Rare earths: the US fights back

Rare earths: the US fights back

THE United States is at a crossroads over the production and use of rare earth elements (REE). The 17 minerals, essential for products and processes from cruise missiles to smartphones, are widely used in the US defence industry, but this represents only a fraction of...
Opinion split over Obama’s national security nominees

Opinion split over Obama’s national security nominees

A TOP priority for US President Barack Obama is to get his national security cabinet confirmed by the Senate. There has been a good deal of controversy over the President’s nominees for Secretary of Defence, Secretary of State, and Director of the Central Intelligence...
Israel’s view of Syria and its radical Sunni groups

Israel’s view of Syria and its radical Sunni groups

MANY Israeli Jews view the Syrian government and the country’s Sunni radical movements as bitter enemies – an attitude further exacerbated following the eruption in March 2011of the Syrian civil war. Frosty relations and periods of hostility have punctuated Israeli...
Russia’s street protests melt away

Russia’s street protests melt away

THE winter of 2011/12 will long be remembered as the time when Russian society was mobilised in earnest, demanding regime change and showing little fear of repression. For some time, it looked as though Russia was heading for serious change. But a year later the...