The UN's Durban Review Conference on racism got off to a rocky start in Geneva on April 20, as about 40 delegates from 30 countries walked out during a speech delivered by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Even before the Ahmadinejad talk, the conference was sparsely attended owing to a boycott by eight Western nations (including the United States) that anticipated that the event would become a forum for anti-Israeli rhetoric.
Ex-prime minister Tony Blair is seen as the front-runner for a permanent EU presidency post, when and if the job is actually implemented. The post of President of the European Council is held for six months on a rotating basis by various heads of member states. Currently the Czech Republic holds the seat, with Mirek Topolanek as president of the council and Vaclav Klaus as president-in-office. The president-in-office is a rather insignificant unofficial position.
How can you tell if a president is asking to spend too much money? (No, it’s not when his lips are moving, wise guy.) It’s when the president has to campaign to get socialist European nations like Sweden, France and Germany to spend more “stimulus” money … and the Euro-socialists refuse.
A few months ago, the British government denied entry to Geert Wilders, the Dutch parliamentarian, who was scheduled to show his 15-minute film about Islam, Fitna, which intersperses selected excerpts from the Koran with clips showing violent acts by radical Islamists. Nazir Ahmed, a Muslim member of the House of Lords who was born in Pakistan, raised a hue and cry. The British Foreign Ministry collapsed and kicked Wilders out as soon as he got off the plane. He was, the British border agency said, a threat to harmony and public security.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, participating in a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels on March 5, invited her counterparts to make a "fresh start" in their diplomatic relationship with Russia. Formal relations between NATO and Russia were suspended last August over differences concerning Russia's military operations in Georgia and its breakaway regions.