Say goodbye to those tuna rolls

The Washington Post reports that the United States backs a ban on trade in Atlantic bluefin tuna and listing the fish as an endangered species.

Strickland said the U.S. decided it needed to push for the extraordinary new protection because "the regulatory mechanisms that have been relied upon have failed to do the job."

"We are literally at a moment where if we don't get this right, we could see this very, very special species really at risk for survival," said Strickland, who will lead the U.S. delegation to CITES between March 13 and 25.

For more on the politicking on the tuna trade before the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora in Doha next week, see our story, "Peak Tuna."



Did Obama push Sarkozy into Russian arms?

The Times's France-blogger Charles Bremner speculates about the motivations behind France's recent overtures to Russia, which include an elaborate state visit to Paris by President Dmitry Medvedev, a gas deal between GazProm and France's GDF Suez, and the planned sale of four Mistral warships to Russia:

Sarkozy's calculations are simple, they make sense for France and they are being welcomed by both left and right. Sarkozy's overtures to Barack Obama  have failed. The American leader looks down on him -- though he has finally invited him for his first White House visit later this month. Sarkozy received nothing from the Americans for resuming full Nato membership. Germany has so far beaten France hands down in reaping benefit from trade with Russia. So France is reverting to the old Russia card that was first played by President Charles de Gaulle in the 1960s.

A longtime Sarko-watcher, Bremner also suspects the president finds Medvedev easier to deal with than the pricklier Vladimir Putin. 

For a very different take on the Mistral sale, see Georgian National Security Advisor Eka Tkeshelashvili's inverview with FP from last week. 

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