Stranger than fiction: Donald Trump and The Plot Against America

No author of speculative fiction wants to be proven right. To be proven right in the spec-fic game is to see the worst come to pass. No, speculative fiction is written as a warning, and […]

Jan, 19

Vietnam’s National Assembly elections plagued by biased vetting, intimidation

When Vietnam elects its National Assembly this weekend, voters will find that, by and large, the choice has already been made for them. The country’s ruling Communist Party blocked more than one hundred independent nominees […]

May, 20

What ‘communist chic’ really means

It is one of the most common sights on the streets of Vietnam. In Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, Da Lat and Nha Trang, tourists abound whose style might best be described as ‘communist […]

Apr, 29

Twenty-first century punch

I had fallen in with an Emirates flight crew—British, Irish, South African, Korean—sometime after eleven. A Swedish stewardess, the eldest among them at a mere thirty-something, watched her charges’ increasingly drunken antics with a wry […]

Apr, 29

“We have America on our side”: How times have changed for Vietnam

Americans are often pleasantly surprised, upon arriving in Vietnam for the first time, by how little the Vietnamese seem to care about the war these days. They might feel a pang of guilt or two, […]

Mar, 21

‘House of Cards’ is dark and brutal but no match for Washington now

Beloved of idealistic young things everywhere, The West Wing was always famous for the way in which it sought to imagine an alternative or counter presidency to that of George W. Bush, who came to […]

Mar, 09

Forty years after the fall of Saigon, a visit to Ho Chi Minh City’s war museum

Has it really been forty years since there wasn’t enough room on the last chopper out? The streets of Ho Chi Minh City are, if not exactly festooned, then at least rather heavily decorated with […]

Apr, 17


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