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In Depth: Asia Pacific

2 Aug 2003

Idiocy Watch

Michael J. Totten's blog It [having kids] is the reason for marriage. It’s not to affirm the love of two people. I mean, that’s not what marriage is about. Rick Santorum , Republican senator from Pennsylvania I wanted a reminder of that day when we ...

4 Nov 2003

McGovern Versus Nixon

Michael J. Totten's blog I’ve said before that I refuse to vote for Howard Dean if he wins the Democratic primary. I take that back. It’s unlikely, but possible, that I’ll vote for him. First let’s get a coupla things out of the way. Howard Dean is ...

5 Nov 2003

Saddam’s Fan Club

Michael J. Totten's blog Australian Labor Party barrister Jim Nolan says Tariq Ali, whose nasty screed appeared two days ago in the Guardian , is an apologist for Saddam Hussein . And he’s right. I don’t say such things lightly, and neither, ...

16 Dec 2003

Seeing an Empty Glass

Michael J. Totten's blog Roger Normand in The Nation magazine laments the global assault on human rights. Who is leading the assault? Not the scattered bands of terrorists, who rely on fear and chaos to magnify their threat and disguise their ...

Not Just the Fringe

Michael J. Totten's blog According to this Anti-Defamation League poll , 43 percent of Americans believe Israel is a threat to world peace. And 37 percent of Americans believe America is the greatest threat to world peace. UPDATE: Moe Lane (who blogs ...

26 Dec 2003

Tragedy in Iran

Michael J. Totten's blog The AP says the death toll in the Iran earthquake could be as high as 40,000. That’s two thirds the number of Americans killed in the Vietnam War. The Bam fortress, the world’s largest mud-brick structure, is gone. Asia ...

28 Dec 2003

Jeff Jarvis Profiled

Michael J. Totten's blog Norman Geras profiles Jeff Jarvis : I called myself a pacifist early in the age of Vietnam and did not change my mind until September 11. There’s an old joke that a conservative is a liberal who has been mugged. A hawk is a ...

1 Jan 2004

Ego Link

Michael J. Totten's blog Tim Blair’s feisty new piece in the Australian Daily Telegraph begins with a breakfast cereal theme and moves on to the sane and the insane left. Oh, and he mentions me, too. (A side note to Tim: I’m not really a part of the ...

26 Jan 2004

Jihad

Michael J. Totten's blog Islamist thugs are murdering Buddhist monks in Thailand. It’s not because Buddhist monks are “colonialist oppressors,” nor is it because Buddhists drive the engine of corporate globalization. And it’s not because Thailand is ...

4 Feb 2004

The Race

Michael J. Totten's blog Pakistan’s military dictator Pervez Musharraf pardoned Abdel Qadeer Khan for selling nuclear weapons secrets to North Korea, Libya, and Iran. The Beeb says there is tremendous public opposition to putting this guy on trial. ...

6 Feb 2004

Free Tibet

Michael J. Totten's blog Jay Nordlinger in National Review implies that conservatives are behind the Free Tibet movement. You will recall that, in previous columns, we have spoken of Meghan Howard, the Harvard kid who stood up to the Chinese Number ...

7 Feb 2004

We Are Not Doomed (Updated)

Michael J. Totten's blog Nelson Ascher posted a remarkably gloomy mini essay on Europundits. He basically says we are doomed. It is absolutely, I repeat, ASOLUTELY unbelievable, but the enemies of the war are winning the peace or rather are managing ...

14 Feb 2004

Vietnam at Half Volume

Michael J. Totten's blog Mark Steyn paints John Kerry as the poster boy for Vietnam Syndrome. Thanks to Kerry in his Hanoi Jane period, Vietnam was a disaster for America that gave the establishment a wholly irrational fear of almost every ramshackle ...

19 Feb 2004

The Unbearable Lightness of Scandals

Michael J. Totten's blog Here’s a shocker . WASHINGTON – John Kerry’s protests against the Vietnam War and President Bush’s wartime service in the National Guard generate disapproval largely among people who already have made up their minds against ...

25 Apr 2004

Free Advice for John Kerry

Michael J. Totten's blog John Kerry is among the legion of politicians who still don’t know the First Rule of Holes: When you’re in one, stop digging. He’s been jumping down into the same deep hole, shovel in hand, for more than three decades. In ...

19 May 2004

Islam’s Bloody Borders

Michael J. Totten's blog Meanwhile, the Jihad is ramping up in Thailand. Dave Rodriguez snagged a photograph from the latest article in a Thai newspaper before they pulled the story offline. Apparently, there are killings every day in the Muslim part ...

