6:31 PM, Jun 6, 2013 • By JERYL BIER
Thursday, at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Gary Robbins delivered another response to the "many concerns" expressed by Russia about the ongoing hunger strike by many of the terrorist detainees at the Guantánamo Bay facility:
Last Thursday, President Obama reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to closing the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba (GTMO), and proposed a series of steps to achieve that end, including his intention to lift the Presidential moratorium on detainee transfers to Yemen. The President also called on Congress to lift the restrictions on detainee transfers from Guantánamo, which the Administration has long maintained impede its ability to close the detention facility. To the extent possible, the United States will transfer those detainees who have been designated for transfer, and where appropriate, will prosecute others in our courts and military justice system. While it will take some time to fully close the detention facility in Guantánamo, all U.S. detention operations will continue to be carried out in accordance with international humanitarian law, including the Geneva Conventions, and all other applicable international and domestic laws.
In the meantime, the Department of Defense is committed to ensuring the health and safety of the detainees who remain at the facility.
Moreover, the United States remains committed to transparency about the facility and the military commissions. As we have previously noted, we are working with ODIHR to accommodate a visit Guantánamo and observe military commission proceedings. We have also offered to host the visit of a Russian delegation to Guantánamo, given the many concerns that the Russian Federation has expressed about the facility. That invitation remains open.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
One of President Obama's first acts in office in 2009 was an executive order to close the Guantánamo Bay detention facility. The president has blamed Congress for its continued operation.
6:15 PM, May 13, 2013 • By LEE SMITH
In his joint press conference with David Cameron this morning, Barack Obama asserted that the reason Moscow doesn’t see eye-to-eye with the White House on Syria is because of the Cold War. “I don't think it’s any secret that there remains lingering suspicions between Russia and other members of the G8 or the West,” said Obama. “It's been several decades now since Russia transformed itself and the Eastern Bloc transformed itself. But some of those suspicions still exist.”
6:05 PM, Mar 1, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
In a phone call today, President Barack Obama told Vladimir Putin that he "looks forward to visiting" Russia in September, according to the White House. Here's the readout of their call:
10:43 AM, Feb 8, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
This week Russian president Vladimir Putin brought Boyz II Men to Moscow to "hopefully [give] Russian men some inspiration ahead of St. Valentine's Day," according to the Moscow Times. That is, Putin brought the music group to town to encourage love-making, and, he hopes, baby-making to offset Russia's demographic disaster.
3:50 PM, Nov 13, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
Russian president Vladimir Putin claims President Barack Obama is planning to visit Russia, the outlet RIA Novosti reports.
"US President Barack Obama has confirmed plans to visit Russia at the invitation of his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, the Russian president’s spokesman said on Tuesday," the Russian outlet reports. "Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Obama made the statement when Putin called a second time to congratulate the US president on his reelection."
9:25 AM, Jul 13, 2012 • By LEE SMITH
On Tuesday, Russia announced it was sending 11 warships to the Mediterranean—some of which would dock in Syria, where Moscow keeps a base in Tartus.
The significance of the Red Army Monument at Netanya.6:10 PM, Jul 5, 2012 • By VICTORIA COATES
Russian president Vladimir Putin made his second visit to Israel last week. His brief trip included high-level talks with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in which they agreed at least in the abstract that Bashar al-Assad should stop slaughtering civilians in Syria and that the world would be a better place if Iran did not get a nuclear weapon. But the real purpose of Putin’s visit was to attend the unveiling of a memorial to the Soviet soldiers who fought against Nazi Germany in World War II.
11:34 AM, Jun 20, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
Fred Barnes, with Juan Williams and Charles Krauthammer, last night on Fox News:
8:12 AM, Jun 19, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
CBS reports that when Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin met with the press after their long private discussion, "The two men barely looked at each other. You could just feel, sort of, the tension between them. And the body language really represented how far apart the two leaders remain on the issue of Syria."
10:24 AM, Jun 6, 2012 • By STEPHEN SCHWARTZ
On May 20, Tomislav Nikolic was elected president of Serbia in a second-round runoff against incumbent Boris Tadic. Tadic, who sought a third term, and his Democratic party, have been described as victims of Serbian populist opposition to European Union financial austerity. Nikolic, candidate of the Serbian Progressive Party (SPS), calls for Serbia to join the EU but favors economic coordination with Russia instead of Western Europe. Tadic now seeks the prime minister’s post.
4:15 PM, May 30, 2012 • By LEE SMITH
Some have argued that last week’s massacre in the Syrian city of Houla, where Bashar al-Assad loyalists killed more than a hundred people, a third of whom were children, may in time come to mark the moment when world opinion turned irrevocably against the Syrian strongman, and the democracies finally decided to bring down the regime in Damascus. Perhaps, some say, it will be Assad’s Srebenica. Maybe. But not if Obama keeps deferring to the Russians.
10:12 AM, May 29, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
AFP reports: "Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier this month rejected an offer from United States (US) President Barack Obama for landmark bilateral talks at the White House, the Kremlin revealed on Tuesday."
2:31 PM, Apr 12, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
In just the last few months, Bidzina Ivanishvili, one of the world's richest men with an estimated $6.5 billion fortune, hired a small army of PR consultants and lobbyists in Washington, including at least 7 of Washington’s most prominent firms.