U.S. President Barack Obama passed the halfway point of his four-year term Thursday and revealed he is already plotting to win a second, boosted by a sudden upswing in popularity.
Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs divulged the worst-kept secret in Washington, saying that his boss would "likely" ask voters to send him back to the White House in 2012.Full Story
The United States slammed Iranian Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei over his rejection of any ruling by the international tribunal investigating the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
Khamenei "does not have the authority over the tribunal. It was convened by the United Nations," said State Department spokesman Philip Crowley.Full Story
Richard Holbrooke, a brilliant and feisty U.S. diplomat who wrote part of the Pentagon Papers, was the architect of the 1995 Bosnia peace plan and served as President Barack Obama's special envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan, died Monday, the State Department said. He was 69.
Calling Holbrooke "a true giant of American foreign policy," Obama paid homage to the veteran diplomat as "a truly unique figure who will be remembered for his tireless diplomacy, love of country, and pursuit of peace." Holbrooke deserves credit for much of the progress in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the president said.Full Story
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has assured Prime Minister Saad Hariri of U.S. support as a U.N. tribunal probes the 2005 assassination of his father stoking tensions in Lebanon.
Biden "spoke by phone today (Friday) with... Hariri to discuss recent developments in Lebanon and the region," the White House said in a statement, adding the vice president "reaffirmed the administration’s commitment to Lebanon’s sovereignty, independence, and stability."Full Story
The top U.S. military officer on Wednesday warned North Korea that the U.S. commitment to helping South Korea defend itself is "unquestioned," even as he pressed China to use its influence to push its ally Pyongyang to change.
Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, the U.S. chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, called recent North Korean aggression, including an artillery attack last month that killed four South Koreans, "belligerent, reckless behavior." He said China appeared unwilling to use its enormous leverage to rein in the North.Full Story
Prime Minister Saad Hariri told former U.S. Ambassador Michele Sison he feared another war with Israel would mean the "death" of his pro-Western March 14 alliance, leaked cables showed Monday.
A document reportedly obtained by whistleblowing website WikiLeaks and published on the website of local daily al-Akhbar quoted Hariri as saying he believed Hizbullah would rise again should there be another round of violence.Full Story
U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations Susan Rice has stressed that the Special Tribunal for Lebanon should not be compromised on.
Rice said it was important to remember that the Lebanese government and the people are the ones who asked for the establishment of the tribunal.Full Story
The Lebanese government is increasingly "subordinate" to Iran and Syria, who have been helping Hizbullah rearm, a top U.S. lawmaker told U.N. special envoy Terje Roed-Larsen.
Republican Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told the diplomat on Tuesday that she was "concerned" U.S. and U.N. efforts in Lebanon were failing to counter Hizbullah's growing power.Full Story
Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez Monday called on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to resign after the leak of embarrassingly candid U.S. diplomatic correspondence by WikiLeaks.
"The empire stands naked... Mrs. Clinton should resign," Chavez said in a speech, using his favorite description of the United States. "It's the least you can do: resign, along with those other delinquents working in the State Department."Full Story
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday reiterated Washington's support for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, stressing that attempts at weakening the tribunal will not be tolerated.
Clinton said, on her behalf and on behalf of her Egyptian counterpart Ahmed Abul Gheit at a joint news conference in Washington, that they condemn any attempts at obstructing STL's work.Full Story