Straight dealing

first_imgAs Congress begins to debate an international agreement to limit Iran’s nuclear ambitions for the next 15 years, analysts at Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) say many questions remain that will determine the ultimate success or failure of this deeply controversial deal.Is the agreement strong enough to truly constrain Iran, and does it prevent or promote the spread of nuclear arms in the Middle East? How should and will the United States and coalition partners respond if Iran cheats? Is the partisan divide over the deal damaging to this country and to the deal’s credibility?David E. Sanger, chief Washington correspondent for The New York Times and a senior fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, put those queries and more to panelists Tuesday night on the crest of next week’s Congressional vote.Critical of the deal, William Tobey, a former deputy administrator for defense nuclear nonproliferation at the National Nuclear Security Administration and now also a senior fellow at the Belfer Center, cautioned that recent statements by top Iranian ministers and advisers denying that inspectors will be permitted to access so-called military sites are signs the deal “may already be eroding.”“Unless there’s a full understanding of who did what, where, and when, then there can’t be a baseline for effective verification, and we won’t know that this activity has ceased, and we won’t know that it won’t recur,” he said.Tobey also noted that most of the meaningful restrictions on Iran fall away in just 10 to 15 years, and that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) still hasn’t gotten an explanation for a dozen possible weapons activities in which Iran has engaged.Even supporters acknowledge the deal has some weaknesses.“The big risk is that in year 15, most of these restrictions on the Iranian program begin to lapse, so the Iranians could reconstitute a civil nuclear program, and they could possibly use that as a cover to develop a covert nuclear weapons program. We have to mitigate against that risk,” said R. Nicholas Burns, the Roy and Barbara Goodman Family Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations and director of the Future of Diplomacy Project at HKS.In implementing the deal, he said the United States must take a hardline stance should Iran cheat on its end of the bargain.“I think President Obama should be more clear than he has been about his determination that he will use military force if there’s a fundamental Iranian violation of this agreement,” said Burns, who testified before Congress four times this summer as a cautious proponent of the deal.Audience members packed into the John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum for “The Iran Nuclear Deal: For & Against.” Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff PhotographerMatthew Bunn, professor of practice and co-principal investigator of the Project on Managing the Atom at HKS, said the deal does a “pretty good job” over 10 to 15 years in reducing Iran’s stockpiles of enriched uranium and an “even better” job on its plutonium cache and covert sites. But “over the longer term, it’s weaker, there’s no doubt about it,” than it might have been.“Overall, the chance that we’re going to have some unstable nuclear arms race in the Middle East goes down, in my judgment, as a result of this deal,” said Bunn.Troubling are two compromises struck very late in the negotiations process in Vienna, the lifting of a United Nations ban on conventional arms transfers to Iran in five years, and a ban on ballistic missiles, which ends in eight years, Burns said.“I regret that those compromises had to be made,” said Burns, a former ambassador. As soon as those bans expire, the United States should push hard to reimpose them because, he said, “We cannot trust the Iranians with more powerful weaponry, given their track record.”Panelists agreed that Iran is more likely to try to cheat at the margins, rather than do something bold. It’s a strategy that would make it harder for the United States to rally China, Russia, France, Britain, and Germany to take swift punitive action, given their trade interests with Iran.“In some ways, the strongest reason that Iran has not to cheat is that the agreement is so advantageous to it. It gets international blessing for its program and gets to get right up to the brink of a nuclear weapon in 10 to 15 years,” Tobey countered.Despite near-complete opposition by Republicans in both houses of Congress, Obama now appears to have more than 40 Democratic supporters of the deal, enough to prevent a veto override, assuring the deal will survive.But the prospect of an agreement with Iran has only further stoked the deeply political divisions in Washington.Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, now running for president, said Wednesday that while she supported the deal, its success will depend on the United States having a broader strategic framework with Iran. “‘Distrust and verify’ would be her approach,” Sanger co-wrote in The Times.On Tuesday, former Vice President Dick Cheney called the deal “shameful” and said it will almost surely lead to a nuclear attack by Iran. “It is madness,” Cheney told supporters.Obama’s speech last month at American University declaring that resistance to a deal would assure future conflict with Iran further fueled bitter feelings and skepticism toward consensus.“I thought he overplayed his hand by saying that if this deal is rejected, we’ll have war,” said Burns. “I don’t think so at all.”The panelists concurred that passing the deal without bipartisan support is harmful to the deal’s credibility and damaging to U.S. democracy.Without a majority vote, Tobey said the deal is less legitimate and weakens its enforceability. “Of course, it’s bad for the deal and bad for the country if the deal is essentially the product of a vote of disapproval in both houses of Congress.”“I’ve been disappointed, maybe not shocked, but disappointed by the partisan nature of this debate,” Burns said. “I think we as citizens in the United States had a right to expect that an issue of this gravity … that members would vote their heads and they’d vote their consciences, [and that] they wouldn’t just vote along strict party lines.”“It seems to me,” Bunn said, that “we need to have in the United States an ability to talk about difficult national security issues in a rational way. And that’s not the kind of debate that we’re having about this deal in the last few weeks.”last_img read more

