Thursday, November 26, 2009

Obama telephones thanks to 10 service members

Barack Obama enjoyed a quiet Thanksgiving at the White House, telephoning U.S. servicemen and women stationed around the world and spending time in the company of his family and friends.
Obama placed calls from the Oval Office to 10 U.S. servicemen and women - two each in the Army, Air Force, Navy, the Marines and the Coast Guard - stationed in combat zones in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as in the Persian Gulf.
The commander in chief, who spent the past several weeks conduct an intensive review of the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan, called to wish them Happy Thanksgiving and to let them know that he and first lady Michelle Obama are "truly thankful for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the nation," according to a statement Thursday from the White House.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Obama attends Copenhagen climate talks

The White House announced that President Obama will travel to Copenhagen on Dec. 9 to participate in the United Nations Climate Change Conference, in order to work with the international community to drive progress towards a comprehensive and operational Copenhagen accord. The White House also announced that President Obama is ready to put on the table a U.S. emissions reduction target in the range of 17% below 2005 levels by 2020.

President Obama’s commitment to American leadership on fresh energy and combating climate change, the White House also announced that a host of Cabinet secretaries and other top officials from across the Administration will travel to Copenhagen for the conference. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, Energy Secretary Steven Chu, and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson are all planned to attend, along with Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy Sutley, and Assistant to the President for Energy and Climate Change Carol Browner.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Barack Obama entertains India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh

Looking glamorous in a stylish strapless gown by Indian-American designer Naeem Khan, Michelle Obama welcomed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his wife Mrs. Gursharan Kaur to the White House Tuesday night and ushered in the Obama administration's first official state dinner.
With Mr Obama and India's Manmohan Singh touting advances in support on trade, investment and technology reached during meetings earlier in the day, the Indian businessman Ratan Tata of Tata Motors led numerous captains on Indian industry at the occasion.
During an effusive welcome at the White House for Mr Singh, the president said the state visit was verification of India's "rightful place as a global leader".
"Our generation has an opportunity given to few remakes the new global equilibrium after the irreversible changes" of the crisis, Mr Singh said.
"The India-US partnership can contribute to an arranged transition to the new order and be a main factor for global peace and stability."
Saying Asia was the focal point for major change, Mr Singh said: "India and the United States can work together with other countries in the region to make an open and inclusive regional architecture."

Monday, November 23, 2009

India welcomes barrack Obama's engagement efforts with Iran

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has welcomed US President Barack Obama's efforts to engage with Iran without preconditions, hopeful this will end the stand-off between Tehran and western countries over the issue of nuclear enrichment.
Singh stated that Iran as a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty had the right to make use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes but could not develop a weapon.
"As far as Iran's nuclear weapon ambitions are concerned I have stated unambiguously on many occasions that we do not support the nuclear weapon ambitions of Iran," he said during an interaction at the Council on Foreign Relations, a prominent think tank, on the next day of his four-day visit here.
He also indicated that India would abide by any UNSC resolution on the issue when asked if New Delhi could support sanctions against Iran.
Point out that Obama had "open a new pathway of engagement without preconditions" with Iran, he expressed hope that it will "yield results." Unlike his predecessor George W Bush's violent stand,
President Obama has decided to engage diplomatically with Tehran but the exchange has not yielded actual results.
Recently, Western powers revealed the existence of a secret underground plant but Tehran maintains that its nuclear enrichment program is for quiet purposes.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

PM's state visit to showcase powerful Indo-US ties

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit to US as Barack Obama's first state guest is expected to showcase the significance the US President attaches to Indo-US relationship, with universal issues including climate and Afghanistan to feature prominently along with bilateral ties.
Obama will welcome Singh at the White House on Tuesday morning as the first State Guest of his presidency, in what senior administration officials have said is no co-incidence but a aware decision to send a strong signal on how critical the relationship is to the United States.
Obama has recognized India as a natural ally of the US and wants to take the Indo-US relationship to a new level.
The US now sees India as an "emerging power" and needs to work with it on the global front. They are expected to discuss a range of regional and global issues including Af-Pak, climate, and are also possible to discuss Obama's recent trip to Asia, particularly China, besides identifying ways to deepen strategic relationship. Given where the US position with regard to Af-Pak strategic review, it is expected that Obama and Singh would discuss Afghanistan and Pakistan and talk about constancy and security in the region.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

