President Obama Speaks At The Oso Firehouse.


 

By Jueseppi B.

Barack Obama

 

I’ve observed my share of Presidents in my 54 years and not one comes close to this POTUSA. Not one past President has had the number of natural disasters to contend with that this President has faced. Not one past President has had the number of deaths from gun violence that this President has had to handle. And for sure, not one past President has had to shoulder the sheer hatred because of their skin color. Yet, Barack Hussein Obama loves this country and his citizens.

 

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(CNN) —Calling their grit, resiliency and sense of community an inspiration to all Americans, President Barack Obama promised Tuesday that those impacted by last month’s deadly landslide in Washington won’t be forgotten — least of all by the federal government.

 

"This is ... what America is all about," Obama said. "When times get tough, we look out for each other. We get each others' backs. And we recover, and we build, and we come back stronger."

“This is … what America is all about,” Obama said. “When times get tough, we look out for each other. We get each others’ backs. And we recover, and we build, and we come back stronger.”

 

Speaking in Oso, a small community about 60 miles northeast of Seattle that was ground zero for disaster, Obama outlined the ways the government has already helped and will continue to do so. He said that he wanted to visit the area to show support for “families who are searching for loved ones (and) families who have lost everything.”

 

President Obama Speaks on Responding to the Mudslide in Washington State

 

Published on Apr 22, 2014

President Obama delivers remarks at the Oso Firehouse after viewing the devastation from the recent mudslide in the area and meeting with the families affected by this disaster, as well as first responders and recovery workers. April 22, 2014.

 

 

President Obama Tours Oso, Washington.

 

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Schoolchildren watch President Obama’s motorcade travel past their bus on Washington Highway 530 near Oso

Schoolchildren watch President Obama’s motorcade travel past their bus on Washington Highway 530 near Oso

 

“I just wanted to let you know that the country is thinking about all of you, and have throughout this tragedy,” the President said. “We’re not going anywhere. We’ll be here as long as it takes.”

 

Obama spoke exactly one month the rain-saturated hillside along the Stillaguamish River gave way, unleashing walls of mud that swallowed up roads and homes in and around Oso.

 

First responders, Washington National Guard members and volunteers quickly converged on the traumatic scene, digging through mud, logs and debris 70 feet thick in some places hoping to find the missing.

 

Authorities on Monday put the death toll from the landslide at 41, though that number could rise as the search continues.

 

The President noted that while few knew of Oso before last month, many since have “been inspired by the incredible way that they community has come together and shown love and support that they have for other in ways big and small.” That might include risking their lives volunteering to find neighbors, providing a meal to those on the front lines or offering up chain saws or rain jackets.

 

“One resident said, ‘We’re Oso, and we just do it,’ ” Obama said after touring the damage and meeting with various people involved in the search-and-rescue operations as well as relatives whose loved ones died.

 

The debris field is full of toxic sludge, including human waste and toxic chemicals from households, oil and gas, according to Lt. Richard Burke of the Bellevue Fire Department. During the rescue efforts, some workers have come down with dysentery.

 

The work seems never-ending, and the piles of debris and muck remain high a month after the mudslide.

 

But thanks to workers’ efforts, water that was 6 feet deep has now drained, making it easier for heavy equipment to navigate the still tricky terrain.

 

One spruce tree that remained standing after the mudslide is now a memorial to the victims and a source of strength to the workers.

 

Obama came to Washington state on the way to a four-country tour to Asia. He will stop in Malaysia, where the mystery of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 and its scores of passengers remains unsolved, and South Korea, where a ferry full of high schoolers collapsed last week.

 

The President didn’t refer to either of those disasters in his comments Tuesday. But he did laud the response of those in and around Oso for symbolizing what is best his own country.

 

President Obama Speaks at the Oso Firehouse: The Slid Show Gallery

 

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Tryon, a rescue dog muddied from the day's work, stands with his handler March 30 near the west side of the landslide.

Tryon, a rescue dog muddied from the day’s work, stands with his handler March 30 near the west side of the landslide.

Teresa Welter cries during a candlelight vigil in Arlington on Tuesday, March 25.

Teresa Welter cries during a candlelight vigil in Arlington on Tuesday, March 25.

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The President’s Trip Itinerary For Japan, The Republic Of Korea, Malaysia, And The Philippines.


