On July 13, 1989, a frantic getaway is taking place out front of an apartment house at 5 Linke Bahngasse in Vienna. In an article for the Austrian weekly Profil, the journalists Sibylle Hamann und Martin Staudinger reconstruct the scene: A secret agent has been shot and he is dragged by two other men between two parked cars. He is bleeding from multiple wounds. A man on a motorcycle pulls up beside them. All four are members of an Iranian terror commando unit that has left behind a bloodbath in a two-room apartment on the fourth floor of the building […]

After long being spared the violence that has characterized Basque separatist agitation in the Spanish Basque country, the French Basque country has in recent months been hit by a series of increasingly spectacular attacks. French police investigations in connection with one such attack led to the arrest last month of 13 people, including some with known links to the Basque terrorist group ETA. An internal ETA document uncovered last month by the local Basque news service Vasco Press suggests that the upswing in violence may be the result of a new ETA “strategy of confrontation” with France. -o- In a […]

IT ALL STARTED WITH MALTA — It was clear from U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s personal involvement with last Monday’s summit on climate change sponsored by the world body that he wants to make the issue a priority of his term of office. A senior U.N. adviser said shaping the proposed post-Kyoto agreement (the Kyoto Protocol emission reduction targets will expire in 2012) will continue to be one of Ban Ki-moon’s main targets. The Korean doesn’t have his predecessor Kofi Annan’s public persona, but inside the organization he is widely judged to have had an effective first year in the […]

Developments during the past month suggest that relations between China and major European governments will remain problematic for the next few years. Chinese and European officials have engaged in disputes on several important issues that could prove difficult to resolve. Nevertheless, the governments of China and Europe also share important interests that should limit the impact of these conflicts. Many of the differences between China and Europe became apparent during German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s three-day visit to China at the end of August. The itinerary for Merkel’s second trip to China as chancellor included stays in Beijing and Nanking. In […]

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