Posts Tagged ‘Mugabe’


World’s Weekly Blue Streak

September 12, 2008

Quote of the Week: 

“What else could we do [about Georgia]? Brandish a pen knife?        

-Vladimir Putin on the Russian incursion 

 Is Kim Jong Il Ill?

 September 11, 2008: NORTH KOREA – After Kim Jong Il failed to make an appearance at North Korea’s 60th Anniversary Parade—a particularly auspicious date in Korean culture—there was suspicion that Kim had suffered a stroke and was in grave condition. Amidst rumors of conspiracy plots and nuclear rearmament, the Korean intelligence chief has stepped up today and vouched that Kim is both “conscious” and able to “control the situation.” Nevertheless, with North Korea’s true intentions concerning disarmament recently thrown into question, it isn’t the most opportune moment for Kim Jong Il to fall off the map. No one has summed up the situation better than Brad Glosserman, director of the Pacific Forum: “The starting point on all this should be that we don’t know diddly about what is going on inside that closed country.”

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  Sundaravej Voted Off the Island

 September 12, 2008: THAILAND – Following Thai politics this week was like watching reality TV; between the Foreign Minister blaming his resignation on his wife, and the Prime Minister’s power questioned due to a stint on a cooking show (called “Tasting and Complaining,” no less)—it was only a matter of time before Samak Sundaravej got voted off the island. However, Mr. Samak was poised to return to power just days after being ousted, a decision that many feared would reignite anti-government protests. On Friday, the PPP (People Power Party) decided not to endorse Mr. Samak, which should soothe political turmoil. Looks like Samak Sundaravej got more complaining than he bargained for.

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  It’s Not the End of the World, Yet

 September 11, 2008: SWITZERLAND – For everyone on Wednesday who hunkered down in a bunker and kissed the kids goodbye, you can come out now. The debut of the atom smasher in Switzerland was met with nothing more than some champagne toasts and the thrill of scientific discovery–not a hungry black hole vying for earth. 

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  Living Happily Ever After?

September 12, 2008: ZIMBABWE – After a six-month stalemate, President Robert Mugabe has forged a deal that is intended to share power with bitter opposition rival, Morgan Tsvangirai. The accord still gives Mugabe the primary executive role, but Tsvangirai will be able to fill cabinet posts and head a council of ministers. Only problem? Both leaders appear to be in charge of the same group of ministers. Whether the deal will lead to progress in the economically ravaged country depends on cooperative power sharing—something that has historically been difficult in Zimbabwe. Although Tsvangirai received more votes in the March election, controversy over the run-off election and subsequent violence has allowed Mugabe to continue his 28-year rule. South African president Thabo Mbeki stated, “We hope the rest of the world will respect the decision of the leadership of Zimbabwe.” But if the new agreement fails to alleviate social and economic grievances, the rest of the world might lose its patience. 

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 Chavez Ousts the Yanks

 September 12, 2008: VENEZUELA – After giving the American ambassador 72 hours to leave the country, Hugo Chavez is beginning to feel the repercussions of heightened political tension with the U.S. The United States has imposed sanctions on Venezuela, and today named two of the country’s top intelligence officials as drug traffickers. Conflict has centered over Chavez’s support for Bolivia, cocaine trafficking, and Chavez’s threats to cease selling oil to the United States. Relations have plummeted to a new low, and according to Chavez, “When there is a new government in the United States, we’ll send an ambassador.”

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By Dana Liebelson