About a Boycott: After Starbucks Caves, U.K. Sets Sights on Tech Giants
December 15, 2012
Do America's tech giants have anything to fear?
Baathism: An Obituary
September 14, 2012
When Bashar Al Assad's government finally collapses in Syria, it will mean the end of a totalitarian ideology that thrived—and killed—for 70 years.
The Known Unknowns
June 07, 2012
The Inner Life of Empires: An Eighteenth-Century HistoryBy Emma Rothschild (Princeton University Press, 483 pp., $35) BY A RURAL SCOTTISH river on an early summer’s day in 1771, someone makes a catch: a package wrapped in cloth, and inside the cloth, a baby boy, and on his tiny sodden body “the marks of violence” that may have caused his death. It does not take long to identify a suspect, the infant’s mother, who works in a nearby household. She is brought to the local sheriff’s court, interrogated, and charged with the murder of her son. Every suspect, by definition, invites doubt.
The Trouble With Neutrality
September 14, 2011
A World on Fire: Britain’s Crucial Role in the American Civil War By Amanda Foreman (Random House, 958 pp., $35) The world’s biggest superpower has a problem. The citizens of a nation overseas have risen up against their tyrannical rulers, determined to claim liberty even if it takes a civil war. As the most powerful global advocate of freedom, the superpower has to admire the rebels’ cause. Should it help them? Humanitarians argue that intervention can prevent hundreds of thousands of civilians from suffering hideous state-sponsored subjugation.
Real Conservatives Don’t Slash Foreign Aid
February 22, 2011
As House Republicans press for deeper budget cuts, one of their top targets is foreign aid. It is a tempting candidate for draconian cuts—a soft priority in today’s hard fiscal times and a budget line with no strong domestic constituency. Before Republican budget hawks wield their knife, however, they should take a lesson from their conservative cousins in the United Kingdom: When belt-tightening gets serious, foreign aid should be improved, not gutted. After coming to power last summer, British conservatives have not just talked about slashing Britain’s budget, they have delivered.
January 06, 2011
In a critically and commercially disappointing year for the film industry, one of the few highlights has been the reception given to The King’s Speech. The movie has been nominated for just about every existing award, and a bevy of Oscar nominations are forthcoming. The period drama is also on its way to financial success. Like Stephen Frears’s film from 2006, The Queen—which won Helen Mirren an Oscar for her eponymous performance—The King’s Speech is a testament to Americans’ continuing fascination with the British Royal Family.
O.K., The President May Have Difficulties With Europeans. But the American People Don't.
July 20, 2010
In any case, the nations with which Barack Obama seems to think he clicks are not especially respected (or liked) by the people he represents. And these presidentially favored nations don't really seem to respect either him or us. Basta with the Muslim orbit. Obama wants to run after Recip Tayyit Erdogan let him. Frankly, I believe that the Anglophobia of the administration is a much over-estimated quantum. By the time you read this, moreover, the president and David Cameron will have had whatever set-to they were destined to have, or not to have.
Dismal Perhaps, But Is It A Science?
June 30, 2010
As if there weren’t enough transatlantic rifts already, from the Middle East to the environment, another has opened over economic policy.
The Politics of Evasion
May 06, 2010
For all of the excitement surrounding the UK’s general election, its main players have been deeply evasive on the nation’s central question: What to do about the massive fiscal imbalance they’re staring at? Here is how the respected Institute for Fiscal Studies begins its quietly scathing analysis: “The financial crisis and the recession have prompted a huge increase in government borrowing over the last two years, as the gap between what the public sector spends and raises from taxes has widened to an extent not seen since the Second World War.