May 24, 2014 GENEVA – Russia’s leader Vladimir Putin usually wears a perfect poker face. But last week in Shanghai, the icy-cold Russian president came awfully close to bursting into a big grin. And why not? Putin had just stolen a march on his western rivals. The US-British attempt to […]


November 16, 2013 LONDON – This week, the European Commission President, Jose Manuel Barroso, actually scolded Germany for producing too efficiently and exporting too much. Were the amiable Barroso not EU Commission president, he would likely be sitting under an olive tree in his native bankrupt Portugal, strumming melancholy fado […]


September 28, 2013 “Most armed; most free.” So the renowned Italian thinker and strategist Niccolo Machiavelli described the Swiss five centuries ago. That was a time when the 30 ft pikes and deadly halbards (pole axes) of Switzerland’s fierce mercenary armies were the terror of Europe. The “furia Helvetica” ruled […]