Nearly three years after the start of what was then called «The Great War,» the United States entered World War I with a congressional declaration of war against Germany on April 6, 1917. Until then, President Woodrow Wilson had maintained a policy of non-intervention, and a strong antiwar sentiment had swept the U.S. as casualties mounted on the battlefields across Europe and beyond. But the growing threat of a powerful German navy and its fleet of submarines attacking American shipping, plus evidence that Germany was trying to draw Mexico to its side, persuaded Wilson to join forces with Great Britain and France.… Seguir leyendo »
Nota: Este archivo abarca los artículos publicados a partir del 1 de diciembre de 2008.
It’s been a bad 2017 for Jews. During the month of January, 48 bomb threats were called in to Jewish community centers across the country. Also last month, a neo-Nazi made national news by promising to hold a march in Whitefish, Mont., to intimidate the town’s small Jewish population.
It was thus unsurprising that two reporters were moved to ask President Donald Trump at Thursday’s news conference about a rise in anti-Semitism — and that many of us were aghast at Trump’s rude dismissal of the first reporter, an Orthodox Jew, and Trump’s unwillingness to take the question seriously.
But here’s the thing: As bad as 2017 has been for anti-Semitic incidents, 2016 wasn’t great, either.… Seguir leyendo »
Former Secretary of State John Kerry said moving our Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem will cause «an absolute explosion in the region.»
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas claimed doing so «will destroy the peace process.»
France’s foreign minister, Jean-Marc Ayrault, condemned the idea saying, «One cannot have such a clear-cut, unilateral position.»
Most editorial pages have panned it.
The fact that many are condemning it is exactly why President Donald Trump should keep his campaign promise and follow through on the provocative move.
But only if the goal is truly a sustained peace where Israeli and Palestinian children can enjoy the violence-free future they deserve.… Seguir leyendo »
«Mr. President, your legacy will depend on what you do in Syria,» I said to President Barack Obama as I shook his hand during an event in the White House in the summer of 2013.
He grew more attentive. I told him about my recent medical mission to Aleppo, the attacks on hospitals and civilians by the regime of Bashar Assad and urged him to do something. At that point, fewer than 100,000 people had been killed in Syria, and there were only about 1 million refugees and few small-scale chemical weapons attacks.
Obama leaned forward, smiling, and said, «My legacy will be determined by other things also.» I answered without hesitation, «But Syria will be important, Mr.… Seguir leyendo »
Ebola is now part of our daily lives, inescapable in headlines and on TV, in conversations and nightmares.
But it has been part of my life for 20 years, coming at me in the pages of a book titled «The Hot Zone» and then in the presence of the author of that book, Richard Preston. At a restaurant near the Tribune Tower in October 1994, Preston said this: «It is likely that (Ebola) could be a slate wiper. It could wipe out a vast portion of humanity. It kills 9 out of 10 people who contract it. And Ebola does in 10 days what it takes AIDS 10 years to accomplish.»
I remember that well, have ever since, but I cannot remember now if Preston and I even ordered lunch as we talked about his book, which is the frightening true story of a 1980 emergence of Ebola (and its not-quite-so-deadly cousin Marburg) in the African rain forest and how a strain of the virus made its way to the U.S.… Seguir leyendo »
Peng Liyuan, celebrity folk singer and wife of President Xi Jinping, has a chic, elegant and decidedly local look. Since March 22, when she appeared at a Moscow airport arm in arm with her smiling husband on his first international trip as China’s new head of state, talk of her has spread across newspapers and blogs. Especially as compared with her all-but-invisible predecessors, Peng is a vision of modern Chinese times, and modern Chinese people seem to be embracing her.
