International News Briefs

U.S. group offered asylum to Gadhafi

WASHINGTON: It has been uncovered that an organization going by the moniker The American Action Group had offered to rescue former president Muammar Gadhafi, during the recent Libyan uprising. The New York Times reported that a Washington terrorism expert, a veteran C.I.A. officer, a Republican operative and a Kansas City lawyer had offered to make the former president their client in exchange for a minimum payment of $10 million. The group claimed they weren’t trying to be lobbyists for Gadhafi, and their efforts were to prevent a bloodbath by relocating Gadhafi and his family to a secret hideout.

Brazil’s emerging power causing conflict with neighbours

BOLIVIA: Indigenous protestors have marched 325 miles across the country to condemn Bolivian president Evo Morales’s agreement with a Brazilian highway construction initiative. In 2008, Construtora OAS, a Brazilian construction firm, had won a $415 million contract to build a highway through Bolivia, reported The New York Times. Morales has since halted the highway project, but Brazil’s continuous efforts for expansion and resource accumulation are under fire from other neighbouring countries as well. In recent years Brazil has become an economic powerhouse that boasts a national bank with stronger lending power than the World Bank.

Man charged with assassination attempt on Obama

WASHINGTON: Oscar Ortega-Hernandez has been charged with attempting to assassinate U.S. president Barack Obama or members of his staff. Al Jazeera reported two bullets from a semi-automatic rifle had hit the exterior of the White House last week. Ortega-Hernandez was connected to the incident after police found items related to the shooting in an abandoned car near the scene. The incident occurred on a Friday, but was not investigated until the following Tuesday when bullet holes were found. Still, Ortega-Hernandez was found and arrested by secret service agents at a motel in Pennsylvania after a citizen reported a suspicious person circling the area.

New York could be submerged in next decade

NEW YORK: A recent report by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority says climate change will put a third of New York City underwater by the mid-2020s, The New York Times reported. Rising sea levels, due to polar ice melting, and severe storms will cause massive flooding in low lying areas across the entire state, much of which is inhabited by more than half a million people. The report is intended to help the government get people out of harm’s way and to help city planners factor climate change into long-term infrastructure changes.

Fears of civil war rise in Syria as conflict continues

LEBANON: Recent attacks on government buildings by the rebel Free Syrian Army, as well as rising internal and international tensions, has led to fears of an impending civil war in the country. The New York Times reported that rebel groups are on the rise as more troops desert the Syrian Army to fight against the current government regime. Syria’s international allies have condemned the country for continuing to use violence to control protests, which has killed thousands of people. Lack of international assistance has also been scrutinized, leading some to believe the conflict is of less concern because Syria does not have significant natural resources, such as oil.

Published in Volume 66, Number 13 of The Uniter (November 23, 2011)

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