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Analysts: Downgrades Could Have Been Worse

WASHINGTON — The decision by Standard & Poor’s to strip France of its prized triple-A credit rating and downgrade eight other European countries slammed a continent struggling with a debt crisis and an economic slowdown. But beleaguered Europeans can take some comfort: It could have been…

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Qatari Leader: Send Arab Troops Into Syria

The leader of Qatar has said Arab troops should be sent to Syria to stop the regime’s violent crackdown on protesters. Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani’s comments, made to CBS, are the first by an Arab leader calling for the deployment of troops inside Syria. They come amid growing claims that a team of Arab League observers dispatched…

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Tunisians Mark Anniversary Of President’s Ouster

TUNIS, Tunisia (CNN) — Thousands of people gathered on the main boulevard in Tunis on Saturday to commemorate the first anniversary of a demonstration that toppled the president and set in motion a string of revolts across the Arab world. What came to be known as the Arab Spring saw presidents removed from power in…

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Steps to Defuse a Crisis

WASHINGTON — As the United States and Iran move closer toward open confrontation, it’s important that both take quiet steps to avoid the miscalculations and misunderstandings that can lead to an inadvertent military conflict. It’s been done before: During the Cuban missile crisis in 1962, President Kennedy used a back channel to communicate American resolve to the Soviets, and also ...

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The Damascus dilemma

The Arab League is in a quandary. With its observer mission in Syria in jeopardy after an attack on one team of observers and allegations from the Syrian opposition of being ineffective in deterring the government’s brutalities, it will have to rework a plan that is mindful of any shortcomings. However, blaming the monitors is hardly justifiable. For one, they ...

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First Person / Much has improved in Haiti since the earthquake; much has not

Two years ago, a massive earthquake devastated Haiti. My first visit to Haiti was in May 2010, four months later. I went with a photographer and the director of my medical relief and development organization, Global Links, to explore ways that we could help rebuild a public health system that had been grossly inadequate even before the…

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Marine video hurts U.S. war efforts

Even during war, civilized countries recognize there are lines that should not be crossed. The Pentagon is investigating an Internet video that claims to show four Marines urinating on the bodies of three men in standard Afghan clothing. The chest of one of…

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News of the Wired

Disunion follows the Civil War as it unfolded.Tags: Maps, Media, Newspapers, telegraph, The Civil War The advent of the Internet has prompted endless claims that we are living through an unprecedented revolution in communication, one that has annihilated the concept of distance. Yet the real revolution came with the arrival of the telegraph in the 19th century. The innovations of ...

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U.S. Faces New Challenge of Fewer Troops in Europe

WASHINGTON — With word that the Pentagon will bring two combat brigades home from Germany, the Obama administration faces a challenge to convince Atlantic allies that the military’s new orders to refocus on the Asia-Pacific region, while sustaining its role in the Middle East, will not mean abandoning Europe to fit shrinking budgets. Connect With Us on Twitter Follow @nytimesworld ...

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Mossad ‘posed as CIA to recruit fighters’

Agents with Israel’s spy agency have posed as CIA agents in operations to recruit members of the Pakistani group Jundallah, according to a report in Foreign Policy magazine. Using US dollars and passports, the agents passed themselves off as members of the US’ Central Intelligence Agency in the operations, according to memos from 2007 and 2008, said the report which ...

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