FROM John Broder
Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki Visits the White House At today's White House news conference with Iraqi President Nouri al-Maliki, President Obama said that history will decide if it was right for the US to have invaded Iraq nine years ago. Honoring the sacrifice of those who made this day possible, the President called today the beginning of "a new chapter in the history between our two countries: a normal relationship between sovereign nations." Jonathan Broder is defense and foreign policy senior editor for Congressional Quarterly.
FEMA, Disaster Relief and the Politics of Global Warming Hurricane Irene is the most recent in a string of natural disasters, including the tornado in Joplin, Missouri, flooding in Minot, North Dakota, drought in Texas and wildfires in the Southwest. President Obama is promising federal help to victims of Hurricane Irene, but the Federal Emergency Management Agency is running out of money and House Republican leaders say any new federal assistance will have to be paid for with cuts elsewhere in the budget. We hear about disaster relief in the short term and the long-term politics of global warming.
Disaster Relief and the Politics of Global Warming Climate scientist won't attribute a given weather disturbance to global warming, but the consensus is that rising temperatures will lead to bigger and stronger storms. Tornados in Joplin, Missouri; flooding in Minot, North Dakota; drought in Texas, wildfires in the Southwest and, now, Irene all raise the question of whether global warming is creating "weird weather." Most Republican Presidential candidates are skeptical of global warming, especially the idea that it's caused by human activity. The Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA , is short of money, and House Republican leaders say any new federal assistance will have to be paid for with cuts elsewhere in the budget. With President Obama promising help to all those affected, will disaster protection and climate change be issues in next year's campaign?
Congress Debates Cap and Trade A sweeping bill on climate change – one that would cut greenhouse gas emissions by two-thirds by 2050 -- is being debated in the US Senate this week. But opponents are focusing on the economic costs of the bill. In the meantime, the debate is drawing scores of lobbyists, representing everyone from Alaskan Indians to venture capitalists. New York Times correspondent John Broder has been covering the hearings.
Iraq and State Department at Odds over Contractor Immunity The Associated Press and several newspapers report that State Department investigators offered immunity to Blackwater security guards in exchange for statements about last month's shootout that left 17 civilians dead on the streets of Baghdad. Denying the allegations, State Department Spokesman Sean McCormack said, "The Department…would not have asked the FBI and the Department of Justice to get involved in a case that we did not think that they could potentially prosecute." John Broder wrote the immunity story in today's New York Times .
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
The flight bumping heard around 'round the world Recent video of a passenger forcibly removed from a United Airlines plane is a worst-case example of what's happened since consolidation into just four US-based carriers. Management seems to be tone-deaf to a decline in service — and even abuse — of passengers.