Maintaining the Panama Canal

first_img You are currently not logged in to a MyNavingo account. Premium content Premium content You are currently not logged into your account. Register and get a two week trial. You need javascript to validate your login status. Premium Your current account does not have access to this premium item. Please upgrade your membership to access this content. Go to the shop The Panama Canal, an artificial 82 km waterway in Panama that connects the Atlantic Ocean with the Pacific Ocean, opened 106 years ago Premium content Log in Registerlast_img

Vicar exits Anglican Church in same-sex row

first_imgNZ Herald 29 May 2014An Anglican pastor has quit the church and is taking his congregation with him after the governing body moved ahead with plans to bless same-sex relationships.Charlie Hughes, the former vicar of St Michael’s in Henderson, says he cannot reconcile the decision of the church to recognise same sex relationships with his ordination vows.He said the vows were a pledge to uphold the constitution of the Anglican Church. The constitution states it is “not lawful to ordain anything contrary to God’s word written”.“It’s not because we have a problem with people who are in a same sex relationship but because of the commitment we have to shaping our lives around the teachings of the Bible,” Mr Hughes said.“This isn’t an anti-gay issue. This is a pro-Bible issue. There are seven completely clear statements in the Bible about same sex acts which are all disapproving.”The Anglican Church’s ruling body this month issued an apology to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community. It also told clergy they could bless same sex marriages with a bishop’s permission and set out a path to formalising the recognition. read more

Alex Meruelo purchase of Coyotes finalized, making him NHL’s first Latino majority owner

first_img“I look forward to helping hockey continue to thrive in the desert.” – Alex MerueloWelcome to #OurPack, Alex. 👏— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) July 29, reported the sale price at $300 million — much lower than initial reports that had the figure in the $400 million to $450 million range — and last month described a franchise that has been hemorrhaging money.The son of Cuban immigrants, Meruelo, who got his start in his father’s tuxedo business, bought controlling interest of the team from Andrew Barroway, who will retain a minority share. Related News Andrei Vasilevskiy signs 8-year, $76M extension with Lightning What sets Meruelo apart from many who’ve tried to help hockey thrive in the desert: He has a history of buying interests in businesses and improving them, rather than flipping them for quick profits.He has built a broad portfolio of businesses in casino gaming, real estate, construction and engineering, hospitality, TV and radio stations, food services and private equity.But he faces a stiff challenge in the Coyotes, who have faced huge financial hurdles, argue that they need a new arena and have struggled on the ice.Forbes in December valued the franchise at $290 million, last among the NHL’s 32 teams, and the team has missed the playoffs for seven consecutive seasons and has advanced past the first round only once (2011-12) since the Winnipeg Jets relocated to Phoenix ahead of the 1996-97 season.A glimmer of a bright spot, according to The NHL hasn’t tapped into the Latino market, and Meruelo surely will have ideas about how to do that, adding that his experience in the gambling, broadcast and land development industries make him an ideal candidate to own a sports franchise, and in particular, the Coyotes.Meruelo thanked Barroway for what he called “invaluable service to the club.” Alex Meruelo on Monday became majority owner of the Coyotes, making history in the process as the first Latino to have controlling interest of an NHL team.”This is an incredible moment for me and my entire family,” Meruelo, 55, said in a statement.  “The Arizona Coyotes team is poised to do great things on and off the ice. I look forward to helping hockey continue to thrive in the desert, and I am committed to providing our passionate fans, loyal partners and the entire state of Arizona with a team they can be proud of for years to come.” “Andy deserves credit for stabilizing the franchise and for growing the game of hockey in Arizona,” Meruelo said. “I look forward to working with him in the future and want to thank him for his hard work and commitment to the team.”Coyotes president and CEO Ahron Cohen called Meruelo’s purchase of the team a capstone to what has, thus far, been a momentous offseason. “Mr. Meruelo is a proven winner and his track record of multi-faceted and dynamic business accomplishments makes us well-positioned for continued growth, progress and long-term success here in Arizona. Today marks a major step forward for our organization and our great fans and partners.”The team has scheduled a news conference for Thursday to introduce Meruelo as the new controlling owner.last_img read more

