American and Colombian officials suspected that a decision by the Brazilian government granting political asylum to a prominent Marxist terrorist was made under pressure from former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, whose Workers’ Party (PT) has frequently been accused of receiving millions of dollars from the drug-trafficking terror group known as the FARC.
The suspicions surrounding the case were highlighted in an explosive U.S. diplomatic cable from 2006 that was recently released by the whistle-blowing organization WikiLeaks. But despite the enormity of the revelations in the document, entitled “Brazil Grants Asylum to FARC Terrorist,” there has been virtually no press coverage of the scandal so far.
The saga described in the cable began when Francisco Antonio Cadena, the so-called “Ambassador to Brazil” for the communist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), was arrested by Brazilian authorities in 2005. He was apparently living there with his family at the time.
Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul is most distinguishable, on the debate stage alongside fellow GOP contenders, for his opposition to the U.S. wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and now Libya. Texas Congressman advocates the withdraw of U.S. troops from not only Afghanistan and Iraq, but also elsewhere in the world, such as Germany, Japan, and South Korea.
Rep. Paul has also distinguished himself from other candidates in his consistent statements and beliefs. Unlike most other candidates, he has not flip-flopped — saying now what he has been saying for decades.
Once considered as one of 12 potential leaders of the conservative movement after the age of Reagan, according to the March 1983 issue of Conservative Digest magazine, Ron Paul is now regarded as the Godfather of the Tea Party movement. Still, despite his popularity on the right, and among libertarians, independents, as well as disenfranchised Democrats, Paul is attacked by many due to his foreign policy stance.
As protests and unrest continue to spread across Syria, Western pressure including sanctions and even open talk of military intervention is mounting against the regime of “President” Bashar Al-Assad.
Numerous sources report that NATO is already plotting an invasion as foreign powers covertly arm Syrian rebels. And some analysts believe military intervention against Damascus would merely serve as a prelude to an attack on Iran.
Mass demonstrations in Syria, sometimes violent, began in mid-March. Since then, human rights groups and various governments claim thousands of civilians have been killed by security forces trying to put down the unrest.
The European Union and the U.S. government already imposed economic sanctions on the Assad dictatorship. More might be on the way as EU officials consider joining the American embargo on Syrian oil imports.
Brazil’s communist Punch and Judy show and the “right” of eminent domain.
A new U.S. military report — which will give additional credence to those advocating an end to foreign aid and interventionism — reveals that America has been funding her enemies to the tune of $360 million. After a careful examination of combat support and reconstruction contracts, researchers determined that the U.S. tax dollars had ended up with the Taliban and other enemies whom the United States has been fighting for the past decade.
The Blaze observes:
The losses underscore the challenges the U.S. and its international partners face in overcoming corruption in Afghanistan. A central part of the Obama administration’s strategy has been to award U.S.-financed contracts to Afghan businesses to help improve quality of life and stoke the country’s economy.
The investigation into the contracts, led by U.S. Army Gen. David Petraeus, reveals many connections between the Afghan companies and their subcontractors to groups which the military would classify as “malign actors.”
Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger has been riding the promotion circuit since his latest book, On China, was released on May 17 by Penguin Press. The release was timed to precede the 40th anniversary (July 9, 1971) of his secret trip to China that is credited with opening relations between the United States and the Communist regime of Mao Zedong (which was then assisting the Communist forces that were killing American troops in Southeast Asia).
The book's release also, coincidentally, was well timed for exploitation by the Chinese Politburo for the 90th Anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China (July 1, 1921). As to be expected, the 608-page tome has been showered with adulatory reviews from the Kissinger-adoring mainstream media. Some examples: "Nobody living can claim greater credit than Mr. Kissinger for America's 1971 opening to Beijing ... a fluent, fascinating...book," — the Wall Street Journal. "Fascinating, shrewd..." — the New York Times. "From the eminent elder statesman, an astute appraisal on Chinese diplomacy ... Sage words and critical perspective ..." — Kirkus Reviews.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is being heavily criticized for civilian casualties and a series of bombings apparently targeting essential non-military infrastructure in Libya, with some observers calling the actions war crimes. The Libyan rebels being supported by coalition forces have also been accused of wanton savagery and even crimes against humanity.
Most recently, a NATO bombing campaign near the Libyan city of Zlitan earlier this month reportedly killed almost 100 civilians — more than half of them women and children. The attack sparked a new wave of outrage worldwide as journalists and activists called for investigations.
Representatives of the Gaddafi regime took a large group of foreign reporters to the site. They were reportedly shown bodies of women and children, including the remains of a baby. Multiple bombed out homes were also presented to international journalists.
As the GOP 2012 presidential campaign evolves, foreign policy issues will become more and more relevant, particularly as pro-Israel candidates debate Palestine’s venture for membership into the United Nations. Although domestic issues will continue to play a central role in the debate — largely due to the economy’s prolonged comatose state — Palestinian leaders’ request for U.N. membership serves a new recipe for the GOP campaign plate.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will introduce Palestine’s application to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon before the general assembly convenes on September 20. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said that the Palestinian request was "expected and regrettable," and that "Netanyahu still believes that only through direct and honest negotiations — not through unilateral decisions — will it be possible to advance the peace process."
Iowa Straw Poll — Ron Who? Why is the media ignoring Ron Paul…again?
An analysis just released by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco concludes that most of what Americans spend on consumer goods, electronics, clothing, sneakers and the like, stays in America. Surprisingly little comes from China after all. Say the authors:
Goods and services from China accounted for only 2.7% of U.S. personal consumption expenditures (PCE) in 2010…Chinese imports make up only a small share of total U.S. consumer spending…
Athough globalization is widely recognized these days, the U.S. economy actually remains relatively closed. The vast majority of goods and services sold in the United States is produced here. In 2010, imports were about 16% of U.S. GDP. Imports from China amounted to 2.5% of GDP.