Patrick Devenny

Patrick Devenny is the Henry M. Jackson National Security Fellow at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, D.C. Email: patrick.devenny@gmail.com

Tinker, Tailer, Reporter, Spy

 

The Foreign Correspondent By Alan Furst (Random House, 288 pages, $24.95) The modern era is a blessed one for reporters. Able to reach a vast international audience and aided by stunning technology, reporters can quickly find themselves celebrities, deadlines and facts giving way to sensation and Vanity Fair spreads. Those lucky enough to live and […]

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Assad’s Academic

 

The Assad regime in Syria was dealt yet another blow last week when former Syrian Vice President and friend to Bashar Assad, Halim Khaddam, gave an astonishingly candid interview to Al-Arabiya, a popular Arabic-language television station. Khaddam — who fell out of favor earlier this year — admitted that Bashar Assad had made personal threats […]

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True Fanatic

 

President Ahmadinejad’s speech before the UN General Assembly in September was a towering diplomatic dud. Instead of assuaging the prim gentlemen in the audience — who are always willing to suffer through long harangues from third-world despots, as long as they paint the West as omnipresent villain — Ahmadinejad indulged in warlike hyperbole, threatening to […]

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The House of Kim

 

October 10th marked the 60th anniversary of the Korean Workers’ Party, an event celebrated by the massive military parades and the synchronized demonstrations so often associated with the Stalinist state of North Korea. The event drew additional outside interest due to the North Korean leadership’s habit of announcing major new policy initiatives during the state-sponsored […]

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Blinded by Sunshine

 

WASHINGTON — On Wednesday, the six-party talks concerning North Korea’s nuclear program are scheduled to reconvene in Beijing. If the conferences of the past are any indication, the United States will again face an obstinate North Korea that adamantly refuses to abandon a nuclear program that it views as its sole guarantor of security. Further […]

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The Battle for Basra

 

The proverbial library of successful counter-insurgencies — a woefully small collection — is dominated by the near-legendary campaigns of the British, including those carried out in Malaya, Aden, and Oman. Until recently, some observers thought it entirely possible that the British effort in southern Iraq would join this catalog of battlefield achievements. Those hopes — […]

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Bashar the Survivor

 

With Friday’s release of the long-awaited Mehlis report, the speculation concerning the future of Bashar al-Assad and his nation has reached a fever pitch. Its publication is only the latest in a long line of scandals that have buffeted the regime in recent months, beginning with the murder of Rafik Hariri, continuing with the humiliating […]

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Coddling Kim

 

WASHINGTON — Writing seven years ago in the South China Morning Post, reporter Martin Bradley caught a glimpse of hell along the Yalu River, which separates the Korean peninsula from China. Mr. Jasper — who recently authored a superb book on North Korea — described hundreds of emaciated Korean refugees fleeing into the Chinese forests, […]

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Trouble in Damascus

 

WASHINGTON — Last week, German judge Detlev Mehlis arrived in Damascus, prepared to interview several high-ranking Syrian security chiefs over their role in the February murder of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Mehlis, whose U.S.-backed UN-led investigation has already led to the unprecedented arrest of four Lebanese security officials, is rumored to have requested […]

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