By making a public spectacle of negotiations, leaders have made Israelis and Palestinians less likely to reach any agreement. President Obama should have pushed them to conduct back-channel, off-the-record talks instead.
There is a real risk that President Obama’s claim in his Oval Office address that “the American combat mission has ended” in Iraq may come to rank with President Bush’s ill-judged boast of “mission accomplished” back in May 2003.
Israel and the Palestinian territories have been talking about peace for a long time (at least a dozen summits have preceded this one with little or no tangible results). So in acknowledgment of the long odds, here are a few oft-used phrases the negotiators should avoid.
A senior prosecutor in Sweden on Wednesday announced she is reopening an official investigation into a rape allegation against Julian Assange, the Australian cofounder of the whistle-blowing Web site WikiLeaks. She also said a parallel investigation into allegations of "molestation" by Assange will not only continue but also apparently be expanded.
In marking the end of America’s combat role in Iraq, President Obama sought to shift his priorities to the United States’ own deep problems at home. “We have met our responsibilities. It is time to turn the page,” Obama told the nation from the newly refurbished Oval Office, seeking to open a new chapter in his troubled presidency.
Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, widely considered the father of Pakistan's nuclear bomb, has kept a low profile since his unprecedented 2004 television address accepting sole responsibility for providing nuclear know-how to Iran, Libya, and North Korea. NEWSWEEK PAKISTAN's Fasih Ahmed recently conducted an interview with the nuclear scientist hailed as a hero inside his own country and a threat to global security outside it.
Even though Latin America is more democratic than ever, governments across the region have lashed out this summer at unfriendly reporters by imposing restrictive (and sometimes unconstitutional) bans on the free press.
Earlier this month it was reported that right-wing Israeli groups were teaching courses on editing Wikipedia entries to give them a Zionist slant. Now some Palestinians say they'll be watching the online encyclopedia and editing in the other direction.
A senior Swedish prosecutor is expected to announce Wednesday whether she believes there is sufficient evidence to continue to pursue a sex-related investigation of Julian Assange, the Australian frontman for the whistle-blowing Web site WikiLeaks.
U.S. authorities are still not sure what the bottom line is in an investigation that led to the detention in the Netherlands on Monday of two Yemeni men who were trying to fly from the U.S. to their homeland. American officials said evidence is accumulating that the men did not know each other before they were arrested by Dutch authorities.
Sudan, for so long the focus of the world's humanitarian attention, is back in the news. Deaths continue to rise, the country is splitting in two, and foreign workers are kidnapped with alarming regularity. It remains to be seen whether the nation can survive these latest challenges.
A leader in the movement protesting plans to build an Islamic cultural center two blocks from Ground Zero in lower Manhattan is defending the actions of a right-wing, anti-Muslim group that was involved in violent clashes with British riot police over the weekend.
Is China ready to rule the world? Not quite yet. The fact is that Asia still needs American power. And if our time is indeed witnessing the long handoff of global power from one empire to another, the smoother the transition, the better.
Cabinet appointments in Lower Saxony normally don’t receive much attention. But political success is rare for minorities in Germany, and in April, Aygül Özkan—a little-known politician of Turkish descent—was heralded as a trailblazer for becoming the state’s social-affairs minister. Her quick fall from grace shows how calcified Germany’s system remains against candidates of immigrant descent.
Taliban officials know it’s sacrilegious to hope a mosque will not be built, but that’s exactly what they’re wishing for: the success of the fiery campaign to block the proposed Islamic cultural center and prayer room near the site of the Twin Towers in lower Manhattan. “By preventing this mosque from being built, America is doing us a big favor,” Taliban operative Zabihullah tells NEWSWEEK. (Like many Afghans, he uses a single name.) “It’s providing us with more recruits, donations, and popular support.”
Brazil has a sunken-treasure problem. The discovery three years ago of a huge offshore stash of oil unleashed a gusher of nationalist euphoria. At somewhere between 9 billion and 15 billion barrels, it was the largest find in the Western Hemisphere in more than a quarter century.
The last time Burma’s junta tried rigging an election in hopes of putting a civilian face on its military rule, in 1990, it was routed at the polls. The junta responded by annulling the results. Now, with the country’s first vote in 20 years set for Nov. 7, the generals have apparently learned their lesson: this time, the process will be even more tightly controlled.
In August, China’s biggest job-search site released a survey of 200,000 Chinese college students, ranking their -preferences for employment. Only three non-Chinese multinational corporations made the list of the top 50: Google, Microsoft, and Procter & Gamble, all in the top 10. That’s a steep decline from the 21 foreign firms that made the list last year.
An Israeli prime minister widely described as a hawk, and an Arab leader perilously isolated and reviled by the radicals, enter into peace talks—what chance do they have of succeeding? Not much, according to many commentators writing about the relaunch of direct talks in Washington this week between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
Israeli prime ministers don’t usually have time for long chats with people outside their circle of advisers and deputies. Yet the day before an important speech last year, Benjamin Netanyahu spent two hours with the novelist Eyal Megged, listening to his ideas and filling several pages with notes.
As part of the spy-swap deal that let her leave the country, flame-haired Russian sleeper agent Anna Chapman agreed to what U.S. officials claimed was a strict condition: she could not profit from her story. There's disagreement now over whether she's sticking with the deal.
Rwandan President Paul Kagame was reelected with 93 percent of the vote in the country's elections earlier this month. But there were widespread reports that journalists and opposition politicians were imprisoned or killed. Now a leaked U.N. report suggests that Rwandan troops may have committed war crimes and massacred tens of thousands in the late 1990s.
An American prisoner, held in a North Korean prison camp since crossing into the country earlier this year, boarded a plane for Boston today after former President Jimmy Carter succesfully negotiated his release. North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-il, meanwhile, is still on a mysterious visit to China.
Salih Mutlak can only wonder where in Iraq he might find justice. As one of the country’s leading Sunni politicians, he was puzzled and angry to learn shortly before this spring’s parliamentary elections that the Accountability and Justice Commission had barred him from running, along with roughly 500 other candidates.