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Showing posts from June 10, 2008

AFP: Global military spending soars 45 pct in 10 years

AFP: Global military spending soars 45 pct in 10 years: "World military spending grew 45 percent in the past decade, with the United States accounting for nearly half of all expenditure, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said Monday.

Military spending grew six percent last year alone, according to SIPRI's annual report.

In 2007, 1,339 billion dollars (851 billion euros) was spent on arms and other military expenditure, corresponding to 2.5 percent of global gross domestic product, or GDP -- or 202 dollars for each of the world's 6.6 billion people.

The United States spends by far the most towards military aims, dishing out 547 billion dollars last year, or 45 percent of global expenditure.

Britain, China, France and Japan, the next in line of big spenders, lag far behind, accounting for just four to five percent of world military costs each."

Top Iraqi cleric warns of uprising -

Top Iraqi cleric warns of uprising - "A leading Iraqi Shiite cleric said Monday the status of forces agreement between Washington and Baghdad could lead to an uprising in Iraq.

'It is not to the benefit of the U.S. as a major power to lessen the sovereignty of Iraq. This treaty is humiliating to the Iraqi people, and might cause an uprising against it and those who support it,' Grand Ayatollah Mohammad al-Modarresi told the Iranian state-run English-language service, Press TV.

Modarresi said the strategic framework between Iraq and the United States needs a full understanding of the situation in Iraq before negotiations on the arrangement proceed. 'It will surely fail if kept as it is,' he said."

No, Obama Can't! - by Uri Avnery

No, Obama Can't! - by Uri Avnery: "After months of a tough and bitter race, a merciless struggle, Barack Obama has defeated his formidable opponent, Hillary Clinton. He has wrought a miracle: for the first time in history a black person has become a credible candidate for the presidency of the most powerful country in the world.

And what was the first thing he did after his astounding victory? He ran to the conference of the Israel lobby, AIPAC, and made a speech that broke all records for obsequiousness and fawning.

That is shocking enough. Even more shocking is the fact that nobody was shocked."

Al Jazeera English - News - Hamas Members Killed In Gaza Raid

Al Jazeera English - News - Hamas Members Killed In Gaza Raid: "Three members of Hamas's armed wing, the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, have been killed in an Israeli attack on the Gaza Strip, Palestinian officials say.

Health officials said at least four other Palestinians were wounded on Tuesday in separate Israeli air raids.

The Israeli military said it targeted fighters who had fired mortar rounds across the border.

Hamas said 16 mortar shells were fired towards an Israeli-controlled border crossing in retaliation for the killings."

Al Jazeera English - News - Somali Leader Rejects Peace Deal

Al Jazeera English - News - Somali Leader Rejects Peace Deal
Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys, former leader of Somalia's Islamic Courts' Union, has rejected a new peace agreement between the country's interim government and its main political rivals.

Aweys, who is a member of the opposition alliance that signed the deal, on Tuesday called it "a trap" to derail armed Somali resistance against Ethiopian forces.

The Ethiopian-backed Somali government and some members of the opposition Alliance for the Liberation of Somalia (ALS) signed a cessation of hostilities accord on Monday at UN-sponsored peace talks in Djibouti.

But the deal faced criticism just hours after it was signed.

Speaking to the Reuters news agency by phone from Eritrea, Aweys said: "We encourage the insurgents and the Somali people not to be tired of combating the enemy."