Monthly Archives: May 2008

The Failed Theology of Arms Control | Los Angeles Times

One of the least noticed and most peculiar campaign promises made by Barack Obama is his pledge, if elected president, to “secure all loose nuclear materials in the world within four years.” Without doubt that is a laudable goal, but one is left wondering how exactly he expects to accomplish it in four years, or even, for that matter, in 40.

One of many obstacles is that our intelligence agencies seldom know where loose nuclear materials are, especially when they are hidden on the territory of hostile states. An even bigger problem is that when we they do locate them, there always will be some expert or another telling us that, despite all the evidence, they are not really there. Obama, of all people, should know this.

He has one such expert advising his campaign. Continue reading

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Our Enemies and the Election | Wall Street Journal

Are we due for an “October surprise?” Ever since October 1972, when Henry Kissinger, then Richard Nixon’s national security adviser, announced that “peace is at hand” in Vietnam, an October surprise – or the impending possibility of one – has been a perennial feature of American political life. Will a dramatic foreign-policy development tip the electoral balance this year?

Several factors have converged to make this more probable than in any recent election.

Consider the extraordinary way foreign powers have been lining up in the election. Thus far, Barack Obama has been winning this particular nondelegate count. “We like Mr. Obama and we hope he will win the election,” is what Ahmed Yousef, a ranking official of the Islamic terrorist organization Hamas, declared in April. Gleb Pavlovsky, a key adviser to both Vladimir Putin and Dmitri Medvedev, has called John McCain the worst choice and Sen. Obama the best – “less tied” to the Cold War. Continue reading

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Autocrats and Democrats | Commentary

The world is full of mysteries. One of them is why, in the aftermath of the cold war, the major powers of the world could not simply get along.

For a very brief moment, things seemed otherwise. After Communism unraveled, a degree of global harmony appeared tentatively to set in. Russia and the countries of Eastern Europe, no longer frozen in the permafrost of Stalinism, displayed a common interest with the West in peacefully journeying toward economic development, democracy, and political integration. Even a major Communist holdout like China appeared to be ambling, with occasional stumbles, along the same garden path. Continue reading

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