Editor’s Notes

I’ve been nudged about the amount of attention we’ve been giving Venezuela and China. The answer is that rapidly-developing China is becoming the new heavyweight contender.  I’ve long said that China will be the economic engine of the 21st Century. There are some people who are born to know how to turn a dollar just like Mozart was born to hear a note. China has put their citizens with this talent for business on a long leash. The immediate results have become more and more clear as the months and years unfold. The world cannot ignore what is happening there because of the inevitable growing economic international impact. Knowledge goes a long way toward understanding. Venezuela also can’t be ignored because it is largely leading developments that are transforming the economic and political life of South and Central America. As an important part of the Western Hemisphere what happens in South and Central America is sure to have an impact on Canada. It also helps to know that Chavez is no Pinochet.

The essay on Elite Democracy in Venezuela is another candidate as a print-out for weekend reading.

In this issue we also focus on Turkey’s suspicions of what the Kurds are doing in the oil-rich Kirkuk area of northern Iraq. Aside from oil, Turkey is concerned about the possibility of Kurds gaining enough economic and political power to establish a separate Kurd state that would include a large section of Turkish territory. A development to watch.

We also pay attention on the resurgence of Russian nationalism with a theme of Soviet nostalgia that includes support of the Russian Orthodox Church. There are suggestions that an economically weakened Belarus would leave the isolated republic wide open for a Russian takeover. Russians consider Belarus (White Russia) to be an historical part of Russia anyway. These two articles help to put the action there in context.

Finally, please be advised that we don’t necessarily agree with the reports that we publish. We offer them as a balance to information that our readers receive from other sources.

Looking forward

Carl Dow, Editor and Publisher