National Press Club

Journalist Bahari: "I am free now, but others are not."

June 20, 2011 | By Peter Hickman |

Journalist Maziar Bahari, who spent almost four months in a six-by 12 foot cell in Tehran's Evin prison on what he says were unspecified espionage charges, urged journalists to remember others who are imprisoned and work for their release.

"I am free now, but others are not," the Iranian-born Bahari told a Newsmaker audience June 16.

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Scowcroft: Globalization erodes power of individual countries

June 14, 2011 | By Ken Dalecki |

Globalization is "reducing freedom of action of the nation state," former National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft told a National Press Club luncheon audience June 14 during the annual Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation journalism awards presentations.

Scowcroft, the top security aide to Presidents Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush, said that globalization in communications, economics and other fields is "eroding the power of nation states" that have been the framework for international relations since the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648.

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Ag Secy: Global food security requires innovation, accurate information

June 13, 2011 | By Lorna Aldrich |

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack called for innovation and accurate market information to meet global food needs at a National Press Club luncheon June 13.

"We must ensure that food makes it from farms to mouths," he said. "The solution to global food security lies in innovation, arising from research and development."

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that 925 million people were undernourished last year. Although an improvement over 2009, the number is still "unacceptably high," Vilsack said.

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Club 5K participants beat heat; race draws record number of entrants

June 13, 2011 | By Mark Schoeff Jr. |

Hundreds of participants in the National Press Club Beat the Deadline 5K endured hot, humid conditions on June 11, despite the race's 7:30 a.m. start time.

The event drew a record number of entrants -- more than 800 -- and likely will produce the highest fundraising total in six years for the Eric Friedheim National Journalism Library.

But the cohort of runners and walkers was fewer than the total registered -- probably due to the warm temperature.

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Go Campaign initiates $500,000 drive to help youth solve world problems

June 9, 2011 | By Robert Webb |

Leaders of the non-profit Go Campaign announced at a June 9 Newsmaker a $500,000 fund drive to help youth "solve real world problems and combat poverty in developing nations."

The initiative will support a five-year grant program to find the innovators and entrepreneurs who will inspire youth to tackle challenges in their communities and around the world.

Campaign board member and exercise guru Tony Horton, who will be a marshal at the June 11 Club 5K race, touted the drive.

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Babbitt: Radicals in Congress waging shadow war on environment

June 8, 2011 | By Terry Hill |

Former Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt today accused “radicals” in Congress of waging a shadow war against the nation’s wilderness areas and called on President Barack Obama to gird for battle against increasing assaults on the environment at a June 8 Newsmaker.

“It is clear to me that the House of Representatives will not only block progress but will continue to sustain an assault on our public lands and water,” he said, urging the president to act more forcefully to aid the cause of conservation.

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Pakistani ambassador mourns slain journalist

June 7, 2011 | By Clothilde Le Coz |

During a condolence meeting convened by Pakistani reporters in the United States on June 6 at the National Press Club, Pakistani Ambassador Husain Haqqani mourned the death of journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad, stating that his passing diminishes the humanity of everyone and that he was grieved that Pakistan has become a battlefield.

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Democracy meeting in Lithuania to focus on North Africa, Middle East, diplomats say

May 31, 2011 | By Peter Hickman |

A high-level democracy meeting in Vilnius beginning June 29 will have a special focus on supporting democratic transition and consolidation worldwide, but especially on North Africa and the Middle East, and on helping bridge the gap between the principles of democracy and universal human rights, Egidijus Meilunas, Lithuania's vice minister of foreign affairs, and Dr. Tomicah Tillemann, senior advisor to Secretary of State Clinton for Civil Society and Emerging Democracies, said at a Newsmaker press conference May 26.

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Former NPR journalist Williams says honest debate "essential" to the nation's future

May 27, 2011 | By Ken Dalecki |

Former NPR and current Fox News commentator Juan Williams told a National Press Club luncheon audience May 26 that he had attended many events in the Club's ballroom but "I never thought I would be the speaker."

Williams became a news story seven months ago when he was fired by NPR for expressing discomfort at seeing persons in Muslim garb boarding an airplane with him. His comments caused a firestorm of controversy and Williams said he was shocked by the attention given his dismissal. In spite of years of exposure on television and radio, " I was fairly anonymous before this happened."

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Environmental questions fuel natural gas drilling debate

May 25, 2011 | By Lorna Aldrich |

Uncertainty over the environmental effects of hydraulic fracturing, a method of drilling for shale natural gas, dominated a debate on regulating such drilling at a May 24 NPC Newsmaker.

Adrian Kuzminski, an anti-drilling activist from Sustainable Otsego, an upstate New York "grass roots" organization of 600 people, opposed fracturing. "Natural gas is not a substitute for oil, but an extension," he said.

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