Saturday 30 May 2020 | 05:41 | SYDNEY

Blogs and blogging

Wednesday linkage

General Motors' China sales rose 78% (!!) in July compared to last year. My dad was a British spy, says the ABC's Mark Colvin. Vladimir Putin goes all MacGyver. The SMH has the pictures. North Korean Economy Watch has all the links you need on President Clinton's visit to Pyongyang. Pacific

Tuesday linkage

Hamas says it will accept a Palestinian state along 1967 lines, but there are caveats. The International Energy Agency says most of the world's major oil fields have passed their peak production. (H/t Infrastructurist.) Great Britain is in decline. No, it isn't. Dutch opinion polling on the

Monday linkage

Australia has a mascot for the Shanghai World Expo. It's a guy in a kookaburra suit, and it looks like it's been dusted off from the Sydney Olympics. A long NY Times essay on the making of US Iran policy. Peter Gallagher calls for the economic integration of the Pacific Islands. A photo

Friday linkage

Counterintuitive claim of the day: 'The fact China is holding all of this debt actually gives us (the US) leverage that we've never had before.' 'In the Loop' looks like a very promising political comedy film. Spiegel on swine flu: 'A whole industry is waiting for a pandemic'. World Politics

Thursday linkage

On Burma's nuclear aspirations, it's deja vu all over again: 'Indeed, the early stages of what might be Burmese nuclear attempts look eerily familiar.'   Speaking of Burma and nukes, it's cool that the Washington Post quotes The Interpreter, but would it kill them to acknowledge the source?

Wednesday linkage

Mapping China's expanding overseas oil interests (minus the more controversial holdings). New Zealand looking at a national interest test for foreign investment.  Iranians growing anger at getting beaten up...by their government. The top 10 political pets and Bo's op-ed. From the NYT: '

Tuesday linkage

Anthony Bubalo and Michael Fullilove make the case for sticking it out in Afghanistan. François Grignon writing in the Guardian suggests the $US 950m credit line facility China offered the Zimbabwean government and a separate $US 5 billion deal related to platinum concessions will weaken

Monday linkage

A new 20-nation poll on Afghanistan: people in most countries think the Afghanis Afghans want NATO out now. To forward or not to forward? How to safeguard your reputation online (H/T Daily Dish). How long until computers are running the show?  Market rationality facilitating prison growth

Twittering Sarah Palin

Over the past month or two I’ve been trying out Twitter. One of the people I follow — and I use that word in the narrow Twitter sense of ‘follow’, rather than the broader political sense — is Alaska Governor and former Republican VP nominee, Sarah Palin. Palin tweets a lot. What she

Friday funny: Hu on first?

With two Hus in the news this week there was room for confusion: this classic shows just how trouble-prone the name can be

Friday linkage

Japan's defence strategy evolves, and with it, its defence industry. Secretary of State Clinton flummoxed by a staff question about web browsers. The NYT takes you inside the bizarre second life of war criminal Radovan Karadzic. The Herald Sun has been reading about mistweetment A new take

Thursday linkage

Secretary of State Clinton's remarks to the press at the ASEAN Summit. Why the West should stop fixating on Aung San Suu Kyi. Tyler Cowen on the future of libraries (and of information generally). The American Enterprise Institute says Australia understands the China threat better than the

Wednesday linkage

As Hu Jintao's son is caught up in an African corruption probe, China's propaganda department issues instructions to Chinese search engines. Foreign Policy's annual Failed States Index is out. A critique of FP's methodology here. From the Jamestown Foundation, Chinese perceptions of US

Tuesday linkage

Joseph Nye on the enduring strength of the US-Japan alliance. The UK Telegraph has a wonderful obit of the world's oldest man. Read on if you like war stories. The Carnegie Endowment's latest Arab Reform Bulletin. Further to last Wednesday's presentation at the Lowy Institute on the effects

Monday linkage

Jeffrey Frankel says a multilateral climate change agreement is feasible. (Link fixed.) No avoiding the pun: Asia's water infrastructure is under pressure. Having bagged Tom Barnett recently, it's only fair to praise his excellent critique of Obama's Africa speech. More geopolitical ructions

Friday linkage

Russia in the Middle East: '...what the Kremlin really fears is the prospect of an Iranian-American rapprochement...' The Wall St Journal lists its top 25 economics blogs (h/t Parentonomics.) The US Army is embracing Wikis in its development of doctrine. The Economist on the failure of

