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Showing posts from July 16, 2011

U.S. Debt Default Looms as Talks Stall on Deficit Reduction: “We Are Playing with Fire”

U.S. Debt Default Looms as Talks Stall on Deficit Reduction: “We Are Playing with Fire”


Discussion on a deficit reduction deal has stalled after five consecutive days of negotiations between Republicans and Democrats. In order to borrow beyond August 2, the United States must raise its $14.3 trillion debt ceiling. This week, Standard & Poor’s became the second of the major credit rating agencies to place U.S. debt under review, citing an increasing risk of a payment default. Republicans are pushing for massive spending cuts, many of which Obama has agreed to, even as Democrats say they want to raise taxes on corporations and wealthy households. We speak with Jeff Madrick, director of policy research at the Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis at The New School and author of "Age of Greed: The Triumph of Finance and the Decline of America, 1970 to the Present."

Sudan: The break-up - Sudan: The Break-Up - Al Jazeera English

Sudan: The break-up - Sudan: The Break-Up - Al Jazeera English
http://english.aljazeera.net/programmes/sudanthebreakup/2011/07/201171285056382703.html

The party is over and now the monumental task of nation-building confronts the people of South Sudan.

On July 9, 2011, as the country celebrated its independence from the north in front of numerous foreign dignitaries, very few of those present in the huge square across from the John Garang Mausoleum in the capital, Juba, or the millions watching on television screens around the world, would have known that thousands of poor people had had their shacks and kiosks bulldozed from that same square to ensure the city looked its best for the visitors.

In many ways that sums up the current reality that is South Sudan - it is a façade. To the unknowing eye, everything in the garden looks rosy; the truth is an entirely different matter. The world's newest nation is already in turmoil, and while the government's spin-doctors may attempt to s…

Somalia crisis one of 'largest in decades' - Africa - Al Jazeera English

Somalia crisis one of 'largest in decades' - Africa - Al Jazeera English
East Africa's hunger crisis has been described by a US official as one of the worst humanitarian crisis in decades amid stepped-up efforts by Western countries to provide relief aid and a decision by Kenya to open a fourth camp for starving refugees.

Tens of thousands of Somali refugees are flooding camps in Ethiopia and Kenya - at a rate of more than 3,000 new arrivals per day - in search of food after several seasons without rain killed livestock and destroyed crops in Somalia.

"There are many seasoned relief professionals who would tell you we haven't seen a crisis this bad in a generation," Reuben Brigety, the deputy assistant secretary responsible for state department assistance to refugees and conflict victims in Africa, said on Saturday.

"We anticipate that this crisis will get worse before it gets better."

The US was studying how much more it would give in addition to $5m pr…

Bodyguard who killed Karzai's brother was trusted CIA contact - Asia, World - The Independent

Bodyguard who killed Karzai's brother was trusted CIA contact - Asia, World - The Independent
The bodyguard who assassinated President Hamid Karzai's brother had been working closely with US Special Forces and the CIA before he was recruited by the Taliban, raising fears over the Islamist movement's increasingly sophisticated intelligence apparatus which has managed to threaten the inner circles of power in Afghanistan.

Sardar Mohammad, who shot Ahmed Wali Karzai at his home in Kandahar City on Tuesday, also held regular meetings with British officials, and had two brothers-in-law serving in a CIA-run paramilitary unit, the Kandahar Strike Force, the Washington Post reported yesterday.

Recognition: A Step Toward Turning Over Gadhafi’s Billions to Rebel Faction -- News from Antiwar.com

Recognition: A Step Toward Turning Over Gadhafi’s Billions to Rebel Faction -- News from Antiwar.com
The latest in a long line of Western nations to do so, the Obama Administration today announced that it is formally recognizing the East Libyan rebel faction as the “legal government” of Libya.