21 Aug 2004

Swift Boat Psychodrama

Michael J. Totten's blog I haven’t written about the Swift Boat Veterans controversy for a number of reasons. One, I hate the Vietnam War. Two, that war ended when I was three years old and we are in a different historical era twice removed . Three, ...

3 Sep 2004

Move On

Michael J. Totten's blog Dave Barry : Call me a dreamer, but I’m hoping that at some point before we go to the polls, we can get this campaign past the Vietnam era to at least, say, the late ’70s. It would be cool if we could argue about the late 70s ...

6 Oct 2004

Documents: Saddam Bribed France, Russia, and China

Michael J. Totten's blog John Kerry rather undiplomatically described the allies of the United States as a “coalition of the bribed, the coerced, the bought, and the extorted.” As it turns out there really was a coalition of the bribed and the bought ...

29 Nov 2004

Two Things Dubious Yet Hopeful

Michael J. Totten's blog Posted by Jeremy Brown File these under things we’d like to believe but are reluctant to, though it is nevertheless a hopeful sign that the words are even being spoken (you’ll have to write small to fit this on the file tab): ...

30 Nov 2004

Weirder Than Libya

Michael J. Totten's blog When you visit another country you meet other people who are also visiting the country. Inevitably you’ll discuss other places you’ve been. If you go to Costa Rica you’ll meet people who’ve been to Guatemala and Bolivia. Go ...

11 Dec 2004

When in Rome

Michael J. Totten's blog I considered moving to Tokyo to teach English right out of college but then chickened out. I wasn’t ready to live abroad in an alien culture at 22. (Actually, I probably was. I just thought I wasn’t.) Six years ago, before ...

20 Dec 2004

Aquarius Then and Now

Michael J. Totten's blog Christopher Hitchens reviews a series of books on the 60s, hippies, Vietnam, and the commune movement for the New York Times . Lots of good stuff came out of that era, civil rights being only the most noted and obvious. (Also ...

26 Dec 2004

Shifting Geography

Michael J. Totten's blog Whoa . The magnitude 9.0 earthquake that struck off Indonesia on Sunday morning moved the entire island of Sumatra about 100 feet to the southwest , pushing up a gigantic mass of water that collapsed into a tsunami and ...

27 Dec 2004

Worse Than (Our) Vietnam

Michael J. Totten's blog The number of people killed by the South Asian tsunami will likely exceed the number of Americans killed in the Vietnam War. The AP reports the casualty count has now passed 52,000 . And it is going to be a lot worse. The ...

29 Dec 2004

First Stingy, Now Unilateral

Michael J. Totten's blog First we’re accused of being stingy in the wake of the tsunami. Now Clare Short is laughably accusing us of trying to help unilaterally. United States President George Bush was tonight accused of trying to undermine the ...

2 Jan 2005

Who’s Stingy?

Michael J. Totten's blog Jonathan Last notes that tsunami relief donations from rich Muslim countries are – shall we say – stingy compared with Japanese, Taiwanese, and Western donations. I don’t expect fat aid packages from Afghanistan and Somalia. ...

10 Jan 2005

North Korea Cracks Down on Longhairs and Slobs

Michael J. Totten's blog When Christopher Hitchen described North Korea as a state “where everything that is not absolutely compulsory is absolutely forbidden,” he wasn’t joking around. Here’s the latest from the ne plus ultra of nanny states. SEOUL ...

11 Jan 2005

Rampant Perversion on Christmas?

Michael J. Totten's blog Stephen Schwartz highlights a nasty rant by a Saudi Arabian blowhard about how the south Asian tsunami was the wrath of Allah. In one such instance, Shaykh Salih Fawzan al-Fawzan, a high functionary of the Saudi regime, said ...

10 Feb 2005

Bat Ye’or at Columbia

Michael J. Totten's blog Posted by Mary Madigan I went to hear Egyptian scholar Bat Ye’or speak at Columbia University on Tuesday. Yes, the pro-Israel Ye’or walked directly into the belly of Columbia’s leftist beast. Despite the documented anti ...

5 Mar 2005

Syria Shudders

Michael J. Totten's blog I have high hopes for post-occupation Lebanon, despite — and certainly not because of — Lebanon’s history of violent ethnic conflict. Lebanon’s politics are notoriously ruthless, but there also exists a dynamic, sophisticated ...

28 Mar 2005

Contagious Democracy – The Second Breakup of the Soviet Union

Michael J. Totten's blog The liberal revolutions that swept through Eastern Europe toppled communist dictatorships like dominoes in a chain. But most of the Central Asian republics remain authoritarian – and in some cases, totalitarian. Some, like ...

