'A servant queen': World pays tribute to Queen Elizabeth II
Across the globe, the death of Queen Elizabeth II has prompted reflections on the historic sweep of her reign and how she succeeded in presiding over the end of Britain’s colonial empire and embracing the independence of her former dominions.
Renowned pastry chef Roland Mesnier passes
Chef Roland Mesnier spent 25 years as Executive Pastry Chef in the White House. Prior to going to work for former President Jimmy Carter and First Lady Rosalynn Carter, he was executive pastry chef at The Homestead for four memorable years. HOT SPRINGS – Renowned and much-admired pastry chef Roland Mesnier, who spent four yearstherecorderonline.com
David McCullough, Pulitzer-winning historian, dies at 89
David McCullough, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author whose lovingly crafted narratives on subjects ranging from the Brooklyn Bridge to Presidents John Adams and Harry Truman made him among the most popular and influential historians of his time, has died.
Biden calls former VP Mondale 'giant' of political history
President Joe Biden has saluted his “friend of five decades” Walter Mondale, traveling to the University of Minnesota to remember the former vice president and Democratic Party elder whose memorial service was delayed for a year due to the pandemic.
Black lawmakers blast plans for monument to Justice Thomas
Georgia’s Republican-controlled Senate voted Monday to erect a monument to conservative U.S. Supreme Court Justice and Georgia native Clarence Thomas after heated debate and objections from several Black senators, one of whom called Thomas a “hypocrite and a traitor.” The monument would be financed by private donations and would be erected somewhere at the state Capitol if the measure were to receive final passage. Statues honoring people at the state Capitol are generally put up after their deaths.news.yahoo.com
The Green Lantern Theory Destroyed Jimmy Carter’s Presidency. Now It’s Hitting Joe Biden.
Mario Tama/GettyThe problem with being a president who promises to clean things up after a villainous predecessor is that the press corps treats you like a superhero—which sounds like a good thing until you realize that just means you get blamed for things you can’t control.That’s what happened to Jimmy Carter, and it’s what’s happening to Joe Biden now thanks to what Dartmouth political scientist Brendan Nyhad has called “the Green Lantern Theory” in which voters believe a president can do anytnews.yahoo.com
Why people clean the bones of their dead relatives every year in this Mexican village
In the days leading up to Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, families in Pomuch, Mexico, take their deceased relatives' skeletons out of their tombs for their annual cleaning. The ritual is said to originate with the Mayans, and today, only Catholics here practice it. The pandemic has kept people away from the cemetery for the past two years, and younger generations are unlikely to carry on the tradition for much longer.news.yahoo.com
Annette Carter, daughter-in-law of former president, dies
Annette Davis Carter, who campaigned for father-in-law Jimmy Carter during his successful bid for the White House in 1976 and spent nearly 50 years in Georgia's Carter clan, has died. Carter's son Josh Carter wrote an online obituary for his mother that was shared by the former president's church in Plains, on Wednesday. Annette Davis met Jeff Carter at Georgia Southwestern State University and the two married in April 1975, Josh Carter wrote.news.yahoo.com
Jimmy Carter, wife Rosalynn celebrate 75 years of marriage
Former President Jimmy Carter on Saturday turned to his wife Rosalynn and thanked her for 75 years of marriage, telling her that she's always been right for him. “I want to express particular gratitude for being the right woman that I chose for my wife," Carter said at a 75th wedding anniversary celebration in his hometown of Plains, Georgia. About 300 friends and family members attended the event at Plains High School, a portion of which was livestreamed.news.yahoo.com
Jimmy, Rosalynn Carter mark 75 years of ‘full partnership’
The young midshipman needed a date one evening while he was home from the U.S. Naval Academy, so his younger sister paired him with a family friend who already had a crush. Nearly eight decades later, Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter are still together in the same tiny town where they were born, grew up and had that first outing. In between, they’ve traveled the world as Naval officer and military spouse, American president and first lady, and finally as human rights and public health ambassadors.news.yahoo.com
Egypt, Turkey officials meet for talks to reset frayed ties
Egyptian and Turkish officials met Wednesday for talks aiming to reset ties between the two regional powers after years of enmity. The two-day “political consultations” in Cairo are chaired by Hamdi Loza, Egypt’s deputy foreign minister, and his Turkish counterpart Sedat Onal. Egypt’s Foreign Ministry, which announced the meetings in a statement late Tuesday, described the talks as “exploratory discussions” that would focus on “the necessary steps that may lead towards the normalization of relations between the two countries, bilaterally and in the regional context.”news.yahoo.com
American Troops in Iraq Have Been Pummeled by 3 Attacks in 3 Days. Will Biden Strike Back?
