Trade representatives of mainland China and the Republic of China on Taiwan signed a trade deal called the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) in the Chinese city of Chonqquing on June 29, as negotiators on both sides spoke of a new era in ties across the Taiwan Strait.
What is the political ideology that governs the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea? Communism, its government proclaims. Communism, on paper, rejects dynastic rule. The party may govern the state and the state may be given almost unlimited power over the lives of its citizens (or, rather, subjects), but those who rise to high positions in government or party jobs earned that honor by slavish devotion to the Communist Party — or so the story goes.
On June 7 of this year, our ongoing war in Afghanistan surpassed the Vietnam War as the longest war in American history. In his December 1, 2009 speech at West Point, President Obama followed the pattern set by several predecessors and employed the deceptive tactic of presenting false alternatives. He deftly and swiftly discounted terminating U.S. efforts in what was then already an eight-year-old war. He dwelt instead on what were, to him, the only alternatives worthy of consideration. Should the United States send tens of thousands more troops to Afghanistan? Or should the current force level be maintained? Of course, we know he has opted for sending an additional 30,000 troops.
Who is Prisoner X? That is the question being asked in Israel following the brief publication of a story about a mysterious prisoner by Ynetnews, the news website published by Yedioth Ahronoth, the nation’s leading Hebrew-language newspaper.
Ethnic violence is rocking Kyrgyzstan. Uzbek citizens of the central Asian nation are alleging atrocities committed against them by Kyrgyz gangs roaming those parts of their nation in which ethnic Uzbeks form a significant part of the nation. The death toll so far stands at 117 killed with many more homes burned and Uzbeks injured. This is particularly curious because Uzbekistan has almost five times as many people as Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan has twice the land area as Kyrgyzstan.
The New York Times on June 14 quoted a statement from General David Petraeus, commander of the United States Central Command (USCENTCOM) that there could be as much as $1 trillion in mineral deposits in Afghanistan, including significant deposits of lithium, an alkaline metal with numerous industrial applications, including lithium batteries.
AP reported statements from NATO leaders on June 11 declaring that the alliance had “regained the initiative” in the Afghan war, along with promises that the gains could result in a handover of security responsibilities to Afghan authorities by the end of 2010.
The New York Times — the newspaper whose reporter Walter Duranty won a Pulitzer Prize in 1932 while deliberately covering up Joseph Stalin’s starvation of the Ukrainian people — has apparently changed its tune on the subject of communism in the decades since.
In 2005 the U.S. Supreme Court, in the case of Kelo v. City of New London, ruled that governments in the United States have the right to steal their citizens’ property and transfer it to private developers as long as it serves a “public purpose,” namely bringing in more tax revenue. Thus, according to the court, the city of New London, Connecticut, was within its rights to evict Susette Kelo and others from their property in order to hand the property over to Pfizer for development — development that, in fact, never materialized.
"There has been a overwhelming criticism, both nationally and internationally, against the alleged “attack” on the so-called Freedom Flotilla by the Israeli Defense Force. Mainstream media outlets originally reported that boats filled with “peace activists” were attacked by violent armed Israelis. In fact, words like “slaughter” and “genocide” were used in reference to the event. Of course, as it turns out, the “peace activists” were in fact terrorists, a minor detail that has been conveniently left out in most reports on the incident.
On Monday, May 31, the Los Angeles Times was reporting that officials in Pakistan have released Major Adnan Ahmad, recently taken into custody under suspicion of helping the Times Square bomb attempt suspect, Faisal Shahzad. Pakistani law enforcement sources said it had been determined that Major Ahmad had not been involved with the failed car bombing.