A previously unknown group calling itself the Deccan Mujahedeen has claimed responsibility for the horrific attacks in Mumbai.  While these attacks came during a period when Western intelligence chiefs were "expecting an al Qaeda spectacular terrorist attack" and came just hours after the FBI warned that al Qaeda may be "targetting New York's subways and railroads," the best guess of terrorism experts is that the Mumbai attacks were the work of local groups.

Read More

A few years ago I sat at a friend’s kitchen table on a cool summer evening in Dublin, Ireland.  I don’t visit there very often, so I inevitably wanted to catch up on Irish sports, the music community, as well as the political scene of a country that, for its size, is well adept at making world headlines. 

Read More

globe-2025.jpg

In its latest report entitled Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World, the National Intelligence Council has made various predictions about the continuing and changing influence of globalization around the world. It is argued that “as some countries become more invested in their economic well-being, incentives toward geopolitical stability could increase.” This is positive.

Read More

Barack Obama's cabinet choices have been met by gushing reviews.   While many of his choices have come under fire from both the left and the right on ideological grounds, the consensus seems to be that these are among the brightest, most capable people around.

Read More

Germany will be either a world power or it will not be at all. - Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, 1925.

Russia can either be big and strong or it will cease to exist. - Dmitry Medvedev, speech to senior military officers, The Kremlin, September 30, 2008.

Read More

Climate Change Will Be More Severe in 2025

The National Intelligence Council’s “Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World” report considers likely scenarios for nearly all strategic global issues, including nuclear proliferation, terrorism, and climate change.  Climate change in particular is an issue that we will be faced with on a daily basis two decades from now.

Read More

Learning from the Barbary Pirates

Amidst all the angst and astonishment about those wild and crazy Somali pirates, we seem to have forgotten that we’ve been through this movie before. It was more than two centuries ago when Muslim pirates were, after England, perhaps the most serious foreign threat bedeviling the new American republic. And the policy response too, is instructive today, though the issues raised are more complex.

Read More

globe-2025.jpg

The National Intelligence Council’s "Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World," released on November 20, poses a fascinating variety of alternate futures. 

Read More

Barack Obama: Al Qaeda’s Ideological Challenge

Chief Al Qaeda ideologue Ayman al-Zawahiri gave a good indicator of the current status of his organization’s ideological appeal when Al Qaeda released a video last week.

Read More

Terrorism Here Today, Gone Tomorrow?

Speaking to the Atlantic Council last Thursday, CIA director Michael Hayden declared that, "although Al-Qaeda has suffered serious setbacks, it remains a determined and adaptive enemy" and vowed that, while the American people have grown naturally complacent about the threat, he and his colleagues remain vigilant every day, motivated by the fact that the country "never faced an enemy so committed to our destruction."

Read More