The author of ‘A Beautiful Mind’ on the life and death of John Nash

Q: What has been the most concrete application of his ideas?

SN: I think the biggest and most concrete impact has been in Federal Reserve policy, which now really revolves around managing expectations of both companies and consumers and other central banks. It’s become strategic, rather than we’re going to turn the dial here and there, and that’s it….

Those remarks by Nash have been somewhat misinterpreted or taken out of context. He got sick at 30. He was never in treatment after age 40. That is 1970. No medication, nothing. He didn’t will his way to recovery. What he called it was aging out of it. He thought the hormonal changes had something to do with this recovery. This is almost certainly true. When he talked about managing the delusions, that is what cognitive therapy and behavioral therapy are all about. He’s not talking about willing away the illness. He would never do that because he was dealing with his son.


Why We’d Be Better Off if Napoleon Never Lost at Waterloo

There was no denying that the Battle of Waterloo had been catastrophic. Except for the Battle of Borodino, which Napoleon had fought in Russia in his disastrous 1812 campaign, this was the costliest single day of the 23 years of the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. Between 25,000 and 31,000 Frenchmen were killed or wounded, and vast numbers more were captured. Of Napoleon’s 64 most senior generals, no fewer than 26 were casualties. The losses for the Allies were severe, too—Wellington lost 17,200 men, the Prussian commander Marshal Gebhard von Blücher a further 7,000. Within a month, the disaster cost Napoleon his throne.

Walking the battlefield today, it’s all too easy to understand why he lost. From the 140-foot-high Lion’s Mound, which was built in the 1820s on top of Wellington’s front line, one can see what Napoleon could not: the woods to the east from which 50,000 Prussians started to emerge at 1 p.m. to stave in the French right flank, plus the two stone farmhouses of La Haie Sainte and Hougoumont, which disrupted and funneled the French attack for most of the day.

După Irak, Arabia Saudită

După știrle cu armata irakiană care a lăsat cadou tehnică militară americană tocmai grupării ISIL, acum urmează Arabia Saudită.

Why Saudi Arabia’s Yemen War Is Not Producing Victory

King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud appointed his son as defense minister Jan. 23 after the son had served as chief of Salman’s royal court for two years. The son had no previous military experience or military education. Less than two months after his appointment, the Saudis began Operation Decisive Storm to coerce the Houthis to restore the government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi back to power. The Saudis gave Washington three hours’ notice of the first airstrikes. The king’s son immediately became the face of the war, appearing endlessly in the Saudi media directing operations and trying to find allies to join the campaign.

The Salmans also immediately sought experienced combat-tested ground forces from Pakistan to take the war into Yemen. The Pakistanis came away from meetings in Riyadh convinced the king and his son had „panicked” and jumped into the war without a viable strategy for achieving victory; the Pakistanis refused to join the war effort and leaked their worries to the press. The young prince was portrayed as „untested” and unprepared for the job. All this from a Pakistani leader, Nawaz Sharif, who spent years in exile in the kingdom and knows the royals better than any other outsider.

There are similar mutterings around the Gulf states now that the Saudi leadership is impulsive and rash. The Saudis have traditionally been very conservative and risk-averse. From Faisal to Abdullah, Saudi kings were cautious and careful. Now there is hushed talk of a team out of its depth with no plan for an endgame. No one wants to say openly that Riyadh is in a quagmire, but Oman’s decision to opt out of the war is increasingly seen as a smart decision.

Momentul adevărului pentru România

Acest moment tocmai a venit. Se confirmă printr-o sursă importantă, Stephen Blank

The West’s Failure of Nerve By Stephen Blank

Poland and the Baltic states intend to ask NATO to station a battalion or even larger units on their territory. The Baltic states—Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania—want a brigade so that each country can host a battalion or permanent rotational forces. Poland’s Foreign Minister, Grzegorz Schetyna, indicated that his government would request the permanent stationing of two heavy brigades, a formation that normally numbers up to 5,000 troops, on Polish soil. Poland is also seeking military bases with heavy equipment in preparation for the 2016 NATO summit in Warsaw. (…)

It’s not surprising that the Baltic states and Poland have publicly, although not directly, proclaimed their vote of no confidence in NATO and Washington’s policies toward Russia for failing to deter or reassure. Many NATO members are being made uncomfortable by these four states’ stated intentions. Those demands entail NATO’s repudiation of its 1997 NATO-Russia Founding Act concerning permanent NATO deployments in these frontline states. But Moscow has violated every agreement on European security that it has concluded with Ukraine and all the post-Soviet states. Why should NATO be bound by a treaty whose conditions no longer exist due to Russia’s unpunished violation of that accord?


Momentul adevărului înseamnă de fapt momentul unor decizii pentru România care să clarifice:

1. Dacă suntem mulțumiți cu măsurile luate în NATO pe linia reasugurării ?

2. Dacă suntem multțumiți de progresele din NATO în 3 domenii: mecanismul politic, aplicarea prevederilor din art. 5 si asigurarea operaționalizării Forței de reacție rapidă ?

3. Dacă România, în baza Parteneriatului strategic cu Polonia, va susține la NATO cererea Poloniei și a țărilor baltice de staționarea a unor forțe NATO permanente ?

4. Dacă va fi inclusă ca obiectiv în Strategia națională de apărare a României, prezența unor forțe permanente NATO în România ? Sau România, pe termen scurt, mediu și lung  va fi o excepție pe axa Varșovia – Ankara, adică singura țara NATO care nu va avea forțe permanente NATO pe teritoriul său ?