<p>Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks in Islamabad Friday, as Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar looks on. Clinton urged Pakistan to act swiftly to dislodge the militant Haqqani network.</p>
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in Pakistan to urge the country's leadership to eliminate safe havens for terrorists, says that U.S. officials met with the Haqqani network this summer. She did not say who the participants were, or what was discussed.
As the BBC reports:
Reports about such a meeting circulated over the summer but the US refused to confirm them at the time.
Mrs Clinton said the US had reached out to the Taliban and to the Haqqani network to test their sincerity and willingness to engage in a peace process.
<p><strong>Here Bums The Bride: </strong>Lars von Trier's <em>Melancholia </em>centers on a newlywed (Kirsten Dunst) whose chronic depression leaves her singularly well-equipped to confront the end of the world. </p>
Credit Magnolia Pictures
<p><strong>Darkness Falls:</strong> <em>Take Shelter</em>'s protagonist (Michael Shannon) is plagued by premonitions of an apocalyptic storm — and doubts about his own sanity. </p>
Credit Sony Pictures Classics
<p><strong>Madness In The Mirror:</strong> Natalie Portman's <em>Black Swan</em> ballerina is another relatively recent example of a main character whose unsteady perspective is designed to keep the audience guessing.</p>
In the space of a few weeks, Hollywood will give us four serious dramas about mentally unstable characters. It's a minitrend at best, and most likely coincidental. But it got me thinking about how filmmakers use narrative form to shake up audiences and put them in the same frame of mind as the characters they're watching.
Originally published on Fri October 21, 2011 12:45 pm
Unemployment rates across America didn't change much in September, says the Labor Department. But among the mostly small shifts that occurred, 25 states reported decreases in their unemployment rate. Of the remaining states, 14 saw a higher jobless rate, and 11 remained the same.
This weekend, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet in Brussels with other European Union leaders. Their goal: to settle on a plan to pay the debts of struggling member nations.
Their meeting might go better if Alexander Hamilton's ghost could get a seat at the table.
Hamilton, one of the United States' Founding Fathers, was the fiscal genius who insisted that paying off debts of this union's member states would lead to economic greatness.
A few minutes ago, President Obama announced that the war in Iraq was over.
"After nearly nine years, the long war in Iraq will come to an end by the end of this year," the president said. President Obama said he talked to Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki earlier today and they were both in complete agreement about how to proceed. Obama said that "as promised" by the end of the year all troops will withdraw from the country.
He said that this means the relationship between Iraq and the United States will now be a normal one between two sovereign countries.