October 2007 Archives

Guest Analyst  |  October 5, 2007 3:27 PM

Burmese Protests Transcend Politics

The monk-led protests in Burma are about spiritual authority as much as they are about raw political power.

They are deeply rooted in Burma’s religious culture. Nothing illustrates this so well as the chants of the protesting monks and their overturned begging bowls. Everyone in Burma understands the message: the military rulers are evil spirits who have lost their authority.

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Guest Voice  |  October 15, 2007 2:59 PM

Kurds: Armenians Win, We Pay the Price

By Falah Mustafa Bakir

Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan is asking his country’s parliament this week to unanimously approve a "mobilization" against the Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK), an action that he and other Turkish leaders have signaled could include a Turkish military attack on the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Such an attack would represent the gravest challenge to Iraq since our liberation from Saddam Hussein in 2003 and would jeopardize, perhaps fatally, the success of the American mission in Iraq.

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Guest Voice  |  October 19, 2007 9:59 AM

The Battle for Azerbaijan

By Karl Rahder

Vladimir Putin’s statement at this week’s Caspian Sea summit that no country in the region “should offer its territory to third powers for use of force or military aggression” has been widely and correctly seen as aimed to deter U.S. military intervention in Iran.

But this warning was directed not only at the U.S., but at Azerbaijan, the smallest of the Caspian countries and America’s chief ally in the region – and at any plans to establish a permanent U.S. base in Azerbaijan.

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Panelist View  |  October 22, 2007 11:31 AM

Hu's in Charge?

By Kyoko Altman

It’s not about who leads China. Whether the top man is Hu Jintao , Li Keqiang or Xi Jinping makes little difference. As long as China chooses leaders through an ossified, secretive process that draws on candidates from a small pool of like-minded elites, all from the same party, it will only face more of the same.

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Guest Voice  |  October 24, 2007 11:29 AM

Déjà Vu: Musharraf and the Shah

By Gary Sick

Last Sunday’s New York Times analysis, “In Pakistan Quandary, U.S. Reviews Stance,”
fits so closely with a number of conversations that I have had over the past few weeks that it inspires a kind of déjà vu. It takes me back to the time when the Iranian revolution was brewing, when I was the desk officer for Iran on the National Security Council.

The ultimate reason for the U.S. policy failure at the time of the Iranian revolution was the fact that the U.S. had placed enormous trust and responsibility on the person of the shah of Iran. He -- and not the country or people of Iran -- was seen as the lynchpin of U.S. strategy in the Persian Gulf. Everything relied on him. There was no Plan B.

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