A world of ideas. Commentary and comment on the day's biggest news and most important trends.
A talk with Ian Fok Chun-wan on China's second free trade zone
The wealthy tycoon comments on a proposed free trade zone covering Hong Kong, Macau and part of Guangdong province.
Pragmatic realism should govern West’s response to the take over of Crimea
Commentary: Crimea is gone and West should focus on talks toward security and peace for Ukraine.
As Turkey's elections approach, denial runs deep for Erdogan
Commentary: Prime Minister Erdogan called for 'democratic elections in a democratic state' at the polls on Sunday, proving that he still fails to recognize the accumulation of grievances behind nearly a year of protests.
EU can be a more effective counter to Russia in Ukraine than US
Commentary: Germany and Poland can be the most helpful allies in bringing security and stability to Ukraine.
Settlements have ruined the Zionist dream of a two-state solution in the Middle East
Commentary: ‘They have put Israel’s neck in a noose,’ leaving a one-state democracy the best solution.
Getting fresh water to the disabled remains a challenge
Commentary: 80 percent of disabled live in developing countries where fetching water is difficult.
The Kabul Serena’s dark history
‘That place is cursed,’ Afghans say.
ICC conviction of former Congo rebel commander is a missed opportunity
Commentary: Acquittal on rape charges reinforces hard truth about the court’s failure to address sex crimes.
The media emphasis on language division between Ukrainian and Russian plays into Putin’s strategy
Commentary: In Crimea, most Ukrainians are bilingual, speaking Russian at work and Ukrainian at home.
Chinese seeking asylum in US often are betrayed by customs practices
Commentary: Smuggling chains give rise to asylum fraud, revealed in New York’s Chinatown prosecutions.
Cutting foreign aid won't defeat anti-gay laws in Africa and Latin America
Commentary: Human rights courts and commissions are the best tools to diminish violence and strengthen LGBT rights.
What happens in China will increasingly stay in China if media censorship persists
Commentary: But the People's Republic has a unique opportunity to show the international community it can be better when it hosts the 2014 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum.
'What is religion for, anyway?'
Commentary: Best-selling author Thomas Cahill reflects on Pope Francis and the astonishing change he brings to the Vatican.
Historical ironies abound in trying to reconcile Putin’s actions in Crimea
Commentary: Can Israel’s land grab in West Bank be justified but not Russia's occupation of Crimea?
China's 'two sessions' 2014: Deepening reforms high on the agenda
Hotly-discussed topics included environmental issues, social security, income distribution, the fight against corruption, property issues, medical reform, inflation, commodity prices, and food and drug safety
Women's History Month: Paying tribute to Rita Moreno, Puerto Rican Hollywood icon
Commentary: Moreno is fabulous and fearless. Why the Latino community, especially Latino women, should follow Moreno's lead and boot their insecurities.
Unelected forces controlling Ukraine trying to do what they could not under Yanukovych
Commentary: Protesters believe Ukraine is not a democratic country but it belongs to the European Union anyway.
Women's History Month: Paying tribute to Margaret Marshall, anti-apartheid activist and judge
Commentary: "Freedom is like oxygen. When you’re breathing it, you’re not even conscious."
Protecting trade secrets is a challenge in a global economy
Commentary: Governments have a role to play through national laws and international treaties.
Putin has a genuine interest in protecting Russia's warm-water port and naval base in Crimea
Commentary: He will be shunned internationally for a while, but at least a war will be avoided.
In Somalia, rape is normal, but the government can change that
Commentary: In a country where one-third of the victims of sexual crimes are children, police training and a "zero-tolerance policy" can go a long way.
American ideas on volunteering don't resonate worldwide
Commentary: Nevertheless, a culture of volunteerism can benefit developed and developing nations alike.
German high court challenges the European Central Bank pledge to defend the Euro
Commentary: Is the court inviting challenges to the European Central Bank on complex issues affecting the Euro?
If West stands up to Putin, Russian economy will pay heavy cost
Commentary: The country’s ruling class will suffer under consequences of economic sanctions.
A Universal Rule for Traveling: 'Never, ever insult another country's cuisine'
Commentary: A tweet calling Japan's dolphin hunt "inhumane" triggered a justifiable debate about "culinary imperialism." To tell a nation that its food is illegitimate, barbaric, or inhumane is an insult to its history, culture and identity.
Reducing the size of the army reflects lessons learned in Iraq, Afghanistan
Commentary: But Congress may not go along as members try to protect bases in their districts.
The spirit of the Egyptian revolution can still be felt through its female entrepreneurs
Commentary: Egypt's 2011 revolution empowered many of the country's young women. Now, a new wave of entrepreneurial spirit is rippling across Egypt.
There are encouraging signs that some Arab views of Israel are changing
Commentary: Public sentiment is softening and the power of Israel’s military and high-tech capacity is recognized throughout region.
Russia’s playing a long game over Ukraine
Column: With Moscow already trying to undermine the new authorities in Kyiv, Western countries must learn from past mistakes by fully committing to Ukraine.
Ukraine: What the hell just happened?
Commentary: Was it a democratic revolution? An ultra-nationalist coup? Whatever it was, the future of Europe and East-West relations may depend on what happens next.
With Iraq in deep trouble, US military aid now is key to stabilizing Middle East
Commentary: Stronger ties to US and the West would assure Iraq of its best future.