Tag: State Department

Robert O’Brien ‘Looks the Part,’ but Has Spent Little Time Playing It

WASHINGTON — Even his many critics conceded that the former national security adviser John R. Bolton brought useful credentials to the job: decades of foreign policy experience and a keen grasp of how the gears of government turn. Mr. Bolton’s main problem, as it turned out, was that he knew too much. Confident in his […]

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A Love Letter to the State Department

The phrase “the toughest job you’ll ever love” was technically the slogan for the Peace Corps in 1961 under President Kennedy. But there’s a good case to be made that these days it applies to the State Department. The complexity of a globalized economy, an immigration debate reduced to sound bites, polarization at home and […]

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For Mike Pompeo, a Moment of Singular Influence

WASHINGTON — It took about five minutes after John R. Bolton’s unceremonious fall from grace this week before Washington’s official whisper factory started floating a surprising suggestion for a replacement: Mike Pompeo. Not that Mr. Pompeo would give up his post as secretary of state to succeed Mr. Bolton as national security adviser. Instead, he […]

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Iran Breaks With More Limits in Nuclear Deal as It Pushes for European Aid

Iran’s atomic energy agency said Saturday that it was deliberately violating another set of limits on its nuclear research and production that were imposed under the 2015 agreement renounced by President Trump last year. But the details suggested that Iran was more interested in increasing pressure on European nations to find a way around American-imposed […]

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Jason Greenblatt, a Designer of Trump’s Middle East Peace Plan, Is Leaving the Administration

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s special envoy for Middle East peace, Jason Greenblatt, will leave the administration, according to a senior Trump official, raising new questions about a long-delayed plan to resolve the Israel-Palestinian conflict. Mr. Greenblatt has worked closely since early 2017 with Mr. Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, to design what Mr. […]

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In Hong Kong Protests, China Angrily Connects Dots Back to U.S.

HONG KONG — Jenny Lee, 26, marched with a friend through the sweltering streets of Hong Kong the other day, hoisting an American flag over her shoulder. “We hold this to tell the world that we want democracy and freedom,” she explained. The authorities in China, however, are holding up those kinds of gestures as […]

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Leslie H. Gelb, 82, Former Diplomat and New York Times Journalist, Dies

Leslie H. Gelb, an iconoclastic former American diplomat, journalist and prodigious commentator on world affairs, died on Saturday at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center in Manhattan. He was 82. The cause was renal failure brought on by diabetes, his wife, Judith Gelb, said. Mr. Gelb was 30 years old when in 1967 he took day-to-day […]

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Pompeo Fuels Further Talk of Senate Race

They were the types of meetings more typical for a political candidate than for the nation’s top diplomat. But on a trip on Tuesday to New York, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Ronald S. Lauder, the cosmetics heir and billionaire Republican donor, two people briefed on the meeting said, speaking on the condition […]

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Trump Expected to Nominate Pompeo Deputy to Be Ambassador to Russia

WASHINGTON — President Trump is expected to name John Sullivan, the deputy secretary of state, to be the next ambassador to Russia, replacing Jon Huntsman Jr. as his liaison to Moscow, a senior administration official said. The post of ambassador to Moscow is a prestigious diplomatic position that is challenging always, but even more so […]

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Rethinking America’s Approach to the World

The White House has ordered a freeze on up to $4 billion that Congress approved for global health, United Nations peacekeeping and other foreign aid. Unless lawmakers can overcome a complicated legislative process and force a reversal by the end of the fiscal year on Sept. 30, that money could be denied to programs fighting […]

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Peace Road Map for Afghanistan Will Let Taliban Negotiate Women’s Rights

WASHINGTON — Roya Rahmani is neither royalty nor from a powerful family, so she was initially surprised when she was appointed as the first woman to be Afghanistan’s ambassador to the United States. Now she understands why: to signal Kabul’s commitment to women’s rights as the Trump administration pushes for a peace deal with the […]

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Trump Administration Approves F-16 Fighter Jet Sales to Taiwan

The Trump administration is moving forward with an $8 billion sale of F-16 fighter jets to Taiwan, American officials said Friday. The move is certain to further anger China at a time when a long-running trade war between Washington and Beijing has upended relations between the world’s two largest economies and contributed to stock market […]

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Trump’s Hong Kong Caution Isolates Him From Congress, Allies and Advisers

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s cautious distance from Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement has left him politically isolated from both parties in Congress, the State Department, European allies and his most hawkish advisers at the White House. Despite ringing declarations of support for the protesters from leading Democrats and Republicans as well as European officials, Mr. Trump […]

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The U.S. Has Joined Secret Talks With Israel and the U.A.E. The Topic? Iran.

WASHINGTON — The United States is participating in secret talks between the United Arab Emirates and Israel to confront threats posed by Iran, a shared adversary among the three countries. The talks aim to broaden cooperation for military and intelligence sharing between the United Arab Emirates and Israel, two cautiously allied Middle Eastern nations, a […]

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Free Austin Tice

Two anniversaries approach for Austin Tice, an American freelance journalist. On Sunday, he will turn 38; three days later, he will start his eighth year in captivity, probably somewhere in Syria. Mr. Tice is a graduate of the Georgetown School of Foreign Service, served as a Marine officer and was enrolled at Georgetown Law. But […]

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U.S. Issues Travel Warning to Hong Kong Due to ‘Confrontational’ Protests

HONG KONG — The United States on Wednesday issued an advisory warning people about traveling to Hong Kong, urging visitors to “exercise increased caution” because of “confrontational” protests in the semiautonomous Chinese territory. The alert by the State Department comes two days after a general strike and widespread demonstrations shook the city, and as Chinese […]

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Trump Adds to Sanctions on Russia Over Skripals

President Trump on Thursday signed an executive order imposing new sanctions on Russia, responding to growing pressure from Congress to further punish Moscow after a nerve agent attack last year against a former Russian spy in Britain. It is the second round of sanctions by the administration after a botched attempt in March 2018 to […]

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The White House Blocked My Report on Climate Change and National Security

Ten years ago, I left my job as a tenured university professor to work as an intelligence analyst for the federal government, primarily in the State Department but with an intervening tour at the National Intelligence Council. My focus was on the impact of environmental and climate change on national security, a growing concern of […]

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U.S. Couple Sues State Dept. Over Policy Denying Their Baby Citizenship

This summer, James Derek Mize and his husband, Jonathan Gregg, celebrated their daughter’s first birthday at home in Atlanta with a party that coincided with WorldPride. Dressed in a rainbow outfit, the birthday girl, Simone, did what toddlers are bound to do: Took a fleeting glance at her presents and instead found delight in her […]

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Iran Rejects Pompeo’s Suggestion It Is Willing to Negotiate Over Missile Program

WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday that Iran appeared willing to negotiate over its missile program “for the first time,” in what he and President Trump presented as evidence that sanctions and military pressure were working, less than a month after the president halted a planned military strike against Iran. But […]

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