Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Miscellaneous Links (updated again)

I've been busier the past few days than I expected.  Regular posting to resume soon.  In the meantime, some links.

1. Fascinating NYTimes piece on the Guyanas and their contested borders.  If your ignorance of this least-talked-about part of South America is anywhere near as bad as mine, you'll learn a lot from this.

2. Exhibit A of strained relationship between US and Israel regarding response to Iran.  Exhibit B.  My understanding is that there's been a sense of "these are our allies?" in the USFP community for some time, but it was mostly kept behind closed doors.  All the public ever heard was how Israel was the closest ally of the US (though, of course, the US has about seven of those).  Are we seeing a sea change in US-Israeli relations?

3. And you thought that US politics was unduly influenced by Israelis... wow.  Just wow.  Can you imagine if something comparable were true in the US?  This blew my mind.

4. France accuses Israel of water "apartheid."  This continues to be one of the most poorly appreciated (by Americans) factors in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, IMO.  Surprisingly strong language though, and already being called a "mishap" by the French.

5. This is what comes from refusing to distinguish between "Islamic" and "terrorist."  I wish I could say that I didn't have to correct half my family members the same way someone needs to correct Rick Perry.

6. If the protests don't bring down Assad, perhaps economic woes will.  I've seen a number of people speculate that Assad will survive because they don't expect any significant foreign support to be provided to the rebels, and the rebels can't do it alone.  I'm not entirely persuaded by these claims, but I probably haven't thought enough about it yet.

7. Pakistani President Yahya tipped US journalist off to attack on India ahead of 1971 war.  Not sure that means all that much, but interesting all the same.

8. NYTimes story gushing about Taiwan's recent presidential election and China's response.  Of course, it doesn't even mention the KMT, the DPP, or the pan-blue and pan-green coalitions.  Can you imagine a NYTimes story about a European national election that failed to identify the parties of any of the candidates, including the winner?  I don't know about you, but my understanding of (modern, representative) democracy is that it has a little something to do with parties.  But it's not like we expect much from the nation's most prestigious paper or anything.

9. Evaluating the impact of policies using RDD.  Great post.  Too few political scientists are familiar with this method

10. Romney, Obama, and the Taliban.  It's Scott Wolford.  Go read it.

11. This is what bargaining looks like: Gulf War edition.  A literal ultimatum.  I continue to be baffled by the number of IR scholars who already express their arguments in the language of strategic behavior and responding to incentives, yet resist the insights of bargaining models and instead rely on (implicit, informal) decision theoretic models of war onset.

12. Best song about stealing heroin from the Taliban that you will hear today.  (H/T Jake Wobig)

13. Layman's response to academic complaints about Publish or Perish.  Sounds about right to me.  Though ask me again when I'm denied tenure...


  1. Glanced at beginning of the Guiana thing, appears to be v. interesting. Definitely going to read that, thks.

  2. I don't know if most of that information is common knowledge. But, at least for me, it was very informative.