This is a new feature that I have decided to do instead of a reflection. I will post big stories that happened throughout the week and the links from my blog:
Crucial Test of U.S. Power (Sudan)
Solutions and criticism of the conflict (Sudan)
Reforming the IMF
Fixing Development Aid
Geithner Pressures China
EU-Asia Summit and China’s Currency Policy
U.S. Midterm Elections and Foreign Policy:
Part I and Part II
U.S. Power in graphs
Conversation on Afghanistan and Pakistan
Have a Good Weekend!
To give you a better perspective of the conflict, here are some tools that can help you.
The BBC has a really good chart that explains the major issues in the conflict.
This is a map of the Israeli settlements that cause such disagreement.
Right now, the talks are in limbo at the current moment. Both the Israelis and the Palestinians are meeting with the Arab League to decided whether to continue the talks or not. The settlement freeze extension is the biggest sticking point right now. The U.S. has offered Israel to extend the settlement freeze for 60 days, but that only delays the problem of a permanent extension. Will the talks collapse? It is hard to tell at this point. My guess is that they will stay on for a little while longer, but at some point they will probably collapse.
Does it have to end like this? No, but their is so much baggage on both sides that continuing the talks would be very difficult. The only way the talks can really keep going is if there is an agreement on the settlements. The Obama administration is also going to be bogged down with the midterm elections to focus on the process. What they can try and do is delay the talks until the beginning of next year when their is solid leadership in congress. It would also give some strategy time. Until then, it does seem a bit hopeless.
I will begin this column by stating the obvious: the world is hilarious and should not be taken seriously. More importantly, those in Beltway should be considered the jesters of the world. If we as a society are to survive this world of doom and gloom, we must recognize this fact more often to save our sanity. Two men have decided to take the liberty of illustrating this point by holding mock political rallies. Jon Stewart, host of the Daily Show, and Stephen Colbert, host of the Colbert Report, have chosen to give this nation a much needed sanity break before the midterm elections.
Of course, Stewart and Colbert are both mocking Glenn Beck, the newest hit in the Republican Party for his rally on Aug. 28 at the Lincoln Memorial. Beck’s rally occurred on the 47th Anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream Speech.” Beck, a man who stated that President Obama “has a deep seated hatred for white people,” used the event to proclaim his own dream of America returning to God, not the government, as its foundation. Most of the people at Beck’s rally were white, Tea Party activists. In contrast, Stewart and Colbert will host their rallies on Oct. 30. The crowd will probably be much smaller and made up of mostly college students and liberal adults.
Stewart is calling his rally: “The Rally to Restore Sanity,” an appropriate title I think. Colbert is calling his rally: “Keep the Fear Alive.” Critics will call these rallies a distraction from the national conversation. I call these rallies genius.
Cartoon From Slate