Morning Brief, Friday, August 31

Asia: The Taliban Flexes Its Muscles SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty Taliban fighters ambushed a military convoy and captured more than 100 Pakistani soldiers in South Waziristan.  Meanwhile, in Islamabad, Pervez Musharraf said he plans to be reelected as president before October 15. The government of South Korea denies paying off the Taliban to release its hostages. For ...

599628_070831_taliban_05.jpg
599628_070831_taliban_05.jpg

Asia: The Taliban Flexes Its Muscles

SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty

Taliban fighters ambushed a military convoy and captured more than 100 Pakistani soldiers in South Waziristan.  Meanwhile, in Islamabad, Pervez Musharraf said he plans to be reelected as president before October 15.

Asia: The Taliban Flexes Its Muscles

SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty

Taliban fighters ambushed a military convoy and captured more than 100 Pakistani soldiers in South Waziristan.  Meanwhile, in Islamabad, Pervez Musharraf said he plans to be reelected as president before October 15.

The government of South Korea denies paying off the Taliban to release its hostages. For its part, the Taliban views the whole thing as a huge success.

Dozens of pro-democracy protesters in Myanmar aren’t giving up, despite grave threats from the ruling junta. 

China’s new top spy specializes in commercial espionage.

Middle East: Ramadan Special

Under an unusual agreement with Sunni Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi, the U.S. military will release 50 Iraqi prisoners each day during Ramadan. 

U.S. lawmakers visiting Iraq had a scare when their plane took small-arms fire from insurgents.

A new report has the United States and the IAEA at loggerheads again, this time over Iran’s nuclear program.

Europe: Merkel Rules

Angela Merkel: the most powerful woman in the world? 

Greece nearly has its wildfires under control

France and Britain are still considering sanctions on Sudan.

Kosovo’s leader threatened again to declare independence from Serbia if talks fail. 

Elsewhere: Reid Bends

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he’s willing to compromise with Republicans in order to end the Iraq war.

How the subprime crisis went global

Wheat is getting very expensive as stockpiles fall to their lowest level in nearly 30 years and traders worry about this year’s crop.

Today’s Agenda

  • President Bush reveals his plans to combat the subprime mortgage crisis.
  • Karl Rove officially resigns from his White House position.
  • Malaysia celebrates 50 years of independence.
  • Hugo Chávez is due in Colombia, where he will strategize with Alvaro Uribe on a prisoner swap with FARC.
  • Pakistan is scheduled to close the longstanding Jalozai camp for Afghan refugees.
  • John Warner, the influential senator from Virginia, has a big announcement to make.
  • Today marks the 10th anniversary of Princess Diana’s death.

Yesterday on Passport

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