U.S. thwarts cease-fire endorsement
While Arab, European and United Nations leaders have put their weight behind calls for a cease-fire in Gaza, the U.S. has blocked a Security Council statement to that effect.
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)/Reuters (1/3), The Toronto Star/The Associated Press (1/3)
UN meets for rush diplomacy section
Foreign ministers from key UN nations met in New York for an emergency session to find a diplomatic solution to the crisis conflict between Israel and Gaza, now into its 11th day. The group seems to be coalescing behind Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who have authored plans for a truce. BBC (1/7)
主要的聯合國會員外長於紐約召開緊急會議，以找出以色列與加薩間進入第十一天危機衝突的外交解決手段。這個團體似乎是在曾提出停火計畫的埃及總統Hosni Mubarak和法國總統Nicolas Sarkozy之下結合而成。
Blocking the Security Council statement appears to be among the farewell performances of the Bush administration (along with a recent ocean conservation plan). As the Obama crew comes in place, the balance in US foreign policy between the liberal approach of a democrat government (perhaps a change from the previous “unilateralism”) and the general “anti terrorism” position of recent years, is of observation worth.
And there’s the eager Frenchman. France has kept a tradition of foreign policies which “stands out” from its fellow European countries, be it the constant contravention against US positions during the Cold War, or the hardheaded nuclear test in 1997. Since President Sarkozy came to office, we have seen the Frenchman’s active participation in international politics, as observed in the European summit in response to the current financial crisis, the EU conference on carbon emission, and of course the call for a cease fire on the present Gaza conflict. Again we may suggest that the tradition is being kept, in a rather dramatic manner.
As to economic influences, the strength of the current global recession and the impact of the Middle East conflict can be regarded as two factors working against each other. Which of these factors has the greater effect on oil prices, and hence the world economy, might prove an interesting episode in midst of the credit crunch.