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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 16, 2005 / 14 Mar-Cheshvan, 5766

Bookshelf: Thomas Barnett's Blueprint for Action

By Michael Barone


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Thomas Barnett won a lot of attention back in April 2004 with his book The Pentagon's New Map. Now he comes forward with a sequel, Blueprint for Action: A Future Worth Creating. Barnett's PowerPoint presentations have attracted many in the Pentagon and defense establishment, and rightly so. His analysis in New Map of where we stand in the world is original and illuminating. His policy prescriptions in Blueprint I find not entirely convincing, but others will disagree, and they are at least worth thinking about.

Barnett divides the world into the Functioning Core and the Non-integrating Gap. The Core consists of the developed countries with the rule of law and is held together by globalization, by trade and mutual economic dependence. It includes what Barnett called the New Core—China, India, Brazil, etc. The Gap consists of the parts of the world not linked to the global economy and plagued by war and conflicts of various kinds—splotches of Latin America (the Andean countries, Central America, the Caribbean), sub-Saharan Africa and North Africa, much of the Balkans, the Middle East and Central Asia, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The goal of policy—diplomatic. military, and economic—should be to expand the Core and shrink the Gap. Barnett argues in Blueprint that progress is being made—in the Balkans, in Iraq, in Southeast Asia and Indonesia.

If Barnett's PowerPoints have been influenced by his contacts with Wall Street financial types, they have been aimed mostly at people in the Pentagon and the defense establishment. He distinguishes between two kinds of U.S. military forces—the Leviathan and the System Administrators (SysAdmin). The Leviathan force, he argues persuasively, can produce victory in major military conflicts rapidly and with casualty levels that are minuscule by any historical standard. That is what we saw between March and May 2003 in Iraq. The SysAdmin force, he argues, needs more work. It does what conservatives used to refer to derisively as nation-building. Barnett believes that the United States has employed too few SysAdmin troops in Iraq. But he believes that the Rumsfeld Pentagon has done a good job of improving the SysAdmin force and has widely embedded jointness—cooperation between units of the different services—into the culture of the Pentagon.

This is in contrast to the longstanding Pentagon culture of concentrating on equipping the Leviathan force with ever more capable weaponry and technology. That's no longer so important, Barnett argues, because we have no major competitor now and none in sight in the future. He argues strenuously and at great length that China is and will not be such a competitor, because China's leaders have decided instead to embed their country into the world economy. Others argue that that doesn't necessarily prevent wars: Germany was embedded into the world's free-trade economy before 1914 but decided to go to war anyway. Barnett says that the next generation of Chinese leaders is quite sophisticated and looks on the United States as a long-term ally, not adversary.



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Similarly, Barnett says we should try to engage and incentivize the regimes in Iran (by encouraging India to use its leverage there, among other ways) and North Korea to provide "connectivity" with the Functioning Core. He sees possibilities there that are not visible to me. And he believes that the United States should accept coverage of SysAdmin troops, but not Leviathan troops, under the International Criminal Court.

After the publication of Map, I wrote that "Thomas Barnett may turn out to be one of the most important strategic thinkers of our time." Whether because of his work, or simply parallel to it, the Pentagon has been reshaping our military forces in the direction of more SysAdmin work. Blueprint carries his work a step further. It also calls for policy changes that are likely to appeal more to a future Democratic administration than to the current Republican administration. His emphasis on global connectivity is in line with many of the pronouncements of the Clinton administration, as are his policies with respect to Iran, North Korea, and the International Criminal Court. But Barnett's focus is less political than institutional.

"My team is never out of power," he told me in an interview. "The political masters come and go."

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BARONE'S LATEST
Hard America, Soft America: Competition vs. Coddling and the Battle for the Nation's Future  

America is divided into two camps, according to U.S. News and World Reports writer and Fox commentator Michael Barone. No, not Red and Blue, though one suspects Barone may taint the two groups in the hues of the 2000 presidential election. Barone's divided America is one part Hard, one part Soft. Hard America is steeled by the competition and accountability of the free market, while Soft America is the product of public school and government largesse. Inspired by the notion that America produces incompetent 18 year olds and remarkably competent 30 year olds, Barone embarks on a breezy 162-page commentary that will spark mostly huzzahs from the right and jeers from the left. Sales help fund JWR.

JWR contributor Michael Barone is a columnist at U.S. News & World Report. Comment by clicking here.




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