March 18th, 2011
10:00 PM ET

White House Week in Review

WASHINGTON (CNN)– The ongoing crises in Japan and Libya gave the White House a plate-full of issues to deal with this week. Take a look.


Topics: Japan • Libya • The Visuals • week in review
Obama: U.S. not threatened by nuclear fallout in Japan
March 17th, 2011
05:54 PM ET

Obama: U.S. not threatened by nuclear fallout in Japan

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Obama said Thursday the United States was using all “available resources” to protect American citizens in Japan, and sought to reassure a weary American public that the nuclear crisis unfolding in Japan currently poses no threat to the United States.

“We do not expect harmful levels of radiation to reach the United States, whether it’s the West Coast, Hawaii, Alaska, or U.S. territories in the Pacific,” Obama said in an afternoon statement in the White House Rose Garden. He repeated the line verbatim to stress his point.

Leading public health experts, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention do not recommend U.S. citizens do anything more than stay informed the president said, but “we will continue to keep the American people fully updated – because I believe you must know what I know as president.”
FULL POST


Topics: Japan • President Obama • The News
Preparing for a POTUS statement
March 17th, 2011
03:51 PM ET

Preparing for a POTUS statement

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Members of the White House Press Corps wait for President Obama to come to the Rose Garden to give a statement on Japan. With today's warmer weather, it was the first time this season an event has taken place in the Rose Garden.

Obama signs condolence book for Japan
March 17th, 2011
03:15 PM ET

Obama signs condolence book for Japan

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Obama made an unexpected visit this afternoon to the Japanese Embassy to sign a book of condolences for earthquake and tsunami victims.   The Ambassador of Japan Ichuro Fujisaki stood at the back of the "Old Residence" room as the president sat and quietly wrote his message.    

The book, on a small table with a white tablecloth, sat next to the flag of Japan faced a second table with 5 vases of flowers each with a hand-made card. 

Filling the page the president wrote, "Please know that America will always stand by one of its greatest allies during their time of need." FULL POST


Topics: Japan • The Visuals
When it comes to radiation- trust, but verify
This DigitalGlobe image shows the damage to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant on following the March 11th earthquake.
March 15th, 2011
06:07 PM ET

When it comes to radiation- trust, but verify

WASHINGTON (CNN) -  Fearful of the threat of radiation from Japan's damaged nuclear plants, several countries are urging their citizens to leave Japan but – so far – the United States is not.

Asked Tuesday whether Americans in Japan should pack their bags, Carney told reporters he was not aware of any recommendation for U.S. citizens to leave but urged them to check State Department advisories.

The State Department has been issuing regular updates for Americans citizens but, so far, it is not urging them to leave Japan.

Its March 13 Travel Alert urges U.S. citizens to "avoid tourism and non-essential travel to Japan at this time." It also requests "non-essential" U.S. government personnel, including embassy families, to put off travel. FULL POST


Topics: Japan • The News
Obama's international focus
March 14th, 2011
06:43 PM ET

Obama's international focus

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama Monday reaffirmed his call for Libya's embattled leader Moammar Gadhafi to step down.  After a meeting in the Oval office with Denmark's Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen Obama told reporters Gadhafi , "has lost legitimacy and he needs to leave, and that we as an international community have to speak firmly against any violence that's directed at civilians."

The president said the United States, working with NATO and the United Nations, would be looking at "a wide range of options that continue to tighten the noose around Gadhafi and apply additional pressure."  The president noted that Denmark and Prime Minister Rasmussen in particular had been a leader in Europe's efforts to apply tough sanctions against the Libyan leader's regime.  FULL POST


Topics: Japan • Libya • The News
Obama official doesn't expect Japan radioactivity to reach U.S.
March 14th, 2011
02:47 PM ET

Obama official doesn't expect Japan radioactivity to reach U.S.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was joined by administration officials to answer questions about the nuclear power plants in Japan that were damaged after Thursday's earthquake and tsunamis.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko said there is a "very low probability" that harmful radiation levels will reach the United States and other territories.

Jaczko called it a "serious situation," but he and Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman said they don't expect these events will result in any changes in U.S. nuclear power policy.

FULL POST


Topics: Energy • Japan • Nuclear power • President Obama • Uncategorized
Obama, Danish Prime Minister put Japan on top of the agenda
March 14th, 2011
02:37 PM ET

Obama, Danish Prime Minister put Japan on top of the agenda

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Obama declared Monday that he's "heartbroken" by the devastation of the 8.9 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan, and vowed to help in any way possible to help the close U.S. ally rebuild.

"I want to reiterate America's support for the people of Japan, who are some of our closest friends and allies," Obama said during an event at a middle school in northern Virginia. "And I've said directly to the prime minister of Japan, Prime Minister Kan that the United States will continue to offer any assistance we can as Japan recovers from multiple disasters. And we will stand with the people of Japan in the difficult days ahead."

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen, who had a pre-scheduled meeting with Obama on Monday afternoon to discuss the war in Afghanistan and unrest in the Mideast among other key issues, told CNN in an interview that the relief efforts for Japan would also now be a key part of their Oval Office discussion as well. FULL POST


Topics: Japan • President Obama • The News • Uncategorized