Can the US and Pakistan Mend an Uneasy Alliance
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President Obama and Pakistan's new Prime Minister met yesterday in hopes of strengthening a troubled alliance. We look at how the relationship is complicated by nuclear weapons, terrorism and a lack of mutual trust. Also, the healthcare hearing gets heated, and Walmart versus Amazon.
Banner image: US President Barack Obama (R) speaks with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during their meeting in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington October 23, 2013. Photo: Larry Downing/Reuters
Healthcare Hearing Gets Heated ()
On Capitol Hill today, Republicans zeroed in on the Obama Administration and contractors who built the troubled website for Affordable Care Act. Fred Upton of Michigan, Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, faulted top administration officials and contractors for failing to disclose problems with the online site, while New Jersey Democrat Frank Pallone accused Republicans of "trying to scare everybody." Kelly Kennedy covers healthcare policy for USA Today.
Can the US and Pakistan Mend an Uneasy Alliance ()
Pakistan is crucial to US interests, with a growing nuclear arsenal and a strategic location, but ties to anti-American terrorists and political unrest have strained relations. After 60% of the voters braved deadly violence, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's party won big enough to raise hopes for stability. Yesterday at the White House, he called for an end to American drone strikes, but leaked CIA files detail how deeply Pakistan’s military has been involved in drone strikes — even helping to choose targets hundreds of times. The files also describe "tense meetings" with US officials accusing Pakistan’s intelligence service of ties to militant groups that attacked American forces. What's the state of Sharif's credibility? Does either country trust the other? Can diplomatic and economic relations be improved?
- Daniel Markey: Council on Foreign Relations, @MarkeyDaniel
- Ahmed Rashid: Pakistani journalist
- Mustafa Qadri: Amnesty International, @Mustafa_Qadri
- Linda Robinson: RAND
Today's Talking Point
Walmart's Dot-Com Division Plays Catch-Up with Amazon ()
America's biggest retailer is going online, while the country's leader in e-commerce is constructing new buildings. Walmart, known for big box stores full of discounted everything, from tires to organic milk to tires, is increasing its presence on line. In Amazon it has finally found a competitor it's worried about. Claire Cain Miller, who covers technology from San Francisco for the New York Times, has more on the competition between Walmart and Amazon to sell you just about everything.
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