AHMAD AL-RUBAYEFor the third day in a row, U.S. bases in Iraq have come under fire from rocket attacks.No one has claimed responsibility for the latest spate of attacks, which has not proved deadly so far, but the U.S. has routinely accused Iran-backed militias of attacking American interests in Iraq.The question now—as the attacks escalate—is what is President Joe Biden going to do about it?The Biden administration faces a Herculean task in confronting these incidents, in part because it was left with a blueprint from the last administration that sought retaliation every time American personnel were killed.When an American contractor was killed in a 2019 rocket attack targeting a K-1 base—which the U.S. blamed on Kataib Hezbollah—U.S. forces carried out retaliatory airstrikes against Iran-backed militants that December, setting off a cycle of violent back-to-back clashes. Within days, the U.S. embassy was hit by protests, American forces killed Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani, and Iran fired ballistic missiles at Al-Asad base, where U.S. troops were stationed, in January 2020.That cycle is one that the Biden administration wants to avoid. And while Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has been adamant that the U.S. will defend its forces in Iraq, its troops are backed into a corner in weeks like this when rocket attacks strike three U.S. positions. Rockets were fired into the Ayn al Asad airbase in Western Iraq on Tuesday, there was an attack on the Balad air base north of Baghdad, which houses U.S. contractors on Monday, and another on the U.S. base at Baghdad airport on Sunday.The Biden administration doesn’t want to rush into a violent response, but it doesn’t want to look like it’s doing nothing. That is why State Department and Pentagon officials often evade questions about which specific groups are responsible for a given attack, and how they intend to react. If they don’t name the culprit, then there is no onus on them to respond.In February, the U.S. launched airstrikes on Iranian-backed militias in Syria in response to a previous attack on American forces.This was an example of the delicate balancing act the U.S. is so desperately trying to perfect: to respond without escalating. By attacking Iranian-backed forces in Syria, the U.S. did not violate Iraqi sovereignty, which is a sensitive issue in Iraq and has led to calls for the U.S. to leave. American forces are in Iraq at the invitation of Baghdad to help fight ISIS. When the Trump administration hinted in December 2018 that the U.S. might withdraw from Syria and use Iraq to “watch” Iran, many Iraqi politicians were stunned by the proposal.During the war against ISIS, an uneasy truce existed between the U.S. and Iran. When the Iran deal was in the works in 2015, U.S.-led Coalition forces came to Iraq to help train, equip, advise, and assist Iraqis to push back ISIS. But by 2017, with Trump in office and ISIS largely defeated in Iraq, tensions began to grow between the U.S. and pro-Iranian politicians in Iraq.The Badr Organization, whose leader Hadi al-Amiri served alongside the Iranians in the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, called for the U.S. to leave. Qais Khazali, a militia leader who had once been detained by the U.S. at Camp Cropper, amplified threats against the U.S.By May 2019, rocket attacks—often using 107mm rockets linked to Iran—were targeting the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, a U.S. facility at Baghdad International Airport, and U.S. forces at Camp Taji and other bases. By July 2020 attacks increased to weekly incidents, and the U.S. sent air defense, including Patriots, to Iraq to protect against ballistic missile threats from Iran.This could mean that pro-Iranian groups in Iraq are seeking a kind of maximum-pressure campaign against the U.S., similar to the Trump administration’s maximum pressure on Iran.This puts the Biden administration in a precarious position. Unlike in Afghanistan—where the U.S. is withdrawing—it wants to preserve a presence in Iraq, and today, American troops have been drawn down and consolidated in more easily defended locations, in part due to the frequent attacks. Consolidation means fewer potential targets, and forces left K-1, Q-West, Camp Taji, and a series of other posts in 2020.Still, recent attacks in the past three months show just how vulnerable U.S. forces are, regardless of the consolidation tactics they take. The message appears to be that Iranian-backed forces will continue to strike wherever U.S. forces are located, whether on the giant sprawling Asad base or in Erbil.The White House is left with several options in response. It can hold Iran directly responsible, but that could lead to a military escalation. It can also use the attacks as leverage to levy a new regional Iran deal, requiring them to stop as part of the agreement. Alternatively, it could demand these groups be held responsible by Iraqi authorities, but the track records of those investigations are bleak. No militias have ever been charged for these attacks by the government, which is often reluctant to prosecute these groups because of their links to powerful political parties who have threatened Iraq’s president and prime minister in the past.The final two options are to escalate U.S. airstrikes in Syria to punish groups linked to Iran, or to do nothing at all. Doing nothing means letting pro-Iran groups dictate the tempo and escalation of the conflict. More airstrikes risk the appearance of taking action while failing to send a serious message to Iran. Small, tit-for-tat attacks will not make Iran reconsider its policy of harassing U.S. forces in Iraq.The Trump administration tried to set the bar by retaliating in response to any casualties, which led to dozens of attacks by militias. Prior to Trump, other U.S. administrations preferred to err on the side of doing nothing, putting the U.S. on the backfoot and giving pro-Iranian groups the upper hand.The White House is facing two loaded questions here. Are the attacks in Iraq a purely Iraqi problem, with a local solution? Or is the goal to stop the attacks in Tehran, requiring a regional approach that would address tensions from Yemen to Syria, Lebanon to Israel? Either path presents the administration with challenges that three previous administrations haven’t been able to solve.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.news.yahoo.com
Iraq's health minister resigns over Baghdad hospital fire
Iraq's health minister resigned Tuesday over a week after a deadly blaze killed dozens of people in a Baghdad hospital for COVID-19 patients that officials said was caused by negligence. Iraq's prime minister approved the resignation request submitted by Health Minister Hasan al-Tamimi, according to a statement from his office. The resignation came shortly after the Cabinet voted on the recommendations of an investigative committee that probed the catastrophic fire at Ibn al-Khatib hospital.news.yahoo.com