By Jonathan Steele (THE GUARDIAN, 03/08/07):
Glad tidings from Baghdad at last. The Iraqi parliament has gone into summer recess without passing the oil law that Washington was pressing it to adopt. For the Bush administration this is irritating, since passage of the law was billed as a «benchmark» in its battle to get Congress not to set a timetable for US troop withdrawals. The political hoops through which the government of Nouri al-Maliki has been asked to jump were meant to be a companion piece to the US «surge». Just as General David Petraeus, the current US commander, is due to give his report on military progress next month, George Bush is supposed to tell Congress in mid-September how the Maliki government is moving forward on reform.… Seguir leyendo »
By Matthew Syed (THE TIMES, 03/08/07):
The men’s 100m at the World Athletics Championships in Japan this month will be won by a black athlete. This is not so much a prediction as a statement of fact. Every winner of the 100m at the championships since the inaugural event in 1983 has been black, as has every finalist from the last eight championships. No white athlete has reached the final of the Olympic Games for more than a quarter of a century. Of the 53 athletes to have ducked under ten seconds, all are black.
There is a natural conclusion to be drawn from all this: blacks have an inbuilt superiority over whites when it comes to sprinting.… Seguir leyendo »
By Rosemary Righter (THE TIMES, 03/08/07):
Angka. Duch. Monosyllables that, 30 years on, Cambodians can barely be induced to utter, even within the family, so unbearable is the pain, the abiding fear, and also the eerily generalised guilt those words invoke.
Angka, “the collective”: the murderous Khmer Rouge forbade people to attach names or faces to the regime that was bent on crushing all traces of identity out of them.
Duch, the Year Zero sobriquet of Kaing Khek Ieu: now a born-again Christian, but between 1975 and 1979 the Angka’s methodical torture master. This week, a full decade after it was agreed that Khmer Rouge leaders should face trial, he became the first of Pol Pot’s henchmen to be indicted for crimes against humanity.… Seguir leyendo »
By Sarah E. Mendelson, the director of the Human Rights and Security Initiative at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and Theodore P. Gerber, a professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin at Madison (THE WASHINGTON POST, 03/08/07):
Vladimir Putin’s belligerent rhetoric and actions toward the United States and its allies have begun prompting pundits to debate whether a new Cold War is afoot. But how has the Russian president’s message played to his home audience? A survey we commissioned by the Levada Analytic Center of 1,802 Russians ages 16 to 29 offers some insight. We focused on this «Putin generation» because it is Russia’s political and economic future.… Seguir leyendo »
By Patrick Bashman, the director of the Democracy Institute and an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute (THE NEW YORK TIMES, 03/08/07):
ACCORDING to anti-smoking groups, the current Congressional attempt to give the Food and Drug Administration authority to regulate tobacco is the most important piece of legislation since the surgeon general spoke out on the dangers of smoking 40 years ago. Surprisingly, it is not just the foes of Big Tobacco that support the proposed law, which was approved by the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on Wednesday.
Philip Morris, the world’s largest tobacco company, is also firmly behind the bill.… Seguir leyendo »