Newscast Media CARACAS—The US has expelled Venezuela’s charge d’affaires and two other diplomats. The move comes in reprisal for the expulsion of Kelly Keiderling, the top US diplomat in Venezuela, from Caracas.
Venezuelan officials called the move unjustified, saying the diplomats in Washington had not met with people opposed to President Barack Obama in order to undermine their host country, as it accused the US officials of having done.
According to Venezuela, the US diplomats, including Charge d’Affaires Kelly Keiderling, met with the country’s “far right” – the government’s term for the opposition – to finance President Nicolas Maduro’s opponents and encourage actions to sabotage the power system and the economy.
Venezuelan President Maduro began his term in April, after winning an election following the death of his mentor Hugo Chavez, and has continued the anti-US populism that had served the revolutionary-cum-head of state so well during his 14 years in power before succumbing to cancer.
Relations appeared to have eased in June, when the two countries agreed to begin discussions aimed at returning ambassadors to Caracas and Washington after talks between US Secretary of State John Kerry and Foreign Minister Elias Jaua. However, Venezuela broke off the rapprochement in July after the diplomat Samantha Power, now the US ambassador to the United Nations, lumped the country in with other
“While the government of the United States does not understand that it has to respect our country’s sovereignty there will be simply be no cordial relations nor cordial communication,” Maduro said Tuesday in Caracas. “The day that the government of President Obama rectifies the situation, we will establish new points of contact to discuss common issues,” Maduro added.
Source: Radio Deutsche Welle
Newscast Media WASHINGTON—In a video paid for by the Koch brothers who hold
conservative views, Obama supporters are portrayed as voters who will do anything
they are asked, as long as Obama says it is a good thing to do.
In the video, the parody mocks Obama whose supporters are attempting to raise
money on Kickstarter to the tune of $1.6 trillion, so that Obama can fund World War
One of the actresses says, “Obama is right all the time. So I support World War III
and IV, and any moon war the president may want to start.”
The actors in the video say the war will be good because it is not a Republican war
but one started by Obama that will destroy 99% of humanity. They also reason that it
will be a good war because it will be the most social media-focused war ever.
It concludes by saying, “Help us make WWIII a reality…because of Obama.” Watch:
Help kickstart World War 3 mocks Obama and supporters
Newscast Media WASHINGTON—Despite Britain’s rejection of David Cameron’s
proposal to attack Syria, France is ready to follow the US and strike Syria, President
François Hollande told Le Monde newspaper on Friday. Although strikes should not
take place before UN inspectors have finished their investigation in Damascus, they
could be launched before a special meeting of the French parliament on Wednesday,
France wants a firm, proportionate action against the Damascus regime,” Hollande
told Le Monde, insisting that Paris can take such action without British support.
“Every country is sovereign when it comes to taking part in an operation or not,” the
president said. “That goes as much for France as for the United Kingdom.”
Hollande is to have an “in-depth” phone discussion with US President Barack Obama,
he told the paper, pointing out that, even if he is counting on support from other
European powers and the Arab League, France is one of the few countries with the
“capacity to inflict punishment with the appropriate means”.
Germany will not take part in a military strike on Syria, Foreign Minister Guido
Westerwelle told the Neue Osnabruecker Zeitung on Friday.
Source: Radio France Internationale
Newscast Media KIGALI—From one president to another, Barack Obama placed a call to Rwanda’s Paul Kagame to underscore that any support to Congolese rebel group M23 is “inconsistent with Rwanda’s desire for stability and peace” in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and advised Kagame to abide by commitments made in November to permanently “end all support for armed groups” in the country.
Obama told Kagame that it is important to reach “a transparent and credible political agreement that includes an end to impunity for M23 commanders and others who have committed serious human rights abuses” and that the crisis in eastern DRC should be resolved by a “political agreement that addresses the underlying regional security, economic and governance issues while upholding the DRC’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
An estimated 5 million people have been killed and millions displaced since 1998 by a variety of rebel groups battling to control the eastern DRC. In 2012, a new group of rebels rose up. Known as the M23 that has created instability in the region.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters December 18 that the Obama administration is continuing to call for Ntaganda’s arrest, as well as that of Sylvestre Mudacumura, who is also charged with committing atrocities and has been issued an ICC warrant.
“The current conflict in the eastern Congo with M23 underscores the continuing impunity the perpetrators of violence and human rights abuses continue to enjoy in the Congo,” Nuland said.
Along with identifying individuals on the ground who commit abuses and subjecting them to U.S. sanctions, Nuland said, the United States is also reviewing its list of those who are aiding and abetting armed groups for possible sanctions designation. “We look at the whole landscape,” Nuland said.