«Peng Liyuan’s debut trip is remarkable. For a very long time, (Chinese Communist) Party leaders, and especially their wives, left dowdy impressions,» tweeted a retired academic in Shandong province via the Sina Weibo microblogging service.… Seguir leyendo »
Six months after the smoke cleared from the bus bombing in Burgas, the deadliest terrorist attack on European soil since 2005, Bulgarian authorities bravely identified the Hezbollah terrorist organization as its culprit. In response, the U.S. called on the international community to take «proactive» and «immediate action to crack down on Hezbollah.»
While most of the world suspected Hezbollah’s involvement in the Burgas bombing for months, the real shock is that Hezbollah continues to remain conspicuously absent from the European Union’s list of recognized terrorist organizations. Not since Napoleon invaded Russia has the European continent seen such an astonishing lack of foresight.… Seguir leyendo »
Lidia Gonzalez doesn’t have time to look for counterrevolutionaries. She’s too busy looking for sugar.
Hours after Venezuelan Vice President — and current de facto leader of the country in Hugo Chavez’s absence — Nicolas Maduro told the nation that government security forces had uncovered a plot to assassinate him and the president of the National Assembly, Gonzalez was waiting in line at the store. Shelves were riddled with empty spaces where food used to be.
An employee at the Agriculture Ministry here in Venezuela’s capital city, she was returning home when a friend called to let her know that sugar had just been delivered at their local supermarket.… Seguir leyendo »
It is time for President Bashar Assad to step down from power and for peace to come again to Syria.
As secretary general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, I have always sought to protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of member states, but the brutality and enormous loss of life in Syria has compelled OIC to take a moral stand to aid the critical needs of its people. I am encouraged that President Barack Obama and his administration together with the majority of nations have recognized the National Coalition for the Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces in an effort to bring peace and stability.… Seguir leyendo »
Perhaps the most bizarre element of the horrific gang rape and murder of a New Delhi woman is how it became fodder for the India-versus-China debate.
Chinese media, not known for chronicling human-rights abuses at home, were all over the lethal attack on a 23-year-old Indian on a moving bus on Dec. 16, and her cremation on Dec. 30. Everything from a surge in demand for gun permits among women to a dysfunctional penal system to how democracy is failing India’s 1.2 billion people got enthusiastic coverage in China.
That was until a vast crowd staged protests in the Indian capital.… Seguir leyendo »
My son is sleeping peacefully in the next room as I write. He fell asleep to the sound of me singing «Twinkle Twinkle Little Star» as he has done almost every night since I brought him home from Russia nearly 31/2 years ago. It would be impossible to count the number of times I sang it as we walked around the grounds of his orphanage in Rostov-on-Don — or how many since. I can tell you that it was the first song he learned to sing — he comforted himself with the melody before he knew the words — and that I can sing all five verses.… Seguir leyendo »
Few modern authoritarians are more image-conscious than Vladimir Putin. For 12 years, we have been treated to the macho displays of the Russian leader as action hero/adventurer: the judo black belt; the shirtless outdoorsman; the deep-sea diver; the motorcycle enthusiast; and most recently, the (slightly softer) supposed savior to a flock of endangered cranes. Less well-known is how carefully scripted Putin’s appearance on Russian television can be, with regime spin doctors dictating media coverage down to the minute. The Kremlin is probably a more poll-driven institution than anything you’ll find in Washington.
That’s why the Russian president’s decision on Friday to sign a piece of legislation forbidding the adoption of Russian children by American citizens appears at first blush to be so oddly tone deaf.… Seguir leyendo »
The barbarisms inflicted on the young in Syria continue unabated while Americans grieve for the children of Newtown.
In the U.S., we try to fathom the cruelty, and the faces of Connecticut first-graders torment us. Similar stories are told by Syrians suffering at the hands of Bashar Assad’s brutal regime. One such account was given in «Untold Atrocities,» a report released several months ago by the Save the Children charity. It opens with the tale of one Syrian child, Alaa, as told by Wael, a narrator who is 16 years old.
