Docudharma Times Tuesday November 3




Tuesday’s Headlines:

Obama Warns Karzai to Focus on Tackling Corruption

Gore’s Dual Role in Spotlight: Advocate and Investor

Democrats’ concerns over abortion may imperil health bill

Healthcare provision seeks to embrace prayer treatments

Victory (for a crooked, corrupt and discredited government)

Animal activists outraged by Nepal’s plans for mass animal sacrifice

David Miliband’s icebreaking Russian trip haunted by Litvinenko case

Radovan Karadzic ‘regretted that not all Bosnian Muslims died at Srebrenica’

Interview: How Salam Fayyad plans to save the Palestinian dream

Arabs See U.S. Tilt to Israel

Why Africa welcomes the Chinese

Climate change will melt snows of Kilimanjaro ‘within 20 years’

In Mexico, fears of a ‘lost generation’

Obama Warns Karzai to Focus on Tackling Corruption



By HELENE COOPER and JEFF ZELENY

Published: November 2, 2009


WASHINGTON – President Obama on Monday admonished President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan that he must take on what American officials have said he avoided during his first term: the rampant corruption and drug trade that have fueled the resurgence of the Taliban.

As Mr. Karzai was officially declared the winner of the much-disputed presidential election, Mr. Obama placed a congratulatory call in which he asked for a “new chapter” in the legitimacy of the Afghan government.

What he is seeking, Mr. Obama told reporters afterward, is “a sense on the part of President Karzai that, after some difficult years in which there has been some drift, that in fact he’s going to move boldly and forcefully forward and take advantage of the international community’s interest in his country to initiate reforms internally. That has to be one of our highest priorities.”

Gore’s Dual Role in Spotlight: Advocate and Investor



By JOHN M. BRODER

Published: November 2, 2009


WASHINGTON – Former Vice President Al Gore thought he had spotted a winner last year when a small California firm sought financing for an energy-saving technology from the venture capital firm where Mr. Gore is a partner.

The company, Silver Spring Networks, produces hardware and software to make the electricity grid more efficient. It came to Mr. Gore’s firm, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, one of Silicon Valley’s top venture capital providers, looking for $75 million to expand its partnerships with utilities seeking to install millions of so-called smart meters in homes and businesses.

USA

Democrats’ concerns over abortion may imperil health bill

Bloc could withhold support over fears of a governmental role

By Perry Bacon Jr.

Washington Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


While House leaders are moving toward a vote on health-care legislation by the end of the week, enough Democrats are threatening to oppose the measure over the issue of abortion to create a question about its passage.

House leaders were still negotiating Monday with the bloc of Democrats concerned about abortion provisions in the legislation, saying that they could lead to public funding of the procedure. After an evening meeting of top House Democrats,  Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (Md.) said, “We are making progress,” but added that they had not reached an agreement.

Healthcare provision seeks to embrace prayer treatments

A little-noticed measure would put Christian Science healing sessions on the same footing as clinical medicine. Critics say it violates the separation of church and state.

By Tom Hamburger and Kim Geiger

November 3, 2009


Reporting from Washington – Backed by some of the most powerful members of the Senate, a little-noticed provision in the healthcare overhaul bill would require insurers to consider covering Christian Science prayer treatments as medical expenses.

The provision was inserted by Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah) with the support of Democratic Sens. John F. Kerry and the late Edward M. Kennedy, both of Massachusetts, home to the headquarters of the Church of Christ, Scientist.

Asia

Victory (for a crooked, corrupt and discredited government)

 Special report by Patrick Cockburn

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

The election in Afghanistan has turned into a disaster for all who promoted it. Hamid Karzai has been declared re-elected as President of the country for the next five years though his allies inside and outside Afghanistan know that he owes his success to open fraud. Instead of increasing his government’s legitimacy, the poll has further de-legitimised it.

From Mr Karzai’s point of view he won through at the end and showed that nobody is strong enough to get rid of him. For the US President, Barack Obama, the election has no silver lining. It has left him poised to send tens of thousands more US troops to fight a war in defence of one of the world’s most crooked, corrupt and discredited governments. “It is not that the Taliban is so strong, but the government is so weak,” was a common saying among Afghans before the election. This will be even truer in future.

Animal activists outraged by Nepal’s plans for mass animal sacrifice

From The Times

November 3, 2009


Rhys Blakely in Mumbai

Plans to sacrifice more than 500,000 animals during a two-day religious festival in Nepal this month have met with the wrath of animal rights activists, who have called for the 300-year-old ritual to be banned.

Every five years the tiny village of Bariyapur near Nepal’s southern border with India is swamped with blood as hundreds of thousands of Hindu devotees flock to the local temple to take part in what is thought to be the world’s biggest ritual slaughter.

This year it is expected that about 500,000 animals, including about 25,000 buffaloes, will be offered to Gadhimai, a Hindu goddess, by devotees who hope she will answer their prayers in return. Proceedings begin with the sacrifice of two wild rats, a cockerel, a pig, a goat and a lamb.

Europe

David Miliband’s icebreaking Russian trip haunted by Litvinenko case

From The Times

November 3, 2009




Catherine Philp and Tony Halpin in Moscow


The ghost of Alexander Litvinenko loomed large over talks between Britain and Russia yesterday, on the third anniversary of his fatal poisoning.

David Miliband, the Foreign Secretary, flew to Moscow determined to focus on issues of “common ground” with Russia, such as Iran’s nuclear ambitions and stability in Afghanistan. But little progress was made and focus was rapidly dragged back to the source of discord: the murder of the dissident former security agent in London three years ago.

