Paul's Feed
Feb 13, 2013

Analysis: North Korea nuclear-test drama rehashes old script

WASHINGTON/BEIJING (Reuters) – A North Korean nuclear test draws international condemnation, modest U.N. sanctions and expressions of hope in the United States that China will finally rein in its brazen ally.

Beijing chides North Korea, but nothing much happens.

The world has seen this movie before and it’s likely to witness another rerun after North Korea’s third nuclear test on Tuesday.

Jan 29, 2013

Blind dissident urges global pressure on China over rights

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng urged the United States on Tuesday not to let business concerns prevent it from pressing China over human rights, saying America must never “offer the smallest compromise” on its principles.

Chen is a self-taught legal advocate whose escape from house arrest last April and subsequent refuge in the U.S. Embassy XXX embarrassed China and led to a diplomatic tussle that ended with him leaving China to study in New York.

Jan 15, 2013

India needs greater financial supervision, liberalization-IMF

WASHINGTON, Jan 15 (Reuters) – India needs to improve its
financial system supervision and crisis preparedness while at
the same time liberalizing some sectors to reduce distortions
and risks created by heavy state involvement in banking, the
International Monetary Fund said on Tuesday.

The IMF’s Financial System Stability Assessment Update said
India had improved its supervision and regulations in the 20
years since it started liberalizing its economy and that its
financial system fared well in the global financial crisis.

Jan 15, 2013

U.S. delegation seeks to calm spats between Japan, South Korea

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States sent its top Asian diplomacy and security officials to South Korea and Japan to calm tensions between two U.S. allies whose squabbling has frustrated efforts to deal with a troublesome North Korea and an increasingly assertive China.

The high-powered delegation from the White House, Pentagon and State Department departed on Monday and will be visiting the region shortly after the election of a new nationalist-leaning Japanese government in December and before Seoul inaugurates a new president in February.

Jan 13, 2013

Republicans add “temperament” to questions about Hagel at Pentagon

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Opponents of President Barack Obama’s choice of Chuck Hagel to become the next U.S. defense secretary stepped up criticism of the Republican former senator on Sunday, with one lawmaker questioning whether Hagel has the right temperament for the job.

Hagel, who was nominated to the job last Monday, spent much of last week calling senators before confirmation hearings begin in the coming weeks to address portrayals of his stance on Israel and his record on Iran, U.S. officials said.

Jan 9, 2013

Google Earth helps put North Korea gulag system on map

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt’s visit to North Korea this week has been met with sharp criticism and low expectations, but the global Internet search giant indirectly is helping to make history by revealing one of the reclusive country’s darkest secrets, say human rights activists.

Google Earth, the company’s popular satellite imagery product, might be the last thing Schmidt will want to showcase for his hosts, because it presents a bird’s eye view of many things that secretive North Korea wants to keep hidden.

Jan 6, 2013

Republican maverick Hagel forged bond with Obama over Iraq

WASHINGTON, Jan 6 (Reuters) – From his lonely position as an
early Republican critic of the Iraq war, former Nebraska Senator
Chuck Hagel sometimes lectured his more timid Senate colleagues.
“If you wanted a safe job, go sell shoes,” he told them.

Now Democratic President Barack Obama, putting together his
team for his second term, is poised to choose t he intensely
independent thinker to run the Pentagon. If Hagel is confirmed
by the Senate, he will have to oversee the withdrawal of U.S.
troops from another war zone – Afghanistan – and grapple with
spending cuts.

Dec 20, 2012

U.S., China tout progress on trade irritants

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – After a year of clashes on trade and investment issues, senior U.S. and Chinese officials on Wednesday touted progress on a number of commercial irritants as a sign of the commitment both countries have to building a stronger relationship.

China agreed to take further steps to address U.S. concerns about widespread piracy and counterfeiting of American-made goods by strengthening enforcement of intellectual property rights and promoting the use of legal software by state-owned banks and state-owned enterprises, Chinese Commerce Minister Chen Deming told reporters after the meeting.

Dec 16, 2012

Disputes over small islands pose big conundrum for U.S

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Far away from the United States and usually far down the list of things Washington worries about, the obscure islets at the center of bitter spats between China and its neighbors have become a flashpoint that could get hotter and embroil America.

This week served up fresh evidence that 2013 likely will bring no pause in tensions rippling the seas around China. Japan on Thursday scrambled fighter jets after a Chinese government plane entered what Japan considers its airspace over disputed islets in the East China Sea, just one of many contested sites.

Nov 14, 2012

Obama eyes diplomacy on Iran nukes but says no imminent talks

WASHINGTON, Nov 14 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama said
on Wednesday that he will renew efforts for a diplomatic
resolution to Iran’s suspected attempt to build a nuclear
weapon, but denied that any talks with Tehran were imminent.

Obama told a news conference that reports that emerged
before his re-election on Nov. 6 of impending U.S. talks with
Iran were “not true and … are not true as of today.” But he
said diplomacy remains his preferred option.