World Citizen: A Year of Wisdom, Wiliness — and Craven Stupidity

World Citizen: A Year of Wisdom, Wiliness — and Craven Stupidity

With 2008 drawing to a close, I decided to look back at the year's columns and update some stories where important developments have occurred. The stark, if obvious, realization arising from this review is that world politics is shaped by people -- people of all kinds: smart, stupid, brave, crafty, or cowardly. But behind every movement, trend and event stand individuals, whose actions shape the course of history. We can easily lose sight of that fact when we focus on the larger picture of global events.

In places such as Yemen, Iraq, Israel, and beyond, history-makers do not stand still. Every article I've written has an epilogue, and every epilogue is nothing but a prologue to the world's continuing history.

Just last week, I wrote about Israeli primary voters in Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud party dealing their party leader a serious blow. They shocked the stalwarts by voting the hardest of hardliners to high places on the party list ahead of next February's election. Netanyahu rival Moshe Feiglin -- a man whose views stand very far to the right of the national mainstream -- won the 20th slot on the list, all but guaranteeing him a spot in the next Knesset (Israel's parliament). With Israeli voters positioned firmly in the pragmatic camp, the very name Feiglin had the potential to derail Netanyahu's bid to regain the prime minister's seat.

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