- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 14, 2008


The Embassy of Georgia opened a book of condolences Wednesday for supporters to express their sympathy for the victims of the Russian invasion.

In an e-mail to “all diplomatic missions and international organizations” in Washington, a spokesman said the book will remain open Thursday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the embassy at 2209 Massachusetts Ave. NW.

The book is open to “anyone who wishes to express concerns over the deaths and casualties caused by the invasion of the Russian Federation on Aug. 8,” the embassy said.

Officials in Georgia estimate that 175 civilians have been killed and 100,000 left homeless by the Russian attacks.

The U.S. Embassy in Georgia said the State Department’s top diplomat for the region flew into the capital, Tbilisi, on Tuesday to show support for the government and denounce the attempt by “one of the world’s strongest powers to destroy the democratically elected government of a smaller neighbor.”

Matthew Bryza, assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eurasian affairs, held a press conference to declare that Russia’s “brutal behavior … has no place in the 21st century.”


Two former U.S. senators are leading a delegation on a trip to Europe to review efforts to combat terrorism and prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction.

“We are continually reminded that the security of America and the security of the world are inextricably linked,” said Bob Graham, chairman of the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism, said Tuesday before leaving Washington on a four-day visit to London and Vienna.

Vice Chairman Jim Talent added, “We look forward to meeting with our closest international partners, not only to discuss our successes but also to examine continuing challenges.”

The commission met Wednesday with senior British officials in London to discuss nonproliferation of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons and review British efforts to combat terrorism. On Friday, they travel to the Austrian capital for talks with officials from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Mr. Graham, Florida Democrat, and Mr. Talent, a Missouri Republican, lead a nine-member commission Congress created as part of the recommendation from the 9/11 commission.


The former U.S. ambassador to Paraguay, after becoming a recording star in the South American nation, says he might just sit on a dock in Miami and sell worms when he retires from the State Department at the end of September after a 38-year diplomatic career.

“If they buy two dozen, I’ll sing them a song in Guarani,” Ambassador James Cason told the Associated Press.

Mr. Cason, 63, learned the difficult language of the indigenous Guarani people and recorded an album in the language that sold 2,000 copies. After enduring ridicule from a left-wing member of the Paraguayan legislature who complained about his singing voice, Mr. Cason received strong support from many ordinary Paraguayan people. His CD — titled “Campo Jurado,” or “Field of Promises” — was widely played on local radio stations.

Mr. Cason was replaced by Ambassador Liliana Ayalde, who presented her credentials Monday to President Duarte Frutos.

Call Embassy Row at 202/636-3297, fax to 202/832-7278 or e-mail jmorrison@washingtontimes.com.

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