World

Franco Then the Army?

Madrid—The Spanish armed forces, no longer a military monolith, may become the arbiter of Spain’s political future in the crisis following Generalissimo Francisco Franco’s latest serious illness and probable disappearance from the national scene.

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Mrs. Gandhi's Watergate

India's Prime Minister Indira Gandhi has locked up droves of her political enemies. She has suspended constitutional rights and imposed such drastic press censorship that even publishing news of the censorship rules is banned. More than 1000 persons have been jailed, including the venerable Jayaprakash Narayan, the prominent associate of Mahatma Gandhi. Mrs. Gandhi's current troubles began with her conviction by a local Allahabad judge for two minor election abuses. These involved taking undue advantage of her prime ministerial office to wage her personal political wars.

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For at least eight years it seemed reasonable to me to assume that sooner or later, no matter what we did in Vietnam, things would end badly for us. This feeling was not based on any desire to see us humiliated, or any feeling that the other side represented the forces of goodness and light; it just seemed that the only way to stave off an eventual Communist victory was with an open-ended, and therefore endless, application of American firepower in support of the South Vietnamese regime. No matter how much force we were willing to use, this would not end the war, only prevent Saigon's defeat.

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After eight days without food, the Sinologist Vitaly Rubin had an alert, rapid, feverish way of explaining things. "I am no parasite, what they call. I work at Hebrew University, only I am still in Moscow. I was summoned to KGB to fill out a form: What is your working place? and I answered: Hebrew University." Odd to discuss such matters with men deliberately starving themselves to death. "It is possible to live here," Vitaly Rubin was saying, "but not if you have any dignity. I am specialist in eighth and ninth century China." He was laughing a fierce, feverish little chuckle.

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Torture

… I was arrested on May 11, 1970, in Sao Paulo, on my way to dinner with a young lady I had recently met… She had been arrested several days previously and violently tortured and taken to Operacion Bandeirantes… With four armed policemen we went to OBAN headquarters. During the journey [one] ordered the young lady to show me her hands so that I 'could have an idea of what awaited me.' They… were handcuffed… greatly swollen and covered with dark purple hematomas.

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Oriana Fallaci: You said in another interview: “If I could have my life over again, I’d be a violinist, a surgeon, an archaeologist or a polo player, anything except a king.” Mohammed Reza Pahlevi: I don’t remember saying that, but if I did, I was referring to the fact that a king’s job is a big headache. But that doesn’t mean I’d be ready to give it up. I believe in what I am and in what I’m doing too much for that. Where there’s no monarchy, there’s anarchy, or an oligarchy or a dictatorship. Besides, a monarchy is the only possible means to govern Iran.

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Continuing American participation in the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO) militates against prospects for any effective reassertion by Congress of its foreign policy role in Southeast Asia. Yet the Senate still displays a remarkable complacency toward the survival of SEATO. Though recently dormant, that old treaty is still alive, operative and available as an instrument for further presidentially initiated intervention.

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Mission to China

From the Editors: February marks the thirty-eighth anniversary of President Nixon’s landmark visit to Beijing, and, back in 1972, TNR was one of the few media outlets able to get a first-hand report from the trip. John Osborne’s report, “Mission to China,” provided a snapshot of a country far removed from the modern economic power it is today. “China, feared though it has been and mightier now than it has ever been before, is still a poor country and, in the scales of world power, a weak country,” Osborne wrote.

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Nixon's Peace Plan

In these cheerless times, we search with special diligence for any scrap of good news. So we study the President's latest plan for peace in Indochina, and the background briefing, hoping to find something that justifies the extravagant claims (new, sweeping, comprehensive) made for it. We're still searching. As a domestic political document, it is compelling.

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In the process, we lose sight of one of the cardinal maxims of a guerrilla war: the guerrilla wins if he does not lose.—Henry Kissinger, Foreign Affairs, January, 1969. The Nixon Administration is not prepared to negotiate in Paris under any terms short of capitulation by the other side. An impasse strategy has taken shape, based, unfortunately, on that glimmer of marsh gas known as Vietnamization. Listen.

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