Here are the stories we’re covering today:
In international news:
• US and South Korean united front. Don Kirk on the first-ever meeting Tuesday between President Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung Bak. They put up a united front against an increasingly belligerent North Korea, in contrast to their predecessors.
• Protectionist move. Peter Ford on a new Chinese government edict requiring that economic stimulus money be spent only on Chinese goods, taking the world a step further towards a dangerous international trade war.
• Roots of Iran's conflict. Scott Peterson on how the current power struggle goes back three decades. Supreme Leader Khamenei faces an unprecedented challenge from the old guard of the revolution - Rafsanjani, Mousavi, etc.
• Colonialism's legacy. Robert Marquand on how the recent death of Gabon’s strongman leader has prompted critics to take another look at France’s colonial legacy. When Sarkozy attended the funeral, he was jeered.
• South African soccer. Scott Baldauf on a nation's debate over just how the current Confederations Cup (all top soccer teams in the world) makes South Africa look to the world, and whether it can really get its act together for the 2010 World Cup.
• Al Qaeda in Yemen. Is Al Qaeda on the rise in Yemen?
And in the US:
• Airbus rudder issues. Alexandra Marks obtains a memo from a corporate travel management organization recommending that United Airlines reconsider buying Airbus jets because of their history of rudder problems.
• Health care hits the Hill. Wrangling over healthcare reform begins in earnest on Capitol Hill, as the bill designed by Senator Kennedy enters the amendment process. It’s just one of several plans being considered in the Senate, but the debate over it will make the fault lines clearer.
• Another healthcare vision. Gail Chaddock covers a bipartisan path to healthcare reform proposed by three former lions of the Senate – Daschle, Baker, and Dole.
• Iraqi refugees in the US. Homelessness looms for some of the nearly 10,000 refugees. Patrik Jonsson asks where Washington’s duty to refugees ends, as Americans – and returning soldiers – also struggle to find footing in the economy?
• Still too big to fail? Mark Trumbull takes a further look at the new financial regs, asking how they address the core concern that led to a massive government bailout – namely, that some firms are “too big to fail.”
• The garden blog. Judy Lowe on how native grasses clean up soils contaminated by TNT (and herbicides).