April 10, 2008 |
Five years ago Wednesday, U.S. forces entered the heart of the Iraqi capital, and Saddam Hussein's regime fell. While much of the world watched the downfall of Hussein and the destruction of his huge statue in central Baghdad's Firdos Square on television, Iraqis lived it. They have memories of what they were feeling as Hussein was toppled from power. Here are some of them: -- My family fled the capital days before the Americans arrived and went to stay with relatives in Diyala province.
April 3, 2013 |
Kim Jong Un is an absurdly comical figure. If he were not holding the fate of millions of people in his hands, the North Korean dictator would provide us all with nothing but laughs. He runs a country that, thanks to the ruinous communist policies of his father and grandfather, is an economic basket case where mass starvation is always as close as tomorrow. He has almost no friends in the world, except for the similarly outcast nutcases that run Iran. His closest allies, the Chinese, are so disgusted with him that they have signed on to United Nations sanctions against his country.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 8, 1997
Akinwumi Adesokan, a cultural writer with the Post Express in Lagos, Nigeria's capital, was arrested Nov. 12 and is said to be in solitary confinement at the State Security Service offices there. His detention is one more desperate act by the authoritarian regime of Gen. Sani Abacha, whose fear of critical words seems unbounded. All possible pressure should be brought on Abacha to release Adesokan, who is said to be ill.
October 21, 2013 |
Pyongyang, North Korea - I became British ambassador to North Korea a year ago, and since then I have seen firsthand the nature of the regime. Its human rights record is appalling; it continues to develop its nuclear and ballistic missile programs and to sell its military know-how to other states. And yet, I've also seen that it is possible to engage with the regime constructively. The United Kingdom is one of just a handful of Western countries that have diplomatic relations with North Korea (known formally as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea)
April 25, 2013 |
President Obama has followed a commendably restrained policy in refusing to intervene militarily in Syria's civil war. But if the U.S. confirms that the regime of President Bashar Assad has used chemical weapons, the president should adhere to his insistence last year that such conduct would be a "red line" justifying action by this country, alone or in concert with other nations. That doesn't mean the administration should accept uncritically suggestions by Israel, Britain and France that the regime has used chemical agents.
January 6, 2010 |
Iran's so-called green movement is not yet a counterrevolution, but recent developments make clear it is heading in that direction. Seven months after the uprising began, an opposition manifesto is finally taking shape, and its sweeping demands would change the face of Iran. Three bold statements calling for reform have been issued since Friday, one by opposition presidential candidate Mir-Hossein Mousavi, one by a group of exiled religious intellectuals and the third by university professors.
November 14, 2010 |
Obama administration officials cheered the release of activist Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar on Saturday but said they needed to see more positive steps before easing pressure on the isolated regime. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said she joined "billions of people all around the world to welcome the long-overdue release" of the Nobel Peace Prize laureate from house arrest in Yangon, the former capital. She said the United States was calling on Myanmar's leader to make the release "unconditional, so she may travel, associate with fellow citizens, express her views and participate in political activities without restrictions.
June 17, 2011 |
Syria braced for more bloodshed Friday as another day of mass anti-government protests got underway following weekly prayers across the country. The peaceful three-month uprising, the greatest challenge ever to the authoritarian rule of President Bashar Assad and his family, and a military crackdown laden with provocative sectarian overtones, have shaken Syria and sent shock waves across the region. Late Thursday, the president's unpopular and powerful cousin, telecommunications tycoon Rami Makhlouf, claimed he was withdrawing from business and planning to devote his profits to charity, an assertion that could not be verified nor squared with the history of a regime infamous for what critics have described as crony capitalism.
November 6, 2012
There is no appetite among the American people - or on the part of the two men competing for the U.S. presidency in Tuesday's election - for U.S. military intervention in Syria. That reluctance is sensible. Painful as it is to observe the deaths of tens of thousands of Syrians in the war between President Bashar Assad and insurgents inspired by the Arab Spring, the deployment of U.S. troops or a campaign of airstrikes under the rubric of a no-fly zone would enmesh the United States in an unpredictable conflict with a heavily armed ally of Iran on behalf of a fractious and fragmented rebel army.
March 8, 2012 |
Syria's deputy oil minister reportedly defected from the government of Bashar Assad on Thursday, and a high-level international peace envoy seeking a cease-fire in Syria warned against further "militarization" of the bloody conflict. The reported move by Abdo Hussameddin - whose videotaped message abandoning the Assad administration was posted on YouTube - would be the highest-level civilian defection to date from the embattled government in Damascus, which is facing a yearlong rebellion, international isolation and a reeling economy.