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Thursday, April 06, 2006

Shrinking the Gap with Allies (Capitalism and Democracy)

"The Wave Theory of Core and Gap," by David, The Glittering Eye, 28 March 2006, http://theglitteringeye.com/?p=1870 (from ZenPundit).

"When the Chinese were our friends...," by Tom Barnett, Thomas P.M. Barnett :: Weblog, 4 April 2006, http://www.thomaspmbarnett.com/weblog/archives2/003131.html.

"In Pictures: French Protests," BBC News, 4 April 2006, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_pictures/4876616.stm.

In the Second World War, China was our ally:


In this global war on terrorism, she is again.

Read more ...

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Nicholas Sarkozy 2007

"Sarkozy 2007!," Catholicgauze, 19 February 2006, http://catholicgauze.blogspot.com/2006/02/sarkozy-2007.html.

Any day that sees Playboy returning to UNL and tdaxp taking over a warship wouldn't be complete without French political news. From Catholicgauze:

Creoles, Arcadians, and Cajuns! Soon you may be able to once again embrace your French heritage with pride! Americans of all backgrounds may once again look to France as an ally. Soon it will be time for the Old Europe country of France to elect the pro-globalization, pro-American, anti-terrorist Nicolas Sarkozy as Président de la République française.

Market-liberalism combined with social conservatism is marching across the developed world to victory after victory. The latest region to become a battle ground for the Neo-Right is Old Europe. Germany elected as Chancellor over the center-left incumbent . The next up for elections is France.

has been on tdaxp before.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Turkey-in-Europe, or Turks out of Europe?

"What Will Europe Really Do?," by Victor Davis Hanson, 14 February 2006, http://www.realclearpolitics.com/Commentary/com-2_14_06_VDH.html (from PowerLine Blog).

"Cartoons: Against Solana," by Andrew Stuttaford, The Corner, 15 February 2006, http://corner.nationalreview.com/06_02_12_corner-archive.asp#090123.

"Question for PNM Theorists," by Jeff, Caerdroia, 15 February 2006, http://www.caerdroia.org/blog/archives/2006/02/question_for_pn.html.

"Female Reporter Stoned at Turkish Cartoon Protest," by GP, Gateway Pundit, 16 February 2006, http://gatewaypundit.blogspot.com/2006/02/female-reporter-stoned-at-turkish.html (from Instapundit).

This is a hard post to write.


It is no longer clear to me that Turkey belongs in Europe.

Read more ...

21:25 Posted in Europe | Permalink | Comments (6) | Tags: turkey

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Dreaming of a Lost Empire - or - the Germans are Planning Something

Catholicgauze found a nifty site of old road maps -- including some nice German ones...


From the 1950s!

And 1970s!

A more serious point: one hears complaints about supposed Japanese "remilitarization," but Japan wasn't mapping her lost Empire a generation after she lost it.

View the rest of the travel maps

Monday, January 16, 2006

de Blij v. Parker, Part I: The Cores of Europe and The World

It's not a dispute


It's a deathmatch:


Read more ...

Thursday, January 12, 2006

"Post-Communism" - Example Political Science Literature Review and Research Design

Note: This is part of an example political science literature review and research design. An abstract and table of contents are also available.

A useful segue between geographic and ex-Communist factors is found in Teune (1995). Teune surveys the rise of local governments relative to centralizing governments, using the declining influence of Moscow over eastern Europe and Russia as examples. In contrast to Williams who sees local differences as a cause for oppression and autocracy, Teune sees local power as very strong and democratic. Territoriality matters, says Teune, "even after the gradual opening of national borders in the second half of the twentieth century and the near encapsulation of the entire world in a single trading system." Additionally, territorially based localities lean democratic.

The linkage between local government and democracy is based on the proposition that political participation is meaningful insofar as it deals with the familiar, a tenet of the Federalist Papers. Another aspect of this argument is that the incentives for participation are stronger locally than nationally in that visible consequence are more visible and immediate on the local level. There are two supporting propositions for this part of the argument: the larger the political unit, the longer it takes to form a democratic political coalitions; and the larger the unit, the greater the diversity of the groups and individuals required for compromise, the less likely decisive action will be taken at all, frustrating the collective aspirations of the many." (Teune)

Read more ...

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Maps of Potential Soviet Military Theatres During the Late Cold War

"The Middle East and Soviet Military Strategy," by Michael MccGwire, Middle East Report, No. 151, Mar.-Apr. 1988, pp 11-17, http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0899-2851%28198803%2F04%290%3A151%3C11%3ATMEASM%3E2.0.CO%3B2-D.

While working on my literature review, I stumbled on this great article by Michael MccGwire on Soviet military strategy from the late 1980s. If you have access to jstor it's definitely worth reading, but what struck me are the maps. The boys over at Coming Anarchy have been doing great work with time-series maps of Armenia, Ethiopia, Europe, and other neat places, so here is a series of maps from one moment in time, but of different regions:'


The prospect of regional war with the US in the Persian Gulf region has prompted Soviet planners to take a fresh look at the military doctrine prevailing through the 1970s. At least until recently, it is the contingency of world war that has determined the structure and posture of the Soviet armed forces and shaped their war-related requirements beyond their borders. These requirements are organized in theaters of military action (TVDs), which are constructs for planning in peacetime as well as for conducting operations in war. As the accompanying maps show, TVDs extend from inside the Soviet Union to as far beyond its borders as makes military sense.

Western TVD


In Soviet planning for the contingency of world war (which the Soviets absolutely want to avoid but can not afford to lose), the Western TVD is by far the most important. This encompasses NATO's central region and the southern part of Scandinavia.