 

By Jueseppi B.

asia

 

The President’s Trip to Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, and the Philippines

 

April 22 to April 29

 

President Obama’s fifth trip to Asia during his time in office will underscore a continued focus on the Asia-Pacific region and commitment to his vision of rebalancing to the world’s largest emerging region. The President’s visit to Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, and the Philippines will focus on our major priorities in the region: modernizing our alliances; supporting democratic development; advancing the Trans-Pacific Partnership and commercial ties; investing in regional institutions; and deepening cultural and people-to-people ties.

 

 

Previewing the President’s Trip to Asia, Spring 2014

 

Published on Apr 22, 2014

Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes previews the President’s trip to Japan, Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines during April, 2014

 

 

 

The President will travel to Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines as part of his ongoing commitment to increase U.S. diplomatic, economic and security engagement with countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

In Japan, the President will meet with Prime Minister Abe to highlight the historic steps the United States and Japan are taking to modernize our 54-year alliance, deepen our economic ties, including through the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and expand our cooperation on a range of diplomatic challenges in Asia and globally.

 

The President will then travel to the Republic of Korea, where he will meet with President Park to reaffirm the United States’ commitment to a strong alliance, review recent developments in North Korea and our combined efforts to promote denuclearization, and discuss our ongoing implementation of the Korea-United States FTA.

 

In Malaysia, the President will meet with Prime Minister Najib of Malaysia to showcase the substantial progress made in deepening our diplomatic, economic, and defense ties with such an important partner in Southeast Asia.

 

The President will then travel to the Philippines, the fifth Asian treaty ally he will have visited during his presidency.  He will meet with President Aquino to highlight our economic and security cooperation, including through the modernization of our defense alliance, efforts to expand economic ties and spark economic growth through the Partnership for Growth, and through our deep and enduring people-to-people ties.

 

 

asiatrip

 

Schedule for the Week of April 21 – 29, 2014

 

On Tuesday, the President will travel to Oso, Washington, to view the devastation from the recent mudslide and to meet with families affected by this disaster, as well as first responders and recovery workers.  Following his visit to Oso, Washington, the President will travel to Tokyo, Japan.

 

On Wednesday night, the President will arrive in Tokyo, Japan and remain overnight.

 

On Thursday, the President will hold a state call with Emperor and Empress of Japan at the Imperial Palace. Later in the morning, the President will participate in a bilateral meeting and joint press conference with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan at the Akasaka Palace. In the afternoon, the President will visit the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation to tour and deliver remarks at a youth and science event with students. Later in the afternoon, the President will visit the Meiji Shrine and host a roundtable meeting with Select USA business leaders. In the evening the President will attend the Japanese State dinner at the Imperial Palace with the Imperial family. The President will remain overnight in Japan.

 

On Friday morning, the President will meet with employees and family members of the U.S. Embassy to Japan. He will then travel to the Republic of Korea. In the afternoon, the President will participate in a wreath laying ceremony at the National War Memorial to honor fallen soldiers. Following the ceremony, he will tour the Gyeongbok Palace. Later in the afternoon, the President will visit the Blue House to participate in a bilateral meeting and joint press conference with President Park of the Republic of Korea . In the evening the President will join President Park for a working dinner and remain overnight in Seoul, South Korea.

 

On Saturday morning, the President will participate in a roundtable meeting with business leaders to discuss trade policy.  Following the round table, the President will travel to Yongsan Garrison.  Here, he will be briefed by U.S.-ROK Combined Forces Command officers and deliver remarks and visit with troops and their families to thank them for their extraordinary service to our nation. In the afternoon, the President will travel to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.  In the evening, he will join King Abdul Halim and Prime Minister Najib of Malaysia for the State dinner at the Istana Negara Palace.   The President will remain overnight in Malaysia.

 

On Sunday, the President will visit the National Mosque of Malaysia.  Following his visit, he will participate in a bilateral meeting and working lunch followed by a joint press conference with Prime Minister Najib of Malaysia at the Prime Minister’s Office. In the afternoon, the President and Prime Minister will take part in an event at the Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Center. In the evening, the President will travel to Malaya University to participate in a town hall with participants in the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative. The President will remain overnight in Malaysia.

 

On Monday, The President will leave for The Philippines in the morning. The President will have a bilateral meeting and joint press conference with President Benigno AquinoLater that evening The President will attend a State Dinner hosted by President Benigno Aquino.

 

On Tuesday, The President will view an electric vehicle in The Philippines called “The Comet.” The President will visit Fort Bonifacio, where he will deliver remarks to U.S. and Filipino service members and veterans. The President will lay a wreath at The American Cemetery. Later in the evening The President will return to Washington, D.C.

