The US Democratic party, shaken by its loss on "moral values" in last November's elections, has embarked on a rethink of its approach to the core issue of abortion rights. \nTwo of the leading candidates for the leadership of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) have called on the party to embrace opponents of abortion -- an idea that would once have been unthinkable in an organization where the right to choose is sacrosanct. \nSenator Hillary Rodham Clinton, with an eye to her potential candidacy in 2008, also joined the debate this week, telling a largely pro-choice crowd she sought "common ground" on the US' most divisive issue. \n"We can all recognize that abortion in many ways represents a sad, even tragic, choice to many, many women," Clinton told a rally marking the 32nd anniversary of the Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion. \nAnn Lewis, an aide to Clinton who was until recently the director of the DNC women's vote center, insisted the senator remained staunchly pro-choice. \n"There is no reason to think that talking about moral values is synonymous with overturning the Supreme Court decision," she said. \nBut it is impossible to ignore the impetus for the Democrats' soul-searching: exit polls from last November's election found that 22 percent of voters had been swayed by "moral values." \nThe discovery comes at a time when supporters of abortion rights are already feeling under siege, with the religious right chalking up a number of victories in the first four years of the Bush administration. \nThe very idea of a rethink has outraged powerful women's organizations within the Democratic establishment. They argue that Senator John Kerry's failure to make his case on national security or the economy played a far larger role in the Democrats' defeat. But several prominent Democrats have called on the party to recast its approach.
An Australian university student who has never visited China and has only a modest social media following would seem an unlikely target for the Chinese government. However, when a Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman personally denounced Drew Pavlou at a news conference, it was just the next phase in an extraordinary campaign against the 21-year-old that has fueled concerns over China’s targeting of critics overseas. Pavlou first placed himself in the superpower’s sights when in July last year he organized a small sit-in at the University of Queensland, where he studies, to protest against various Chinese government policies. Since then, the Global
‘ASKED TO MOVE OUT’: Indonesian coast guard personnel argued with a Chinese vessel over territorial claims after it entered the country’s exclusive economic zone An Indonesian patrol ship confronted a Chinese coast guard vessel that spent almost three days in waters where Indonesia claims economic rights and that are near the southernmost part of China’s disputed claims to the South China Sea. The Indonesian Maritime Security Agency on Friday night detected Chinese ship 5204 entering Indonesia’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in what Indonesia calls the North Natuna Sea. The agency sent a patrol ship that closed within 1km of the Chinese coast guard vessel and they communicated to affirm their position and their nation’s claims to the area, Indonesian Maritime Security Agency head Aan Kurnia said. “We
BEFORE WINTER COMES: Snow cuts off roads into Ladakh for four months or more each year, so the crunch is on to get food, tents and high-altitude equipment to Leh From deploying mules to large transport aircraft, the Indian military has activated its entire logistics network to transport supplies to thousands of troops for a harsh winter along a bitterly disputed Himalayan border with China. In the past few months, one of India’s biggest military logistics exercises in years has brought vast quantities of ammunition, equipment, fuel, winter supplies and food into Ladakh, a region bordering Tibet that India administers as a union territory, officials said. The move was triggered by a border standoff with China in the snow deserts of Ladakh that began in May and escalated in June into hand-to-hand
Since her personal telephone number was posted online, Hong Kong democracy advocate and Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions chairperson Carol Ng has received menacing calls from strangers and been bombarded with messages calling her a “cockroach.” She is not alone. A sophisticated and shady Web site called HK Leaks has ramped up its “doxxing” — where people’s personal details are published online — of Hong Kong democracy advocates, targeting those it says have broken Hong Kong’s National Security Law. Promoted by groups linked to the Chinese Chinese Communist Party and hosted on Russia-based servers, HK Leaks has become the most prominent “doxxing”