If Kagame fails to heed Obama’s advice, the next phase, as was pointed out by the State Department’s Victoria Nuland is to subject those aiding and abetting the rebels to sanctions. Finally, after that phase, as we saw in Libya and are seeing in the Middle East, the next step usually points to regime change.
Newscast Media HOUSTON, Texas—After a dynamic performance at the debates, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has widened his lead among the most coveted voters who decide elections—the Independents.
Independent voters are neither Democrat nor Republican, and party loyalties or media hype are not a decisive factor with this particular group. That’s the reason why candidates always spend more money in “swing states” that can make an election go either way.
The latest reading is based on data collected from Oct. 4, the day after the first presidential debate, through Oct. 9. The prior day’s 2-point spread included polling done before last Wednesday’s debate, in which Romney was widely seen as the victor.
“The jump from 2 points to 5 is because the days prior to the debate were removed from analysis,” explained Raghavan Mayur, president of TechnoMetrica Market Intelligence, IBD’s pollster. “The impact of the debate is fully reflected in the latest data.”
Romney’s strength among whites applies to both men and women. White men back him 64%-28%, a cavernous 36-point difference compared with the 16-point (57%-41%) advantage McCain had. White women favor Romney 52%-39%, and numbers for single White women aren’t much different — 52% to 41% for Romney.
The entire spectrum of the daily tracking poll can be viewed here (pop-up) which includes household income, age, education, gender, ideology, race, investor class and party. Romney also leads in the general by five (5) points.
by Paul Stanley
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—It was only about one year ago that Republicans – not knowing who their nominee would be – were bracing for a presidential campaign where President Obama would have an unlimited campaign war chest while their candidate scraped by with only a great message and limited funds. That is not the case today.
Today, Republicans know who their nominee is (it will be official in one week) and according to fundraising totals through the end of July, they know how much money is in both presidential bank accounts.
Romney and the Republican National Committee raised an astounding $101 million in July and it is the third consecutive month the campaign has hit triple digits. Obama and the Democrats took in $75 million.
In addition to the joint bank accounts each candidate share with their respective parties, both the RNC and the DNC raise and spend their own funds. In July, the RNC hauled in $37.7 million compared to the DNC’s $8.8 million. When added to the prior month’s balance, the Republicans have $88.8 million on the ledger while the
Democrats have $15.4 million in their account.
What has many Democrats concerned is that for the past several months Obama has spent money at a faster pace than Romney while taking in less. In July, the Obama campaign spent $58.5 million and the Romney campaign spent $32.3 million. Most of the funds spent by both sides went for advertising and ad placement.
However, to gain a rational understanding of exactly where the candidates stand it is important to look at their financial picture from a 30,000-foot viewpoint.
Obama raised and spent $750 million to win the White House in 2008 and has been replenishing his account ever since. On the other hand, Romney had to start from scratch and run a competitive primary against as many as eight other GOP hopefuls. Much of what he has in the bank today cannot be spent until he is officially nominated in Tampa, Fla., next week.
From the perspective of each individual candidate, at the end of July Romney had $30.2 million cash on hand while Obama had $87.7 million. Michael Malbin runs the non-partisan Campaign Finance Institute in Washington and says when everything is taken into account, Obama is still in a more desirable position.
“Romney is ahead when you combine it all together but some of his money is going to be less efficient,” Malbin told Reuters. “Obama is way ahead in the most flexible (money that can be spent today) pile. The broad picture, the step back is that the Obama campaign has a stronger financial position than the Romney campaign.”
But the major difference between this election cycle and 2008 is that both candidates chose not to accept public financing and that Super PACs can raise and spend an almost unlimited amount of money.
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—Former President Bill Clinton took to the airwaves Tuesday to offer President Obama some economic advice by suggesting that the White House back a temporary extension of what is known as the Bush tax cuts, which are set to expire in January.
The suggestion from one Democratic president to another may cause further scrutiny of the Obama administration’s plan to increase taxes on those earning over $250,000 per year to raise money to reduce the nation’s growing deficit.
During President George W. Bush’s second term, Congress enacted a series of tax cuts, some of which will expire in January of 2013.
About that same time, $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts will take effect because the so-called “supercommittee” that met last fall was unable to reach a consensus on budget cuts or tax increases. Officials in the Congressional Budget Office have said allowing the two to occur at the same time may add to the nation’s economic woes by causing another recession.
“What I think we need to do is find some way to avoid the fiscal cliff, to avoid doing anything that would contract the economy now, and then deal with what’s necessary in the long-term debt reduction plan as soon as they can, which presumably will be after the election,” Clinton said on CNBC’s “Closing Bell With Maria Bartiromo.”
Officials at the White House were mum on Clinton’s comments, but others close to the president pointed out that Obama has repeatedly said that he would not extend the Bush tax cuts for high-income individuals and families when they expire.
President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada have said they will not extend the Bush era tax cuts without some agreement from Republicans to raise taxes.
