The quartet — a group comprised of the United States, Russia, the European Union, and the United Nations that focuses on Middle East peace — met in Moscow on March 19. At the meeting, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that the proposals offered by the Israeli government to reduce diplomatic tensions with the United States were “useful and productive,” and that the Obama administration would continue talks with Israel in Jerusalem and Washington.
Major news sources reported on March 17 that five U.S. men who were arrested in Pakistan in December were charged this day with plotting terrorist attacks in Pakistan, charges that could lead to possible life sentences. The Los Angles Times reported that the men, ages 18 to 24, are U.S. citizens of Pakistani, African, and Egyptian descent who lived within blocks of each other in Alexandria, Virginia.
After several attacks on Indian targets by militants in Afghanistan, officials and analysts claim that the governments of Pakistan and India are waging a proxy war there.
Citing a February 24 report from the the Nikkei Business Daily, AFP news reported that Japan has offered to enrich uranium for Iran to allow it to have access to nuclear power, while relieving international fears that the Islamic nation might be trying to build atomic weapons.
In an attempt to increase the size of the Afghan police force to 160,000, the United State military intends to invest more than $600 million to build approximately 200 police stations for the Afghan National Police by 2013.This was announced only days after President Obama signed an executive order establishing a new, bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform.
Americans received yet another confirmation on February 16 that President Obama has taken on the mantle of his war-mongering predecessor with a statement by Press Secretary Robert Gibbs saying he “wouldn't rule out” war against Iran.
Last month’s decision by the United States to sell $6.4 billion worth of arms and military supplies to Taiwan “will not affect steadily improving ties between Taipei and Beijing,” according to Chiang Pin-kung, Taiwan’s top China negotiator. The deal “should not have any impact on ongoing China talks and the future development of bilateral ties,” he added.
The deaths of three American soldiers in Pakistan February 3 has exposed “Obama’s secret war inside Pakistan," according to theLondon Times February 7. The American soldiers “were killed when their convoy was bombed as it traveled to the re-opening of [a girls] school” by a remote-controlled bomb in Waziristan in northwest Pakistan.
VOA News reported on February 2 that the Chinese government has expressed anger over a nearly $6.5 billion U.S. arms sale to Taiwan that was announced in Washington on January 29. The report cited Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu, who warned that the sale will hurt Chinese-American relations andand could lead to what he described as "unwelcome consequences."
The Nigerian suspected of attempting to bring down Northwest Flight 253 over Detroit on Christmas Day reportedly met with the expatriate radical cleric whose fingerprints are being discovered all over the corpus of terror in America. Anwar al-Awlaki is an American-born Islamic imam with recognizable ties to al-Qaeda in Yemen and he admitted to a freelance journalist that he indeed met with Umar Abdulmutallab, the man formally charged with attempting to kill almost 300 passengers and crew with a chemical bomb secreted into his underwear. The transcript of the interview the journalist conducted with Awlaki reveals that Abdulmutallab and the fugitive fundamentalist met last fall in Yemen.