January 8, 2008


Bush Assails Iran for Naval Confrontation (DAVID STOUT and SHERYL GAY STOLBERG, 1/08/08, NY Times)

The president commented in the White House Rose Garden, not long after a visit with President Abdullah Gul of Turkey, whose country he praised as a friend as well as “a great strategic partner.”

“I view Turkey as a bridge between Europe and the Islamic world, a constructive bridge,” Mr. Bush said as he and Mr. Gul stood in the Rose Garden in the April-like weather. President Bush said Turkey sets “a fantastic example” of democracy co-existing with Islam.

Mr. Bush reiterated the support of the United States for Turkey’s admission to the European Union (“I strongly believe that Europe will benefit with Turkey as a member”) and made no mention of recent tensions between Washington and Ankara.

He said he and Mr. Gul, who has been in Washington before as Turkish foreign minister but never as president, had a good visit in the Oval Office, exchanging views on a range of Middle East issues. The White House said beforehand that events in Pakistan and Afghanistan as well as across the Middle East were on the agenda.

“All in all, we’ve had a very constructive conversation,” Mr. Bush said. “That’s what you’d expect when two friends are in the room together.”

Mr. Gul, speaking through an interpreter, pledged that his country and the United States would “continue to work together to ensure that peace, stability and prosperity continue to grow around the world.”

So, how big would the pins in the map have to be before the striped pants set figured out the four-confessional encircling alliance the President has erected while they were whining about how french and German socialists don't like us?

India signals strong defence cooperation with Israel (Times of India, 6 Jan 2008)

Ways to explore possibilities of furthering Indo-Israel defence cooperation are expected to figure in talks Indian Navy Chief Admiral Sureesh Mehta will have with top defence officials of the Jewish state during his four-day visit which began in Jerusalem on Sunday.

Mehta, who is the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee, will also be meeting Israel's Defence Minister Ehud Barak tomorrow, besides Israel Defence Forces (IDF) Chief of Staff, Gabi Ashkenazi, director general of the defence ministry, Pinchas Buchris, and heads of different branches of the IDF.

"The meetings will explore possibilities of further cooperation and review ongoing exchanges between the two sides," defence sources here said, adding they "attach a lot of significance to ties with India".

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 8, 2008 5:53 PM
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