 

 

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President Obama’s April 2014 Asia Trip Schedule

 

 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

  • In the afternoon, President Obama arrives in Tokyo, Japan
  • Later, the President joins Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan for a private dinner

 

 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

  • In the morning, President Obama meets with Emperor Akihito of Japan at the Imperial Palace
  • The President meets with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan at Akasaka Palace
  • In the afternoon, the President participates in a joint press conference with Prime Minister Abe
  • Later, President Obama delivers remarks at a youth and science event with students at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation
  • The President visits Meiji Shrine
  • President Obama attends the Japan State Dinner and delivers remarks

 

 

Friday, April 25, 2014

  • In the morning, President Obama greets members of the U.S. Embassy in Japan
  • Later that morning, the President bids farewell to the Emperor Akihito of Japan
  • In the afternoon, President Obama travels to Seoul, Republic of Korea
  • The President visits the National War Memorial and participates in a wreath-laying ceremony
  • Later, the President visits Gyengbok Palace
  • President Obama meets with President Park at the Blue House

 

 

Saturday, April 26, 2014

  • In the morning, President Obama participates in a roundtable meeting with business leaders to discuss trade policy
  • Later, the President participates in a Combined Forces Command Briefing at Yongsan Garrison and delivers remarks
  • In the afternoon, the President travels to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • President Obama participates in an arrival ceremony in Parliament Square
  • Later that evening, the President attends a State Dinner and delivers remarks at Istana Negara

 

 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

  • In the morning, President Obama greets members of the U.S. Embassy in Malaysia
  • Later, the President visits the National Mosque of Malaysia
  • President Obama meets with Prime Minister Najib Razak at Perdana Putra
  • In the afternoon, President Obama attends a working lunch with Prime Minister Najib Razak
  • The President delivers remarks at the Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Center
  • Later, the President participates in the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative Town Hall at the University of Malaysia

 

 

Monday, April 28, 2014

  • The President travels to Manila, Philippines, and participates in an arrival ceremony at Malacanang Palace
  • Later that afternoon, President Obama meets with President Benigno S. Aquino III of the Philippines
  • President Obama participates in a joint press conference with President Aquino
  • The President greets members of the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines
  • Later that evening, the President attends a State Dinner with President Aquino at Malacanang Palace

 

 

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

  • In the morning, President Obama delivers remarks at Fort Bonafacio
  • Later that morning, the President participates in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Manila American Cemetery
  • The President travels back to Washington, D.C.

 

 

 

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Vice President Joseph Robinette “Joey B” Biden, Jr. Meeting With Ukrainian Legislators


 

By Jueseppi B.

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Ukraine crisis Biden to meet Kiev leaders in show of support

 

Published on Apr 22, 2014

News for Ukraine crisis Biden to meet Kiev leaders …
Telegraph.co.uk
Ukraine crisis: Biden to meet Kiev leaders in show of support

 

 

 

Remarks by Vice President Joe Biden at a Meeting with Ukrainian Legislators

 

Rada
Kyiv, Ukraine

10:03 A.M. (Local)

Ukraine crisis | Joe Biden : Russia must start acting

 

Published on Apr 22, 2014

US Vice-President Joe Biden has said Russia must stop talking and start acting to defuse the Ukraine crisis. He was speaking during a joint press conferenc.

 

 

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, Mr. Ambassador.  And I want to thank my colleagues for bringing me back home.  For 36 years I sat in our legislature, and I used to actually have this seat in our — I was the chairman of our committee.  Thank you for making me feel relevant again, back in a legislative body.

I’m honored, and I mean this sincerely, I’m honored to be with you all, all members of the Rada representing the whole of Ukraine.

I signed the book in the hotel as I was leaving today.  The management asked me to sign their book, and I signed, “Ukraine united, Joe Biden.”  And as I look here, this is Ukraine united — center, south, east, west.  And as someone who has held high public office in my country for now 40 years and just because I’ve been around, literally met every major leader in the world in the last 40 years, I don’t — I want you to know I do not underestimate the incredible pressure you all are under.  I do not underestimate the challenge that you all face.  And I do not underestimate the frustration you must feel when someone like me comes along and says this is a great opportunity for you.  (Laughter.)  As my mother would say, but for the honor, I’d just as soon as pass the opportunity.

But the truth of the matter is your fellow countrymen expect a whole lot of you right now.  Their expectations are high.  The demands on you are — my guess is are fairly extreme.  And in addition to that, we have — there is — John Kennedy, President Kennedy wrote a book that became very famous called “Profiles in Courage,” and it listed those men and women in our country who had taken political positions that were overwhelmingly interest of the United States of America, but not in their personal interests.  That’s a profile in courage.  I hope none of you have to appear in the first edition of the “Profiles in Courage in Ukraine,” but my expectation is some of you are going to have to make some really difficult, difficult personal decisions.