“If Republicans want to walk away from the bipartisan spending cuts agreed to last August, they will have to work with Democrats to replace them with a balanced deficit reduction package that asks millionaires to pay their fair share,” Reid said in a statement on Tuesday.
Despite both sides saying something must be done soon, political pundits believe the White House will not push the issue until after the elections.
by Napp Nazworth
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—Despite efforts by the Obama campaign to portray Mitt Romney as a vulture capitalist, Romney’s favorability rating has increased 14 percentage points since February, according to a CNN/ORC poll released Monday.
President Barack Obama still has a higher favorability rating — 56 percent to Romney’s 48 percent. But, Romney’s jump from 34 percent in February cannot be good news for a campaign that has spent significant time and money working to lower Romney’s favorability.
The Obama campaign is the first in modern history to start a campaign with an ad attacking their opponent rather than saying something positive about themselves. It is also spending significant amounts of money much earlier than usual.
Until Monday, the Obama campaign has focused its efforts on Romney’s business record at Bain Capital, a private equity firm. The ads featured people who had worked at companies owned by Bain Capital but lost their jobs after Bain shut them down.
Several Democrats, though, have questioned this strategy. Corey Booker, mayor of Newark, N.J., for instance, said he was uncomfortable with the attacks on Romney’s business record and called them “nauseating,” on NBC’s May 20 “Meet the Press.” (Later that day, he posted a video taking back those remarks.)
Last Thursday night, former President Bill Clinton added his name to the list of Democrats praising Romney’s Bain record. Calling his business record “sterling,” Clinton said that Romney “crosses the qualification threshold” with his experience in private business and as the former governor of Massachusetts.
by Napp Nazworth
Newscast Media HOUSTON, Texas—A common theme has emerged from President Barack Obama’s critics from both the right and the left – he has not kept the promises he made in 2008. The most recent attack came from a Republican National Committee ad accusing Obama of coddling lobbyists.
The ad shows Obama in a 2008 campaign speech saying, “we will not take a dime from Washington lobbyists,” with the words, “the promise, Candidate Obama, 2008″ across the screen. The ad then cuts to TV news reports about lobbyist influence in the Obama administration. The ad ends with a photo of Obama at a dinner, insinuatingly with lobbyists, delivering a toast. The words, “from hope to hypocrisy, the senator who became a sellout,” are across the screen.
The ad is based, in part, on an exposé earlier this month in The New York Times depicting a tight relationship between large donations to Obama’s reelection campaign and visits to the White House. The article revealed that some wealthy donors were accompanied by lobbyists during their visit.
The criticism that Obama has not lived up to his campaign promises has been especially prominent from liberals.
A March 6 editorial by liberal Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank called “Settling in to Washington’s ways” complains that Obama has placed lobbyists in prominent White House positions. They were not technically lobbyists at the time. They de-registered as lobbyists when Obama won office, but continued many of the lobbying activities they were doing while registered lobbyists.
“Such an arrangement may not violate the letter of Obama’s ethics policy, but it makes a joke of the spirit of reform he promised,” Milbank complained. The Onion, a comedy website, also mocked Obama for not living up to his campaign promises in a satirical article called, “Obama Launches More Realistic ‘I Have Big Ideas But We’ll See How It Goes’ Campaign Slogan.”
David Gregory, host of NBC’s “Meet the Press,” quoted passages from The Onion’s article Sunday while interviewing the Obama Campaign’s senior adviser, David Axelrod.
“It gets a laugh, is there any greater truth to that?” Gregory asked. Axelrod answered “no” and blamed Republicans for the lack of progress on Obama’s agenda.
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—Just as in the past, whether the next round of talks on the Iranian nuclear issue, due to be held in Baghdad on 23 May, can be fruitful lies in the United States and Iran finding common ground.
In fact, although Saturday’s talks in Istanbul finished on a positive note, with Iranian chief nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, describing them as “very successful” and a White House spokesperson praising Iran’s “positive attitude”, achieving a permanent and peaceful solution will be difficult, as the US and Iran disagree over the core issue of whether Iran should develop its own uranium enrichment capacity.
Prior to Saturday’s talks, the Obama administration had emphasized that negotiations between the International Atomic Energy Agency and Iran had not met expectations.
It said Iran had not cooperated with the agency on key issues such as clarifying suspect nuclear items and permitting on-site inspections of nuclear facilities. If Iran does not change its attitude, even if there are further negotiations between Iran and “Five plus One” countries – the UN Security Council’s five permanent members plus Germany – it will be hard to make substantial progress.
The Obama administration wants to settle the Iranian nuclear issue before the US presidential elections in November. But at the moment it faces a challenge trying to coordinate policy goals with the Israeli government, with which it already has differences over the establishing of Jewish settlements in Israeli occupied territories.
