"Bush Admin Taps Zoellick to Head World Bank
The Bush administration has announced plans to name former Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick to replace Paul Wolfowitz as head of the World Bank. Zoellick spent four years as the U.S. trade representative until 2005. He went on to the State Department before leaving to join the financial firm Goldman Sachs last year. Zoellick previously served as a paid advisor to the energy company Enron before its collapse. He was an early backer of the U.S. invasion of Iraq and a co-signatory of the neo-conservative Project for a New American Century letter calling for Iraq regime change. Public health advocates are criticizing the appointment. Dr. Paul Zeitz, Executive Director of the Global AIDS Alliance called Zoellick “a terrible choice”, saying: “He has been a close friend to the brand-name pharmaceutical industry, and the trade agreements he has championed block patients access to generic medication… As a market fundamentalist he is also much less likely to stand up for a strong and effective public sector.”"
April-May Deadliest 2-Month Period of Iraq War for U.S.* Amy:
In other Iraq news, the Pentagon has announced ten U.S. troops were killed in Iraq Monday. Their deaths make this month the third-deadliest for the U.S. military of the Iraq war. April and May now also mark the deadliest two-month period since the invasion, with at least two hundred and nine servicemembers killed.
Putin Denounces “Powder Keg” U.S. Missile Plan* Amy:
Tension is increasing with Russia over U.S. plans for a new missile shield in Eastern Europe. On Tuesday, Russia says it had successfully test-fired a new intercontinental ballistic missile designed to overcome missile defense systems. The test came as Russian President Vladimir Putin warned a U.S. missile deployment would have consequences.Russian President Vladimir Putin: “Our point is clear, we consider it harmful and dangerous to turn Europe into a powder keg and to stuff it with new weapons."
Iran Charges 3 U.S. Citizens With Espionage
In Iran, three American citizens have been charged with espionage and endangering national security. Haleh Esfandiari, director of the Middle East Program at the Washington-based Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars, has been jailed since earlier this month. Also charged are urban planning consultant Kian Tajbakhsh and journalist Parnaz Azima. All three face the death penalty if convicted. On Tuesday, Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice called the charges “a perversion of the rule of law.”