Once again, a provision of the National Defense Authorization Act is being cited by Washington as justification for a new policy position. Listing Section 1245 of the NDAA, on Monday, President Barack Obama signed an executive order imposing a roster of new sanctions on the government of Iran, including the Central Bank of Iran.
Egypt’s purportedly ‘transitional’ government — upheld throughout the past year as the example of the “Arab Spring” movement that was destined to bring Western-style democracy to the Muslim world — is proving its inability to live up to the hype. While many warning signs have been in evidence since the emergence of the anti-Mubarak revolution — including a dramatic increase in anti-Christian persecution — many such signs have received little attention in the American media. Now, however, with the Obama administration threatening to cut the $1.3 billion in military aid that the U.S. doles out annually to the Egyptian regime, that nation’s ‘democratic’ experiment is being examined once again.
On the morning of January 11, Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan, a 32-year-old chemist from Sharif University in Tehran, was riding in a Peugeot 405 along Shahid Golnabi Street in eastern Tehran. As his car inched through the morning rush-hour traffic, two men on motorcycles approached Roshan’s vehicle, attached a magnetic bomb to the side of the car, and raced off just before the Peugeot and its prominent passenger were blown to bits. Roshan — who was also deputy director for commercial affairs at Iran’s Natanz nuclear reactor — had just become the latest victim of an apparent covert campaign of assassination targeting high-profile Iranian scientists allegedly involved in the Islamic republic’s controversial nuclear program.
Marta Andreasen, the courageous former chief accountant of the European Union, will not give up. In 2002 she was fired for refusing to sign off on the European Commission’s accounts. But she has continued to hold the EU politicians and eurocrats in Brussels to account, exposing fraud, waste and corruption on her web site, http://www.martaandreasen.com. In 2009 she was elected as a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP), an office she uses to shine the light of exposure on the dark dealings of the EU’s priviledged politicians and civil “servants.” In a January 26 article entitled “MEPs should hang heads in shame over ‘jollies,’” published by Public ServiceEurope, Ms. Andreasen exposed recent records of lavish spending by the eurocrats for foreign junkets.
The Chinese government announced on Monday that it would prohibit its airlines from paying a controversial “carbon tax” on flights to and from Europe imposed by the European Union, putting the continental regime in a tough bind as it seeks assistance from Beijing to tackle the region’s spiraling debt crisis. Unspecified retaliatory measures will be taken if the EU persists, according to Chinese officials, who say the taxes violate international treaties.
During a recent trip to Egypt, U.S Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had some key advice for the leaders of this Middle Eastern country as it supposedly moves past a long era of oppression and dictatorship into freedom for its people: Don’t use the U.S. Constitution as a model in penning your own governing document.
The governments of China and Russia blocked a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad to hand over power, sparking outrage among Western and Arab leaders supposedly concerned about a bloody conflict that has already claimed thousands of lives. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton responded to the UN vetoes by vowing to redouble the Obama administration’s efforts to take down the regime.
“We need a larger firewall.” So declared Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during a speech in Berlin on January 23, 2012, in which she called on taxpayers of the world to chip in $1 trillion to the IMF to stave off a global crisis. “We need to act quickly or else we could easily slide into a 1930s moment,” Lagarde warned, in an obvious reference to the Great Depression.
Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez threatened to nationalize private banks which refuse to obey an official mandate and finance the regime’s development projects, sparking more concerns about the future of Venezuela and its ailing economy. The socialist “President” also vowed to step up his failed land confiscation and redistribution schemes.
The relationship between the U.S. government and the Egyptian regime is coming under increasing pressure as authorities in Egypt shut down American tax-funded “democracy” groups in Cairo while pursuing reforms that are unpopular with the Obama administration and critics in Congress. Meanwhile, within Egypt, tensions between rival interests are also escalating.