When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the US in March, Obama said that the US will do everything it can to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons because it doesn’t serve the US and Israeli’s security interests. But he also said there is still the possibility of solving the issue through diplomacy. This was widely interpreted as Obama trying to restrain Israel from launching military strikes against Iran.
It is generally believed that Israel will not be able to launch a successful military attack on Iran without the US’ support, but the Israeli government has declared several times that it will launch military attack on Iran before the US presidential election in November.
During his visit, Netanyahu also declared that Israel would not make a commitment to inform the Obama administration before taking military action against Iran. In fact, the “red line” that would trigger a military attack on Iran is quite different for the US and Israel. For the US it would be Iran’s decision to make nuclear weapons, while for Israel it is Iran’s capability to make nuclear weapons.
But it is generally believed that Israeli air strikes would only delay Iran’s nuclear program rather than completely destroy its capacity to develop nuclear weapons, and that they would give Iran’s leaders the pretext to publicly commit to making nuclear weapons. This is not what Obama administration wants.
Another challenge the administration faces is controlling rising oil prices.
Since late 2011, the Obama administration has urged the major countries importing oil from Iran, to stop or reduce these imports. EU countries, South Korea, and Japan soon followed the US’ bidding. This has hit Iran’s economy, as oil exports, which are regarded as its economic lifeline, have declined sharply. But it has also led to rising international oil prices.
The Obama administration believes that with Iran’s domestic commodity prices already rising and its currency devaluing, the Iranian people will become more and more dissatisfied with the government, forcing its leaders to abandon the country’s nuclear program.
Moreover, the US is still trying to disentangle itself from Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and whether the Obama administration is willing to commit the US to a new conflict in the Middle East is a big decision.
It is thought that if the US did launch a military attack on Iran together with Israel, it would win wide political support and boost Obama’s re-election chances. But this support would be temporary, and if Obama was elected for a second term his administration would be left with the consequences.
So there may still be hopes of peace in the Persian Gulf, as Obama has repeatedly held out olive branches to Iran since he took office, and Iran’s top leader has praised Obama for restraining Israel.
The author is a senior research fellow of China Arms Control and Disarmament Association.
by Paul Stanley
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Susan B. Anthony List, a national pro-life group, announced on Thursday their endorsement of the presumed Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, promising to spend millions to defeat President Obama in November.
“Now is the time to unite behind Governor Romney in order to defeat the most ideologically pro-abortion president in our nation’s history,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of SBA List, in a written statement. “The SBA List is proud to endorse Governor Romney and plans to spend $10 to $12 million in senate and
presidential battleground states mobilizing pro-life voters to ensure victory.”
The endorsement of Romney signals that SBA and similar pro-life organizations are committed to defeating President Obama, whom they view as “unfriendly and dangerous” to the unborn.
But Romney has not always been seen as a Republican who was willing to fight for pro-life causes. In 1994 when Romney ran for the U.S. Senate against the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, he adopted a pro-abortion position with the permission of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
However, when he ran for governor of Massachusetts in 2002, he had changed his position to one of opposing abortion in most cases.
The group’s unanimous endorsement of Romney was based on a number of factors, including his pledge to defund Planned Parenthood, to nominate pro-life judges to the federal bench, and to choose a pro-life running mate.
“The difference between Governor Romney and President Obama couldn’t be clearer, which is why our Board of Directors voted unanimously to get behind him,” said Jane Abraham, chairman of the SBA List Board of Directors. “It is the responsibility of all pro-life voters to now unite behind Governor Romney. Together we can put a pro-life leader in the White House.”
by Anugrah Kumar
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.— Top Democrats in President Barack Obama’s administration appear to be focusing their attacks on Mitt Romney amid perceptions that the former Massachusetts governor is most likely to be the GOP nominee. Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton lambasted Romney Sunday.
“I think Gov. Romney’s a little out of touch,” Biden said in an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation.” “I can’t remember a presidential candidate in the recent past who seems not to understand, by what he says, what ordinary middle-class people are thinking about and are concerned about.”
Some believe that front-runner Romney’s main rival, Rick Santorum, might have to retreat if he is unable to win in Wisconsin, one of three states to host Republican primaries Tuesday. Santorum was reportedly planning to leave Wisconsin the day before the primary, which was interpreted as a sign of his withdrawal.
“I think the chances are overwhelming that [Romney] will be our nominee,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday. “It seems to me we’re in the final phases of wrapping up this nomination.”
The former Pennsylvania senator has won 27 percent of the delegates at stake, while Romney has won 54 percent of the delegates.
However, Santorum dismissed the notion that his chances are grim. He compared his run with the Saturday night’s basketball game between Kansas and Ohio. Kansas was trailing by more than 10 points in the first half, but still managed to win in the second half. “Look, this race isn’t even at halftime yet,” Santorum said on “Fox News Sunday.”
