The Bigger Picture
By biconews On 29 Feb, 2000 At 05:00 AM | Categorized As Archives | With 0 Comments

By Suzannah Skolnik-Smith

China warns Taiwan that it means business

As Taiwan prepares for its second direct presidential election, China threatened on Monday to use force against the island if it continues to avoid negotiations on reuniting with China.

The policy paper issued by China’s State Council reinforced old warnings that it would implement military force should Taiwan declare independence, but said for the first time that it would also take such action should Taiwan continue to dodge talks about political reunification.

China views Taiwan as a “break-away province,” a notion which the Taiwanese have rejected ever since 1949, when the Nationalist forces of Chiang Kai-shek took refuge there from the Communists.

Taiwan seems for the most part unmoved by China’s threat, and last week urged the mainland to cease worrying about sovereignty and focus its attention on improving relations with Taiwan. Each of the main presidential candidates in Taiwan has declared his desire to strengthen economic ties with China and to resume talks with Beijing.

In presidential race, McCain catches up while Bradley stumbles in polls

Last week the presidential campaign saw a fierce debate between Democratic candidates Al Gore and Bill Bradley, and two primary election wins last Tuesday for Republican candidate John McCain - a predictable one in his home state of Arizona and a major surprise in Michigan. The victories renewed the senator’s confidence after a disappointing defeat in South Carolina by Governor George W. Bush, who now holds only a slim financial advantage over McCain.

Last Monday evening Vice President Gore and former senator Bill Bradley met at Harlem’s Apollo Theater for their first spotlighted debate since Gore’s win in the Feb. 1 New Hampshire primary. Both candidates took punches as the 90-minute debate, sponsored by CNN and Time, got underway.

Before a largely black and Hispanic audience, Bradley accused the vice president of failing minorities on affirmative action and gun control, labeling him a conservative Democrat, and Gore fired back, calling Bradley’s charges a desperate attempt to build himself up. “The problem is, these attacks don’t solve any problems,” Gore said.

The Vice President’s campaign strategies seem to be effective. According to recent New York Times/CBS News polls, twice as many Democrats who are likely to vote in New York’s primary next week said they would probably vote for Gore.

UN predicts another year of extreme starvation

The United Nations predicted last Wednesday that 8,000,000 Ethiopians - about one-seventh of that country’s population - will suffer from hunger or starvation this year. UN aid experts encouraged allies of Ethiopia not to delay in taking action, as they did in 1985 when the death toll from famine in Ethiopia reached over 1,000,000.

Save the Children, an international aid organization, announced Thursday that it has established an Ethiopian famine fund, and on Friday the UN World Food Program began its worldwide campaign to raise $50 million for the Ethiopians.

The UN and private organizations are working in the most devastated section of Ethiopia this week, where an estimated 2,000,000 people are in need of emergency assistance. However, the nations poor transportation system means that it may take weeks for workers to get aid to the hungry, and officials fear that for many Ethiopians it is already too late.

Officials confirm election results in Iran

On Saturday, a final vote count showed a near-sweep of Iran’s capital, Tehran, by reformists in the recent election. The vote confirmed the reformist victory over Iranian hard-liners, giving the reformists control over the Parliament for the first time since the 1979 Islamic revolution brought Muslim fundamentalists to power.

The official Islamic Republic News Agency announced that the reformists won 170 seats, hard-liners and conservatives 45 seats and independents, ten. There are 65 seats are to be decided in April.

Led by Mohammad Reza Khatami, the brother of Iran’s president, the reformists won 29 of the 30 seats in Tehran. Former President Hashemi Rafsanjani, a conservative, won the 30th seat with 25.58 percent of the vote, barely surpassing the 25 percent minimum needed to avoid a run-off.

In a Friday sermon, Rafsanjani spoke against the United States, calling its Iran policy contradictory and criticizing a U.S. Senate bill that permits sanctions against countries providing military aid to Iran.

On Thursday, U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright proposed diplomatic discussion about such Iranian concerns as the U.S. accusations that Iran sponsors terrorism and is trying to sabotage Middle East peacemaking.

Fox Television unveils plans to cancel marriage show

The Chairman of Fox Television Entertainment, Sandy Grushow, canceled the network’s Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire? last Monday after the show incited a national debate over marriage and money. Grushow had already decided not to re-broadcast the show’s premiere after it was discovered that the millionaire groom, Rick Rockwell, was the subject of a 1991 restraining order for threatening his former fiancée.

Grushow said that the cancellation was one step toward weed [sic] out shows that he calls “reality specials,” such as Fox’s When Good Pets Go Bad and Worlds Scariest Police Shootouts. Grushow said that such shows only exacerbate Fox’s reputation for airing exploitative material the very reputation, he says, Fox is attempting to shed.

Diallo jury finds cops not guilty

The trial of four New York police officers who last year shot and killed Amadou Diallo, an unarmed immigrant from Guinea, ended on Friday, when the jury found all four men not guilty. The four may still face federal prosecution for civil rights violations and may be sued on wrongful death charges by Diallo’s family.

Officers Kenneth Boss, Sean Carroll, Edward McMellon and Richard Murphy, all of whom had pled not guilty to second-degree murder, were acquitted on all charges by a jury of eight whites and four blacks. On Thursday the jurors twice asked the judge, New York State Supreme Court Justice Joseph Teresi, to reread definitions of charges ranging from first-degree manslaughter which carries a maximum sentence of 25 years, to criminally negligent homicide, which could result in a sentence of probation without jail time.

In protest of the verdict, hundreds of Bronx residents marched from Diallo’s apartment building, where candles, flowers and written messages filled the vestibule in which he was shot. Police reported 15 arrests on charges of disorderly conduct in the vicinity of the protests.

About - Founded over 100 years ago we are the shared newspaper of Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges. From campus happenings to global news, we've got you covered.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>