Fareed Zakaria

Time to Face Reality on Iran

The huffing and puffing in Washington is so strong these days, it could start a gale. High officials warn Iran not to continue work on its nuclear program.

We All Have a Lot to Learn

Last week India was hit by a terror attack that unsettled the country. A gunman entered the main conference hall of the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, tossed four grenades into the audience and, when the explosives failed, fired his AK-47 at the crowd.

Big Enough To Know Better

By the time you read this column, China's economy will have jumped by 20 percent, or $300 billion. Based on a new nationwide economic census, the National Bureau of Statistics is making an upward revision of gross domestic product, which means that China is now the world's fourth largest economy, bigger than Italy, France and Britain.

An Imperial Presidency

President Bush's most recent foreign trips, to Latin America and Asia, went off as expected. He was accompanied by 2,000 people, several airplanes, two helicopters and a tightly scripted schedule.

The U. S. Can Out-Charm China

Every insider knows that the key to power in Washington is being at the meeting. It's an ancient political rule: if you're not at the meeting, no one will protect your interests and your agenda.

Panic Is Not The Solution

The rising clamor in Washington to get out of Iraq may be right or may be wrong, but one thing is certain: its timing has little to do with events in that country.

First Ladies, in The Truest Sense

Sometimes the most important stories in the world don't get much attention because they're powerful but slow trends that can't be easily covered. They provide no single great event for cameras to focus on, nor a powerful image everyone can easily grasp. (How do you televise globalization?) Last week, however, something happened that gives us a rare opportunity to look at one such trend.

Europe Needs a New Identity

One week is a lifetime in the world of journalism these days. We've now been through two cycles of commentary on the French riots. The first saw the troubles as part of the broader clash of civilizations between Islam and the West. "Falluja-Sur-Seine?" asked the neoconservative Weekly Standard.

Pssst... Nobody Loves a Torturer

As President Bush's approval ratings sink at home, the glee across the globe rises. He remains the most unpopular political figure in the world, and newspapers from Europe to Asia are delighting in his troubles.

A Threat Worse Than Terror

A flu pandemic is the most dangerous threat the United States faces today," says Richard Falkenrath, who until recently served in the Bush administration as deputy Homeland Security adviser. "It's a bigger threat than terrorism.

Finally, a Smart Iraq Strategy

I have a novel idea for the Bush administration. Let's give a medal to someone who's actually done a good job. My candidate would be Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, who has been doing yeoman service there.

Exploit Rifts in The Insurgency

Amid all the problems in Iraq, I see one encouraging sign. Sunnis are organizing to defeat the referendum on Iraq's draft constitution. This is good news because it places the Sunnis in direct opposition to the jihadi insurgents in Iraq.

THE GERMANS: A LOT LIKE US

German voters have spoken. "We don't want to become Americans." That's how a senior German politician explained the recent election to me. And it's the conventional interpretation.

Leaders Who Won't Choose

Adversity builds character," goes the old adage. Except that in America today we seem to be following the opposite principle. The worse things get, the more frivolous our response.

How To Escape The Oil Trap

Both Iran And Saudi Arabia Are Now Awash In Oil Money, And No Matter What The Controls, Some Is Surely Getting To Unsavory Groups.

DON'T MAKE HOLLOW THREATS

Two things are very expensive in international politics, the game-theorist Thomas Schelling once observed: threats when they fail and promises when they succeed.

MISHANDLING THE CHINA CHALLENGE

If you look at two recent events, you might well conclude that the Chinese are a lot smarter at handling the United States than we are at handling them. This week China National Offshore Oil Corp. (Cnooc) ended its bid for the American energy firm Unocal, scared off by rising opposition to the deal from Congress.

TALKING WITH THE ENEMY

Gen. George Casey's remark last week that the United States might begin to draw down troops in Iraq reminds me of the words of another George almost 40 years ago.

HOW WE CAN PREVAIL

The London bombings have failed. Barbarous in intent, brutal for a few hundred people, unsettling for all who watched in horror, they have nonetheless failed.

THE GOOD NEWS AND BAD NEWS

I don't see how Iraq's insurgency can win. It lacks the support of at least 80 percent of the country (Shiites and Kurds), and by all accounts lacks the support of the majority of the Sunni population as well.

REALISM AND RESPONSIBILITY

Richard Curtis, the screenwriter who wrote "Four Weddings and a Funeral" and "Love Actually," has written a new romantic comedy, this time about global poverty.

Wu Jianmin

Given the rate at which China's economic and military might continue to grow, it's no surprise its role on the global political stage is expanding, too. While North Korea hinted last week that it might return to six-party talks on its nuclear program--and in Washington U.S. President George W.

WHAT'S WRONG WITH EUROPE

In English, a double negative usually means yes. but not in European. Last week's double "no"--from France and the Netherlands--has for all practical purposes killed the new European constitution.

THE VIRTUE OF LEARNING VICES

It doesn't surprise me that China has just slapped tariffs on its own textile producers so that they don't flood the U.S. and European markets. (In all, it will increase tariffs by up to 400 percent on 74 goods.) When I was in China last week I was struck by how determined its officials are not to pick a fight with the United States while they focus single-mindedly on economic growth.

NO POLICY IS NOT GOOD POLICY

Does the United States government really care if North Korea becomes a nuclear power? Oh, it tells us all the terrible consequences that could flow from such a development: a nuclear Japan and South Korea; an arms race in East Asia; loose nukes easily available to Al Qaeda or any other high bidder.

LIKE A COUNTRY WITHOUT OXYGEN

It might seem obvious to say that Baghdad is in bad shape, but that's the first thing I noticed when I was there recently. I don't mean the effects of bombs and mortars.

IN SEARCH OF THE REAL NEW IRAQ

Most Americans know that Iraq will soon have its first elected government and that that's a big deal. But in the Middle East, this is seen as a historic and revolutionary moment for a different reason.

CONSERVATIVE CONTRADICTIONS

In the debate over John Bolton's nomination as ambassador to the United Nations, his defenders have repeatedly delighted at the prospect of a real discussion on the issues. "Senator Frist should schedule a floor debate without time limits," William Kristol argued in The Weekly Standard.

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