China, U.S. Spar Over Intelligence Leaker Snowden
Officials from China and the United States have sharply disagreed over Beijing's handling of the fugitive U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden. U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns said Washington was "very disappointed" that China had not sent Snowden back from Hong Kong to the United States where Snowden is wanted for leaking details of secret U.S. surveillance programs.
Securing A Place For Taiwan At The Table
Jim Inhofe & Robert Menendez
After decades of dynamic economic growth and the emergence of a dynamic democracy, Taiwan ought to stand shoulder to shoulder with its neighbors in the vibrant East Asia region. However, the nation’s unresolved political status is creating an increasingly large gap in many areas of international cooperation. One of those is international air travel to and from Taiwan.
Expanding Covert Warfare Makes Us Less Safe
Earlier this month we learned that the Obama Administration is significantly expanding the number of covert Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) agents overseas. From just a few hundred DIA agents overseas today, the administration intends to eventually deploy some 1,600 covert agents. The nature of their work will also shift, away from intelligence collection and more toward covert actions.
Clinton Calls Eurasian Integration An Effort To "Re-Sovietize"
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has described efforts to promote greater economic integration in Eurasia as "a move to re-Sovietize the region." Clinton made the comments while talking to lawyers and civil society advocates who came to attend an international conference in Dublin.
UN Climate Conference Extends Kyoto Protocol To 2020
Delegates from almost 200 countries have extended until 2020 the Kyoto Protocol for fighting climate change. The document, adopted in 1997, was due to expire by the end of the year.
Keeping the Internet Free
Just a few weeks ago, the Syrian government shut down the Internet nationwide during a military push against rebel forces that appear to be making progress. While service is back, it is obvious that Bashar Assad’s government has the power to take it down again. As the Chinese Communist Party transferred power, Google reported a sudden drop in Internet traffic. Gmail was down for most Chinese citizens.
Egypt -- Constitution-Making by "We, the Majority"
Egypt’s constitution-making process has seemingly attained warp speed. Facing the threat of judicial dissolution, members of the Egyptian Constituent Assembly voted last Thursday to accept a draft of a new constitution. President Mohamed Morsi has called for an "almost immediate referendum" in which a majority is likely to approve the document. Is this extralegal process the final vindication of the people’s will?
U.S. Extends Waivers On Iran Sanctions To China, Others
The United States has granted 180-day waivers on anti-Tehran sanctions to China, India, and a number of other countries in exchange for their reduction of oil purchases from Iran. President Barack Obama's administration has now renewed waivers for all 20 of Iran's major oil buyers, after granting them to Japan and 10 European Union countries in September.
South Korean singer Psy Apologizes For Decade-Old Anti-American Acts
South Korean singer Psy, famed for his viral video song "Gangnam Style," has apologized for anti-American performances a decade ago. Psy made the apology on December 8, ahead of his expected participation in an upcoming concert before U.S. President Barack Obama in Washington.
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