April 27, 2012 |
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - The litany of abuses was chilling: mass murder, rape, sexual slavery. Forcing children to fight. Chopping off victims' limbs. Former Liberian President Charles Taylor's conviction Thursday by an international tribunal in the Netherlands on charges of abetting such war crimes in the West African country of Sierra Leone sent a powerful message to other warlords that they will eventually face justice, human rights activists and prosecutors say. But it also highlights what can be a wrenching tension between pursuing justice or peace first in some of the world's most violent, chaotic corners.
December 26, 2009 |
Abortion rights activists dreamed of legislative victories across Mexico after the Supreme Court last year upheld a Mexico City law allowing abortion during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Instead, the opposite has happened. In state after state, antiabortion forces have won changes to local constitutions declaring that life begins at conception and explicitly granting legal rights to the unborn. In all, 17 state legislatures have approved such measures, often with minimal debate, since the August 2008 court decision validating Mexico City's law. The Gulf coast state of Veracruz last month became the most recent state to do so. Its measure also called on the Mexican Congress to consider a similar amendment to the nation's Constitution.
May 16, 2008 |
Myanmar's ruling generals announced Thursday that a new constitution viewed by critics as a pro-government sham had been overwhelming approved by voters. The commission in charge of the Saturday referendum said 92.4% of voters approved the constitution, state-run media reported. The pro-democracy opposition says the new constitution will enshrine military rule.
August 31, 2009 |
An uneasy calm settled over northern Myanmar today as Kokang fighters and refugees continued to cross the border into southern China in the wake of a military operation in the northern part of the country also known as Burma. U.N. and overseas Myanmar groups say upward of 10,000 refugees and hundreds of Kokang fighters are now in southern China, presenting a logistical headache for Beijing. Still unclear, analysts said, is whether this is only a lull in the fighting and how great an effect this human tide will have on Sino-Myanmar relations.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 18, 2012 |
Filing has closed, the candidate lists are final and the curtain has risen on California's reconstructed political stage, where the contests for 153 congressional and legislative seats will play out for the first time under new rules and in altered districts. Look for intraparty fights that will last into the November runoffs, a likely lack of third-party candidates on the fall ballot and, possibly, a larger number of contested seats, compliments of a new primary system and a redrawing of political maps that did not seek to protect incumbents.
January 23, 2013 |
AMMAN, Jordan - Jordan's parliamentary elections Wednesday crystallized the challenges facing King Abdullah II in his 13th year in power: Can he provide a government that is credible with his restive population and able to tackle the nation's serious economic woes and endemic corruption? At least 56% of the 2.3 million registered voters turned out, the nation's electoral commission said, in what some observers described as an endorsement of Abdullah's reform plans. The turnout topped the 53% for the parliamentary elections in 2010 even though several major parties boycotted the balloting.
October 25, 2011 |
When South Sudan declared independence in July, the international community breathed a sigh of relief. A difficult six-year process, set forth in the ambitious 2005 peace agreement that ended Sudan's 22-year-long civil war, was finally over. The world appeared to feel it could stop focusing on Sudan. But Sudan's wars have not ended. They have, in fact, multiplied. Five of Sudan's 16 states are mired in armed conflicts. Since June, new conflicts have erupted in two volatile states — Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile — just north of the South Sudan border, while the three states in the western region of Darfur are still a war zone, although that conflict has dropped from the headlines.
September 27, 2011 |
"You woke the bears! Why did you do that?" That's from one of my favorite scenes in "Anchorman. " In the Oscar-robbed film, Ron Burgundy (played by Will Ferrell) loudly leaps into a bear pit to rescue his girlfriend and then falsely blames her for waking them up. Watching President Obama these days reminds me of that scene. In March 2010, liberal columnist Peter Beinart argued that, for decades, Democratic politicians treated America's innate conservatism like a slumbering bear: If you make no sudden moves and talk quietly, you can get a lot done.