Couch Potato Briefing: Are Palestinians from Mars?

Global Spin’s weekend rental movie recommendations to keep you up to speed with world events, by Tony Karon and Ishaan Tharoor

Chronicle of a Death Foretold

We start this week with Francesco Rosi’s lovely screen adaptation of Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novel “Chronicle of a Death Foretold”. Why? Not simply because it features the …

Beijing’s Cabs and the Struggle to Control Inflation


When I first came to Beijing 15 years ago, the toughest part of getting a taxi was finding a driver who was awake. The Chinese capital was much slower paced then, and cabbies would often follow up their lunch with a one or two hour siesta. The hours of 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. were a taxi wasteland, unless you were willing to risk waking a …

Israel Consumed by Debate over Whether to Attack Iran


All week Israel has thrummed with talk of launching a military strike on Iran. It began with published hints that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was preparing to move forward on plans to attack Iranian nuclear facilities, a pre-emptive move that he, along with his defense minister, Ehud Barak, long have been described as …

Firebombed French Paper Is No Free Speech Martyr


Okay, so can we finally stop with the idiotic, divisive, and destructive efforts by “majority sections” of Western nations to bait Muslim members with petulant, futile demonstrations that “they” aren’t going to tell “us” what can and can’t be done in free societies? Because not only are such Islamophobic antics futile …

Magic Kingdom: Is Qatar Too Good To Be True?


When something seems too good to be true, according to an old adage, it usually is. The announcement, Tuesday, by Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani that legislative council elections would be held in 2013 , without a push from protestors on the street, raises the question of what kind of dark skeletons lurk behind the …

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