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Russia sends long-range strategic bombers, nuclear warships, 1k troops to Venezuela for joint military exercises
Two Russian strategic bombers have landed in Venezuela as part of military maneuvers, the Interfax news agency reported today, at a time when US-Russian relations are at their most strained since the cold war. Interfax cited a Russian defense ministry statement as saying the two Tu-160 strategic bombers landed today to carry out training flights over neutral waters in the next few days before returning to Russia.
The arrival of the Russian strategic warplanes in what the US considers its backyard followed a statement at the weekend by the Venezuelan government saying that four Russian ships would participate in joint exercises in the Caribbean this year. Venezuela said a taskforce including four Russian naval ships and 1,000 Russian military personnel would take part in mid-November exercises with Venezuelan frigates, patrol boats, submarines and aircraft. Confirming a visit would be made, Russia said its ships would include the heavy cruiser Peter the Great and the anti-submarine ship Admiral Chabanenko. Anti-submarine planes would also be sent to Venezuela temporarily, it said.
Season turnaround: an emotional Federer claims 5th consecutive US Open victory, sets sights on Sampras record
So many of Roger Federer’s 13 grand slam trophies had been presented as the smooth work of a genius, as if there were nothing simpler in the world for the Swiss than easing through a draw-sheet. However, his latest triumph was not quite like that.
While Federer winning a fifth consecutive US Open title could never be seen as a shock result, he felt as though this slam title “had a different flavor”. And New York clearly savored that “different flavor”; here was something new in the Federer narrative.
Perhaps the tennis public had previously started to take Federer a bit for granted, believing that his slam victories had become almost too easy. His tennis at the start of this year was complicated by a bout of glandular fever, he lost in the semi-finals at the Australian Open to Novak Djokovic, and then finished as the runner-up to Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros and Wimbledon. The top ranking switched to the Majorcan over the summer. read more »
Ron Paul addresses crowd of more than 10000 people at Minneapolis rally, counter-convention rivals RNC next door
MINNE- APOLIS, Minnesota (CNN) -- While Republicans pow- wowed in St. Paul, sup- porters of Ron Paul threw their own party in neighboring Minneapolis. "Freedom brings people together," Paul said before a sold-out crowd at Tuesday's Rally for the Republic.
Paul, who said he entered the presidential race reluctantly, told the roaring audience, "I lost my skepticism. I hope you lost your apathy." As the congressman stepped on stage, red, white and blue confetti fell from the ceiling during a two-minute standing ovation.
Paul said he entered the presidential race not because of what he wanted to do but because of what he did not want to do. "I did not want to run people's lives. I did not want to run the economy and I did not want to run the world. I didn't have the authority to do it, and I didn't have the Constitution behind me to do it," said Paul, who has served in the House of Representatives for more than 30 years.
Brad Pitt rescues soaking fan from lake at 65th annual Venice Film Festival, picks up Best Actor trophy from '07
Brad Pitt became a hero yesterday at the 65th annual Venice Film Festival after he saved a young fan from falling into a lake.
The star was happily signing autographs for a group of young fans on a boat – but one overwhelmed teen tripped and fell into the water. Pitt acted quickly and grabbed the youngster out of the water and out of harm’s way before he then continued to sign his book. The rescued youngster certainly won't forget why he is a Brad fan.
Brad Pitt and George Clooney came to the Festival for the world premiere of "Burn After Reading" from Oscar winners Joel and Ethan Coen. They were joined there by the Coen brothers, along with co-stars Tilda Swinton and Frances McDormand.
Two Number Ones – China in Gold, U.S. in Total
The Beijing Olympics have come to a close after 16 days of thrilling competition - with the home nation sat on top of the gold medal table.
China has spent seven years planning for this event. It must be relieved that these Olympics are being hailed as both a sporting and an operational success. Worries about air pollution, protesters and media freedom were eventually overshadowed by what went on in the sporting arenas.
At the closing ceremony the International Olympic Committee President, Jacques Rogge, said they had been "truly exceptional games".
Best of the best
Worldwide, 200 countries provided a staggering 5,000 hours of coverage through rights-holding broadcast partners. In China, 842 million people - more than twice the population of the United States - tuned in to watch some part of opening ceremony. read more »
Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili told CNN Russia occupies one-third of his country. US and Poland set missile deal
WASHINGTON — The United States and Poland reached a long-stalled deal on Thursday to place an American missile defense base on Polish territory, in the strongest reaction so far to Russia’s military operation in Georgia.
Russia reacted angrily, saying that the move would worsen relations with the United States that have already been strained severely in the week since Russian troops entered separatist enclaves in Georgia, a close American ally. But the deal reflected growing alarm in countries like Poland, once a conquered Soviet client state, about a newly rich and powerful Russia’s intentions in its former cold war sphere of power. In fact, negotiations dragged on for 18 months — but were completed only as old memories and new fears surfaced in recent days.
Impact of Iraq War: US weakened. EU distracted. Russia’s $18.9 bil trade surplus & troops deeper into Georgia - nations panic
Fears were raised as Russian troops opened a second front by pushing deep into the west of Georgia. Yesterday other former Soviet bloc countries warned that the Kremlin was becoming ever more aggressive and authoritarian and could try to restore control to more of its former territories.
Czech Republic foreign minister Karel Schwarzenberg compared Russia’s incursion into Georgia to the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 to crush the so-called Prague Spring uprising against Communist rule.
Schwarzenberg said the Czech Republic supports Georgia and added that “it is a sad coincidence” that the fighting in Georgia takes place at the moment when the country is marking the 40th anniversary of the invasion of Warsaw Pact troops in August 1968. And the presidents of Poland and three Baltic states, formerly members of the Soviet bloc, labeled Moscow’s approach “imperialist and revisionist.” read more »