On the Events in Egypt

I ride a train some mornings, hurtling south in darkness toward the port of Tacoma, past shadowed bridges, around fields glazed with frost, through tentative and unheard bird songs.  Today, for the first time this winter, the journey ended as a portent of a sunrise began to glow behind the mountain screen in the East. After the burning oil wells and wrenchingly uniform destruction of … Continue reading On the Events in Egypt

Chess Match: North Korean Endgame in Toronto

Today in one of Germany’s leading newspapers, the Suddeutsche Zeiting, underneath coverage of the G-20 meeting in Toronto (with optimistic headlines like “In the Canadian wilderness, Merkel and Obama demonstrate a harmony which in reality does not exist”) is a rather interesting story about North Korea: Christian Wernicke, “Dreimal Schach gegen Pjoengjang: Die Vereinigten Staaten bereiten sich auf ein Ende des Regimes in Nordkorea vor … Continue reading Chess Match: North Korean Endgame in Toronto

China-Iran-Russia: Geopolitics and Soft Power

Via Professor Juan Cole’s groundbreaking Informed Comment website, an illustrated commentary on Sino-Iranian relations by Pepe Escobar in France (in English): Then, via Al Jezeera’s English service, a short report on China’s Iran moves in October: The best look at the deep structure of Sino-Iran relations today is probably my colleague John Garver’s work, Ancient Partners in a Post-Imperial World, published here in Seattle at … Continue reading China-Iran-Russia: Geopolitics and Soft Power

I Saw This Coming in 1935

Scene: Kennedy-era Post Office in Tacoma, Washington.  An overcast, cool day.  People stand in line, shuffling through envelopes tangled with rubber bands and loopy writing.  I am preparing a small mailing to a friend. Everything sifts out and I lift my eyes.  An old man stands in front of me in the line, alert, a little smile on his lips.  He wears a maroon plaid … Continue reading I Saw This Coming in 1935

Nazi Propaganda and Fox News

In researching a previous post, I became curious about the following image used by Glenn Beck in his bizarre equation of President Obama’s health care legislation with Nazi eugenics policies: To summarize: Beck fought back tears as he related how this specific image caused him a great deal of personal pain, on the grounds that the hand of the disabled man in the Nazi poster … Continue reading Nazi Propaganda and Fox News