This story goes back to 2007, when Israel bombed a nuclear reactor under construction in Syria. It’s a detailed account from Michael Hayden, who was director of the CIA at the time. The uncertainties and the complexity of the story are normal for international affairs, and thus the story is a good example of the kind of thing President Donald Trump will face. Short version: Syria builds a nuclear reactor to produce bomb material. Israel wants America to destroy it. America refuses, Israel bombs the site. The world learns it was a reactor. But the whole thing is worth reading. Photo: The reactor before it was bombed.
Recent EmDrive claims are evaluated here. I have not followed the EmDrive closely, but it seems to work in contradiction of established physical principles. Here’s the Wikipedia article on it for some background. That evaluation looks responsible to me; it asks the kinds of questions that I expect to see asked about any new scientific phenomenon and looks for the kind of evidence that I expect in support. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary support, in addition to the basic support that any scientific claim requires. It appears that, so far, that support has not been offered for the EmDrive.
Patrick Tomlinson, American conservative: Donald Trump and the GOP, I want my party back. Significant concern across the country about a Trump presidency; some analysis here. The head of the Office of Government Ethics is concerned too. The folly of Trump’s palace guard.
Putin won 2016, but Russia has its limits as a superpower. I’m not convinced Putin won 2016.
New Year Speech by Finnish President Sauli Niinistö on 1 January 2017. Finland celebrates its 100th anniversary this year.
How journalists covered the rise of Hitler and Mussolini. Hint: Not their finest hour.