Cambodia All Over Again?

In the wake of a United Nations investigation implicating a number of Syrian and Lebanese officials in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, the Bush administration is calling for international sanctions, and leaking dark hints of war. But the United States is already unofficially at war with Syria. For the past six … Continue reading “Cambodia All Over Again?”

The Dragon and the Chrysanthemum

At first glance, the growing tension between China and Japan seems almost inexplicable. Massive anti-Japanese demonstrations in China over events that took place more than half a century ago? A heated exchange filled with mutual threats over an offshore petroleum field that Western oil companies think is not worth exploiting? Have a Shinto shrine and … Continue reading “The Dragon and the Chrysanthemum”

Cornering the Dragon: Bad Idea

When newly appointed CIA Director Porter Goss recently warned that China’s modernization of its military posed a direct threat to the U.S., was it standard budget time scare tactics? Or did it signal the growing influence of hard-liners in the Bush administration who want to "contain" China and re-institute the Cold War in Asia? A … Continue reading “Cornering the Dragon: Bad Idea”

Indonesia: US Underwriting Terrorism?

Behind a recent, highly controversial indictment by the U.S. Department of Justice, the Bush administration is maneuvering to revive military ties with the Indonesian Army (TNI), one of the world’s most oppressive institutions. In late June, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft convinced a federal grand jury to indict Anthonius Wamang for a 2002 ambush in … Continue reading “Indonesia: US Underwriting Terrorism?”

Rise of the Machines

The press had lots of fun with the recent robot debacle in the Mojave Desert. Competing for $1 million in prize money, 15 vehicles headed off on a 142-mile course through some of the most forbidding terrain in the country. None managed to navigate even eight miles. The robots hit fences, caught fire, rolled over, … Continue reading “Rise of the Machines”