But you’re facing such unrest and uncertainty, and we can speak a little bit more about that today.  But I also think — it’s easy for me to say — there’s an expression in English, it says, an expert is anyone from out of town with a briefcase.  Well, I don’t have a briefcase, and I’m not an expert.  But I have an opinion, and I speak for the President of the United States, and he shares the same opinion.  And that is that this is a second opportunity to make good on the original promise made by the Orange Revolution.  This is a genuine opportunity to get right what is always difficult to do the first time when coming out from under the oppression or control of another power.

You’re a month away from — I would respectfully suggest, although I will be probably criticized by the press for saying it, what hopefully will be and may be the most important election in Ukrainian history, and that is that you have an opportunity, a chance to bring about an era of reform and democratic renewal that you all hoped for two, five, 10, 15 years ago to lay the groundwork for an even more united and more prosperous Ukraine.

In speaking with your acting President, I was referencing the personal bravery and heroism of Ukrainians is well known.  You are a strong, strong, strong people.  And I’m not being solicitous.  I mean it is real.  And you face very daunting problems and some might say humiliating threats that are taking place indirectly.  And — but the opportunity to generate a united Ukraine, getting it right, is within your grasp.  And we want to be your partner, your friend in the project.  And we’re ready to assist.

I have an expression I use as I’ve gone around the world through my career is you never tell another man or woman what’s in their interest.  They know their interest better than you know their interest.  And so I want you to know that we are not suggesting we have the answers for you, but we’re merely suggesting that we stand ready to stand with you in every endeavor that you undertake to generate the united prosperous and coherent Ukraine you’re all fighting for.

And to the extent that we can be of small assistance in you holding a free election on May the 25th, we want to be part of that.  To the extent that we can help in stabilizing and strengthening Ukraine’s economy by helping you withstand the unfair economic pressure being thrust upon you, we stand ready to do that, and I say the American people stand ready — not just Barack Obama and Joe Biden — but the American people.

As you all know well we have a significant Ukrainian-American population.  We stand with you.  And it is not just a foreign policy judgment, it is a personal — it’s an emotional commitment, as well, by millions of Americans.

And as you attempt to pursue energy security, there’s no reason why you cannot be energy secure.  I mean there isn’t.  It will take time.  It takes some difficult decisions, but it’s collectively within your power and the power of Europe and the United States.  And we stand ready to assist you in reaching that.  Imagine where you’d be today if you were able to tell Russia:  Keep your gas.  It would be a very different world you’d be facing today.  It’s within our power to alter that.  It will take some time, but it’s within our power.  Very difficult decisions, but within our power.

Also to be very blunt about it, and this is a delicate thing to say to a group of leaders in their house of parliament, but you have to fight the cancer of corruption that is endemic in your system right now.  It’s not just the United States.  You need a court system that not only you and your people, but the rest of the world assumes can actually adjudicate fairly disputes among people.  But you have a chance.  You have a chance.  The constitutional reforms that you are envisioning now are ones that some of you have fought for in various ways your entire career, a balance of power between the parliament and the President.  You’ve tried it two different ways.  I think you’ve figured it out for you — not what we think — what you think is the correct balance.

The decentralization and empowering of local communities — we call that devolution of power back home — local communities able to elect their own local officials, control their own budgets, elect their councils.  And as I said, maybe if you look around the world at every country that has in the last 30 years come out from under the yoke of another, the hardest thing to put in place is, as I find it around the world, is a court system, is a judicial system.  In a sense it maybe is the single most important thing that can occur in any country.  And it’s hard.  It’s really difficult.

But it’s totally within your power, and sometimes — presumptuous of me to say this — but sometimes it’s — a crisis spawns the commitment, and the desire, the willingness to make some of these bold decisions.

So it is — I don’t want to exaggerate our role or exaggerate what we — how strongly we feel, but the United States supports the rights, the freedoms and the fundamental dignity of the people of Ukraine, all the people of Ukraine.

And you may have different traditions.  It’s not quite the same, but we understand different traditions in our country — not as deeply as you do, but we are the most heterogeneous democracy in the world.  We’re soon going to get the point where over 50 percent of the United States of America is made up of people of non-European stock; the majority of the American people are not of European origin in 2020.  We understand.  We have millions of Muslims.  We have hundreds — but it’s not quite the same.  We’re not up against a border.  We’re not sitting against a border of another powerful nation.

