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Flap’s Links and Comments for May 18th on 18:18

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These are my links for May 18th from 18:18 to 18:22:

  • Obama to Unveil New Aid Plan for Mideast – WSJ.com – President Barack Obama will announce this week a new aid plan for the Middle East and North Africa that U.S. officials say will be far bolder than previous American economic assistance to the region.

    Mr. Obama will outline the plan, which could include debt cancellation and a reprogramming of financial aid the U.S. already provides to countries like Egypt, in a speech he is scheduled to deliver Thursday at the State Department.

    Whatever aid he announces, though, is unlikely to assuage Arab governments, which had been hoping the White House would push forcibly for a resumption of Palestinian-Israeli peace talks. The president's aides say his speech will focus only briefly on the issue.

    "At the end of the day, the Palestinian cause remains a dominant issue," said a senior Arab official. "A speech by the president without addressing the conflict is unlikely to generate much enthusiasm."

    Mr. Obama met Tuesday with King Abdullah II of Jordan, who has been pressing U.S. officials to take a more aggressive role in the peace process, according to Arab diplomats.

    After the meeting, Mr. Obama said the U.S. will provide Jordan with hundreds of millions of dollars through the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the government institution that finances and insures private business to promote economic growth. The result, according to the U.S., will be roughly $1 billion for economic activity in Jordan. The president also pledged 50,000 metric tons of wheat.

    "All of this will help to stabilize the cost of living and day-to-day situation of Jordanians and will provide a foundation so that these economic reforms can move forward and long-term development can take place," Mr. Obama said.

    The president's goal, officials said, is to give a financial boost to the political change sweeping the Mideast and North Africa, where dashed economic aspirations have fed unrest.

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    Read it all.

    Good grief. What is Obama thinking?

    More monetary aid to Egypt while the USA is debt-ridden?

  • President Obama to Tell Arab World US Eager to Help Them Realize Economic and Political Dreams – On Thursday, President Obama will try to convince the Arab World that the U.S. wants to shift its engagement in the region from a military one to a political and economic engagement that will help the people of the region realize their dreams.

    “Having wound down the Iraq war and continuing to do so, and having taken out Osama bin Laden, we are beginning to turn the page to a more positive and hopeful future for U.S. policy in the region,” a senior administration official told reporters today, previewing the speech.

    Sources said President Obama will discuss Syria as a place where the Arab Spring has not been allowed to flourish, though he will not call for President Bashar al-Assad to step down – though he will mention the sanctions the U.S. imposed on him today.

    Officials said the president sees the speech as way to step back and assess the historic changes in the region and to take the opportunity to explain to the world how his administration will support the democratic aspirations of the people in the region while focusing on four core principles: 

    nonviolence,
    support for human rights,
    support for political reform, and
    support for economic reform.

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    Read it all

    What about American debt doesn't Obama understand. Our own people are not working and entitlements are bankrupting us. We owe the Chinese and other countries massive amounts of money.

    How is it in our interests to help Egypt, Tunisia and Syria.

    Come on now…..this will win Obama no new American voters.

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Flap’s Links and Comments for March 16th on 07:53

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These are my links for March 16th from 07:53 to 07:56:

  • Young Leaders of Egypt’s Revolt Snub Hillary Clinton in Cairo – A coalition of six youth groups that emerged from Egypt’s revolution last month has refused to meet with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who arrived in Cairo earlier today, in protest of the United States’ strong support for former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak who was ousted by the uprising.

    “There was an invitation for members of the coalition to meet Secretary of State Hillary Clinton but based on her negative position from the beginning of the revolution and the position of the US administration in the Middle East, we reject this invitation,” the January 25 Revolution Youth Coalition said in a statement posted on its Facebook page.

    A spokesman for Clinton had no immediate response to the snub. Another State Department official, who would not speak for attribution, confirmed such a meeting had been slated for Tuesday and noted that she still plans to meet with members of civil society and transitional government officials during her visit, during which she will urge Egyptians to continue on the path towards democracy.

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    Obama's foreign policy is a disaster. The young in Egypt do not trust Obama or Clinton which is bad for the USA.

  • Obama Inflation: Wholesale prices up 1.6 pct. on steep rise in food – Wholesale prices jumped last month by the most in nearly two years due to higher energy costs and the steepest rise in food prices in 36 years. Excluding those volatile categories, inflation was tame.

    The Labor Department said Wednesday that the Producer Price Index rose a seasonally adjusted 1.6 percent in February — double the 0.8 percent rise in the previous month. Outside of food and energy costs, the core index ticked up 0.2 percent, less than January's 0.5 percent rise.

    Food prices soared 3.9 percent last month, the biggest gain since November 1974. Most of that increase was due to a sharp rise in vegetable costs, which increased nearly 50 percent. That was the most in almost a year. Meat and dairy products also rose.

    Energy prices rose 3.3 percent last month, led by a 3.7 percent increase in gasoline costs.

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    Here comes the inflation – just like Jimmy Carter

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Egypt

Egypt’s Internet Goes Offline And Congress Readies Obama “Kill Switch” Legislation

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I don’t think after the events in Egypt this past week that this legislation has much of a chance of passing.
As Egypt’s government attempts to crackdown on street protests by shutting down internet and mobile phone services, the US is preparing to reintroduce a bill that could be used to shut down the internet.

The legislation, which would grant US President Barack Obama powers to seize control of and even shut down the internet, would soon be reintroduced to a senate committee, Wired.com reported.

It was initially introduced last year but expired with a new Congress.

Senator Susan Collins, a co-sponsor of the bill, said that unlike in Egypt, where the government was using its powers to quell dissent by shutting down the internet, it would not.

“My legislation would provide a mechanism for the government to work with the private sector in the event of a true cyber emergency,” Collins said in an emailed statement to Wired. “It would give our nation the best tools available to swiftly respond to a significant threat.”

The proposed legislation, introduced into the US Senate by independent senator Joe Lieberman, who is chairman of the US Homeland Security committee, seeks to grant the President broad emergency powers over the internet in times of national emergency.

I don’t want President Obama, Susan Collins or Joe Lieberman having control of my access to a “free press” which today includes the internet.

More communication and connectivity is better for liberty and freedom, than less.

Hands off.

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