Meanwhile, Biden defended Obama on last week’s conversation with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in Seoul, South Korea, in which Obama said he would have “more flexibility” on the contentious issue of missile defense after the Nov. 6 general election, without realizing it was being caught by a microphone. Obama was “stating the obvious,” Biden said.
Romney had called it “alarming,” asking what else Obama would be flexible on if he happened to get re-elected and saying Russia was “our No. 1 geopolitical foe.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also attacked Romney. She said Romney’s comment was “dated.” “I think it’s somewhat dated to be looking backwards instead of being realistic about where we agree, where we don’t agree,” she told CNN Sunday.
Romney’s campaign hit back. “Vice-President Biden appears to have forgotten the Russian government’s opposition to crippling sanctions on Iran, its obstructionism on Syria and its own backsliding into authoritarianism,” Lanhee Chen, Romney’s policy director, said in a statement.
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C. — This will be one of the most challenging years for Barack Obama as President of the United States, because crucial decisions that could affect his re-election are underway. Despite preparing to embark on his re-election campaign, he still has to deal with the distraction that Israel could launch an unexpected attack on Iran.
To his credit, Obama is doing everything he possibly can to avert a war with the Islamic Republic and is engaging the country in talks and negotiations regarding its nuclear program. Yet Obama is mindful of the warmongers trying to bypass the diplomatic means that are being employed to accomplish a win-win situation in this whole ordeal.
In a speech given on Tuesday, Obama scolded Republican candidates for “beating the drums of war” and ignoring the potential human cost of such a confrontation.
“The one thing that we have not done is: We haven’t launched a war. If some of these folks think that it’s time to launch a war, they should say so. And they should explain to the American people exactly why they would do that and what the consequences would be,” he said.
“This is not a game. There is nothing casual about it. Those who are suggesting, or proposing, or beating the drums of war should explain clearly to the American people what they think the costs and benefits would be. I’m not one of those people,” Obama said.
Should Israel launch an attack on Iran, it would sabotage Obama’s re-election for the following reasons:
He would immediately lose the moderates, independents and some of his hardcore base who have denounced previous wars would stay home. An attack on Iran would also send the gas prices to the $8-$10 neighborhood and would affect the world markets. As voters sit at their kitchen tables and sorting out their bills, they will equate the high gas prices and cost of living to Obama’s failure to cure the defects within the economy. That alone would be their justification not to vote for him.
China will not sit by and Russia because they have interests in Iran they would want to protect. Sleeper-cells in the West would then be activated, and those who wished for war would have a lot of explaining to do for endangering the general public. This reflects what Obama said in his remarks that they (the warmongers) would have to “explain clearly to the American people what they think the costs and benefits would be.”
North Korea’s Kim Jung-un would not want to miss in action and would want to prove to his countrymen that he too is made of steel, as reflected in the comments he made on Friday Dec. 30, 2011 when he said: “On this occasion, we solemnly declare with confidence that foolish politicians around the world, including the puppet forces in South Korea, should not expect any changes from us.”
Right there you have China, Russia, Iran and North Korea could align itself with them including Pakistan, Iran’s next-door neighbor. You then have a perfect scenario of East vs. West. There is no way such a war can be won on the seas or in the air. A ground invasion would have to take place whereby troops are sent into Iran, which would be the perfect chance for Afghanistan to side with Iran and seek revenge for the Quran incident.
All the war advocates who hide behind computer keyboards or their ivory towers encouraging an invasion of Iran should use “critical thinking” rather than make this an emotional event. For the past seven years, we’ve heard that Iran was 6-12 months away from acquiring a nuclear weapon. If you do the math, it means Iran has acquired nuclear weapons seven times over. At the beginning of last year, Iran was six months away from a nuclear weapon. June came and went, and the “six-month narrative” continues to be sold to the public.
Americans and people across the world are weary of the wars that have been happening continuously for the past 10 years. Soldiers just want to raise their kids, repair their marriages, finish school or find jobs, while the general public just wants to mind its own business.
Whether you agree with Barack Obama or not, the man is not being fooled, or allowing himself to be induced into an unnecessary military confrontation, and recently said, “I don’t bluff.” Which means he knows who the bluffers are—the media being one of the major players. He has exclusive intel that is not available to the public, and can see what the button-pushers can’t.
George W. Bush experienced what Obama is going through and warned Israel not to bomb Iran. He was very clear about it and said the U.S. did not want to get involved in a third war.”This is a very unstable part of the world and I don’t need it to be more unstable,” Adm. Mike Mullen, the Joint Chiefs chairman, said at a briefing. Bush said, “I have made it clear to all parties [including Israel] that the first option is diplomacy,” in getting Iran to stop enriching uranium that could be used for a nuclear weapon.