And so — but, we, in fact — these different traditions, different languages, and sometimes different perspectives, but the one thing I’ve observed, even with what’s going on in the east, is that there is a much greater desire to call oneself a Ukrainian than to call oneself anything else.  And that’s a major, major, major unifying power, no matter how different the traditions are.

So I’m confident — presumptuous of me to say this — I’m confident that in your constitutional reforms, you will find a way to guarantee those traditions and at the same time strengthen Ukrainian unity.  And to the extent that the United States of America can be of assistance in that effort, we stand ready to do that.

I thank you — and I mean this sincerely — for the honor of being able to speak here in the Rada, or at least a committee room of the Rada.

END
10:15 A.M. (Local)

 

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From Associated Press:

 

BIDEN TELLS UKRAINIAN LEADERS US STANDS WITH THEM

 

By NEDRA PICKLER Associated Press

 

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden told Ukrainian political leaders Tuesday that the United States stands with them against “humiliating threats” and encouraged them to root out corruption as they rebuild their government.

In the most high-level visit of a U.S. official since crisis erupted in Ukraine, Biden told leaders from various political parties that he brings a message of support from President Barack Obama as they face a historic opportunity to usher in reforms.

 

“The opportunity to generate a united Ukraine, getting it right, is within your grasp,” Biden said. “And we want to be your partner, your friend in the project. And we’re ready to assist.”

Biden spoke to nine Ukrainians in a hearing room with gilded moldings at the parliament, or Rada, as the media looked on. The group included three candidates running for president in the May 25 election — most notably billionaire chocolate magnate and front-runner Petro Poroshenko. Biden told the candidates he hopes that they have more luck than he did in two presidential runs.

 

Biden also met privately with acting Ukrainian President Oleksandr Turchynov and acting Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk and later planned to meet with democracy activists. After his meetings, Biden plans to announce new technical support to the Ukrainian government for energy and economic reforms.

The vice president’s visit comes at a critical time, days after a tenuous international agreement was reached to de-escalate violence in eastern Ukraine, where pro-Russia insurgents oppose the government in Kiev.

“You face very daunting problems and some might say humiliating threats that are taking place indirectly,” Biden said.

He told them the United States is an example of people from different cultures united as one nation, although he said Ukraine has a big difference. “We’re not sitting against a border of another powerful nation,” Biden said.

 

Biden told the lawmakers a priority for the U.S. is to help them become independent from Russian energy supplies. “Imagine where you’d be today if you were able to tell Russia, ‘Keep your gas,’” Biden said. “It would be a very different world you’d be facing today.”

Biden said they have an historic chance now that former President Viktor Yanukovych has fled the country.

“This is a second opportunity to make good on the original promise made by the Orange Revolution,” Biden said in a reference to 2004 protests that overturned a widely criticized election that had given Yanukovych the presidency. Yanukovych later took office but left the country after violent protests in February.

Biden added, “To be very blunt about it, and this is a delicate thing to say to a group of leaders in their house of parliament, but you have to fight the cancer of corruption that is endemic in your system right now.” He mentioned reforming the courts and finding the right balance of power between the president and Rada.

 

“I want you to know I do not underestimate the incredible pressure you all are under,” Biden said. “I do not underestimate the challenge that you all face. And I do not underestimate the frustration you must feel when someone like me comes along and says this is a great opportunity for you.”

But he added that the upcoming election may be the most important in the country’s history. “The truth of the matter is your fellow countrymen expect a whole lot of you right now,” he said.

 

 

Joseph Robinette “Joey B” Biden, Jr. In Ukraine 

 

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The White House Celebrates Earth Day


 

By Jueseppi B.

earth-day-254n2r2

 

 

On Earth Day, a Commitment to Climate Action

 

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Baja Citrus Chicken Bowl


Originally posted on Recipes for a Healthy You:

Baja Citrus Chicken Bowl

Here’s a great recipe that will prepare in under 30 minutes. Though you will need to marinate your chicken first for 30 minutes to one hour depending on your intensity for citrus flavors. But once the meat is marinated, as I mention the rest takes under 30 minutes to prepare.

I found a great marinade recipe at She Knows Food & Recipes: Baja Citrus Marinade. The recipe calls for a Mexican beer, but I left that out. The following includes the beer if you wish to prepare the marinade with it.

Baja Citrus Marinade

Place all of the ingredients into a blender and process the…

View original 417 more words

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