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bbc.co.uk

Japanese Reconstruction Minister Creates PR Disaster, Quits

After spring’s catastrophic earthquake and tsunami, Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan’s administration created the position of minister for reconstruction and looked to appointee Ryu Matsumoto to help the recovery effort on several levels. That didn’t turn out so well.

Posted on Jul 5, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Khalil Hamra

Building Egypt’s Cabinet

Post-revolution Egypt’s government is beginning to take form, with Prime Minister-designate Essam Sharaf selecting two men not affiliated with Hosni Mubarak to head the interior and foreign ministries.

Posted on Mar 6, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Amr Nabil

Mubarak’s Enforcer Goes on Trial

Just days after President Hosni Mubarak resigned his seat of power in Egypt, former Interior Minister Habib el-Adly was arrested on charges of corruption. His trial began Saturday in Cairo.

Posted on Mar 5, 2011 READ MORE


And Now, a Giggly Swiss Minister’s Take on Cured Meats (Update: Explained)

Here we see the now-viral footage of Swiss finance minister Hans-Rudolf Merz, 67, who is on the brink of retirement and quite able to appreciate the lighter side of some of his bureaucratic duties, such as discussing the apparently amusing matter of cured meat imports.

Posted on Sep 27, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / U.S. Treasury Department

Don’t Count on Us

In the face of the stereotypical image of Americans as free-spending consumers, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has told his international finance colleagues that G20 countries should not rely on American buyers for their products as they travel the road to economy recovery.

Posted on Jun 5, 2010 READ MORE


Zardari
AP / Shakil Adil

Dozens of Pakistani Politicians Called to Corruption Courts

Pakistan’s Supreme Court dealt a blow to many in the country’s ruling elite Friday by reopening corruption cases against “thousands of politicians,” according to The New York Times, and calling for dozens of those officials to appear before the courts. Included on the list was President Asif Ali Zardari, but his position grants him immunity against prosecution.

Posted on Dec 18, 2009 READ MORE


Parliament
aceproject.org

The Making of Iran’s New Cabinet

The Iranian parliament has approved the first woman Cabinet minister, Marzieh Vahid Dastjerdi, in the 30-year history of the Islamic republic. Parliament also gave its blessing as defense minister to a man wanted in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish center in Argentina that killed 85 people.

Posted on Sep 3, 2009 READ MORE


Springsteen
timeout.com

The Gospel According to ... the Boss?

Unitarian Universalist minister Jeffrey Symynkywicz is quite the Bruce Springsteen enthusiast, apparently. The Boston fan has studied Bruce Springsteen’s lyrics as though they were Scripture, and the end result is Symynkywicz’s new book—wait for it—“The Gospel According to Bruce Springsteen.”

Posted on Jul 1, 2008 READ MORE


Mofaz and Rumsfeld
AP photo / Evan Vucci

Israeli Official Sees Attacking Iran Unavoidable

An Israeli official was quoted Friday as saying that “attacking Iran in order to stop its nuclear plans will be unavoidable,” a remark that may further escalate tensions between the two countries as leaders continue to lob rhetorical digs at each other.

Posted on Jun 6, 2008 READ MORE


A Lesson in Courage From Beirut

Not only is The Independent reporter Fisk, like many others in Beirut, no longer shocked by a murder of yet another member of parliament, but he also is no longer affected by viewing the remains of the dead.  Such is life in Lebanon today.  Here, Fisk relates how Lebanese officials are learning to exist in a perpetual fog of fear.

Posted on Oct 1, 2007 READ MORE


Iran Blasts France for Beating War Drums

Not surprisingly, Iranian officials are none too pleased with French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner after he warned on Sunday that Iran’s developing nuclear program constitutes cause for alarm—and potentially for war. 

Posted on Sep 17, 2007 READ MORE


sir salman
AP Photo/Fritz Reiss

Sir Salman’s Knighthood Triggers Backlash

Author Salman Rushdie is once again the subject of controversy—a position the “Satanic Verses” scribe is familiar with, to say the least.  The decision by Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II to knight Rushdie last weekend drew criticism from Muslims who disagreed with the message of his most notorious novel, including members of Pakistan’s parliament.

Posted on Jun 18, 2007 READ MORE


nilofar
foxnews.com

When Hugging Is a Crime

Nilofar Bakhtiar, Pakistan’s federal minister for tourism, is in hot water with clerics in her home country for hugging a skydiving instructor who guided her through a tandem parachute jump for charity last month.  Now, after striking such an “obscene” pose, she’s had to resign from Pakistan’s Cabinet.

Posted on May 21, 2007 READ MORE


UK’s Blair to Resign in 2007, Says Paper

British Prime Minister Tony Blair has told aides that he will step down as the leader of his party on May 31, 2007, and resign as prime minister on July 26, according to the British tabloid The Sun. He had already announced he would not seek a fourth term in office, but this is the first news of a specific resignation date.

Posted on Sep 6, 2006 READ MORE


Hallelujah! Spanish Leader Snubs Pope

More than a million worshipers in Spain showed up to hear the pope deliver a homily in which he made a veiled attack on Spain’s liberal legal attitude toward gay marriage and divorce. Conspicuously not in attendance: the Spanish prime minister. It’s apparently the first time in history that a Spanish leader has missed such an address.
Que bueno. Memo to Pope Benedict XVI: Keep on dressing up hate speech as The Good News and you’ll continue to be marginalized by more-enlightened world leaders.

Posted on Jul 10, 2006 READ MORE


A Ray of Hope From Iraqi Insurgents?

Several Sunni-led insurgent groups have begun talks with the Iraqi government in hopes of starting cease-fire negotiations. The talks began in the wake of the reconciliation plan that the Iraqi prime minister presented on Sunday.

 

Posted on Jun 26, 2006 READ MORE


Molly Ivins: Eye to Eye in Iraq

The media continues to fizz with excitement at Bush’s “spontaneous” trip to Iraq, and his “eye to eye” with Prime Minister Maliki.  However,  continuously escalating violence reveals his visit to be just another misleading “Mission Accomplished” photo-op moment.

Posted on Jun 14, 2006 READ MORE


Iraqi Leader Accuses U.S. of ‘Daily’ Attacks Against Civilians

The Iraqi prime minister issued the sharply worded criticism in the wake of rising outrage over the massacre of 24 Iraqi civilians in Haditha in November.

Posted on Jun 2, 2006 READ MORE


New Italian Leader: Iraq War ‘Grave Mistake’

Italy’s incoming prime minister, Romano Prodi, said the war had encouraged global terrorism and he has vowed to pull his country’s troops from Iraq.

Posted on May 18, 2006 READ MORE


Rumor: Tony Blair Will Step Down

The British leader has been battered in the polls as of late, and in the UK it’s a lot easier to remove a head of government than it is here. AMERICAblog has the gossip (and that’s all it is now.)

Posted on May 15, 2006 READ MORE


British Official: Close Gitmo

The British attorney general says the continued existence of the U.S. detention camp at Guantanamo Bay is “unacceptable.”

Posted on May 10, 2006 READ MORE


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