Thursday linkage

A new paper from the Center on International Cooperation at NYU: 'The UN and Security Sector Reform in Timor-Leste'. An Interperter post by Jim Della-Giacoma is cited in the footnotes. What he said: David Penberthy is right. Peter Garrett's new stand on uranium doesn't make him a hypocrite, it

Wednesday linkage

'Europe's inherent vigour': That headline alone should be rare and perhaps counterintuitive enough to get you interested in Spiegel's article. Speaking of counterintuitive, Michael Totten says the war in Iraq has been won. It's a fascinating on-the-ground perspective from Baghdad with some good

The Interpreter and Caijing magazine

I'm very proud to announce that today marks the beginning of The Interpreter's collaboration with China's leading business magazine, Caijing. At least once a fortnight, Caijing's website will feature a post from The Interpreter, with today's selection a piece by Mark Thirlwell on the BRIC

Tuesday linkage

CSIS has released an assessment on US relations with Southeast Asia. An interview with the founder of Yeeyan.com, a site that hosts 5000 voluntary translators busy working on Chinese versions of The Guardian and many other publications. In a previous Linkage, I posted a link to the highlights

Monday linkage

For background to the Stern Hu China spy row, read Hugh White's October 2007 Lowy Institute Policy Brief on looking after Australian overseas. In local elections, more signs that Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso is in trouble. The American Prospect examines Hillary Clinton's feminism and how

Jim Molan excellent adventure

Or, a very short study in blog networking and influence. Maj Gen (Retd) Jim Molan's 'Thoughts on operations in Afghanistan' appeared on The Interpreter on 6 July. It was excerpted on the Small Wars Journal blog the next day (a site favoured by UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband) where,

Friday linkage

The Australian National University is letting a thousand blogs bloom. Here's the latest: South Asia Masala. The seeds of miscalculation: not only is North Korea headed for a 'major retreat back to military communism', but according to one Chinese analyst, Pyongyang believes it has overwhelming

Thursday linkage

SBY wins on the first round, says the Jakarta Globe. More from The Interpreter on this soon.  The NY Times photo gallery I linked to on Tuesday included digitally altered images. New research on the link between kinship and conflict. There's now an official English-language text of the US-

Tuesday linkage

Jeffrey Lewis says a new US-Russian nuclear agreement will be a placeholder for a more ambitious agreement in two or three years. Oxfam has a new report on the economic impact of climate change. Papua New Guinea's economic prospects are not disastrous. NY Times columnist David Brooks

Monday linkage

The International Atomic Energy Agency has a new Director-General. Newly-released archives of the FBI's interviews with Saddam Hussein. Further to Andrew Selth's post on the North Korea-Burma connection, here's an article about how China sees that relationship. And here are some interesting

Thursday linkage

A new World Bank survey of information technology in the developing world. Pakistan has started production of a Chinese-designed fighter aircraft. Matt Yglesias punctures some American cultural triumphalism, and notes that soft power works both ways. He might have mentioned the rise of

Wednesday linkage

Vanity Fair's Sarah Palin profile is getting lots of attention on the US blogosphere. The best piece I've read on the cultural and political subtext to the global grief over Michael Jackson's death. Evidently, Jackson's death was big news in China. Malcolm Gladwell on the digital economy.

Tuesday linkage

John Quiggin alerts readers to the construction of the new ASIO headquarters on the banks of Lake Burley Griffin. Another reason North Korea's provocations are not in China's interest: it pulls South Korea into the embrace of America's missile defence shield. ASI Blog points out that South

So long, and thanks for all the blogs

I know this post is a little self-indulgent, but this is my last day as Executive Director of the Lowy Institute and therefore (although Sam will attest to my lightness of touch in the job) as Editor in Chief of this blog.  Soon after the Institute was set up six years ago, we talked about

Monday linkage

Why governments shouldn't subsidise clean energy. Mobile phones are reaching the Mongolian countryside. Two regional maritime stories via Nosint: deepening cooperation between Beijing and Islamabad; and Singapore launches the first of a new class of submarine.  The UN and WTO have released 

Wednesday linkage

A tough new tone to Indian diplomacy? Russia's navy hasn't totally withered. A new ballistic-missile submarine just went to sea. Blogging seems to be all the rage among ANU foreign policy types. Here's another I've just discovered, on Northeast Asian security: Peacebuilder. And while we're on

Tuesday linkage

If it ever gets built, the Kra Canal would change the economic and strategic face of Asia. A joint US-Russian analysis of the Iranian nuclear and ballistic missile threat. The Center for New American Security has a blog. The WSJ's China blog reports on dam building that goes against the

