Thursday, October 02, 2008

US to Have Military Command Forces in Africa

The head of the new US military command for Africa (Africom) has told the BBC it has "no hidden agenda"
BBC World News

General William Ward said the command would not be used to gain control of African natural resources such as oil.

He also dismissed fears that the US intended to build large military bases on the continent.

Only one country, Liberia, has offered to host Africom, which is coming into full operation at its headquarters in the German city of Stuttgart.

General Ward said the location of the headquarters, for its 1,300 military and civilian personnel, was less of a concern, given the size of the African continent.

The BBC's Adam Mynott says the creation of Africom is a recognition by the US that Africa and security issues on the continent are now a priority.

It reflects concerns about tackling Islamist extremism, securing oil supplies, and countering Chinese influence in Africa, he says.

But its creation has been met with considerable scepticism, our correspondent says.


Monday, September 29, 2008

Dow plummets record 777 as financial rescue fails

Its biggest single-day fall ever
By Tim Paradis
AP Business Writer

The failure of the bailout package in Congress literally dropped jaws on Wall Street and triggered a historic selloff — including a terrifying decline of nearly 500 points in mere minutes as the vote took place, the closest thing to panic the stock market has seen in years.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 777 points Monday, its biggest single-day fall ever, easily beating the 684 points it lost on the first day of trading after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

As uncertainty gripped investors, the credit markets, which provide the day-to-day lending that powers business in the United States, froze up even further.

At the New York Stock Exchange, traders watched with faces tense and mouths agape as TV screens showed the House vote rejecting the Bush administration's $700 billion plan to buy up bad debt and shore up the financial industry.

See: Dow plummets record 777 as financial rescue fails (AP)