Opinion / Asia

The Diplomacy of Ghost in The Shell

Ignore the new version. The 1995 anime Ghost in the Shell is the real thing. See this extended sequence of wonderful drawing and colour, included for no obvious reason other than to show wonderful drawing and colour: The ‘star’ is Major Kusanagi of Section 9, a special police unit. Kusanagi is a […]

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Syria and Diplomacy

Remember this one about President Obama’s speech on Syria in 2013? Thus: The real risk in President Obama’s new approach is this. The protracted painstaking negotiation needed to set up a credible international monitoring and destruction regime for Syria’s CW stocks will give Assad and his state apparatus a massive […]

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Back in the NHS (3)

Happy New Year to one and all. I have been busy trundling to and fro to NHS hospitals. My mother is not so well. See earlier accounts here: Above all, I am humbled by the diligence shown by the nursing staff as they try to keep their designated batch of […]

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Amazon Space: Trust Between Strangers

When I rebooted my website a while back, I took out my 2008 thoughts on Amazon Space and the human and operational limits to Trust. Let’s get it back here. It still reads nicely enough (Wait … huh? What’s a PDA?). The screams of Aleppo are now coming directly into […]

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Social Europe

A doomed moth to a flame, I swing past the website of Social Europe. You just know that anything with the word ‘social’ in the title is all about supposedly progressive but basically bossy collectivism, and if progressive bossy collectivism is what you want, Social Europe delivers bigly. In their parallel […]

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Bad Leaders

My latest piece for DIPLOMAT mulls over the problems the world faces in dealing with Bad Leaders. Some of them contain their Badness within their own borders, thrashing their own people because they can. Others spread their badness and create havoc for others. Thus: The last century gave the world […]

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Peak Craig Murray in Uzbekistan

Former UK ambassador Craig Murray too has a sharp new website look. He goes from strength to strength despite some sad family news, and credit is definitely due: We seem to be hitting peak Craig Murray. Before the hiatus of the last month or so, 40,000 people were regularly reading […]

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North Korea Nuclear Test

Around the planet the world’s networked seismographs will have revealed in seconds all sorts of things about North Korea’s latest big bomb test, hydrogen or otherwise. Notably that it was indeed a bomb (and not an earthquake) and where exactly the test took place. Other instruments will be tracing the […]

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Who Wins the Future?

As Mark Steyn (and others) have noted, the future belongs to those who show up. For the next century or so, those people largely fall into two categories. Africans and Indians. With added Arabs. The UN’s Population Division churns out all sorts of numbers about global demographic trends. They used […]

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Understanding ISIS (and Dubai)

As Twitter noted, this piece about ISIS and modernity appears to hit Peak Guardian: In the neoliberal fantasy of individualism, everyone was supposed to be an entrepreneur, retraining and repackaging themselves in a dynamic economy, perpetually alert to the latter’s technological revolutions. But capital continually moves across national boundaries in […]

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