Monday, July 31, 2017

Ambassador Up-date

Question:  What do Afghanistan, Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia , Cameroon, Canada, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d'Ivoire, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Finland, France & Monaco, Germany, Guatemala, Haiti, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Italy & San Marino, Jordan, Luxembourg, Mauritius & Seychelles, Morocco, Netherland, Norway, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain & Andorra, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland & Liechtenstein, Syria, Tanzania, Trinidad & Tobago, Turkey, United Kingdom, Venezuela and Yemen? 

Answer:  We have NO AMBASSADORS in these countries!    

We do have many Ambassadors who remained in their roles from the Obama administration.  The idea that ALL Ambassadors were fired by Trump isn't actual accurate.  Some of the nations that have retained Obama appointed Ambassadors are actually important like Mexico, Brazil, Chile and Colombia--four nations that we have tremendous industrial and agricultural ties with through our NAFTA economic cooperation treaty.  Also there's Pakistan, Iraq, Egypt, and Libya--all critical allies in our current morass confronting Islamic extremist terrorism.

Trump has actually placed 5 Ambassadors to represent the United State's interest. 

Terry Branstad (former Governor of Iowa) is his Ambassador in China,
Todd Haskell (a career foreign diplomat) is his Ambassador in the Republic of Congo,
Tulinabo Slama Mushingi (a career foreign diplomat) is his Ambassador to both Guinea-Bissau and Senegal,
Scott Brown (former Senator from Massachusetts) is his Ambassador to New Zealand

William Hagerty IV (a private equity investment firm founder) is his Ambassador to Japan.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Glass Houses

The Day After The Flood

 The waters rose and the waters fell.

Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory: The Orchid Room

Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory: From The Top

Mostly from the Desert Gardens, but not all.

Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory: The Blossoms

Mostly from the Tropical Gardens, but not all.

Another Great Place to Spend a Rainy Afternoon: Rawlings Conservatory in Baltimore

Maryland Zoo @ Baltimore: African Aviary

The second aviary is focused on African birds.  It also is home to the Kirk's Dik-dik--a diminutive member of the Deer family that resides in the tropical forests of equatorial Africa.  Besides the Dik-dik, I have included images of a very cooperative Blue-bellied Roller and a pair of Waldrapp Ibis.

Maryland Zoo @ Baltimore: Sitatunga and Crowned Crane

The Sitatunga is a story of breeding success at the Maryland Zoo.  In the past decade, the zoo has gone from 3: a male and two females, to 8!  And four of the new members of the herd were born here.

 The Sitatunga share their habitat with West African Black Crowned Crane and Northern Ground Hornbills.

Maryland Zoo @ Baltimore: The Giraffe's

This past spring, the Maryland Zoo experienced both tremendous joy and tremendous sorrow.  After 20 years without the birth of a Reticulated Giraffe, there were two born!  Willow, a female calf was born to Juma,  Julius, a male cafe was born to Kesi.  The bull Cesar was a proud and very successful father.  However, Julius' birth was difficult and he failed to thrive.  Barely a month after his birth he died, and left behind a conflicted Zoo Staff.  Rejoicing in Willow and mourning Julius.  With Willow, the zoo has a stable herd of 5 Giraffe, and Cesar is again being allowed to breed with one of the three adult females.
Juma and Willow

Maryland Zoo @ Baltimore: The American Flamingoes