NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) delivered a foreign policy focused speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference Thursday, arguing that America's economic strength is related to her ability to exert influence globally.
"Only one nation on earth is capable of rallying the free people of this world to stand up to totalitarianism," Rubio argued before the nation's premier gathering of conservatives.
This would not be the first time that Rubio spoke about foreign policy concerns. While Rubio could have given a speech that all those in the conservative movement could rally behind, such as economic opportunity, he chose instead to focus on an issue that currently divides the conservative movement. more >>
The Washington Post thinks President Barack Obama is living a democratic "fantasy" in a world where "unfortunately" military might still matters. If he continues this approach to foreign policy warns the paper, it will harm U.S. national security in the long run.
The publication's editorial board highlighted its concerns about the president's foreign policy approach in an op-ed this week under a blunt headline: 'President Obama's foreign policy is based on fantasy.'
It then painted a picture of President Obama's rose-colored pursuit of democratic engagement with the world where leaders like Russia's Vladimir Putin, China's Xi Jinping and Syria's Bashar al-Assad are busy blazing arms in a quest for more power in strategic parts of the world. more >>
The head of the Europe-based World Council of Churches has called on those involved in the ongoing Ukraine crisis to "refrain from violence."
The Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit, general secretary for WCC, released a statement Monday expressing concern for the people of Ukraine, specifically in the Crimea region.
The religious persecution in Syria deepened this week, as evidenced by a written ultimatum purportedly distributed by the rebel jihadist group ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) to Christians in the northern provincial capital of Raqqa. Rejecting conversion to Islam or death, some 20 Christian leaders of that city held firm in their faith and submitted to the Islamists' demands to live by as dhimmis.
Under this arrangement, in exchange for their lives and the ability to worship as Christians, they must abide by purported seventh-century rules of the Caliph Umar. According to the Raqqa ultimatum, these include bans on renovating and rebuilding churches and monasteries, many of which need repair because they've been shelled and blown up over the past three years, and bans against the public display of crosses and Christian symbols and the ringing of bells. They are forbidden from reading scripture indoors loud enough for Muslims outside to hear, and the practice of their faith must be confined within the walls of their remaining churches, not exercised publicly (at, for example, funeral or wedding processions).
They are prohibited from saying anything offensive about Muslims or Islam. The women must be enshrouded, and alcohol is banned. more >>
While the Olympics were taking place in Sochi, Russian president and autocrat Vladimir Putin was starting to invade Ukraine. Last Wednesday, Putin put 150,000 troops on high alert for battle near the border with Ukraine. On Saturday, the upper house of the Russian parliament (Duma), the Federation Council, unanimously approved Putin's request to use force in Ukraine and deploy additional troops to the Crimean peninsula.
Putin claims the troops are being sent there to stabilize the socio-political situation in the country. However, many believe that Putin is deliberately stirring up unrest, in order to justify sending in the military. Masked men dressed in black carrying AK-47s have been spotted in the streets, but it's not clear whether they are real protesters or a plant from Putin to create the appearance of a crisis.
Putin originally became Russian president as part of the new, non-communist era Russia, but has proven that he is not a real reformer, reverting to many of his KGB thug ways. Putin worked for the KGB for 16 years under communism. His grandfather was a cook for previous communist leaders Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin. Putin's father is described as a "model communist." Putin has said he spent the best part of his life with the KGB, which made it a difficult choice to leave the KGB when the organization turned on Soviet president and reformer Mikhail Gorbachev. more >>
It is said if someone wants to understand a person's true priorities, just look at their checkbook. The late Fast and Furious star Paul Walker, who died in a car crash last November, is a good example. Walker had it all; with fame, fortune and good looks on his side, but that was not what defined him. Walker used his hard-earned money to make the world a better place through his humanitarian aid organization, Reach Out Worldwide, but his generosity did not stop there.
The story is told that some years back, he was in a Santa Barbara, California jewelry store and overheard a young soldier, Kyle, who had just returned from Iraq tell his fiancé, Kristen, he could not afford the ring she liked. Later, Walker called the store manager and put the ring on his tab. After his death, Kristen told CBS News Los Angeles the look on Walker's face "transformed" when Walker heard Kyle was an Iraq War veteran.
Walker's heart was in the right place. As the scripture goes, "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." If only the same could be said about the priorities of the Obama administration which stores treasure in social programs at the expense of the active duty and retired veterans in my family and yours. more >>