Barack Obama’s greatest challenge is not a battle with the GOP nominee or media or even his critics. Obama’s greatest battle, in my analysis, will be to get Israel to stay put.
by J. Albert Mohler Jr.
Newscast Media HOUSTON, Texas — Some predictions are rather safe to make. 2012 is almost certain to be a determinative year on the issue of same-sex marriage. Multiple courts appear poised to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act [DOMA] and, even more urgently, the appeal on California’s Proposition 8 at the Ninth Circuit U. S. Court of Appeals will set up a certain appeal to the U. S. Supreme Court.
Given the facts of this case and the significance of the nation’s most populous state, the Supreme Court is almost certain to take the case. This sets the stage for the courts to make some determinative statement on same-sex marriage within the next several months – a decision that will go a long way toward setting the direction of the larger culture.
At the same time, the same-sex marriage issue will play a part in the 2012 presidential campaign. The reason for this is quite simple. The issue of same-sex marriage is about far more than marriage as a legal institution and about more than sexuality and personal autonomy. It is the great inescapable issue, and we will know in fairly short order what all the candidates believe about the issue. Then again, maybe not.
President Barack Obama has done far more to advance the cause of gay rights than any previous president. His executive orders and administrative policies have granted benefits to the domestic partners of federal employees, ordered the Department of Justice not to defend the Defense of Marriage Act in the courts, and ordered the Department of State to make the rights of homosexuals a major priority and principle of American foreign policy. Beyond all that, the President led the effort to repeal the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, leading to the full integration of active homosexuals within the U. S. armed services.
But, what about the question of same-sex marriage? The President has explained that his views on the subject are “evolving.” Just a few weeks ago, the President told George Stephanopoulos of ABC News that he is “still working on” the issue.
Thus, the dance continues. The reason for the President’s reluctance is clear enough. The President is reluctant in an election year to be drawn into a culture-war issue – one that reliably helps Republicans turn out evangelical voters in their favor and also strikes a particular nerve with religious black voters, a bedrock Obama constituency in battleground states like North Carolina and Florida.
Interestingly, the latest of these is former President Jimmy Carter. Mr. Carter recently told the Associated Press that President Obama has endangered his re-election prospects by alienating too many voters. His words to President Obama sound like an encouragement to continue his evasive dance on the issue.
President Carter said, “If your main goal is to get re-elected, avoid a controversial subject as much as you can in the first term.”
Maybe that explains it all. The first Obama term is all about “evolution” on the issue. Clarity will come only after the 2012 election. Then, and only then, will the dance end. At the very least, President Carter has helped us to see the dance for what it is.
Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C. — When Hezbollah attacked Israel’s warship with the C-802 missile, Israel was alarmed and unprepared to respond. To Iran, that was a major victory, yet the question remains—how did they build it? Secret files by the U.S. government show that France, China and Israel supplied Iran the upgrades for the C-802. This was not an isolated incident of Tel Aviv helping Tehran. The Israelis brokered arms to Iran during the bloody Iran Iraq War in the 1980s. Israel has a long history of cooperating with China in arms deals.
According to information revealed in these files that were first accessed by veteran journalist Joe Trento, the Chinese had been shipping the C-802s to Iran, but by 2001 they had stopped. By then the Iranians had reverse-engineered the missile and were successfully building a much more advanced version than China had in its own arsenal. The anti-ship missile can travel about 60 kilometers, has over-the-horizon radar capability and can carry a conventional, nuclear or chemical warhead.
However, a study at Harvard shows that the missile’s reach has been upgraded and can now travel up to 120 kilometers. The C-802 can accelerate from zero to mach one in seconds. What gives Navy defenders against the missile problems is that a few kilometers before it encounters the target, the C-802 descends from an altitude of between 75 to 100 feet down to wave top, about nine feet above sea level before it punctures the hull of a ship. It is that kind of maneuverability that makes the C-802 so difficult to defend against, according to Navy weapons experts. Below is a video of the C-802 missile.
Iran’s reverse-engineered C-802 Saccade missile
What is oxymoronic about the secret files on how Iran manufactured the C-802, and the countries involved, is that they are labeled top secret, yet they have made available for anyone to view or download at this site.
Candidates like Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich seem to be so trigger-happy to lead the U.S. into another war. This is because they themselves have never been in combat nor have their families, so it is easy to try and compensate for a lack of military experience by sounding like a tough guy.
My assessment is that Obama will not lead us into war with Iran, because he appears to genuinely want to resolve the conflict through alternative means than war. Should he lose the election, it will be a GOP candidate who will attempt to wage war against Iran. However, upon reviewing the data that all other U.S. presidents who refused to lead the U.S. into a war with Iran have viewed, then that GOP president, will be forced to consider the consequences of his or her actions, considering the mistakes that have already been made, from the capture of CIA spies by Iran, to Iran’s capture of the “Beast of Kandahar” RQ-170 Sentinel stealth drone.