Red Bank Candidates Divided On The Issues

first_imgBy John BurtonRED BANK — The Nov. 8 election will have voters selecting from two incumbents and three political newcomers to fill two, three-year terms on the Borough Council.This year’s slate of candidates features incumbent Democrat Kathy Horgan and running mate Erik Yngstrom, making his first run for elected office; opposition comes in the form of two first-time Republican candidates, Kellie O’Bosky Colwell and Brian Hanlon. Rounding out the ballot is independent candidate Cindy Burnham, who has been on the council since 2014.Burnham, 61, is a retired substitute teacher who had worked at the Red Bank Middle School and Red Bank Regional High School. Burnham won her first election three years ago and served much of her term as a Republican. But she clashed with the local GOP leadership and with the three borough council members of her party, resulting in the committee failing to nominate her for this year’s ballot.Burnham is a self-described “community activist” who said, “I’m running on my record and to stop wasteful spending and irresponsible borrowing that is ingrained in our government.”Burnham is serving as the borough council president for this year and said she’s often been a lone voice against various financial allocations that she maintained were unnecessary and done for political expediency or patronage. Over the course of her council tenure Burnham has advocated for an operational review of the Water and Sewer Authority to study expenses and see if there are cost savings available. To voters, she advises, “The best way to predict what someone will do is to look at what they have done…I have kept my promise to the people.”Horgan, 71, works as the liaison to the board of trustees for amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS research. She has lived in the borough for 17 years and is the veteran among the candidates, having served for nine years on the borough council.“I will stay here for the rest of my life and I’m really interested in my community,” Horgan said, explaining her interest in taking on another term.On issues: “What do you hear when you go door to door? Taxes,” she said. Horgan’s response to voters is “there are reasons that drive them up,” explaining contributors to the situation are multiyear contractual obligations with union employees; a large number of tax appeals annually that, like most lawsuits, wind up being negotiated, and cost the borough money; and the borough’s large number of not-for-profit tax exempt properties, she explained.Commercial development has come up in the discussion of campaign issues. It can be complex, she said, as “You try to find the balance,” encouraging projects that “make for an attractive community,” and bring ratables “but that doesn’t overtax our infrastructure.”She has raised issue with the proposed 55 West Front St. proposal to rezone the property that could permit a previously zoning board-denied large residential development.The same is true for her Democratic running mate, Yngstrom, who sees the plan as undermining the role of the zoning board in the land use process.“I think development should proceed cautiously,” he advised.Yngstrom is a 31-year-old attorney who is making his first run for elected office. He says he’s always had an interest in government and took this opportunity to make a contribution to public service.He has served on the borough Zoning Board of Adjustment for about 1 ½ years and had voted against the 55 West Front St. residential development and has been critical of this plan to rezone the site, alleging it could circumvent the zoning board’s role and authority.Yngstrom has a strong interest in recreation and believes the public parks need additional attention and the west side needs a park for area families.Republican Hanlon, 47, has lived in the borough with his family since 2007, and works in the borough office of a financial services firm. This is his first run for elected office.He and his GOP candidate Colwell have expressed support for this redevelopment and in general encourage what they say is thoughtful commercial development as a means to offset the residential tax base and maintain a vibrant community.Hanlon also suggested the governing body investigate selling the water and sewer authority as a cost saving measure. “Let’s see what it’s worth.”The borough council had privatized trash collection. However, Hanlon pointed out that there were no staff reductions for that department, thus blunting the beneficial impact that step had.He also supports developing the White Street lot as a mixed use, public/private project to construct a parking garage. Hanlon opposes the borough bonding and shouldering the entire cost for such a downtown project.Colwell, 48, is a working mixed media artist who has lived in the borough for most of her life. It is her first run for political office.She, like Hanlon, said taxes and spending take center stage in discussions and their agenda and wants to keep the community affordable for aging residents and young families. “I just don’t want to see anyone leave the town because they can’t afford it,” she said.On the issue of development Colwell said projects get bogged down with bureaucratic red tape and she would like to see if the process could be streamlined. She would also like to see both sides of the community benefit by greater promoting of the community as a cultural hub.last_img read more

