Can Romney Make a Credible Pivot to the Center?

February 22, 2012 by

To secure the GOP nomination, former Gov. Mitt Romney has had to make a hard shift to the right to convince social, economic and foreign policy conservatives that he’s their guy and can be trusted to uphold their values in the general election against President Obama. The shift has been transparent and increasingly awkward for a politician who many consider to be personally awkward. Romney’s button down persona has been described as square and to the right of cool.

Cold War in Warm Waters: US-China’s Dangerous Contest for Asia-Pacific

February 22, 2012 by

On two occasions in my life I found myself living close to the South China Sea. The sea became my escape from life’s pressing responsibilities. But there is no escaping the fact that the deceptively serene waters are now also grounds for a nascent but real new cold war. China takes the name of the sea very seriously. Its claim over the relatively massive water body – laden with oil, natural gas and other resources – is perhaps ‘ill-defined’, per the account of the BBC (Nov 3, 2011), but it is also very serious. Countries such as Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei are uneasy but are caught in a bind.