«I knew a boy named Alaa. He was only 6 years old.… Seguir leyendo »
Seoul and Washington have made the Korean peninsula a more dangerous place. Yes, it was North Korea that launched the rocket. And yes, the regime in Pyongyang — now under the guidance of its enigmatic and boyish leader Kim Jong Un — has its own unknowable motives for continuously provoking the United States and the international community. But American and South Korean political leaders could have done a lot more to prevent the scenario that has now unfolded.
In recent months, North Korea has been the problem that nobody in the Obama administration wants to deal with. Since the Kim regime defied Washington last April and went ahead with its previous rocket launch attempt, the United States has had no consistent approach for dealing with the reclusive regime.… Seguir leyendo »
When I argued a case challenging Ireland’s ban on abortion before the European Court of Human Rights in 2009, I told the story of my client, «Ms. C,» who had been battling cancer when she became pregnant. Ms. C’s doctors in Ireland, where abortion is illegal and lifesaving abortion is largely unavailable, refused to provide her with even basic information about the risk that continuation of pregnancy posed to her life, and so she had no option but to travel to England to obtain an abortion.
The human rights court found this to be a clear violation of my client’s rights under the European Convention on Human Rights and in 2010 demanded that Ireland reform its abortion laws.… Seguir leyendo »
It may turn out that the editors of the English-language edition of the Chinese Communist Party’s mouthpiece, People’s Daily, were only kidding when they ran a 55-image slide show based on «Kim Jong Un Named The Onion’s Sexiest Man Alive for 2012.»
But if it turns out that they weren’t, the explanation for how such an article ended up in China’s most important tribunal isn’t so hard to parse. In three distinct ways, The Onion’s satire was perfectly engineered to appeal to editorial biases — some might call them blind spots — at the English edition of People’s Daily.
The first bias is for extended photo essays depicting Kim Jong Un in official, often heroic poses.… Seguir leyendo »
Israel has been fighting the wrong war against Hamas. Everyone should be happy about the cease-fire that was agreed to and hopeful that it will hold. Yet Israel — and everyone else for that matter — has been playing by Hamas rules; it is a game Israel cannot win, and that is why some Israeli officials describe the Israel Defense Forces’ own efforts as «mowing the grass,» because no matter how short you cut it, the grass will inevitably grow again.
When Israel fights this wrong war, it loses ground in the only war it can and must win against intractable enemies: the war of ideas.… Seguir leyendo »
Sometimes, it’s just not that complicated.
Close your eyes. Imagine 800 rockets falling on your country over the last year. Imagine more than 200 in just the past few days. Imagine your children’s school closed not because of labor disputes or snow, but because they need to stay underground in bomb shelters.
Would you expect your government to do something? Would you expect the world to speak out on your behalf?
Open your eyes.
Of course, that isn’t happening here. It’s happening in Israel and as the rockets leave Gaza and Israeli parents try to grab their children in 15 seconds to take them to shelter, much of the world had either stood silent or issued statements with no distinction between the terrorists and those trying to defend themselves.… Seguir leyendo »
— With news coverage focusing on the ongoing euro crisis, demonstrators protesting austerity in the streets of European capitals and commentators predicting the breakup of our union, the European Union may not have seemed to most Americans the obvious choice for the Nobel Peace Prize.
And yet the Nobel Committee recently announced the EU would receive the award for having «contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe,» reminding us «what can happen if disintegration starts and if we let extremism and nationalism start growing again in Europe.»
I was in Manchester, N.H., when I got word.… Seguir leyendo »
— «I want to die with you, and the children do too — than live without you.»
These weren’t ordinary words, the moments that triggered them were not ordinary and the speaker was not an ordinary person. The words were uttered 50 years ago, in October 1962, by Jacqueline Kennedy. She was speaking to her husband, the leader of the world’s most powerful nation. She did so literally as the hands of our collective doomsday clock approached midnight, at the apex of those critical days later euphemistically termed the Cuban missile crisis.
In the hours that followed those harrowing moments, statesmanship prevailed over brinkmanship.… Seguir leyendo »