Political News from Yahoo

In Poland, Obama reassures eastern Europe allies over Ukraine

By Roberta Rampton and Jeff Mason WARSAW (Reuters) - President Barack Obama assured Poland and its eastern European neighbors on Tuesday that the U.S. commitment to their security was sacrosanct at the start of a four-day trip meant to show U.S. resolve after the Russian intervention in Ukraine. The White House unveiled plans for a $1 billion initiative to send more of its military to Europe on a temporary basis but stopped short of promising to beef up its permanent presence as some of Washington's allies are seeking. Speaking in an aircraft hangar at Warsaw airport where he met U.S. airmen taking part in a joint program with the Polish air force, Obama said U.S. commitments to Poland and the region were a cornerstone of the United States' own security. "As friends and allies we stand united together," said Obama, whose two-day stay in Warsaw will include meetings with Ukrainian President-elect Petro Poroshenko and other central and eastern European leaders.

From 'Fat Years' to reality for Chinese author Chan Koonchung

Chan Koonchung's novel "The Fat Years", set in a China of the near-future where a dark moment of history has been erased from public memory, has never been published on the mainland. The book released in 2009 presents a dystopian vision of 2013 in which China's rise coincides with the economic weakening of the West. But its chances of being published in China were always going to be slim, given its allusions to the Communist Party's censorship machine and the way events such as the bloody Tiananmen Square crackdown 25 years ago this week have been virtually deleted from official history. "My novels are unpublishable (in China)," said Chan in an interview in Hong Kong.