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AMSTERDAM — At one point during the press conference that followed Wednesday’s high-level meeting in Rome, Condoleezza Rice raised a hand to her face and ran it across her forehead. She knew the world’s cameras were trained on her and the image might put a dent in her carefully cultivated image as an unflinchingly cool diplomat facing a tough international crisis. Analysts had already declared that the meeting – designed to find a solution to the war in Lebanon and Israel – had ended in failure. Indeed, the negotiators did not reach consensus on how to stop the fighting. And [...]
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On the occasional evening when the absence of both a breeze and electricity brought me to wonder if I was residing in a kiln, sanctuary existed under one of the bread fruit trees at Migombani, the only prostitute-free local bar in my quarter of Stone Town, Zanzibar. And when you’re a broad-shouldered American, in a region where size is roughly equivalent to wealth, you tend to get plenty of smiling faces approaching your table in the shade. Perhaps stemming from the island’s legacy of trade, perhaps because they posses nothing else to peddle, one becomes accustomed to the fact that [...]
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Venezuela’s President Hugo Chávez was the guest of honor as the newest member nation joined the 30th Mercosur Summit in Córdoba, Argentina July 20-22. But it was Cuba’s President Fidel Castro whose rare foreign visit stole the show with some fiery rhetoric and the signing of a new trade pact with the Mercosur. Defiance of Yankee “imperialism” was a recurring theme at the summit. This might be expected for an event held close to the childhood home of Ernesto “Ché” Guevara. Fidel and his protégé Chávez peppered their discourse with anti-American sentiment. Along with President Evo Morales of Bolivia, the [...]
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