At a joint press conference that offered few signs of warmth between the two foreign ministers, Mr Miliband and Sergei Lavrov laid out competing versions of the Litvinenko saga, with the Foreign Secretary pressing for extradition of the main suspect while Mr Lavrov insisted that the demand was unrealistic.

Radovan Karadzic ‘regretted that not all Bosnian Muslims died at Srebrenica

Radovan Karadzic’s one regret was that some Bosnian Muslims “got away” and were not killed in the Srebrenica massacre, Europe’s first genocide since the Second World, prosecutors alleged on Monday.

By Bruno Waterfield in The Hague

The former Bosnian Serb president boycotted the United Nations war crimes tribunal in The Hague again but agreed to attend a hearing on Tuesday aimed at continuing the trial without him unless he takes his place in the dock.

Alan Tieger, the UN prosecutor, concluded his case, begun last week, by accusing Mr Karadzic of personal responsibility for “one of humanity’s dark chapters”, the slaughter of over 7,000 Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica.

“He was informed of its progress throughout. He knew that men were being killed. He covered up the mass expulsions and murders and continues to do so today,” he said.

Middle East

Interview: How Salam Fayyad plans to save the Palestinian dream

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad brought the PA back from the brink once. Now he wants to create Palestinian settlements, in effect, to counter Israeli moves.

By Ilene R. Prusher | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

RAMALLAH, WEST BANK – Palestinian elections are scheduled to be held in less than three months, but the prime minister of the Palestinian Authority (PA), Salam Fayyad, isn’t concerned about running for office.

Rather, he’s set his sights on a longer-term platform: establishing a Palestinian state by 2011 – a goal he outlined recently in a clear, well-organized booklet titled “Palestine: Ending the Occupation, Establishing the State.”

“All I’m campaigning for is the two-year statehood program,” said Dr. Fayyad in an interview Sunday. “The idea is unabashedly that two years down the road, we will have something that will look like a Palestinian state.”

His office, sleek and ultramodern, seems to capture something of the man who is trying to save the Palestinian dream from collapse. And unlike workspace of most Palestinian politicians, the dominant photo is not a portrait of PA President Mahmoud Abbas or legendary Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat – but rather, a grand, old olive tree. It seems fitting that this, the Palestinian symbol of connection to the land, is what Fayyad sees when he looks up from his desk.

Arabs See U.S. Tilt to Israel

 NOVEMBER 3, 2009

By JAY SOLOMON

MARRAKECH, Morocco — The Obama administration’s drive for Middle East peace risked a major setback as Arab nations warned of “failure” after a surprise U.S. shift away from insisting on a total freeze of Israeli settlement-building in disputed areas ahead of peace talks.

A furor in Arab capitals forced U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to issue a carefully worded statement from Morocco on Monday, asserting that U.S. policy on the settlement issue hadn’t changed. That didn’t damp the criticism.

“The Americans couldn’t bring something serious” on the settlement issue, said Amr Moussa, secretary-general of the Arab League and an Egyptian diplomat. “I’m really afraid we’re about to see failure….Failure is in the atmosphere.”

Africa

Why Africa welcomes the Chinese

Africa must attract broad investment, not rely on handouts, if we are to sustain development



Paul Kagame

guardian.co.uk, Monday 2 November 2009 22.00 GMT


There is a debate among geopolitical and economic commentators about the merits of Chinese versus western involvement with Africa. One argument is that Chinese investment is exploitative and undermines the development of democracy and human rights on the continent. Others view the matter in terms of competition, arguing that China is encroaching on the decades-long monopoly of the west over Africa’s natural resources.

Neither of these viewpoints addresses the core issues. First, major players in global investment and development are discussing Africa without engaging its people as equal partners. Second, Africans are not seen to be proactive in setting their own priorities and terms of engagement.

Climate change will melt snows of Kilimanjaro ‘within 20 years’

Ice on Africa’s highest peak is vanishing at fastest rate for 100 years

By Steve Connor, Science Editor

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

The snows of Mount Kilimanjaro – the highest mountain in Africa – may soon be falling on bare ground following a study showing that its ice cap is destined to disappear entirely within 20 years, due largely to climate change.

The vast ice fields of Kilimanjaro in Tanzania are melting at a faster pace than at any time over the past 100 years and at this rate they will be gone completely within two decades or even earlier according to one of the world’s leading glaciologists.

Latin America

In Mexico, fears of a ‘lost generation’

 Violence among young soars as drug cartels recruit more minors

By William Booth and Steve Fainaru

Washington Post Foreign Service

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


CIUDAD JUAREZ, MEXICO — The number of minors swept up in Mexico’s drug wars — as killers and victims — is soaring, with U.S. and Mexican officials warning that a toxic culture of fast money, drug abuse and murder is creating a “lost generation.”

Although the exploitation of children by criminals is timeless, authorities say the cartels are responding to new realities here. They have stepped up recruiting to replace tens of thousands of members who have been killed or arrested during President Felipe Calderón’s U.S.-backed war against the traffickers.

Ignoring Asia A Blog

1 comment

    • RiaD on November 3, 2009 at 2:12 pm

    thank you for these stories!

    go Gore!

    wonderful article…gha! if only he had fought to count every vote…where would we be now?

    why must they be including things like abortion & christian scientist prayers in a health care bill?

    i really wish they’d just concentrate on basic health care & not all the superfluous BS. we really need affordable (free!) healthcare in this country. me in particular.

    i don’t know how much longer we can afford $1000/month for health insurance. & when we stop paying i’ll never be able to be insured again because of ‘pre-existing conditions’

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