US President Barack Obama talks between China, Dalai Lama

US President Barack Obama ended his state visit to China with a call for new talks between Beijing and the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.
The US and China was also agreed to disagree on Iran, the world economy and the nature of political freedom.
However, the common theme of the joint statement and the Obama visit was US recognition of the rising influence and importance of China.
"The Sino-US relationship has never been more important in our collective future," Obama said after his summit with Hu. He urge a ‘strong and prosperous’ China plays a bigger global role. Hu began his declaration by referring to complex global challenges and the need for interdependence of nations.
Obama has made his first visit to China under the shadow of a failing US economy dependent on Beijing as its main foreign creditor.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Outrage in US over obama’a bow to japan emperor

There is a great outrage in the US over President Barack Obama's bow to Japan's Emperor Akihito. The critics in Washington said that Obama has disgraced the nation by taking a deep bow at the waist while meeting with Japan's Emperor Akihito. They slammed Obama in strong words and said that US leader should stand tall when representing America overseas.
Barack Obama, who is presently touring Asia, has already completed his Japan tour and is now in China. He met Chinese President Hu Jintao in Beijing and pledges a "positive, cooperative and comprehensive" relationship with China.
Obama acknowledged China's cooperation in fighting the worst-ever universal recession. He also talked about a revised economic approach to raise US exports and create jobs in China. Obama and Jintao both clarified that the US and China are never rivals.

Obama Says U.S. - China Trade spur Prosperity for Both

President Barack Obama said a deeper relationship between the U.S. and China is critical to the economic prosperity of both countries and necessary to confronting global issues such as climate change.
The U.S. president, addressing students at a forum in Shanghai, also brought up the issue of human rights, saying political and religious freedoms must be “universal” and available to all people and group “whether they are in the United States, China or any other nation.
In China for his first-ever visit, Obama arrived in Shanghai last night from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Singapore where few leaders expressed concern about his commitment to free trade. He meet earlier today with Shanghai Mayor Han Zheng and Communist Party Secretary Yu Zhengsheng.
The president is planned to have dinner tonight in Beijing with Chinese President Hu Jintao. In response to a question at the forum with the students, Obama said he is in China to look for “a meeting of the minds” with Hu.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

First lady Michelle Obama 'in Awe' of Military families

First Lady Michelle Obama saw close-up the pain and suffering of military families when she visited Fort Hood with President Obama on Tuesday, paying tribute to the 13 people kill in a shooting spree, allegedly by an Army psychiatrist. Mrs. Obama, who has embrace helping military families as one of her causes, on Wednesday - Veterans Day - said she was in awe of what the families of soldiers endure.
Mrs. Obama and her husband joined Vice President Biden and his wife, Jill, at Arlington National Cemetery for Veterans Day ceremonies, where the president laid a garland at the Tomb of the unknowns. Then the first couple made a surprise visit to a part of the cemetery, Section 60, where military soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan is buried. They were walked between tombstones for about 10 minutes; the president greets mourners at grave sites. (Mrs. Obama wore a teal outfit, a difference to the dark colors the president, the Bidens and others at the ceremony wore.)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Obama place to launch debut Asia mission

Barack Obama leaves on his debut presidential trip of Asia Thursday seeking to revive America's prestige as a regional power, on a trip much heavier on symbolism than diplomatic substance.
Obama will take a precious week out of his bid to enact an ambitious domestic schedule to show the region, and a rising China, that Washington is no longer distracted by crises elsewhere.
He will travel first to Japan for discussion Friday with Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, then attend the weekend's APEC summit in Singapore and become the first US president to sit down with all 10 leaders of ASEAN, including Myanmar.
Obama will next visit Shanghai, and fly on to Beijing for a state dinner and meeting with President Hu Jintao, then wrap up his tour in South Korea.

