Analysis

Is Turkey Secretly Working on Nuclear Weapons?

While the world worries about Iran’s nuclear program, could another nation in the Middle East have atomic desires? Hans Rühle The National Interest Some months ago it became known that the German Intelligence Service (Bundesnachrichtendienst – BND) was spying on Turkey. Turkey’s political leadership was none too happy. Yet the BND has good reasons to keep a watchful eye on Ankara. It is not only the crises in Iraq and Syria, drug-smuggling, people-trafficking and the activities of the PKK that ... Read More »

Is Turkey Secretly Working on Nuclear Weapons?

While the world worries about Iran’s nuclear program, could another nation in the Middle East have atomic desires? Hans Rühle The National Interest Some months ago it became known that the German Intelligence Service (Bundesnachrichtendienst – BND) was spying on Turkey. Turkey’s political leadership was none too happy. Yet the BND has good reasons to keep a watchful eye on Ankara. It is not only the crises in Iraq and Syria, drug-smuggling, people-trafficking and the activities of the PKK that ... Read More »

Why College Is Not a Commodity

What is college for? We typically answer this question by citing a variety of purposes, of which liberal education is only one. Most other goals — marketable skills, moral and social development, learning how to learn — are tied to the demands of employers. Gary Gutting The Chronicle of Higher Education Yes, young people need all of those qualities. But, apart from liberal education, our best colleges — say, the top 100 major research universities and the 50 best four-year ... Read More »

Where in the World Is the U.S. Military?

Despite recently closing hundreds of bases in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States still maintains nearly 800 military bases in more than 70 countries and territories abroad—from giant “Little Americas” to small radar facilities. Britain, France and Russia, by contrast, have about… David Vine Politico By my calculation, maintaining bases and troops overseas cost $85 to $100 billion in fiscal year 2014; the total with bases and troops in warzones is $160 to $200 billion. These costs have heightened debate ... Read More »

The Tricks People Use to Avoid Debate

In the art of evading meaningful policy discussions, all political camps have honed their particular styles. HANNA ROSIN The Atlantic A proper argument takes intellectual vigor, nimbleness, and sustained attention. If carried on long enough, it can push both parties to a deeper level of understanding. Oxford debaters hack away at each… The Tricks People… Read More »

In Washington, the Real Power Lies With the Spooks, Eavesdroppers and Assassins

A review of Michael Glennon’s ‘National Security and Double Government’.. by MATTHEW HARWOOD Almost two months after the first stories about whistleblower Edward Snowden appeared in June 2013, libertarian-minded Rep. Justin Amash — a Michigan Republican — and liberal Democrat Rep. John Conyers, also of Michigan, co-sponsored an amendment to the defense appropriations bill that would have defunded the National Security Agency’s call records program… Source: In Washington, the Real Power Lies With the Spooks, Eavesdroppers and Assassins — War Is Boring Read More »

Slavoj Žižek: What is freedom today? – video

Are we free to live our lives as we want? We might think so, but philosopher Slavoj Žižek argues that this apparent freedom is actually governed by a complex series of conditions. With Slavoj Žižek. The Guardian Produced by Nicole Jackson, Ben Marshall, Bruno Rinvolucri, Anetta Jones, Robbie Kilgour and Caterina Monzani, theguardian.com For Žižek, a ‘pathetic, old romantic’, the highest form of freedom is in fact love • The books Absolute Recoil: Towards a New Foundation of Dialectical Materialism by Slavoj Žižek and Comradely ... Read More »

Asian Gambling Addiction

“We have this saying in Chinese: if you don’t gamble, you don’t know how lucky you are.” —Anonymous Chinese gambler This strong belief in luck, fate, or fortune is part of the driving force behind Asians and gambling. Sam Louie MA, LMHC Psychology Today It’s no coincidence there is such a high proportion of Asians gambling and the deep cultural factors which not only encourage gambling but discourage seeking help when it becomes compulsive or addictive. Research shows Asians in the ... Read More »

Four Orthodox Christian Lessons from Martin Luther King Jr.

Every January, Americans pause to honor the memory of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. who led a civil rights movement that called this nation to see every person as created in the image and likeness of God and worthy of equal treatment under the law. By Andrew Estocin in The Sounding Blog Orthodox Christian Network One of the most beautiful moments in American Orthodox history was when Archbishop Iakovos of North and South America chose to march against racial segregation ... Read More »

Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming

A lecture explaining why using our imaginations, and providing for others to use theirs, is an obligation for all citizens Authors condemn £4m library fund as a ‘sop’ and a ‘whitewash’ Neil Gaiman The Guardian It’s important for people to tell you what side they are on and why, and whether they might be biased. A declaration of members’ interests, of a sort. So, I am going to be talking to you about reading. I’m going to tell you that ... Read More »

After the Children Have Grown

LATELY, I’ve been having some trouble figuring out exactly who I am. Or, more precisely, who I will be going forward. Parts of me have changed over the years. MADELINE LEVINE The New York Times But my core identity has not budged in three decades. I’m a mother. With my youngest son about to graduate from college, I find myself increasingly unhinged from that most fundamental view of myself. When I give talks, I find myself flummoxed about when exactly ... Read More »

What Sex Means for World Peace

The evidence is clear: The best predictor of a state’s stability is how its women are treated. Valerie M. Hudson FP In the academic field of security studies, realpolitik dominates. Those who adhere to this worldview are committed to accepting empirical evidence when it is placed before their eyes, to see the… As Walter Lippmann wrote, “We must not substitute for the world as it is an imaginary world.” Well, here is some robust empirical evidence that we cannot ignore: ... Read More »

Christian Zionism and Foreign Policy: Exploiting Religion.

Abstract This article considers the phenomenon of what has become known as ‘Christian Zionism’, as manifested in particular in the United States of America, and its influence on foreign policy formulation. William Mallinson It suggests that there has always been an important element of religious moralising in US foreign policy, which has gone hand in hand with more down-to-earth business interests, but that recently the evangelical side of American Christianity has allied with active support for Israel and its policies. ... Read More »

The Divisions of Cyprus

Enlargement, widely regarded as the greatest single achievement of the European Union since the end of the Cold War, and occasion for more or less unqualified self-congratulation, has left one inconspicuous thorn in the palm of Brussels. Perry Anderson LRB The furthest east of all the EU’s new acquisitions, even if the most prosperous and democratic, has been a tribulation to its establishment, one that neither fits the uplifting narrative of the deliverance of captive nations from Communism, nor furthers ... Read More »

Reborn

We have always been told there is no recovery from persistent vegetative state – doctors can only make a sufferer’s last days as painless as possible. But is that really the truth? Steve Boggan The Guardian Across three continents, severely brain-damaged patients are awake and talking after taking … a sleeping pill. And no one is more baffled than the GP who made the breakthrough. Steve Boggan witnesses these ‘strange and… Reborn… Read More »