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Asia is going to command ever more attention and resources from the United States, thanks to the region’s growing prosperity and influence and the enormous challenges the region poses. The Obama administration’s pivot or rebalancing makes sense; the challenge now is giving it proper form, substance, and resources.
It would be obscene to say that the genocide in Rwanda had even the thinnest silver lining. But it did create a natural -- or unnatural -- experiment, as the country’s social, economic, and political institutions were wiped out. In important respects, the reconstructed Rwanda is a dramatically different country, especially for women.
In 1963, Jalal Al-e Ahmad, an Iranian writer popular with dissident Islamist clerics, traveled to Israel and wrote a surprisingly positive account of his trip. That a guru to the ayatollahs liked Israel now seems touching. But what he liked seems cautionary.
As the U.S. boom in shale oil and gas drives down global energy prices, energy-producing states that lack diversified economies will lose out, whereas energy consumers stand to gain. But the biggest benefits will accrue to the United States.
New technologies have given conservationists amazing new powers, and so for the first time they are starting to operate at the pace and scale necessary to keep up with -- and even get ahead of -- global environmental challenges.
Armed drones are starting to rule the skies, but the United States’ monopoly over their use is fading. The Obama administration should nurture a regime to limit drone proliferation, similar to efforts to control nuclear weapons and missiles.
As “the Internet of Things” takes hold, everyday objects are starting to communicate with each other online -- a linking of the digital and physical worlds that will have profound implications for both.
The HealthCare.gov fiasco is only the latest in a long line of government tech disasters. The key to preventing future ones is for the government to change its management practices, adopting what have long been best practices in the private tech sector.
Whether the Obama administration’s bungled rollout of HealthCare.gov will permanently tarnish the administration’s legacy is unclear, but it certainly offers important -- and depressing -- insights into the president’s operating style and the administration’s culture.
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