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The Chernobyl factor in the Ukraine crisis

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Twenty-eight years after its Chernobyl nuclear plant exploded, Ukraine confronts a nuclear specter of a different kind: the possibility that the country’s reactors could become military targets in the event of a Russian invasion. Speaking at the Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague in March, Andrii Deshchytsia, Ukraine’s acting foreign minister, cited the “potential threat to many nuclear facilities” should events deteriorate into open warfare.

Posted: April 16th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The Yalta temptation

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The quiet period between the declaration of war in September 1939 and the Nazi blitz on Belgium and France in May 1940 is often called “The Phony War.” Since Russia invaded and annexed Crimea, and began massing troops and armored columns on our eastern border, we in Ukraine have been living through a “phony peace.”

Posted: April 7th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Day traders of charity

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An online charity organization is taking Silicon Valley by storm. Called Watsi, the charity allows users to read personal tales of medical woe in emerging markets and contribute up to the total amount needed to pay for a particular patient’s treatment. Many might say, “How nice!” But I say, “Hold the applause.”

Posted: April 2nd, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Give nuclear security a chance

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About 50 global leaders are in The Hague for the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit being held (March 24-25) at the World Forum in the Hague. This year’s conference marks the initiative’s third meeting since 2010, continuing a process that seeks to raise awareness about the threat of nuclear terrorism and catalyze much-needed action to secure the materials that terrorists would need to make a weapon. But time is running out.

Posted: March 25th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

India’s women on the march

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Sometimes countries suddenly take a mighty leap forward, forcing everyone else to take notice. On one critical issue—sexual harassment and rape—India has moved far into the lead. Following a number of brutal rapes that became notorious worldwide, Indian women are pushing back in radical, innovative, and transformational ways.

Posted: February 1st, 2014 in Columns,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Who lost Thailand?

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Thailand, Southeast Asia’s most developed and sophisticated economy, is teetering on the edge of the political abyss. Yet most of the rest of Asia appear to be averting their eyes from the country’s ongoing and increasingly anarchic unrest. That indifference is not only foolish; it is also dangerous. Asia’s democracies now risk confronting the same harsh question that the United States faced when Mao Zedong marched into Beijing, and again when Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini ousted the Shah in Iran. Who, they will have to ask, lost Thailand?

Posted: January 25th, 2014 in Columns,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The girl can’t help it

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When Mary Barra was named CEO of General Motors in early December—the first woman to head a major American automaker—it seemed to many to be a milestone in women’s struggle for equal rights and opportunities. But, in a climate in which, as Catalyst, the feminist glass-ceiling watchdog, points out, only 4.2 percent of US Fortune 500 CEOs are women, is Barra’s promotion really a victory?

Posted: January 5th, 2014 in Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The path to altruism

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“Cooperation,” the Harvard University biologist Martin Nowak has written, is “the architect of creativity throughout evolution, from cells to multicellular creatures to anthills to villages to cities.” As mankind now tries to solve new, global challenges, we must also find new ways to cooperate. The basis for this cooperation must be altruism.

Posted: January 4th, 2014 in Columns,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Putin’s rearguard battle

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MADRID—Russia’s recent diplomatic successes in Syria and Iran, together with foreign-policy missteps by US President Barack Obama, have emboldened President Vladimir Putin in his drive to position Russia as capable of challenging American exceptionalism and Western universalism. But Putin’s recent address to Russia’s Federal Assembly was more a reflection of his resentment of Russia’s geopolitical [...]

Posted: December 31st, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Global warming and global security

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On Sep. 27, the 195 member countries of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), supported by the work of thousands of scientists from around the world, released its Fifth Assessment Report. Even for a military man like me, the latest scientific evidence on global warming makes for a chilling read.

Posted: October 21st, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Waste not, want not

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Every year, we waste or lose 1.3 billion metric tons of food—one-third of the world’s annual food production. The sheer scale of the number makes it almost impossible to grasp, no matter how one approaches it. Try to imagine 143,000 Eiffel Towers stacked one on top of another, or a pile of 10 trillion bananas.

Posted: October 20th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The narrative plot against Syria

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When President Richard Nixon visited Syria in 1974, Syrians lined the streets of Damascus to greet him. Not all were delighted by his visit, though. “Isn’t that Nixon the same one you have been telling us for years is an evil man who is completely in the control of the Zionists and our enemies?” an eight-year-old boy asked his father. “How could you welcome him and shake his hand?”

Posted: October 13th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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