Iran’s Rouhani to pack cabinet with old hands
Jon Hemming, Reuters — July 29, 2013
Iranian President-elect Hassan Rouhani will pick a cabinet of experienced insiders and will appoint the head of a powerful charity-cum-business foundation as his chief nuclear negotiator, Iranian news agencies said on Monday
U.S. House set to vote on tough Iran sanctions bill this week
Timothy Gardner, July 28, 2013
Lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives are due to vote on a tough Iran sanctions bill this week that seeks to squeeze the Islamic Republic’s oil exports to a trickle.
White House-Congress divide on Iran nuclear sanctions widens
Paul Richter, The Los Angeles Times — July 27, 2013
The election of a more moderate president in Iran has sharpened the conflict between the White House and Congress over Tehran’s disputed nuclear development program.
President-Elect Stirs Optimism in Iran and West
Thomas Erdbrink, The New York Times — July 26, 2013
…There is growing optimism in Iran and in the West that Mr. Rouhani, 64, is ready to restart serious talks on the nuclear issue; Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki of Iraq told the United States this month that Mr. Rouhani was ready to start direct talks, and the Obama administration has indicated a willingness to engage in head-to-head dialogue after years of inclusive multiparty negotiations.
Op-Ed: Rouhani and the Iranian Bomb
Francois Nicoullaud, The New York Times — July 26, 2013
As Hassan Rouhani prepares to become the next president of the Iranian Islamic Republic, it is worth recalling the leading role he played as Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator in late 2003, when the clandestine program run by the Revolutionary Guards to produce a nuclear weapon was halted.
Jimmy Carter to visit N. Korea ‘soon’ for rescue mission: RFA
Grace Oh, Yonhap News Agency — July 28, 2013
Former United States President Jimmy Carter plans to visit North Korea “very soon” to win the release of a Korean-American man detained there, a U.S. radio station reported Sunday.
North Korea heralds 60th anniversary of war ‘victory’ with massive parade
Se Young Lee and Maxim Duncan, Reuters — July 27, 2013
North Korea celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Korean War truce on Saturday with a massive military parade trumpeting the revolutionary genius of three generations of leaders that gave it “Victory in the Great Fatherland Liberation War”.
South Korea Made Final Offer to North Korea for Gaeseong Talks
Heesu Lee and Eunkyung Seo, Bloomberg News — July 29, 2013
South Korea contacted North Korea to make a “final” offer to resume talks on the resumption of operations at the suspended Gaeseong joint industrial zone, the South’s Unification Ministry said.
There’s a Storm Brewing in the Pentagon’s Budget
Mackenzie Eaglen, US News and World Report — July 29, 2013
The House of Representatives debated and passed the 2014 defense spending bill this week. The White House has threatened to veto the bill for a variety of reasons, but one stands out: the unsustainable cost of military and retiree benefits.
The Costly Failure of Missile Defense
Bob Dreyfuss, The Nation — July 26, 2013
Never mind that no one is firing ICBMs at us. It’s been three decades since Ronald Reagan cooked up his cockamamie plan to shoot down missiles in the sky, and while technology has improved incalculably since then, after countless billions of dollars—according to The New York Times, it’s $250 billion—the damn things still don’t work.