A Week Later, the Battle to Understand England’s Riots Rages On

The French have a phrase for circumstances beyond control: “C’est la guerre,” literally “it’s the war.” They might say it, with a shrug, as they sit in traffic or wait for a bus that never arrives. But last week the expression, which dates back to World War II, took on a different inflection as residents of a village on the shores of …

Libya: Perils of the End Game

The good news from Libya is that the collapse of the Gaddafi regime is reportedly accelerating, with rebel forces making military advances towards Tripoli on three fronts and two key regime figures reported to have defected in as many days. But every silver lining has its cloud: The rebellion against Gaddafi has, in recent weeks, …

As the GOP Presidential Race Heats Up, British Fascination Grows



Michelle Bachmann and Rick Perry may be going head to head for the first time in Waterloo, Iowa tonight, but at London’s Waterloo Tube Station Monday morning, commuters couldn’t read enough about their showdown 4,000 miles away.


News of the Ames straw poll and Perry’s South Carolina campaign announcement have flooded …

How a Late Bollywood Icon Saved This Correspondent’s Life


RIP Shammi Kapoor, Bollywood star of the 1960s. You danced, you sang, you romanced, you made movies fun. And although you didn’t know it, you saved my life.

Long before Indian song-and-dance movies became cool in the West, they were huge in the Middle East. In the 1960s, 70s and 80s, Bollywood stars like Raj Kapoor (Shammi’s older …

What Will Happen When the Palestinians Go to the U.N.?

The Palestinian Authority has set the date: Sept. 20, a Tuesday, is the day it will ask the United Nations for membership. As for what comes the day after, well, that’s a good deal less clear, and efforts to read the murk betray only intentions.

An Israeli legal expert predicts chaos.

“There are huge legal consequences of …

After Protest, Chinese City Says it Will Move Chemical Plant


After the heavy-handed reaction this spring to the calls to being Jasmine Revolution-style demonstrations to China, it’s easy to think that the authorities’ only response to popular protest is to crack down. But as events in northeast China this weekend indicate, the government can be remarkably receptive to demonstrations, especially …

Could French Doubts On Afghanistan Influence Future Foreign Policy?

It may wind up proving to be nothing more than mere politics, but if the re-thinking now being expressed by French Socialists about the country’s engagement in Afghanistan is in earnest, it could have some serious consequences for the military operations Paris is already involved in—and any more than might be looming.

On …

Why Turkey Holds the Key to the Regional Power Game on Syria

As the Assad regime on Sunday escalated its brutal crackdown by sending gunboats to shell the coastal city of Latakia, yet the rebellion shows no sign of abating despite at least 1,700 deaths so far, Syria’s fate may come to rest less in the hands of its own people, than in the corridors of power in neighboring and more distant …

A Glimpse into Ai Weiwei’s 81 Days of Detention

Chinese dissident and artist Ai Weiwei spent his 81 days of detention in a 12′ by 24′ room, watched at all times by two military police who were never more than few feet away from him and was required to ask permission before moving, even to scratch his ear. While the artist, who is accused of evading taxes, did not suffer physical …

Is the U.S. the Western Hemisphere’s New Banana Republic?

Forget The Change-Up. The best body-swapping story these days doesn’t star Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds; it features Uncle Sam and Latin America.

The U.S. was once the responsible (albeit imperious) adult among the two, the superpower whose politics and finances were managed more reasonably and rationally. Latin America was …

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