Need to Know
September 23, 2002
If the Bush administration's preparations for war with Saddam Hussein were proceeding appropriately, the president would probably be curling up right now with something called a National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) for Iraq. An NIE is a document pooling all the information on a particular country that U.S. intelligence services have collected from overheard phone calls, satellite photos, decrypted e-mails, defectors, paid informants, foreign intelligence services, diplomat tipsters, newspaper articles, and official speeches.
September 09, 2002
The United States added a critical ounce of prevention to its war on terrorism last week. One hundred pounds of prevention, actually, in the form of bomb-grade, highly enriched uranium airlifted from Serbia to Russia for safekeeping. The nuclear material had been sitting around for more than a decade at Belgrade's Vinca Institute of Nuclear Sciences—a decrepit civilian nuclear reactor—in small, low-radiation canisters that would have been easy to carry off without special equipment. The site was protected by little more than a barbed-wire fence and a few lightly armed guards.
July 08, 2002
A few of us at The New Republic have gotten into the habit of expressing our mundane daily conversations in the lingo of 30 second political attack ads. (Just the sort of behavior that made us so cool in high school.) Suppose a colleague wants to head to a familiar spot for lunch, and I prefer a new place.
February 24, 2002
America's success has long depended on the success of immigrant families. Just this month the Census Bureau reported that one in five Americans were either born in a foreign country or have a parent who was. And some of these immigrant families are soaring as never before: Urban school honor rolls swell with immigrant children; immigrant adults wield unprecedented power in universities, government, and business; immigrants own 40 percent of technology companies in Silicon Valley. That's the bright side of the story.
February 18, 2002
LAREDO, TEXAS Tucked into the backseat of a black Range Rover, the candidate is on the phone with a local reporter. And he is causing trouble. "I want to propose a debate," announces Dan Morales, who careened into this year's Texas governor's race in the final hour of the final day of filing.
November 05, 2001
ONE OF THE MOST VIVID experiences of my time as a graduate student at Harvard was a seminar I took with the preeminent liberal political theorist John Rawls. The discussion centered on Rawls's later work, in which he divorced his liberalism from the claim of absolute truth. His argument was only cogent, he averred, if read and understood by people who already shared some basic premises--the need for consent, the reliance on reason, a tone of civility, a relatively open mind. With characteristic tactlessness, I asked him what his response would be if Hitler joined the debate and disagreed with
November 04, 2001
One of the most vivid experiences of my time as a graduate student at Harvard was a seminar I took with the preeminent liberal political theorist John Rawls. The discussion centered on Rawls's later work, in which he divorced his liberalism from the claim of absolute truth. His argument was only cogent, he averred, if read and understood by people who already shared some basic premises--the need for consent, the reliance on reason, a tone of civility, a relatively open mind.
Correspondence - October 8, 2001
October 08, 2001
Infinite justice To THE EDITORS: THE NEW REPUBLIC misreports my role in the Pan Am bombing case (Notebook, August 20). I agreed to analyze the court's decision, especially the eyewitness testimony cited by TNR for the British law firm of Needleman, Treon. I am not representing Libya or Muammar Qaddafi, and if the evidence after a full review shows that Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi was guilty, then he should be punished along with anyone who put him up to it, including Qaddafi. The problem is that several sources within intelligence agencies friendly to the United States believe it is likel
July 02, 2001
The young woman clutching a video cam appears in grave danger of having her eyes pecked out. She dodges and weaves and backs slowly away but cannot escape the advancing (and quite pointy) nose of Bill Cunningham, spokesman for Michael R. Bloomberg. It's June 6, and Bloomberg, the billionaire businessman turned New York mayoral candidate, is making his first official campaign appearance at an interminable awards breakfast on the Harlem campus of City College. The entire New York media is there to document the event.
June 18, 2001
Now that they control the Senate, some Democrats want to treat George W. Bush's judicial nominees as badly as Republicans treated Bill Clinton's. Senate Republicans repeatedly distorted the records of Clinton's nominees to the federal appellate courts, painting judicial moderates as judicial activists and denying them hearings. While Ronald Reagan and Clinton appointed similar numbers of appellate judges, 87 percent of Reagan's nominees were confirmed, compared with only 61 percent of Clinton's.