Sun Tzu said: “He wins his battles by making no mistakes. Making no mistakes is what establishes the certainty of victory, for it means conquering an enemy that is already conquered. Hence the skillful fighter puts himself into a position which makes defeat impossible, and does not miss the moment for defeating the enemy. (The Art of War, page 18).
by Sergei Balmasov
Newscast Media HOUSTON, Texas –The USA intends to use the ANZUS Treaty (Australia, New Zealand and the USA) against China. Barack Obama visited Australia’s capital Canberra to mark the 60th anniversary of the alliance. Obama met Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and agreed to considerably strengthen the defense cooperation with the country. Particularly, it goes about a tenfold increase of the US military presence on the green continent.
The leaders of the two countries said that the United States would not have a special army base on the territory of Australia. Nevertheless, they acknowledged that the deployment of US military men in the north of Australia and the increase of the US naval presence in the region will virtually turn Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory, into the center of constant presence of the US Armed Forces in Australia.
The US contingent will increase from 200 to 2,500 people. Strategic bombers B-52, F/A-18 fighter jets, as well as C-17 cargo planes and fuel aircraft will also be deployed on the green continent. All of them are going to be deployed at Australia’s Tindal air base. As a result, the US presence in Australia will become the largest since the end of WWII.
The deployment of the US Armed Forces in Australia will take place gradually, for six years. The first group of 250 US marines will arrive on the green continent already in 2012.
Obama did not conceal the fact that all those measures would be taken to contain China. The US president admitted Washington’s concerns about China’s growing influence in the region. According to Obama, he welcomes China’s growing influence, but says that China must play by the rules.
China reacted immediately to Obama’s remarks. An official spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry stated that such an increase of the military presence and the expansion of the defense cooperation did not seem to meet the interest of the countries of the Asian-Pacific region.
Chinese officials stated that China supports the peaceful development and cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region. Other countries should not act differently. “When developing state-to-state relations, one should take into account the interests of other countries as well as the whole region, and peace and stability of the region,” Liu Weimin, an official spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry said.
A week ago, Western media published the concept of the actions of US forces in case of an armed conflict with China. The concept stipulated a possibility for conducting combat actions on the Chinese territory, including attacks on China’s inland areas, as well as massive cyber attacks and the neutralization of China’s anti-satellite weapons. The concept made many US experts draw parallels with the period of the Cold War against the USSR.
The document appeared in response to China’s national military strategy of the new period. The strategy stipulates active defense of China’s national interests, even in remote areas of the World ocean.
By 2016, the combat abilities of Chinese Navy will be able to conduct efficient operations near the territories of Japan, New Guinea and Indonesia. This may touch upon Australia’s sphere of influence. China needs to defend its economy, which largely depends on the shipments of oil from the Middle East. This region is extremely important for the United States as well.
It is worthy of note that Australia is only one of the USA’s strategic partners, with whom Washington intends to contain China’s growing influence. The United States intends to use the Philippines, Japan and India for the same purpose. Maybe Washington will change its relations with Vietnam too.
Newscast Media, AUSTIN, Texas — As the candidates undertake the last quarter of the year, former front-runner Rick Perry has slipped to third place while Mitt Romney and Herman Cain are leading the GOP field. Cain came from obscurity and continues to grow his support, while Mitt Romney is relatively stable and has not slipped or risen considerably in the polls. What some analysts wonder is why Rick Perry isn’t recovering in the polls.
The analysis is accurate, and if Perry wants to turn this around he has October, November and December to do so, and he is going to not only start thinking outside the box, but to also tear it up. If Perry cannot turn this around by Christmas, Mitt Romney will waltz his way into the nomination. The article asks why Perry hasn’t put Bobby Jindal to use the way Mitt Romney has Chris Christie.
One may also ask, “Where is Haley Barbour, Sarah Palin and all the college students? Where are the soccer moms and the factory workers?” Perry needs these surrogates in order to succeed. Bachmann will end up endorsing Romney and might go as far as telling her supporters to vote for the former Massachusetts governor, just like Mike Huckabee told his supporters to vote for McCain and was able to keep Romney from getting the nomination.
