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  • Author: Donald Blinken
  • Publication Date: 03-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: My diplomatic experience proved valuable on the historic New York Philharmonic Orchestra's February visit to North Korea in which my wife, Vera, and I participated. Before our departure for Pyongyang, the advice offered to us was, "Take food, you will be hungry" and "Take warm clothes, you will be cold." One of our briefers, a Western diplomat living in Pyongyang comforted us by saying that staying in a hotel assured we would have both light and water at the same time. Because very few Americans have been to North Korea over the past 55 years (the United States and North Korea are still technically at war), we did not know what to expect. Also, such advice did not take into account our privileged status as guests of the government.
  • Topic: Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: United States, New York, North Korea
  • Author: Richard S. Williamson
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: The United States has made great efforts to encourage the full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and to end the unconscionable humanitarian suffering in Darfur. For the past eight years, President Bush has led the work of the US government on Sudan, through a massive humanitarian operation, an integrated development program, sustained and vigorous support for peacekeeping, and significant diplomatic efforts. Early in the administration, Senator John Danforth, whom President Bush empowered as his special envoy in 2001, used great creativity, commitment, and skill in helping to secure the groundbreaking signing in 2005 of the CPA. Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick later devoted his efforts and attention to the crisis in Darfur, culminating in the signing of the Darfur Peace Agreement, and most recently, Special Envoy Andrew Natsios worked diligently through frequent travel to the region and coordination with international partners to bring relief to the people of Sudan.
  • Political Geography: United States, Sudan, Darfur
  • Author: Christopher Sabatini
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: Since formally acceding to the presidency on February 24, 2008, Cuban President Raúl Castro has launched a menu of reforms that, by their contrast to the stated positions of his brother, Fidel Castro, have sparked hope that a new era of change has begun in Cuba. Don't hold your breath. The reforms—from the loosening of agricultural markets, to greater freedom to purchase electronic equipment (including cell phones)—represent little more than an effort to relieve some pressures inside Cuba and to stoke international pressure for a reevaluation of US policy.
  • Political Geography: United States, Cuba
  • Author: Peter E. Cianchette
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: United by a shared commitment to democracy, free enterprise, and sustainable development, the United States and Costa Rica have long enjoyed a good, mutually beneficial relationship. Building on Costa Rica's well-deserved reputation as a stable democracy committed to peace, social progress, and environmental conservation, President Oscar Arias has embarked on a “Peace with Nature” agenda aiming to make Costa Rica become Latin America's first fully developed, carbonneutral country by 2021. However, Costa Rica also faces security threats arising from increased domestic and transnational crime, as well as threats to its prospects for a greener, more prosperous future resulting from persistent weaknesses in the country's businessenabling environment and key infrastructure, such as water, wastewater, energy, and transportation systems.
  • Political Geography: United States, Costa Rica
  • Author: Otto Reich
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: When Álvaro Uribe was sworn in as President of Colombia in August 2002, the question in the minds of US policymakers was when, not whether, the Colombian government would fall into the hands of Marxist terrorists or right-wing paramilitaries. Some wondered if a military coup would come first. Terrorists operated with so little constraint that Uribe took the oath of office with bombs and rockets detonating outside the building he stood in, killing 19 civilians and injuring 60 more.
  • Political Geography: United States, Colombia
  • Author: Donna E. Shalala, Ph.D., Charles E. Cobb
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Ambassadors Review
  • Institution: Council of American Ambassadors
  • Abstract: It is critical that Florida and the United States provide bipartisan support for the 12 Western Hemisphere countries that have formed the alliance called "Pathways to Prosperity in the Americas." These 12 countries that previously have negotiated trade agreements are: Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Peru and the United States.
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Canada, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, Chile, Peru, Guatemala, Florida, El Salvador, Panama