As Secretary of State John Kerry concluded a meeting with Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammad Javad Zarif to discuss Iran’s nuclear program, voices rose in Congress to pass legislation that would impose new economic sanctions on Iran.

President Obama hosted a bilateral meeting with President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico on January 6, during which he will reportedly seek the Mexican leader’s advice on implementing administration policies on immigration and Cuba. The two were also expected to discuss the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

With much of Obama’s Democrat political base seeking to block misnamed “free-trade” agreements at the moment, the White House is plotting with congressional Republicans and Big Business interests to advance the controversial national sovereignty-crushing agenda disguised as a “trade” deal.

The German magazine Der Spiegel has has published a revealing exposé about the loose standards with which the Obama administration assassinated people, including many non-combatants, in Afghanistan. The December 28 story documented a quick-to-assassinate tendency which took the form of readiness to loosely classify anyone in the drug trade as a legitimate assassination target, as well as a willingness to accept large numbers of civilian casualties.

In an odd turnabout that few might have predicted a year or more ago, the United States now finds itself allied with Iran in the battle to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) — also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).