Why Are We Cutting Pakistan Another Check?
Um, why is Washington cutting Pakistan another check after it was revealed that only $500 million out of previous $6.6 billion package actually went toward fighting Taliban and other terrorists? Obama appears determined to continue the Bush administration’s failed policies of the past, even as the AP reports that the aid we are sending Pakistan is being misused for other things unrelated to protecting U.S. forces in the region (like fighting India). It goes unstated that several Pakistani politicians are probably lining their pockets with America’s largesse. Even if there are strings attached, cutting Pakistan a blank check is just bad policy.
Yet that’s only the tip of the Pakistani iceberg. Predator/Reaper drone strikes are up, a short-term tactic that risks losing the ever-important war for locals’ hearts and minds.
Pakistan continues to be the primary obstacle in the region to greater peace. I remember a few years back, covering a lecture by President Pervez Musharraf who was on his “book tour” of the United States. He was feted by the press, made a Daily Show appearance, and was the talk of the town in New York. Yet he had just made a deal with the devil—he had basically cut a deal with Taliban elders in the northwest regions not to intervene if they brought some semblance of stability. Only recently he has admitted he was wrong to make such a deal but where was the pushback from U.S. officials then, when all this was going on and we were blindly backing Musharraf? I ask because we risk making the same mistakes again, with nothing to show for our billions of aid.
Meanwhile the U.S. company that will be showered with money to provide our diplomats there with security, DynCorp, cannot even keep its own employees in Afghanistan from overdosing on drugs. They are supposed to be there to train Afghan forces, not toke up every night. The company, according to the New York Times, “is being used by Washington to develop a parallel network of security and intelligence personnel within Pakistan.” There is a review underway by the Pakistani government. Between the predator strikes, the blank checks, and Dyncorp, the Obama administration’s Pakistan policy stinks to high-heaven.
Universities claim to prepare students for the world. How many actually do it?
- Many university mission statements do not live up to their promise, writes Ben Nelson, founder of Minerva, a university designed to develop intellect over content memorization.
- The core competencies that students need for success—critical thinking, communication, problem solving, and cross-cultural understanding, for example—should be intentionally taught, not left to chance.
- These competencies can be summed up with one word: wisdom. True wisdom is the ability to apply one's knowledge appropriately when faced with novel situations.
This is what the world will look like, 250 million years from now
To us humans, the shape and location of oceans and continents seems fixed. But that's only because our lives are so short.
SpaceX's momentous Crew Dragon launch is a sign of things to come for the space industry, and humanity's future.
- SpaceX was founded in 2002 and was an industry joke for many years. Eighteen years later, it is the first private company to launch astronauts to the International Space Station.
- Today, SpaceX's Crew Dragon launched NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to the ISS. The journey will take about 19 hours.
- Dylan Taylor, chairman and CEO of Voyager Space Holdings, looks at SpaceX's journey from startup to a commercial space company with the operating power of a nation-state.
A new study may help us better understand how children build social cognition through caregiver interaction.
Researchers at UT Southwestern noted a 47 percent increase in blood flow to regions associated with memory.