Editorial


Elevating the Debate

Israel’s parliament offered up a useful counterpoint this week to the mud bath that is America’s national debate on intelligence and counter-terrorism policy. In a crisp 80-page report, the Knesset on Monday released the findings of a special subcommittee investigating the performance of Israel’s intelligence servicesRead More


The Killing of the Sheikh

We do not celebrate this week. Israel has escalated the Middle East conflict into unknown and dangerous new territory with its killing of the Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. The rules, such as they were, have been upended. All leaders are now fair game. Palestinian rage and determination to attack Israel have been scaled up to new heights,Read More


Spanish Democracy

Given their oft-stated commitment to the spread of democracy, the Bush administration and its allies have shown a strangely ungenerous response to the results of this week’s elections in Spain. Spanish voters did exactly what citizens in a democracy are supposed to do: They considered the facts, examined their representatives’ records, weighedRead More


Postcards from Creation

For most of us, it took some imagination to make sense of those photos of distant galaxies released last week by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The pictures looked like nothing so much as colored blotches. You had to read NASA’s explanations to understand what they were: postcards from the dawn of time.The photos, takenRead More


The Blinding Mirror

Whatever else may be said about it, the bitterly divisive debate over “The Passion of the Christ” proves that Mel Gibson’s movie is — well, divisive.This is not a small point. Gibson and his admirers insist the film’s message is one of love and redemption, meant not to divide but to unite. In countless published reviews and interviews,Read More


Which Comes First?

The latest twist in the never-ending tragicomedy of Middle East diplomacy is a debate between America and Europe over whose recipe for peacemaking is more wildly unrealistic. The cynics among us will call it a draw.The debate revolves around President Bush’s new Greater Middle East Initiative, which aims to promote democratic reformsRead More


Intelligence and Wisdom

President Bush got one thing right in his February 8 television interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” Responding to the mounting furor over intelligence failures leading up to the Iraq war, Bush said there would be “ample time for the American people to assess whether or not I made good calls, whether or not I used good judgment, whether orRead More


Sharon’s Plan

One of Ariel Sharon’s least-understood strengths as a leader is his mastery of the art of ambiguity. Despite his popular image of bulldog stubbornness, Sharon has managed throughout his career to be many things to many different people around him, maneuvering nimbly from one crisis to the next, keepingRead More


Sticks and Stones

Last August this newspaper published a front-page essay by a former speaker of Israel’s Knesset, Avraham Burg, arguing that the continuing Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza was threatening to destroy the Jewish state from within. To save itself from demographic obliteration and moral decay and preserve the Zionist visionRead More


What Joe Wrought

Senator Joe Lieberman’s departure from the presidential contest was the right thing to do, given his inability to gain ground with the voters. But it leaves undone some of the big tasks that Lieberman took on when he joined the race. For his campaign was more than just a run for office. It was a quest to challenge some basic assumptions in ourRead More


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