US president travels to asia

President Obama leaves Thursday on his first official trip to Asia. USA TODAY looks at Obama's policy plan for the week, as he visits Japan, Singapore, China and South Korea.
The main purpose of his journey is to attend this weekend's summit of the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation group. The Apec meeting is in Singapore, and would be the US leader's only stop in the Asian region.
Mr Obama's promises about restoring US interest in Asia in general and Asian in particular, have proved so far to be more talk than substance. His Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pointedly made her first foreign visit to Asia soon after Mr Obama took office in January. She returned in July for the annual Asian Regional Forum in Thailand.
More seriously, Mr Obama and advisers will find it tricky to keep a straight face in Singapore while they support free trade. The US president took office owing favors to trade unions and political groups who oppose free trade. His administration has already delivered some free-trade restrictions. Since January, the White House has trumpet "Buy American" campaigns including new laws restricting foreign textile and clothing makers. The US has begun a so-called "tyre war" with China, and of course has delivered hundreds of billions in bailout subsidies for the US auto industry and its unionized workers.

Monday, November 9, 2009

U.S. healthcare face the tough path in Senate

After a landmark win in the U.S. House of Representatives, President Barack Obama's push for healthcare reform faces a complex path in the Senate amid divisions in his own Democratic Party on how to proceed.
On a 220-215 vote, including the support of one Republican and opposition from 39 Democrats, the House backed a bill late on Saturday that would enlarge coverage to nearly all Americans and bar insurance practices such as refusing to cover people with pre-existing medical conditions.
The battle now shift to the Senate, where work on Obama's top domestic priority has been stalled for weeks as Democratic leader Harry Reid searches for an approach that can win the 60 votes he wants to overcome Republican procedural hurdles.
Democrats have no margin for error - they control accurately 60 seats in the 100-member chamber. Some reasonable Democrats have rebelled at Reid's plan to include a new government-run insurance program, known as the "public option," in the bill.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A year after the win: Obama, the realist

Forty-seven-year-old African-American Barack Hussain Obama was chosen President of the United States of America on November 4, 2008.
A year after his election, US President Barack Obama still wants time to turn the myriad campaign promises into policy. Democrats defeated at the hands of Republicans in the race for Governorship in Virginia and New Jersey might just be a backlash of Obama's unfulfilled promises.
The question that was being asked on CNN-IBN's Face The Nation was: Has Barack Obama failed to be the change? On the panel of experts to discuss the issues were: Chairman of the US India Political Action Committee (USINPAC) Sanjay Puri; senior journalist Saeed Naqvi; and the former diplomat, K C Singh.
At the beginning of the debate, 70 percent agreed that Barack Obama has failed to be the change while 30 per cent disagreed.

Health care delays would frustrate Obama

Delay is rarely good for politicians trying to go by legislation. The possibility that Congress might not whole action on a major health care bill this year is another frustration for President Barack Obama and his allies.
Even if it doesn't sink the health care effort, a delay could raise new uncertainties and push other domestic priorities further back. It also would give opponents a chance to pick off nervous Democratic lawmakers eyeing their November 2010 re-election campaigns.
Even some House Democrats with safe seats don't like the plan of voting on a contentious bill until it's clear that the Senate will follow suit.
Obama has swallow one disappointing postponement already this year, when the House and Senate failed to move separate bills before the August recess. Opponents used that calm to rip into the proposed health care changes in raucous public forums.
Democrats are improbable to be caught off guard again if the legislative battle goes past the Christmas-New Year's break. But any delay gives opponents extra time to organize and campaign.

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