Pakistan and the Global Economy
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Police-state tactics smothered political protest today in Pakistan, but a nuclear power is dangerously unstable. We hear what happened and what continued trouble could mean for the world economy, where the falling dollar and sub-prime mortgages are a threat to America's clout. Also, a tanker hit the Bay Bridge, and oil is polluting San Francisco Bay. Environmentalists say it's a "wake-up call."
Former Pakistani Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto speaks to media after breaking through police lines outside her home. Photo: Warrick Page/Getty Images
58,000 Gallons of Oil Spilled in San Francisco Bay ()
A tanker hit the San Francisco Bay bridge on Wednesday morning but until 9 o'clock that night officials were told that 140 gallons of oil were involved. It turns out that 58,000 gallons spilled into the water. Was a massive clean-up effort unnecessarily delayed?
Spreading oil from the tanker Cosco Busan has forced closure of 16 beaches and shoreline parks from Richmond, Oakland and San Francisco out through the Golden Gate to Marin County's Headlands and the Farallon Islands. Paul Rogers is resources and environment writer for the San Jose Mercury-News.
Tumult in Pakistan and the World Economy ()
With thousands of troops on the streets of Pakistan, President Pervez Musharraf stopped a protest rally today before it ever began. Benazir Bhutto was kept at home, but she may be playing a double game by leaving open the prospect of negotiations. From Texas, where President Bush is spending the weekend, the National Security Council called on President Musharraf to allow the opposition leader freedom of movement and to release jailed members of the political opposition. There's been no mention of any reduction in financial aid to Pakistan, even though it's contingent on promoting "the transition to democratic rule." Meantime, Wachovia is the latest bank hit by fallout from the sub-prime mortgage crisis. With that news, the Dow dropped 100 points as the stock markets opened today. Meantime, the dollar is falling and oil prices are rising. Is a nuclear power spinning out of control? What are the possible consequences for the global economy, including the price of oil? What about America's financial position, already battered by the falling dollar?
- Lisa Curtis: Senior Fellow, Heritage Foundation
- David Armstrong: Bureau Chief, National Security News Service
- Michael Economides: Professor of Petroleum Engineering, University of Houston
- Juli Niemann: Oil Analyst, Smith, Moore & Company
- Marc Chandler: Global Head of Currency Strategy, Brown Brothers Harriman
Pakistani Police Stop Demonstration ()
In Pakistan today, thousands of police blanketed the streets of Islamabad and nearby Rawalpindi, where opposition leader Benazir Bhutto had called for a mass demonstration against military rule. The forces of President Musharraf kept Bhutto inside her residence and used batons and tear gas on people who tried to assemble. Late in the day, Bhutto was allowed out of her house for a speech broadcast on official TV. Graham Usher is a freelance journalist, based in Pakistan.
- Graham Usher: Freelance journalist
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