Home > News > News in Brief: 10 October 2008

News in Brief: 10 October 2008

A brief list of news for the day:

Global equities plunge. Equities plunged on Friday after a dramatic late sell-off in New York extended the sustained losing streak on world stock markets. (FT)

Don’t Just Do Something, Talk. One of the most striking things about the reaction to the current financial meltdown is that, as one of the participants put it: ‘No one really knows what to do.’ The reason is that expectations are part of the game: how the market reacts to a particular intervention depends not only on how much bankers and traders trust the interventions, but even more on how much they think others will trust them. (London Review of Books)

Iceland, in Financial Collapse, Is Likely to Need I.M.F. Help. Iceland’s financial system collapsed Thursday, and analysts said it was probably only a matter of time before the country would have to turn to the International Monetary Fund for help. (New York Times)

Russia’s Monroe Doctrine. After almost two decades of retreat from the former USSR’s geopolitical positions, a resurgent, oil-rich Russia appears angry, resentful and unwilling to tolerate further expansion of NATO into its historic region. (In These Times)

A long, hot winter for Pakistan. A bomb disguised as a gift basket of sweets has demolished the headquarters of Pakistan’s Anti-Terrorist Force in Islamabad and set the tone for the Taliban’s strategy to strike government and Western forces before they’re dug in for all-out war. (Asia Times)

Afghanistan awash in corruption, drugs, violence – draft US intelligence estimate. Concern over Afghanistan’s downward spiral rose another notch Thursday amid reports of a draft US intelligence assessment detailing its slide into corruption, drugs and insurgent violence. (The Daily Star/AFP)

Afghan talks widen US-UK rift. Political talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban are likely to deepen the rift between the United States, with its preference for building up troop numbers in Afghanistan, and Britain, which sees talk offering a quicker exit opportunity than reliance on guns and bombs. (Asia Times)

Unchecked Arms Trade Fuelling Conflict, Poverty. With 1.3 trillion dollars spent every year on the world’s militaries, countries enmeshed in conflict are often flooded by weapons which are then turned against helpless civilian populations, say human rights organisations pushing for an international treaty to closely regulate arms sales. (IPS)

Nato joins Somalia piracy fight. Seven vessels will be sent to the region, where negotiations are currently under way after one gang demanded an $8m ransom for a Ukrainian ship loaded with heavy weaponry. (Al Jazeera)

Barzani says PKK attacks aim at hurting ties, calls for dialogue. A senior official of the Iraqi Kurdish administration said yesterday that attacks by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) on Turkish security forces were aimed at undermining recent steps to improve relations with Kurds, asserting that his administration was determined to prevent PKK activities in the region. (Today’s Zaman)

Iceland Finds New Ways to Trap Carbon. At the Hellisheidi geothermal power station, located about 30 km east of Reykjavik, Icelanders are developing novel ways of capturing carbon dioxide (CO2) and hydrogen sulphide (H2S) that are emitted from the plant. (IPS)

Conflicting reports about US warplane’s forced landing over Iran. Tehran first identified the plane as an American Falcon which had mistakenly strayed into Iranian airspace and was forced down Monday, Oct. 6. In that report, the eight US officials aboard, including 5 senior military officials, were interrogated overnight and released after 24 hours. (DEBKAfile)

Syria plays hardball with the Saudis. In a further sign of just how low Syrian-Saudi Arabian relations have sunk, Syrian authorities have banned the distribution of al-Hayat, the Saudi-owned mass circulation Arab daily. (Syria Comment)

US pledges Cobra gunships to Lebanon against Syrian invasion threat. The US decided to withdraw Cobra military helicopters for the Lebanese army from emergency stores in Jordan after Lebanese prime minister Fouad Siniora alerted Washington to Damascus’ plot for a large-scale terror attack or assassination to drum up a pretext for invading northern Lebanon. (DEBKAfile)

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