Southern TVD


The core of the Middle East lies in Moscow's Southern TVD, which looks south from the Caucasus and Turkistan out across the eastern half of Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Its western boundary cuts through the middle of Turkey and runs south between Cyprus and the Levantine coast to Egypt. In the east, the boundary is likely to follow the line of the Himalayas flanking Pakistan and then turn south to Cape Comorin at the tip of India.


The Southern TVD is, including the Persian Gulf, becomes important only in the second phase of a general war, once NATO has been defeated in Europe, because of the need for the sea-line of communications with Moscow's Fat Eastern front. The Southern TVD would have no significant role to play in the first phase of a world war, unless US forces had previously been drawn into the Gulf area, when the requirement would be to prevent them from redeploying to the European front.

Southwestern TVD


The Mediterranean comes mostly within the Southwestern TVD, which includes North Africa.


In the Southwestern TVD, the immediate objective would be to pin down the NATO forces so that they cannot be deployed to reinforce NATO's central region and to secure the Turkish straights against NATO incursions. Once it was certain that operations in the Western TVD would be successful and some Soviet forces would be available for redeployment, the Soviets would then seek to force Italy out of the war and to gain physical control of both sides of the Turkish Straits. This effort would parallel political attempts to maneuver Greece and Turkey out of the war.

Read the whole thing

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Dr. Seuss on Contemporary Europe

Another Seuss parody, by way of Chirol. No hot chicks this time, though....

Cure for Strength and Respect

15:45 Posted in Europe, Humor | Permalink | Comments (3) | Tags: seuss, cartoons, satire

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Feminist Initiative Attacks Marriage, Maternity Leave

"Feminists call for abolition of marriage," The Local, 9 September 2005, http://www.thelocal.se/article.php?ID=2055&date=20050909.

"Swedish feminism put to the test," by var Ekman, International Herald Tribune, 20 October 2005, http://www.iht.com/bin/print_ipub.php?file=/articles/2005/10/19/news/feminism.php.

The Corner links to a pair of stories about Sweden's feminist party, Feminist Initiative. These people have friends in the United States, especially .

On Marriage

Instead the group, which is expected to become a fully-fledged political party following the meeting, wants a 'cohabitation law' which ignores gender - and allows for more than two people to be included.

The proposal is one of the group's 'prioritised political demands' which the newspaper Svenska Dagbladet got hold of before the meeting.

FI founder and board member, Tiina Rosenberg, told the paper that the group wants to create "a modern concept which does not favour and promote couples and heterosexual norms".

On Maternity Leave

Even the Social Democrats are distancing themselves from one of their own proposals: to put quotas on parental leave that would oblige men to stay home more than they do today (in 2004, women used 81 percent of the paid parental-leave days).

"We are critical of the fact that people don't use parental leave in an equal fashion," Marita Ulvskog, the Social Democrats' party secretary, told Dagens Nyheter recently.

Fortunately the good guys have plans too...

22:05 Posted in Academia, Europe, Women | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: feminism

Sunday, October 16, 2005

The Battle of Vienna

"The Gates of Vienna, transcribed by TigerHawk, TigerHawk, 10 October 2005, http://tigerhawk.blogspot.com/2005/10/gates-of-vienna.html (from a private email).

An excerpt:

An Ottoman army 140,000 strong had advanced on the greatest city in central Europe, the seat of the Austrian Habspurgs and a bulwark of Christendom that had defied repeated Turkish campaigns, assaults and sieges. This time the sultan did not intend to fail. He had dispatched his grand vizier, Kara Mustafa, with the finest soldiery the empire could muster: the corps of janissaries formed of Christian boys taken as tribute and school to Muslim fanaticism, and the Spahis, cavalrymen who had swept away the sultan's enemies from the Danube to the Euphrates. The Muslim heart of the Ottoman army was wrapped in the muscle of tributary states: Christian auxiliaries swelled the sultan's leviathan force, the contingents of princes and noblemen whose lands had been conquered in generations past. Mercenary French artillery masters directed the Ottoman siege guns, and the king of France, Louis XIV, had concluded an agreement with the sultan not to assist his fellow Christians against their would-be conquerors. For the Sun King, humbling his Habsburg rivals was more important than the fate of Europe. He set a pattern from which the policy of France has only rarely strayed.

French diplomats had done their best to dissuade any other European states from sending troops to raise the siege of Vienna. Fearful of Bourbon malice, the states of Italy chose to remain passive, and the Habsburgs could rely upon only the remnants of their battered armies and slight reinforcements from Bavaria and a few lesser German principalities.

The numbers were not enough to defeat the massive Ottoman force. Only a single power remained with the strength to save Vienna. The Poles had defended Europe against Turks and Tatars, against Cossack raids and Muscovite barbarism, for a quarter of a millennium. Attacked on all sides in the mid-seventeenth century -- by Tatars, Turks, Ukrainians and Swedes -- the Poles had nonetheless presesrved their state and further burnished their reputation as dauntless soldiers and devoted Christians.

France did all that policy could effect to prevent the Poles from riding southward to rescue the Habsburg Empire. The rough democracy that prevailed among the Polish nobility proved susceptible to French blandishments and threats. Poland's kind could not unite his own country behind his purpose of saving Vienna. Louis XIV and his coutiers at Versailles were certain that France would soon be the dominant power remaining in Europe.


The West had won on the continent of Europe, with Christendom saved by a Polish king. Poland's thanks was dismemberment in the next century, as the rulers of Austria, Russia, and Prussia partitioned its territory and drove its heroes abroad to fight for freedom wherever such wars were waged -- and still fought for their homeland in hopeless rebellions.

No Europeans fought longer for their freedom and the liberty of others than did the Poles. And none have received less gratitude.

Read the whole thing