MARDAN, Pakistan — Zeeshan Khan, a 17-year-old engineering student, says he knows who Pakistanis blame for what has become the largest migration in their country’s history. “These people are coming due to the bombing,” he said, gesturing to the thousands of refugees milling around the Mardan refugee camp. “Due to the jet artillery, the F-16s, the heavy weapons. All our houses are destroyed.” More than 900,000 people have left their homes in and around Swat valley in the last few weeks, adding to a total of 1.4 million people displaced so far by fighting between the Pakistani Army and militants. […]

The world continues to hold its breath over a swine flu that, while perhaps slowing, is still likely to kill in the low hundreds and remains balanced on the edge of a true pandemic. Although only a mere 2-3,000 cases have — so far — been recorded worldwide (80 percent of them in co-sources Mexico and America), this variant of H1N1 influenza penetrated dozens of nations and all mass-populated regions of the globe in a matter of days — a truly humbling reminder of how globalization enhances mankind’s epidemiological interdependency. Has the media overreacted? It’s possible that round-the-clock coverage in […]

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TORREÓN, Mexico — Just as love persisted in García Márquez’s masterpiece set during the 19th century cholera outbreaks, politics has not gone on hiatus during the swine flu epidemic that continues to threaten Mexico. While the political consequences of the outbreak have yet to fully crystallize, it’s clear that the episode has the potential to scramble the electoral calculus ahead of this summer’s elections. The entire lower house of Congress as well as a handful of governorships and state legislatures will be chosen on July 5. President Felipe Calderón’s allies and adversaries are competing to define his government’s reaction to […]