US Gov't Peacekeeping Issues

United Nations Fund Up for Scrutiny as Republicans Continue Savings Hunt

House Foreign Affairs Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen will fire her first legislative salvo against the United Nations this week when the chamber takes up her bill to force the return of money the United States overpaid to the international organization.

According to the legislation, which has yet to be formally introduced, the United Nations has owed the United States $179 million in overpayments to the U.N.’s Tax Equalization Fund since Dec. 31, 2009. It is currently scheduled for House consideration Feb. 9.

US to rebuild Sudan ties once south vote accepted

Published February 2, 2011 by AFP
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KHARTOUM (AFP) – The United States will start normalising its ties with Sudan once the outcome of the southern Sudanese independence referendum is approved, deputy US secretary of state James Steinberg said Wednesday.

"Once the results are certified, that will allow us ... to begin to take steps towards normalisation, including dealing with the state sponsors (of terrorism) list, as well as deepening our diplomatic ties," Steinberg told reporters in Khartoum after meeting Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali Karti.

Illinois soldiers now in the middle of Egypt tension Read more: http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20110130/news/799999772/#ixzz1Cj0MQGcv

Published January 31, 2011 by Daily Herald
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Like swirling riptides, there are two undercurrents pulling and pushing the crisis in Egypt.

Israel and the Suez Canal.

A half-world away, 440 Illinois National Guard troopers are right between the two – literally.

Somalia: Counting the cost of anarchy

Published January 26, 2011 by BBC
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Somalia has not been under the control of a single national government since 26 January 1991, when military strongman Siad Barre was toppled. What impact has 20 years of war and instability had on Somalia and its people?

Republican Congress to U.N.: drop dead

Published January 25, 2011 by Foreign Policy - Turtle Bay
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The new Republican-controlled House leadership sent a clear message that it intends to place the United Nations at the center of its foreign policy mission, stepping up scrutiny of U.N. spending, setting conditions for continued U.S. financial support, and casting a spotlight on the shortcomings of the U.N.'s human rights council.

The new chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Ileana Ros Lehtinen (R-FL), arranged for the hearing to begin with a group of prominent critics describing the U.N.'s failings.

GOP Puts U.N. Reform Back on Agenda as 'Urgent' Problem

Published January 25, 2011 by Fox News
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Once again, the United Nations is in the cross-hairs of a U.S. congressional committee today, and the themes from its critics are all too familiar: wastage of U.S. taxpayer dollars, institutionalized corruption, a “culture of impunity,” covert assistance to America’s enemies and a bias on human rights issues in favor of dictatorships and autocracy, and against Israel.

US Republican lawmakers taking aim at UN

WASHINGTON (AP) — Newly empowered Republican lawmakers are taking their first shots at the United Nations, depicting it as bloated and ineffective as they seek to cut U.S. funding for the world body.

On Tuesday, a House of Representatives panel aired criticisms of the U.N. at a briefing expected to prescribe congressional action.

A House Divided on Diplomacy and Foreign Aid

Published January 24, 2011 by The Will and the Wallet blog
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House Republicans came to Washington ready to tackle the national debt, and the budget for diplomacy and foreign aid is one of the areas on which they have focused most prominently. There is tension, however, between reducing federal spending and the priority that many conservatives place on long-term security and investment commitments to Iraq and Afghanistan.

UN's Ban to Combat Criticism by U.S. House Republicans as Funds Questioned

Published January 21, 2011 by Bloomberg
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United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said he will try to blunt a threat by Republican leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives to withhold financial support for the world body by meeting with them to defend his record.

Republican Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida, new head of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, last July called the UN a “stew of corruption, mismanagement and negligence.”

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