30 Apr 2005

Unintended consequences

Michael J. Totten's blog Posted by Mary Madigan The next installment of neo-neocon’s thoughts on Vietnam and political conversion A Mind is a Difficult thing to Change , is up. This particular post was sparked by a comment by Dean Esmay , found on ...

29 May 2005

The Empty Quarter

Michael J. Totten's blog I don’t live in the West. I live on the West Coast. The West, somewhat counterintuitively, is east of here. It’s on the other side of the Cascade Mountains, away from the cities linked up to the Asian side of the Pacific Rim, ...

12 Jun 2005

Microsoft Bans “Democracy”

Michael J. Totten's blog If you’re thinking about starting your own blog, I suggest you don’t use MSN Spaces . (Hat tip: Roger L. Simon .) Microsoft’s new Chinese internet portal has banned the words “democracy” and “freedom” from parts of its ...

24 Jun 2005

Anti-Americanism

Michael J. Totten's blog In about twenty minutes a friend of mine is going to board an airplane to Belgium. He lives there on-and-off part time, in Antwerp, and this morning he told me he’s dreading going back there. The anti-Americanism gets more ...

26 Jun 2005

Life in the Bubble

Michael J. Totten's blog The more time you spend in a rarefied office, be it an office at a university, a newspaper, a government bureau, or even a bank, the more likely you are to become like Andrew Jaspan. Jaspan is the editor-in-chief at Melbourne ...

30 Oct 2005

Internet Hell

Michael J. Totten's blog Call me crazy, but I figured that going from the Middle East to a European Union country would improve my Internet situation. It didn’t. Cyprus is Internet hell. Internet access here consists, for the most part, of coin ...

22 Dec 2005

A Plea to America – Stay the Course

Michael J. Totten's blog by lebanon.profile The Middle East has not been a nice place to live for a long time. We now have some hope, but not much. We’ve been sold out before. The Central and Eastern Europeans had dreams similar to ours. Their dreams ...

28 Dec 2005

Totalitarian Tourism — Libya, at Long Last

Michael J. Totten's blog My first person account of hanging out in the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya — the most oppressive country in the world after North Korea — has been published by the LA Weekly : In the Land of the Brother ...

13 Jan 2006

A Woman Traveling Alone

Michael J. Totten's blog CAIRO — Egypt doesn’t do many things better than Lebanon, but it does do the Internet better. Free wi-fi is both fast and ubiquitous. So I went to a cozy restaurant and pub, ordered a four-cheese pasta from the waiter, ...

21 Feb 2006

The Utah of the Middle East

Michael J. Totten's blog I have a new (short) article published today in The Bulletin , the Australian edition of Newsweek . I wanted to call it The Utah of the Middle East , since that’s what much of Kurdistan looks like, but they changed it to The ...

13 Mar 2006

As of now, I am in control here

Michael J. Totten's blog The headline, for once, sums up the story: Haig says U.S. repeating Vietnam mistake Al “As of now, I am in control here, in the White House” Haig is right, but for the wrong reason. The key Vietnam era mistake not to make is ...

21 Mar 2006

Guilty as charged

Michael J. Totten's blog United Nations Security Council Resolution 687 (1991) , passed under chapter seven of the charter and linked to the 1991 Gulf War ceasefire, operational paragraph 32: Requires Iraq to inform the Security Council that it will ...

17 Jun 2006

Nineteen Eighty Four

Michael J. Totten's blog Yafawi in the comments section linked to a photo gallery of North Korea. Many of the pictures are illegal. Here are two of them. Crossing the street is illegal because you just might get hit by a car. That’s an electrified ...

17 Jul 2006

Force in Proportion

Michael J. Totten's blog By Callimachus One of the most interesting and in some ways infuriating books I’ve read recently is A.C. Grayling’s “Among the Dead Cities,” a book by philosopher that argues that much of the Allied air war — British bombing ...

28 Oct 2006

No Foreign Press

Michael J. Totten's blog Glenn Reynolds argues that there is no “foreign press” per se anymore. “It’s all on the same Internet,” he says. Harold Ford (D-Tenn) made a gaffe about the “threat” of Australia developing nuclear weapons. American ...

19 May 2007

The Case Against Withdrawal

Michael J. Totten's blog by Michael J. Totten I will admit that sometimes I am this close to deciding the US should withdraw from Iraq. Honestly, I do not expect we will succeed there, not because we can’t but because not enough of us want to in the ...

20 Jan 2008

New Comments System

Michael J. Totten's blog I have a new comments system on this site that, so far anyway, has shut down the comment spammers completely. Old posts were filling up with around 200 “comments” per day advertising hotels in China and “World of Warcraft ...

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