Monday linkage

China: changing public and elite opinion about North Korea. A bewildering Atlantic opinion piece examining the success of The Economist. The piece lauds The Economist's global coverage, only to conclude that, for news magazines to succeed, 'General-interest is out; niche is in'. Huh? Solving

Friday linkage

The NYT profiles Musavi. Passport brings you Iran's fake Tweeters. The Chinese government backs down on attempts to install censor software on all computers. One for the space wonks: a guide to how and where you can see the International Space Station in broad daylight. Strange times: Musavi

Thursday linkage

You've heard of 'carrier battle groups', the US Navy's primary means of moving death and destruction around the globe. Now it's discussing 'Humanitarian Service Groups'. Re. yesterday's Linkage, Twitter says the US State Department's intervention was not decisive in the company's decision to

Wednesday linkage

Re. Anthony's suggestion that the Iranian protest reveals, finally, a useful purpose for Twitter: the service was due to go down for maintenance yesterday, but the US State Department intervened. Meanwhile, international journalists are ordered out of Iran. The Economist gives the UN Secretary

Tuesday linkage

New York Magazine profiles Secretary of State Clinton. Take-away point: she's in charge. From combustion to electric: China's car industry at a tipping point. Is the developing world's 'Malthusian trap' a myth? Iran: World Politics Review wisely counsels against Western intoxication at the

A blog that breaks stories

Christian Kerr claims in yesterday's Australian that 'we have no political bloggers who break stories'. He's not reading The Interpreter: The Age reported on its front page in November 2007 that, according to The Interpreter, Australia had sold surplus jet fighters to Pakistan in the early

Monday linkage

Dutch courage: A hair-raising account of Dutch military heroics in Afghanistan in aid of Australian soldiers. Iran and new media: Two Atlantic blog posts, one about the critical role of social media in the election itself, and another about how blogs are covering the election. The Economist

Friday linkage

Professor Andrew Bacevich challenges the new conventional wisdom on counter-insurgency. Australia highly vulnerable to oil shortages. As a former university tutor myself, this stikes me as excellent advice for improving your classes. New Voices participant and Microsoft Government Affairs

Networks and Kevin Bacon

Congratulations to Fergus for putting on a first-class New Voices conference today. Every year we invite a bunch of high-achieving young Australians to discuss a broad topic relevant to the Institute's work, and this year the theme was networks. As part of a terrific panel discussion, I gave a

Wednesday linkage

Global Trade Alert: A website dedicated to tracking soft-protectionist measures around the globe, and which countries they will hurt. India better placed than China to weather the global downturn, says JP Morgan. Indonesia promises to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty if the US does.

Tuesday linkage

Historical data suggests climate change will hit poorer countries harder than is commonly thought. Dubai is sometimes seen as emblematic of the irrationality of our recent economic past. Here's a defence of that city from the British CEO of Emirates airlines. Trippin': First China came for

Friday linkage

Gideon Rachman has a round-up of a debate I've been meaning to link to for some time: Paul Krugman vs. Niall Ferguson. Indonesian government spending is hampered by a poor budget process. If Kevin Rudd felt slighted due to his rejection slip from Foreign Affairs, he can console himself with

Tuesday linkage

Exploding some myths about the North Korean economy: it's not isolated, it's not (entirely) illicit, and it's not about to collapse. The WSJ reports on declining violent-death numbers in Iraq. Also on Iraq, a photo essay on Saddam's palaces today. Despite only 10.5% of Indonesians having

Monday linkage

Half the Timorese population is illiterate. Someone is doing something about it. The World Bank's East Asia blog has details of a new online database on the nutritional impact of world food aid. Not only has the milblog Small Wars Journal made Rolling Stone's annual hot list, but UK Foreign

Friday linkage

FT columnist Gideon Rachman has the macro view of why it takes so long for incoming US Administrations to get people into diplomatic jobs. Greg Sheridan's column has similar themes, from a micro (Australian) perspective. Ghosts of Alexander has a useful survey of Afghanistan-themed blogs. The

Thursday linkage

The most influential books on Southeast Asia. (H/t Bangkok Pundit.) What if North Korea was the only nuclear-armed country in the world? A disaster, right? Well, maybe not. Also on North Korea, an American PhD student has built a huge Google Earth database on the country; 'democratised

Wednesday linkage

The top ten worst countries in which to be a blogger. The Obama Administration has selected its Japan ambassador. Analysis and more links here. Instead of recruiting overseas for the ADF, why doesn't Australia encourage recruitment in the Afghan Army by promising Australian citizenship at

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