The United States is still getting rid of its chemical weapons
Soccer keeps reminding us how few opportunities there will be to gather the first team ahead of next summers World Cup. No opportunity can be wasted. Thats why the United States Soccer federation has announced its latest friendly, set for Nov. 19 in Vienna against Austria . These teams havent met since 1998. That match will follow a Nov. 15 contest against Scotland at Glasgows famed Hampden Park. Thats the last well see of the national team until the annual January camp which will look quite different this time around. U.S. Soccer isnt officially talking about the January camp yet, but officials will quietly allow that part of the camp will take place in Brazil. It will still be a camp for MLS types and for any Scandinavian league men on break.
The United States pre-World Cup schedule keeps filling up
* The United States will want its military troops to have legal protection through immunity by the Afghan law. The Afghan tribal leaders will want an upper hand by demanding that in case of a breach, the Afghan government may be authorized to decide on the fate of a soldier. It is highly unlikely that American government would agree to provide Afghans with such a jurisdiction. This will be a contentious issue and may lead to further tensions. However, an agreement on the modalities of this proposal could be reached, but it will take a longer time and may not be able to satisfy all members of the Afghan advisory council. * The United States will have to keep in view the sensitivity of Afghanistan regarding its sovereignty. Afghanistan has openly condemned the killing of its civilians in military raids carried out by Nato and ISAF troops against the terrorists on its soil. This has been a major cause of tensions. Any progress in reaching a full agreement will require flexibility and understanding on both sides. Peace and long term stability in South Asia is dependent on the successful signing and implementation of this agreement. It is advisable that negotiators on both sides value the importance of this opportunity and try to minimize their differences.
A network of Chinese ports has secured the sea lines along the Northwest Passage, circumscribing Canadian sovereignty, and Canada’s military, enfeebled after years of reliance on the United States, is powerless to resist. Canada effectively lapses into a vassal state, reliant on neocolonial patriarchs in Beijing and Moscow. This dystopian scenario isn’t the plot of an episode of “The Twilight Zone” or some modish alternate-history, sci-fi story — it’s the threat laid out by Diane Francis, a veteran business reporter and current editor at large of Canada’s National Post, in her newly released book, “Merger of the Century: Why Canada and America Should Become One Country.” And while she frames the book as a “thought experiment,” she believes a U.S.-Canadian union is essential to both countries’ futures — that facing economic infringement, “a merger makes good business sense.” She’s thought it through, down to the last dollar each Canadian should be compensated for their natural resources in a U.S. buyout. “The Russians have thrown down the gauntlet in the Arctic. . . . And the Chinese have targeted our resources, along with everyone else’s,” Francis told Foreign Policy (FP) by phone from Canada. They’re “the wolves at the door,” Francis says; she frames the situation in terms of “prey and predator” in the book. “They’re gaming the system,” she told FP. “And I think they’re brilliant. I think they’re doing a great job …