Nelson Minor Hockey’s Reece Hunt earns spot on Team BC U18 squad

first_img“We are very pleased with the roster that has been selected to represent British Columbia at the 2016 National Women’s U18 Championship,” said Team BC Head Coach, Christina Sharun. “Over the course of the past four months, the 20 players who will represent Team BC this season have competed with passion, intensity and focus each time they had the opportunity to wear the BC crest.”Sharun said each of the players, including Hunt, bring a unique and individual skillset which complements our team as a whole. “We are confident that this group will be great representatives, not only for our province, but for all those who have worn the BC jersey before them, and for those who were unsuccessful in making the final roster, but who brought energy and intensity to each camp along the selection process,” Sharun said.”We are looking forward to working with this group of highly talented young women over the next six weeks and are excited for the opportunity to make our mark among the country’s best.”Hunt is a forward with the Kootenay Wild of the BC Female AAA Hockey League. The Wild, now based out of Trail after spending many seasons in Nelson, begin the 2016-17 season against the Northern Capitals during the opening tournament in Surrey, October 7.Older brothers Sawyer plays for the Nelson Leafs of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League while Dryden, who won the Western Hockey League’s Four Broncos Memorial Trophy as the league’s player of the year, signed a free-agent contract with Florida Panthers of the National Hockey League.The Panthers opened Training Camp Friday.Team BC will travel to Regina, Saskatchewan for pre-stage camp from November 5 – 8 before taking on Manitoba in their first game of the tournament on November 9.Hunt follows in the footsteps of another Nelson Minor Hockey grad, Aimee DiBella who represented BC at the 2011 National Women’s Under-18 Championship in Saguenay, Que. Reece Hunt is following in the footsteps of playing at an elite level of hockey of older brothers Dryden and Sawyer after the Nelson Minor Hockey player was named to the Team BC U18 Female squad following tryout camp this past weekend in Vancouver.Hunt, 15, represents BC at the 2016 National Women’s U18 Championship in Regina, Saskatchewan from November 9 – 13.“It was just a huge sigh of relief to finally find out I made it,” Hunt told The Nelson Daily.“It’s a pretty long stressful process,” 5’4” forward added.“Over four months . . . several rounds of cuts so it’s stressful on all of the girls I would think.”The final Team BC roster was selected during the September Camp last weekend at the University of British Columbia Thunderbird Arena.During the four-day camp players competed in three exhibition games against the UBC Thunderbirds women’s hockey team and Ridge Meadows Bantam A1 team as well as on-ice practices and off-ice training. last_img read more

Education, health get lion’s share of KwaZulu-Natal budget

first_imgThe KwaZulu-Natal provincial government has allocated R12.06-billion to spend on various infrastructure projects around the province during the 2015/16 financial year.“The province is budgeting to spend R12.06-billion in 2015/16, R11.804-billion in 2016/17 and R12.196-billion in 2017/18 on various infrastructure projects. This equates to R36.06-billion over the. MTEF,” said the provincial minister of finance, Belinda Scott.Tabling her Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) budget in the Provincial Legislature on 10 March, Scott said it included infrastructure funded by both the equitable share and conditional grant.Key infrastructure projects over the period include transport; the department of transport will spend R20.594-billion over the period on various programmes. It will also continue with construction and maintenance that fall under Operation KuShunquthuli and the African Renaissance Roads Upgrading Programme, to focus on building roads in rural areas.For the 2015/16 year Scott allocated R4.294-billion to the department of health for infrastructure. Projects will include a R460-million investment in adding 500 beds to the regional Pixley ka Seme Hospital, and a new 192-bed medical ward in Ngwelezane Hospital for R80-million, among others.An amount of R6.909-billion has been allocated to the department of education to spend on building new classrooms and ablutions in various districts.The department of human settlements has been allocated R9.595-billion for the 2015/16 year to focus on catalytic projects that will have a significant impact on the wellbeing of residents.Scott said the projects were linked to transport routes, proximity to schools, clinics and other social facilities. “Some of the key programmes include the Informal Settlement Upgrade Programme, the Rural Housing Programme, the Emergency Housing Programme and the Integrated Residential Housing Programme, as well as the Rectification Programme and Enhanced Extended Discount Benefit Scheme.“In 2015/16, the department will continue to implement these housing programmes and the outputs expected to be achieved include 23 233 housing units constructed and 14 225 beneficiaries approved,” she said.The education department received the largest portion of the provincial budget; the second largest portion went to the health department.The budget allocation for education over the MTEF is R42.142-billion in 2015/2016, R44.210-billion in 2016/2017 and R46.488-billion in 2017/2018.The budget allocation for health over the period is R32.982-billion, R34.742-billion and R36.874-billion.Source: SAnews.govlast_img read more

