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New July 2013

Kurdish recovery

Orlando Crowcroft (Diaspora returns to build Iraqi Kurdistan into the ‘next Dubai’, 26 March) misses two important points.

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Lawrence Walsh

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Independent counsel who painstakingly investigated the Iran-Contra scandalAs the independent counsel investigating the Iran-Contra scandal, Lawrence Walsh, who has died aged 102, spent six futile years tying together the massive disregard for the law within Ronald Reagan’s US presidency. Walsh managed to precipitate 11 convictions, mostly for lesser offences dealing with the cover-up, but saw all of them either overturned on appeal or negated by presidential pardons issued by George Bush Sr.Iran-Contra was a two-pronged operation designed to circumvent the Boland amendment, which had stopped the US government from providing any further support to the insurgency of the rightwing “Contras” against the Sandinista government in Nicaragua. In 1985, Reagan approved the illegal sale of arms to Iran, via Israel, ostensibly in exchange for the release of hostages held in Lebanon by Hezbollah.

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Plan to pass welfare burden to NGOs may hit hurdles

<!– google_ad_section_start –> The central government has embarked on an effort to decentralise power and reduce the role of state agencies by making civil organisations responsible for providing social services. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Pope in Brazil backs young protestors seeking change

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Pope Francis joined two million young pilgrims in a prayer vigil on Rio’s Copacabana beach late Saturday, voicing support for youths protesting for change. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Huge crowds in Brazil welcome Pope Francis back to home continent

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Pope Francis arrived in Brazil on Monday on his first foreign trip as pontiff and was swarmed by well-wishers as he drove into Rio de Janeiro, where more than one million people are expected to gather to see the first Latin American to head the Roman Catholic Church. Welcomed by a committee of local dignitaries, including President Dilma Rousseff, a smiling Francis waved to onlookers before proceeding by motorcade to Rio’s city centre at the start of a week-long gathering of young faithful in Brazil, home to the world’s largest Catholic population. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Dilma Rousseff’s popularity plummets amid Brazil protests

<!– google_ad_section_start –> President Dilma Rousseff’s approval rating sank by 27 percentage points in the past three weeks, a new poll has showed. It’s the strongest evidence yet that the recent wave of street protests sweeping Brazil poses a serious threat to her likely re-election bid next year. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Brazil leader promises political reform

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff on Monday proposed a referendum on political reform in a bid to gain the upper hand after two weeks of nationwide street protests. She also offered to earmark $25 billion for public transport in response to protesters’ exasperation with substandard public services and inadequate mass transit systems in the world’s seventh largest economy. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Britain plans HK$35,900 visa bonds for ‘high-risk’ Asians, Africans

<!– google_ad_section_start –> From November, visitors from countries including India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Ghana will be forced to hand over £3,000 (US$4,600)  for a six-month visit visa. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Brazilians fill streets with protests and violence

<!– google_ad_section_start –> More than half a million Brazilians poured into the streets of at least 80 cities on Thursday in demonstrations that saw violent clashes and renewed calls for an end to government corruption and demands for better public services Riot police battled protesters in at least five cities, with some of the most intense clashes happening in Rio de Janeiro, where an estimated 300,000 demonstrators swarmed into the seaside city’s central area. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Brazil president Rousseff tries to appease protesters

<!– google_ad_section_start –> President Dilma Rousseff sought to defuse a massive protest movement sweeping Brazil, acknowledging the need for better public services and more responsive governance. She insisted on Tuesday – the day after more than 200,000 Brazilians marched in cities around the country – that her government remained committed to social change and was listening attentively to the many grievances expressed. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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200,000 Brazilians vent anger at rallies in more than half a dozen cities

<!– google_ad_section_start –> As many as 200,000 demonstrators marched through the streets of Brazil’s biggest cities in a swelling wave of protest tapping into widespread anger at poor public services, police violence and government corruption. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Biggest protests in 20 years sweep Brazil

<!– google_ad_section_start –> As many as 200,000 demonstrators marched through the streets of Brazil’s biggest cities on Monday in a swelling wave of protest tapping into widespread anger at poor public services, police violence and government corruption. The marches, organised mostly through snowballing social media campaigns, blocked streets and halted traffic in more than a half-dozen cities, including São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte and Brasilia, where demonstrators climbed onto the roof of Brazil’s Congress building and then stormed it. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Volunteer inspired to help more newly arrived migrant families

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Tiffany Lau Nga-yee did not know what to think when she began volunteering last year for Against Child Abuse’s programme to help newly arrived families adjust to life in Hong Kong. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Pictured: The diamond-encrusted iPhone worth US$25,000 on sale in Hong Kong

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Despite the gloom in the West and a slowing expansion of China’s economy, free-spending Chinese consumers and wealthy Hong Kong locals craving exclusivity have proven a blessing to retailers looking to buck global woes. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Iraq holds first polls since US pullout

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Iraqis voted on Saturday in the country’s first polls since US troops departed, a key test of its stability in the face of a spike in attacks that has claimed more than 100 lives. But the credibility of the provincial elections has come into question, with attacks on candidates leaving 14 dead and a third of Iraq’s provinces – all of them mainly Sunni Arab or Kurdish – not even voting. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Margaret Thatcher’s free-market reforms left indelible mark on Britain

<!– google_ad_section_start –> Late French president Francois Mitterand once famously said of Margaret Thatcher: “She has the eyes of Caligula, but the mouth of Marilyn Monroe.” His words reflect the two sides of a politician whose free-market reforms drew criticism and support, but fundamentally changed the British economy and are a yardstick against which her successors are judged. <!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Portugal PM outlines new budget cuts

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Portugal’s prime minister says a court ruling striking down parts of the budget means it will have to make other deep spending cuts to avoid a second bailout.

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Report plays down immigration fears

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Romanian and Bulgarian immigration to the UK will stretch schools but will have a lesser impact on housing and the NHS, says a report.

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America, Inc. at it’s Finest

Saks Fifth Avenue
7 For All Mankind, a division of VF Contemporary Brands
Bren-Books.com, Modern first editions and collectible fiction<

bren-books.com, Modern first editions and collectible fiction

US iTunes, App Store, iBookstore, and Mac App Store
J&R Computer/Music World
Burberry
New July 2013