Perry and his staff have to realize they cannot win this on their own, and only have a short window to flip the script. Mitt Romney doesn’t really have to worry about surrogates because Romney’s surrogates are members of the media as I first reported on December 6, 2010 last year, and is evident in the video below:
Herman Cain, at some point will trip himself because he is already making some serious gaffes and is having to take his words back. Romney remains the warm steady glow rather than the wild fire that dies out quickly. Without deep pockets like Romney, Cain will have problems raising money to match Romney. Cain is currently on a book tour and is not campaigning or fundraising, which is a symbol of either false hope or overconfidence. The Obama camp anticipates a Romney nomination and is preparing ammunition to use against him
Yet one would ask how Perry could put someone like Sarah Palin to use if she hasn’t endorsed him. Gingrich has recently confessed that he could use a Palin endorsement to boost his campaign. Gingrich is aggressively trying to reach her, but is still unable to do so. Perry cannot just sit and wait for the endorsements to come his way, he has to be proactive in getting these endorsements just like Romney actively sought Christie’s endorsement and succeeded in getting it.
The only problem with Sarah Palin is that she might string the candidates along just like she did her supporters knowing from the very beginning she wasn’t going to run. Palin has a job in showbiz and may want to play it safe by not endorsing anyone, in order to keep a sense of neutrality, yet that even makes her more irrelevant as a politician. Any candidate who wins the GOP nomination will not need her endorsement to make it to the finish line because all polls show that Romney/Cain/Perry can beat Obama in the general. Now would be the time for Palin to be effective, while the candidates are on their last stretch.
When Donald Trump was in the race, everyone was quick to put his or her stamp of approval on him, yet it was obvious he was planted by Obama to extinguish the issue of the birth certificate and put it to rest. After he played his role, he announced he wouldn’t run. Right now every GOP candidate has to kiss Trump’s ring and seek his blessing, even though Trump has absolutely no grassroots organization or ground game to put him in the position of kingmaker. But hey, if the candidates are giving him all that attention, why not bask in it?
Should Romney win the nomination, I suspect he may choose a southerner like Cain to help him capture the South. If Perry were to win, he would probably choose Newt Gingrich who has experience, as his running-mate. My best bet is that if Cain were to win he would choose Romney. Because Perry disagrees Romney’s healthcare plan and Romney disagrees with Perry’s in-state tuition for illegals, it is hard to envision one choosing the other as a running-mate.
Perry only has 10 weeks to turn this around, so if I’m him, knowing what I’m up against, I’d be calling in surrogates like Palin, Jindal, mobilizing Tea Party members and other less known political and community figures to help re-energize the campaign, in order to recover from the recent setbacks.
Newscast Media HOUSTON, Texas — Once viewed as the change that could be believed in, Barack Obama’s poll numbers and approval ratings continue to plummet across the political spectrum, prompting some to suggest that Hillary Clinton would have made a better president. However, Obama’s biggest challenge is to convince black voters who feel marginalized by him to support him in the 2012 election.
Some of the most prominent Black leaders who once supported and campaigned for Obama have now woken up to realize that they’ve been sleeping on a bed of roses but the pillow is thorns. Since their awakening, they are now vocal critics of Obama and openly criticize him about his policies.
In regard to the financial crisis he was criticized by his former friend and supporter, Princeton professor Dr. Cornell West who describes Obama as “a black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs and a black puppet of corporate plutocrats. And now he has become head of the American killing machine and is proud of it.”
“I think my dear brother Barack Obama has a certain fear of free black men,’’ West said. “It’s understandable. As a young brother who grows up in a white context, brilliant African father, he’s always had to fear being a white man with black skin. All he has known culturally is white … When he meets an independent black brother, it is frightening.”
On Saturday September 24, in a speech at the annual awards dinner of the Congressional Black Caucus, Obama told blacks to quit crying and complaining and “put on your marching shoes” to follow him into battle for jobs and opportunity.
“Take off your bedroom slippers. Put on your marching shoes,” he said, amidst applause. “Shake it off. Stop complainin’. Stop grumblin’. Stop cryin’. We are going to press on. We have work to do.”
Rep. Maxine Waters believes if it were a Hispanic or Asian audience, Obama wouldn’t have talked down at them that way.
In the BET interview that aired Monday, the host, Emmett Miller challenged Obama saying, “You won’t even say, ‘Look, I am going to help you.”
“Emmett, that is not what people are saying,” Obama shot back. “What people are saying all across the country is we are hurting and we’ve been hurting for a long time. And the question is how can we make sure the economy is working for every single person.”
Obama defended his policies as helping minorities even though he refuses to support programs that only target them.
“That’s not how America works. America works when all of us are pulling together and everybody is focused on making sure that every single person has opportunity,” he said in the interview.
Yet perhaps Obama’s most fiery critic is Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan who expressed outrage that Obama took part in the attack during an interview WVON-AM. Radio.
“Why don’t you organize a group of respected Americans and ask for a meeting with Gadhafi, you can’t order him to step down and get out, who the hell do you think you are?”
However, Farrakhan was the very person who promoted Obama and even referred to his as the “Messiah” in 2008. Within a year from now, Obama will find out if the black voters, who believe are being used as political condoms, will maintain their loyalty to him, or simply stay home.