Matt Labah, the hack's defender.Dec 10, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 13 • By MATT LABASH
AMERICAN JOURNALISTS TYPICALLY regard their British counterparts with a mixture of pity and disdain. Fleet Streeters, so the stereotype goes, tend to be thieving, dipsomaniac fabulists: quick to sensationalize, slow to fact-check, more likely to hoist a pint than a phone.
But I actually think this is unfair. There's no one from whom I'd rather steal than a British hack. As a rule, they have an inborn knack for extracting a story's most interesting details. On occasion, these details even happen to be true. Consequently, the most readable Afghanistan coverage by far belongs to the Brits.
There's only one way to stop fanatical behavior.Dec 10, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 13 • By PAUL R. MCHUGH
IN THE WAKE of September 11, what can a psychiatrist contribute to America's defense? Nothing, of course, to defend the nation from bombs, but something perhaps to defend it against confusion--and here America certainly needs help.
At the University of Pennsylvania, the provost called several neuroscientists together to consider whether the terrorists should be viewed as bad or mad: evildoers or sufferers from an exculpating mental disease. The group reached no conclusion, but one participant thought "brain images" might give the answer.
Tories complain, but there's good reason for Tony Blair's popularity here.Dec 10, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 13 • By MICHAEL GONZALEZ
MY TORY FRIENDS have become very worried--angry even--about British prime minister Tony Blair's newfound popularity in America. What especially grates on them is that Blair is now admired by American conservatives, the last Tory constituency of any value.
"It won't last, you know," they tell me, but I recognize the anxiety in their voices. They whine that "Tony"--he's always Tony to those who hate him most, with the first syllable not just emphasized, but pronounced in a slightly higher tone--will use his newfound influence eventually to introduce something wicked, like the euro.
The Europeans miss their old bogeyman.Dec 3, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 12 • By LIONEL SHRIVER
IN LONDON'S GUARDIAN last month, Seumas Milne decried the war in Afghanistan as a "cruel absurdity"--an assault on "one of the poorest and most ruined countries in the world by the planet's richest and most powerful state." Now that the war against the Taliban looks like a rout, the numerous Europeans who have rubbished the U.S.-led campaign as a militarily doomed human-rights disaster may be pulled up short.
What's to be done about the American hostages?Nov 26, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 11 • By VICTORINO MATUS
LAST MAY IN THE PHILIPPINES, a terrorist group with links to Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network abducted 20 people from a hotel resort on Palawan island. Three of them were Americans. In June, one of the Americans, Guillermo Sobero of California, was blindfolded and led away with his hands tied. According to captured rebel Bashir Balahim, Sobero was crying and begging for his life. His last words were, "No, no, please, I beg of you."
With that, another rebel wielded a machete and chopped his head off. Sobero's remains were found last month.
Is the State Department getting interested in taking on Saddam?Nov 26, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 11 • By ELI J. LAKE
IN THE LAST TWO WEEKS, the Bush administration has publicly signaled that a tougher Iraq policy may be on the horizon. For example, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said on November 8: "There is plenty of reason to watch Iraq, there is plenty of reason to make very clear to the Iraqis that the United States does not intend to let the Iraqis threaten their own people, threaten their neighbors, or threaten our interests by acquiring weapons of mass destruction."
But behind the scenes, the building blocks may also be falling into place for a more aggressive approach on Iraq.
Nov 26, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 11 • By CHRISTOPHER CALDWELL, FOR THE EDITORS
LAST WEEKEND, the Taliban controlled all of Afghanistan. This weekend, as we go to press, their last remnants are fighting for their lives under heavy American bombardment in two rapidly collapsing redoubts: Kunduz in the north and Kandahar in the south. Terrorist leaders of al Qaeda have been captured by rebel forces in some cases and killed from the air in others. These last include Osama bin Laden's top lieutenant, Muhammad Atef, most likely one of the planners of the September 11 attacks.
What Osama bin Laden learned from the Left.Nov 26, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 11 • By WALLER R. NEWELL
MUCH HAS BEEN WRITTEN about Osama bin Laden's Islamic fundamentalism; less about the contribution of European Marxist postmodernism to bin Laden's thinking. In fact, the ideology by which al Qaeda justifies its acts of terror owes as much to baleful trends in Western thought as it does to a perversion of Muslim beliefs. Osama's doctrine of terror is partly a Western export.
To see this, it is necessary to revisit the intellectual brew that produced the ideology of Third World socialism in the 1960s.
The Northern Alliance's stunning victory in Kabul has made a fast, decisive victory possible. It's time to push south.4:00 PM, Nov 13, 2001 • By GARY SCHMITT and THOMAS DONNELLY
THE NORTHERN ALLIANCE'S stunning recent victories in Afghanistan have created an opportunity to destroy the Taliban much more rapidly than seemed possible just a few days ago.
They're the ones who should fear us.Nov 19, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 10 • By FREDERICK W. KAGAN
AMERICAN STRATEGY in the war against Afghanistan has been seriously hampered by the culture of fear that reigns in Washington. We are afraid of "nation-building." We are afraid that the coalition might collapse. We are afraid of Muslim reaction to military operations during Ramadan. We are afraid of inserting ground forces because we are afraid of taking casualties. We are afraid of the Afghan winter.
Alas, no.Nov 19, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 10 • By IRWIN M. STELZER
SO NOW WE KNOW: The Saudi Arabian regime is no friend of ours. Sure, they sell us oil and tell us that they keep the OPEC cartel from pushing prices through the roof. But their refusal to go along with OPEC price hawks is self-serving.
Nov 19, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 10 • By
BILL CLINTON, CHATTERING ASS
Last Wednesday, President Clinton returned to the guest speaker's podium at Georgetown University and proceeded to grace us with his thoughts on international terrorism and suchlike contemporary concerns. President Clinton has decided that:
1. Osama bin Laden's mass murders at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were a direct and deliberate assault on the Clinton legacy, specifically.
Nov 19, 2001, Vol. 7, No. 10 • By ROBERT KAGAN and WILLIAM KRISTOL
IS THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION really getting serious about fighting the war on terrorism?
On the one hand, there was still plenty of happy-talk flying fast and furious this past week. President Bush's speech Thursday night was upbeat and spared him media attacks for not addressing the nation on homeland security. But the American people don't really need to be told how to lead their lives. They need to see their government doing its job, both at home and abroad.
What they've seen too often instead are government agencies spinning madly to make it look like they're on top of the situation.
America's wackiest and most anti-Semitic hate group has a town hall meeting at the National Press Club. Hijinks ensue.11:01 PM, Nov 8, 2001 • By BO CRADER
SOME HALLOWEEN SPECIALS are funnier than others. Take, for instance, the New Black Panther Party's "Emergency Town Hall Meeting," at the National Press Club which was broadcast on C-SPAN as a "Forum on U.S. Anti-Terrorism Efforts & Muslims" on October 31.
A surreal cross between a costume party, a pep rally, and a Public Enemy video, the event initially seemed like a public-access television production.