 | By Amy Fontinelle
    The marriage of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry is anything but ordinary. Even among royal marriages it’s unique because Meghan is American – and, like many Americans, she is biracial. But while her race isn’t a issue, her nationality is – thanks to the U.S. tax code.Prince Harry, Meet the IRS American citizens like Markle, who was born in Los Angeles, must report their worldwide income to the IRS even while living abroad. (For more, see How to Pay Taxes If You're Overseas.) She will have to file U.S. tax returns and Foreign Bank Accounting Report (FBAR) forms, assuming she...
  • Pacific island leaders pledge action toward North Korea denuclearization

    05/19/2018 5:17:04 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 5 replies
    The Nikkei Asian Review ^ | May 19, 2018 | Saki Hayashi
    FUKUSHIMA, Japan -- The leaders of 16 Pacific island nations and territories, as well as Japan, Australia and New Zealand, adopted a declaration at the end of a two-day summit Saturday committing to concrete action toward denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. It was the first time for participants to refer to the North Korean threat at the summit, which is held every three years. This year's summit, the eighth, was held in Fukushima Prefecture, northeastern Japan. The leaders welcomed the Panmunjeom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification of the Korean Peninsula, issued at the April summit between the leaders of...
  • As tensions with Trump deepen, Europe wonders if America is lost for good

    05/19/2018 4:39:01 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 72 replies
    The Worcester Telegram ^ | May 19, 2018 | Griff Witte and Michael Birnbaum, The Washington Post
    BERLIN - Since Jan. 20, 2017, European leaders have managed U.S. relations with one eye on the clock, anxiously counting down the hours until President Donald Trump’s term is up and hoping the core of the Western alliance isn’t too badly damaged in the meantime. But as Trump’s aggressive rhetoric toward America’s closest allies has evolved into hostile action this spring, a new fear has swept European capitals. Trump may not be an aberration that can be waited out, with his successor likely to push reset after four or eight years of fraught ties. Instead, the blend of unilateralism, nationalism...
  • China’s growing navy buoys its psywar efforts

    05/19/2018 4:13:49 PM PDT · by Steve Schulin · 13 replies
    The Sunday Guardian (India) ^ | May 20, 2018 | Jayadeva Ranade (former Additional Secretary in the Cabinet Secretariat, Government of India)
    ... China’s programme to build a Navy and formulate its doctrine was initiated by Deng Xiaoping in 1979. The pace of construction of warships and submarines picked up in the past decade. By 2000, China had a Navy of 19 large surface combatants and 63 small surface combatants like frigates and corvettes. Construction was accelerated and in 2016 alone the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) commissioned 18 warships, including destroyers, corvettes and guided missile frigates. The PLAN plans to have a total of 60 “light missile frigates” in its inventory, with one missile frigate to be launched every three weeks.
  • AfD party wants to take Angela Merkel to court for opening the country’s borders

    05/19/2018 3:27:54 PM PDT · by ameribbean expat · 10 replies
    The populist AfD party announced on Friday that it filed a complaint against Merkel for her 2015 decision on migration. According to the party, Merkel should have consulted the German parliament on such a crucial issue. During the migration debate in August 2015, Merkel spoke the words “Wir schaffen das” (We can manage this) to signal the country was ready to deal with the refugees that would be coming to Germany. With Germany suspending the Dublin Regulation as well, it motivated millions of refugees and migrants to come to Europe. Germany’s Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) has made...