While Obama wrings his hands over a ‘red line,’ the U.N. sits on the sidelines. How long until Syria as we know it falls off the map? Janine di Giovanni sounds the alarm—again.
Happy Easter, Orthodox Christians of Syria.If you were able to celebrate the holiday on Sunday, that is. Easter is meant to be a symbol of hope, renewal, and new life. But not for you.I wonder how many Syrian people actually enjoyed their holiday. Or how many have recently enjoyed the beauty of their country: the rolling olive groves, the ancient ruins, the multicultural bazaars now bombed to oblivion.They should enjoy what they can. At this rate, the country that once was Syria will probably not exist next year.
The volatile country, still reeling after the Benghazi attack and several recent bombings, has become a magnet for al Qaeda terrorists determined to sow instability in the region.
A rare interview with a top Libyan intelligence official reveals that, as an unintended consequence of the French intervention to quash a radical Muslim insurgency in nearby Mali, which forced al Qaeda in the Mahgreb to move north earlier this year, Libya has now become the main base of the terror group in the region, heightening the instability of what is already a volatile country. “Libya has become AQIM’s headquarters,” says the intelligence source, adding that in just the last few weeks three new al Qaeda camps have opened in southern Libya.
In a series of meetings over the past year, Israel laid out to the U.S. beforehand what would trigger a strike in Syria. Eli Lake reports.
Israel did not seek permission from the United States before launching two missile strikes this weekend hitting targets inside Syria—but the strikes were part of a policy that Washington had already signaled its acquiescence to, according to U.S. and Israeli officials.In a series of high-level meetings between U.S. and Israeli officials over the last year, the Israelis explained in detail the conditions that would lead them to attack targets inside Syria.
The trial of Beate Zschäpe, seen the most important in post-reunification Germany, gets under way today. Elisabeth Braw reports on the charges of mass murder—and the nation’s soul-searching.
The 38-year-old woman looks like a librarian or pharmacist. But when Beate Zschäpe faces the court in Munich on Monday, hers will be most-watched trial Germany has seen in decades.For almost 14 years, the neo-Nazi group Nazionalsozialistischer Untergrund (NSU), allegedly led by Zschäpe, killed and maimed across Germany. Her trial may last for years, too. She’s accused of complicity in the murders of 9 foreigners and 1 police officer, several attempted murders, 2 bombings, and 15 robberies and is going on trial with 4 of her top lieutenants.
Latin Americans are closely watching the trial of former president Rios Montt, the first head of state in the region charged with genocide in his own country.
On paper, the Guatemalan civil war was settled 17 years ago, when guerrilla insurgents laid down arms and signed a historic peace accord. But memories still linger of a bloody, 36-year conflict that took 200,000 lives and tore this Central American nation apart.Today, the battle for Guatemala still rages—not in the field but in the courtroom, where a special High Risk Tribunal is hearing charges of an especially bloody chapter of that civil war.
Parliamentarian Laura Boldrini and other female politicians have been harassed with graphic sexual taunts and Internet threats of torture and murder.
When Laura Boldrini, 52, was elected as speaker of Italy’s lower house last month, she knew the job would come with enormous challenges. But she didn’t expect it to come with death threats. Last week, the former United Nations high commisioner for refugees Italian spokesperson sat in front of Italy’s lower house of Parliament and read some of the hundreds of squalid emails she has received since taking office. Many threatened rape, sodomy, torture, and murder.
Iran’s biggest cheerleader is the man who holds the purse strings.
Almost a year after the United States and the European Union imposed unprecedentedly harsh sanctions against Iran to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons, the country is not only surviving, it is thriving.At least that’s the spin from Iran’s Finance Minister Seyyed Shamseddin Hosseini. “Iran’s economy is becoming more lively and energetic,” said Hosseini in an interview.Sanctions, which target oil exports and the country’s ability to use international banking for trade, have cut Iran’s oil sales in half and badly hurt the country’s currency and ability to trade internationally.
Can Obama ever close Guantánamo?
AT A press conference on Tuesday, President Obama vented about his inability to close the prison at Guantánamo Bay—which is back in the news thanks to a hunger strike involving as many as 100 detainees. “It is expensive. It is inefficient. It hurts us in terms of our international standing,” he said, adding that it remains a “recruitment tool for extremists.” He blamed Congress for blocking his initial efforts to close the facility and promised to “go back at this.
Water Worlds Earthlings learned to think of their planet as the tiny azure dot in the vast blackness of space first photographed by astronauts in the 1960s. It seemed the only lonely blue planet in the universe. No more. In April, NASA announced that its Kepler space telescope had discovered five planets circling the star Kepler-62, some 1,200 light-years from Earth. Researchers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics then reported that their calculations showed two of those planets, dubbed Kepler-62e and Kepler-62f, are covered entirely with water.
My week in the online terror underworld.
In the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings, early evidence gathered by investigators suggested that the two suspects, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, were rabid lone wolves who learned both their bomb-building craft and their murderous philosophy on the Internet. Suddenly, pundits and experts across the political spectrum could be heard holding forth about the problem of “self-radicalization”—the process by which those unconnected to organized jihad are lured toward extremism via the Web.
World Bank: Climate Change a Threat
Ready to start taking action now.More
Obama to Russia: Reduce Nukes
We will if you will.More
Karzai Doesn’t Want to Talk to the U.S.
Frustrated by Taliban plan.More
Saudi Women Jailed For Helping Woman "Defy" Her Husband
Two Saudi women have been jailed for trying to help a Canadian woman flee her Saudi husband. More
Ex-Nazi Charged With War Crimes
The 98-year-old was on the run for decades.More
Speaking at the Brandenburg Gate, President Obama called for the reduction of the world's nuclear arms, the closure of Guantanamo Bay, and justice for those fighting for freedom around the world. 'No wall can stand against yearnings of justice, freedom and peace,' he said.
She is a true inspiration. Teenage activist Malala Yousafzai has released a video statement for the first time since being shot by the Taliban last October. 'God has given me this new life,' Malala says, and in return, she is launching the Malala Fund, created to help educate children all over the world.
Dozens of hunger strikers at Guantanamo Bay are being kept alive with a painful, ethically questionable, and politically sensitive medical procedure.