The European Union, the concert of 27 countries ranging from the Bay of Biscay to the Baltics and the Balkans has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway.
The impending launch of a North Korean ballistic missile has as much to do with the propaganda goal of putting a satellite into orbit as to serve as a less than subtle bullying to neighboring states all undergoing a period of political transition.
Tis' the season in the General Assembly for some serious if generally overlooked work and reports. The Assembly's Third Committee has soundly condemned the continuing human and political rights abuses in three global transgressors; Syria, the Islamic Republic of Iran and the quaintly titled Democratic People's Republic of Korea, aka North Korea.
The historic visit of U.S. President Barack Obama to Myanmar, the highest profile American diplomatic contact ever to this long isolated political pariah state, saw the United States enter a high stakes geopolitical chess game in Southeast Asia.
First, the good news. The United States has been re-elected to the U.N. Human Rights Council along with Germany and Ireland. So too have been South Korea and Japan. Now fasten your seat belts for the rest of the 18 new selections to the 47 member Geneva-based Council which is chosen by regional groups.
America appears to have crossed the political Rubicon.
“Navy Sails into New Era,” trumpeted the China Daily as it proudly announced “aircraft carrier set to enhance China's maritime combat capability.”
It's the annual diplomatic ritual when the 193-member U.N. General Assembly elects five of its members to serve for two-year stints on the powerful Security Council. As would be imagined the competition is intense to gain real political power and the global limelight on the 15-member council.
As the seemingly interminable election campaign nears the finish line, there are a few glaringly missing topics which remain almost untouched. The first deals with an issue affecting nearly everyone and the other one which may determine America's future scientific prowess and potential.
It's not often that the southern African country of Zambia makes headlines.