The Kensington Review

21 March 2005

Latest Commentary:

George Frost Kennan, 1904-2005 -- In July 1947, Foreign Affairs published an article signed "X," which laid out the Soviet threat and proposed the containment strategy of the Cold War that eventually undid the communist empire. "X" turned out to be George Frost Kennan, a professional diplomat and Russian specialist. The American neo-cons, whose war in Iraq just turned two years old, lack a Kennan who can explain the current threat because they don't understand it and have no desire to exercise the patience necessary to succeed in meeting the current threat.

French Poll Shows Majority is Against EU Constitution -- The original 6 countries in the European Common Market, which evolved into the current 25 member European Union, had very clear nationalistic reasons for joining. Germany needed to find a way back into the human race after the Nazi abomination. Italy, to a lesser extent, sought the same purge of its history as well as a chance to develop its economy. Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg needed to find a way to participate in global affairs despite their size. And France needed a vehicle to rein in Germany and project French power beyond it real capacity to do so. These nations have always been at the core of Europe, and it was a shock to discover that most French voters now oppose the new European Constitution.

S&P Adopts Free-Float Weighting -- Standard & Poor's, perhaps the most important stock indexing company in America, has made a change in the way it operates. Starting this week, the S&P 500 and its other indices will use a free-float weighting system. While this sounds rather arcane, and is unimportant in day-to-day trading, for long-term investors, this is a significant step forward, even if it doesn't go quite far enough.

Johnson Beharry Wins Victoria Cross in Iraq -- The two-year-old war in Iraq has been one huge dishonor after another. Fought originally to disarm a dangerous regime, it turns out there were no weapons of mass destruction regardless of how hard Christopher Hitchens now toes the Dick Cheney line. The cake-walk turned into a quagmire, and there is still no accounting for literally billion of Iraqi oil revenues "lost" under the first occupation authority. And the election on January 30 has not produced a government as of March 20. But there are acts of human decency and heroism. Private Johnson Beharry of Her Majesty's Armed Forces has two such stories, and a Victoria Cross, the highest honor a British or Commonwealth soldier can win.

Copyright 2004 by The Kensington Review , J. Myhre, Editor. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent. Produced using Fedora Linux.

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