Articles and analysis

by Dr Ariel Cohen

U.S. President George W. Bush and Senator John McCain have called for an expansion of U.S. domestic oil drilling to Alaska, federal lands and the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) off the U.S. East and West coasts. This could not be more timely, if only it was realistic.

The biggest roadblock on the way to more U.S.-produced oil is the Democratic majority in the Congress and its fellow travelers. Oil-rich rulers, from King Abdullah I of Saudi Arabia, to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to Hugo Chavez are probably opening champagne.

By Peter Zeihan

Fear is a powerful motivator, even getting results when the threat is exceedingly remote. It makes us cross at crosswalks even when traffic is thin, pay more over time for fire insurance than our homes are worth, and shy away from snakes even when signs clearly inform us they are not poisonous. Humans instinctively take steps to prevent negative outcomes, oftentimes regardless of how likely -- or more to the point, unlikely -- those unpleasant outcomes are.As with individuals, the same is true for countries.

Anyone can blithely say Cuba or Serbia would not dare ignore the will of their more powerful neighbors, or that Brazil's or Egypt's nuclear programs are so inconsequential as not to impact the international balance of power. But such opinions -- even if they truly are near-certainties -- cannot form the foundation of state power.

By Fred Burton and Scott Stewart

Friday June 13 turned out to be an unlucky day for the guards at Sarposa prison in Kandahar, Afghanistan. At approximately 9:20 p.m. local time, some 30 Taliban insurgents launched a complex and highly coordinated attack on the facility. The operation freed all 1,100 inmates incarcerated there, including a reported 350 to 400 Taliban militants. The attack also resulted in the deaths of several guards -- reports on the actual number vary between six and 15.

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