Strike Talk – The Jerusalem Post has learned that Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told private meetings that setting Iran’s nuclear plans back a few years to buy time for regime change or other developments would be good, even if Israel cannot destroy the country’s nuclear program. It said Netanyahu compared the situation to the 1981 attack on Iraq’s Osirak nuclear reactor, when intelligence circles feared they could only delay the program by a couple of years.
Sectarianism – The Times of India reports on the recent exodus from southern Indian cities of Muslim migrants from the country’s northeast, fearing reprisals over spiraling communal violence in Assam and neighboring states. In an editorial style addition to the end of the article, the newspaper called for cool heads: “Those who deliberately spread rumors in a situation as tense as this one are no less guilty of fanning the flames than those who incite violence,” it wrote.
The Latest Front – The Washington Post reports from towns along Niger’s long border with Mali and northern Nigeria, where al-Qaeda affiliate Boko Haram has intensified attacks this year. The newspaper wrote: “Boko Haram is trying to spread its hard-line ideology and violent aspirations in these border towns, and its fighters are using Niger as a gateway to join up with the Islamists in northern Mali, U.N. security experts and local officials say.”
Contrasting Elections – The Associated Press compares the Chinese and U.S. political campaigns over choosing their next leaders, as they both enter the final stretch. While “U.S. candidates ricochet from one electoral appearance to the next,” waging “loud, rah-rah campaigns with a clear timetable as they head toward the Nov. 6 presidential election,” the date for this fall’s Communist Party congress, which will determine who will replace outgoing leader Hu Jintao, has not even been announced yet.
Assange Asylum Denounced – “The UK and Sweden have criticised Ecuador for granting political asylum to Julian Assange,” the BBC writes, “as the diplomatic row over what to do with him intensifies.” The WikiLeaks founder has taken refuge in Equador’s London embassy since June, to avoid extradition to Sweden over allegations of sexual assault. The U.K is denying Assange safe passage out of the country. Ricardo Patino, Equador’s Foreign Minister told BBC Mundo that the U.K. should respect Ecuador’s “sovereign decision.”
Trusted Advisor – As the uncle of North Korean leader King Jong Un meets with China’s highest officials in Beijing, the New York Times examines his “growing influence as a key adviser to the young Mr. Kim.” Jang Song-thaek, the brother-in-law of former leader Kim Jong Il, is perceived to be at the forefront of plans for North Korea to develop two special trade zones near the Chinese border, which “if successful, would provide the Pyongyang government with badly needed money as it tries to revive its moribund economy.”