Ohio Ag Weather and Forecast — April 20, 2018

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest 180420_RyanMartinDry weather continues through Monday. Temps will be climbing slightly through the dry stretch, but will not really exceed normal. Most of this is due to the fact that we really do not see any significant south wind over the weekend, and see more easterly flow, which does not promote strong warming. The set up will produce some drying, but time will tell if it is enough. The same can be said about a rise in soil temperatures.As the narrative has been pretty much all week, the Tuesday-Wednesday period next week really is the major point of consternation in our forecast. Rains look to push farther north on Tuesday into Indiana, but here we see mostly just renegade moisture that may be content to stay in cloud form through Tuesday afternoon. Down near the river, we likely have to allow for scattered showers Tuesday morning but we are reluctant to talk up action of any major intensity father north. We will allow for the occasional spit and sprinkle across the rest of Ohio. On Wednesday, scattered showers pop up with a little more frequency, but still not much intensity. AT this time, we will put rain totals for the 2 days combined at a few hundredths to .8”, with the higher totals near the river, and general no more than a tenth or to over most of the state. Heavy rains are not too far away, though, sinking down into West Virginia (up to 2”!). The map above shows rain totals through Wednesday.Behind that weak moisture outbreak, we dry back down Thursday, Friday, Saturday and a good chunk of Sunday. This is where precipitation from the Tuesday-Wednesday period becomes more important. If we get very little those days, this second 4-day window will allow for more field work potential. However, if moisture totals build, this window will be probably not long enough. We will keep our fingers crossed, because the extended period is shaping up to be very wet, and very active.Then we kick off the extended 11-16 day forecast window with rains of .5”-1” across 90% of the state for later the 29th and 30th. We take a brief break for Tuesday May 1st and also the 2nd, but we really still have plenty of clouds possible and a damp overall feel. Then heavy rains are back for the 3rdthrough the 5th, with half to 1.5” possible, and there is an outside chance for some isolated 2” totals. Coverage of those early may rains will be 100% of the state.So, short term, this completely dry window we have through Monday is about the best we can do. Conditions will be breezy through the weekend, so spraying may be limited to early morning or early evening hours, if at all. The key to our entire field work outlook is 2 days…next Tuesday and Wednesday. Stay tuned for updates.last_img read more

Durant unfazed by Thunder return

first_imgJapan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 “We’ll see how it feels in the morning but right now, it feels good,” said Durant, who sat out Golden State’s 118-111 victory at Brooklyn on Sunday.Warriors coach Steve Kerr meanwhile said Durant would be ready for anything in terms of crowd reception.“We’re a year removed from the first one so hopefully it will be a little less hostile,” Kerr said. “But we’ll be ready for whatever.”The Warriors coach compared Durant’s return to Oklahoma City to the reception given to LeBron James when he first played back in Cleveland after joining Miami in 2010.“It reminded me of LeBron’s return to Cleveland,” Kerr said. “It was very similar, just a different vibe. Sometimes you can have intensity and desire, and sometimes it can be ugly. And it was ugly.”ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ In his return to Oklahoma City last season, Durant put up 40 points, and blocked out the hostile reception which greeted him.More of the same is expected on Wednesday, but Durant said he is unconcerned by the catcalls.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“It’s just a regular game for me now,” the reigning NBA Finals MVP said Tuesday. “I learned how to tune out the crowd.”The 29-year-old said a decision on whether he will play on Wednesday will most likely be taken on the day of the game. ONE: Yamaguchi eyes quick revenge vs Filipino bet Iniong View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa LATEST STORIES Read Nextcenter_img Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors looks on against the Philadelphia 76ers at Wells Fargo Center on November 18, 2017 in Philadelphia,Pennsylvania. Rob Carr/Getty Images/AFPGolden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant insists he is unfazed by the prospect of facing his former team as the NBA champions prepare to take on Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday.Durant, who is battling to recover from a left ankle sprain, left Oklahoma City for Golden State after eight seasons in 2016.ADVERTISEMENT Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion Kris Aquino ‘pretty chill about becoming irrelevant’ Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday PLAY LIST 03:12Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday01:43Who are Filipinos rooting for in the NBA Finals?02:25Raptors or Warriors? PBA players take their pick of NBA champ01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohortlast_img read more