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Fatster’s Roundup

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Greetings!

International Developments

? 11 countries in the “Lakes Region” around the Democratic Republic of Congo “have signed a UN-brokered accord which aims to bring peace to the troubled eastern region”. Rwanda and Uganda–long supported by US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice, even while they contributed to rebel efforts to overthrow the government of DR Congo–did sign.

? 13 of Chad’s soldiers “have died while fighting in northern Mali.”  65 “Islamist rebels” were reported dead.

? A 20-year-old Bahraini protester has died after being hit in the head by a tear gas canister.

? The Syrian National Coalition (SNC) “has pulled out of a series of international meetings in protest at what it said was the ‘shameful’ failure to stop violence.”

? A major “influx of heavy weaponry” to Syrian rebels, coming through Jordan, may have been supplied by the US “and its major European allies”, as well as Turkey, the United Arab Emirates,  Saudi Arabia and Qatar.  They’re alarmed at the “soaring influence of Islamists”.

? Afghan President Hamid Karzai has ordered “American special forces two weeks to leave the eastern province of Wardak” due to reported torture and abuse of Afghans by Afghan troops.

? Oh, joy.  “Iran announces uranium finds and power plant expansion”.

? Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard claims to have taken “control of [a foreign] drone’s navigation system and brought it down” in southern Iran yesterday.

? President Mohammed Morsi has moved Egypt’s elections  from the 27th to the 22nd of April, in deference to Coptic Christians.  Update:  “Mohamed ElBaradei of National Salvation Front says he will not join poll ‘deception'”.

? “Thousands of Palestinian prisoners are refusing food for one day in protest at the death of a fellow detainee in an Israeli jail.”

? Excellent question.  The Chinese have accused the Dalai Lama of all manner of terrible things.  What if they assassinated him by drone?

International Finance

? “So what should we make of a part of the world where governments have resolutely turned their back on [the austerity] model, slashed poverty and inequality, taken back industries and resources from corporate control, massively expanded public services and democratic participation–and keep getting re-elected in fiercely contested elections?”

? “Tens of thousands of protesters across Spain have been rallying against the government’s austerity measures . . . ‘Marea Ciudadana’–or the ‘Tide of Citizens’.”  Video.

? The compassion and grace of the ruling class never fail to amaze.  Germany’s Development Minister:  “food tainted with horsemeat should be distributed to the poor”.

? 82% of the Royal Bank of Scotland is publicly-owned, but apparently not for long.  RBS has announced it will “float” some 15 to 25% of “Citizens, its US bank . . . ahead of eventual reprivatisation.”

? On Friday, Moody’s downgraded the UK for the first time since 1978.  Result:  “UK downgrade reignites austerity debate”.

Money Matters USA

? “Columbia Business School Dean Glenn Hubbard’s Outside ‘Consulting and Advisory Relationships'”.  From there you can get to the even juicier “[Columbia University professor] Fred Mishkin’s ‘Outside Compensation’ List Revealed.”

? The F-35, “the biggest conventional weapons program ever for any country”, has become so huge a headache that the entire fleet has been grounded.  Emptywheel speculates on China. [cont’d.]

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Dan Wright

Dan Wright

Daniel Wright is a longtime blogger and currently writes for Shadowproof. He lives in New Jersey, by choice.