News + Media


September 1, 2005

Iran: rogue state?

Ali Mostashari, MIT

Iran is now an important focal point for U.S. foreign policy. Yet many have argued that the United States lacks a coherent foreign policy on Iran, amounting to no more than an enormous list of “evils”: namely, that Iran exports its radical Islamist revolution, supports Hezbollah and Hamas and actively opposes the Middle East peace process, is building nuclear and biological weapons capacity, was involved in the bombings of the Jewish center in Buenos Aires and the Khobar towers in Saudi Arabia, provides Al-Qaeda with safe passage and refuge, helps insurgents in Iraq, assassinates its own dissidents and oppresses its people, and so on. 


July 1, 2005

All weapons of mass destruction are not equal

Allison Macfarlane, MIT

In the United States, weapons of mass destruction have become the bête noir of the 21st century. They are now the justification for pre-emptive war, for an expansion of the cold war nuclear arsenal, and for the spending of billions of dollars on offensive and defensive measures. Since significant portions of U.S. foreign and domestic policy are based on this categorization, it is high time to reflect on whether these weapons pose such a lethal threat.


July 1, 2005

The Iraq War: do civilian casualties matter?

Les Roberts, MIT

A disturbing thing happened to me in Afghanistan last May while working on a project to install wells in villages. After a delightful month of working in a rural province, filled with welcoming leaders and offers of tea at every house, the mood suddenly changed. A young man walked up to my 42-year-old female American colleague and bashed her in the face. As we collected our interviewers and headed back to the vehicles, children from the village pelted us with stones. This violence against anything foreign played out in hundreds of locations across Afghanistan that day. 


July 1, 2005

Filling the army's ranks for the Iraq War

Cindy Williams, MIT

Some two years into the occupation in Iraq, the U.S. Army faces a serious staffing challenge. As of May 30, 2005, the active-duty Army had missed its recruiting goals for four months in a row. If things do not improve substantially, the service will have only 10 percent of needed enlistees pre-signed for basic training at the beginning of 2006; normally it begins the year with about one-third of its trainees already committed to contracts.

Analysis + Opinion

June 7, 2005

Fighting blind in Iraq

Barry R. PosenNew York Times

Insurgencies and counterinsurgencies are, above all, intelligence wars -- for both sides. Insurgents are invariably at a disadvantage in terms of troops and firepower. They survive only if they have superior information, which they derive from broad popular support.

Analysis + Opinion

June 4, 2005

Don't put nuclear waste on military bases

Allison MacfarlaneBoston Globe

Is a nuclear waste storage facility coming to a former military base near you? Last week the House of Representatives voted to establish temporary storage facilities for nuclear waste at federally owned facilities, including military bases slated for closure in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Maine.

News Release

May 14, 2005

Symposium on forced labor in the global economy

Though many of us would like to think of forced labor as a practice of the past, the unfortunate reality is that millions of people are still victims of this gross human rights abuse.  The purpose of this collaboration is to raise public awareness about the issue and to tackle some of the disagreements about forced labor, including how big a problem it is, how we should define it, and who should deal with it and how.

News Release

May 10, 2005

Freelance journalist Catherine Elton is first MIT Center for International Studies Elizabeth Neuffer Fellow

CIS announced today that Catherine Elton, a freelance journalist from the United States who has been based in Guatemala, will become the Center's first resident Elizabeth Neuffer Fellow. The announcement was made at the first Elizabeth Neuffer Forum, which was held on May 10 at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston.

Miriam Zoll

News Release

April 20, 2005

PHRJ Fellow Miriam Zoll, co-founder of "Take Our Daughters to Work Day," on protection of orphans and women's economic rights

Twelve years ago, the Ms. Foundation for Women launched Take Our Daughters To Work Day to draw public attention to pay and promotion gaps between men and women in the U.S. workplace. This year one of the program's founders is working through MIT's Program on Human Rights and Justice to develop new strategies for lifting orphan households out of poverty.

MIT President Susan Hockfield shakes hands with Dr. Gianfelice Rocca after the two signed an agreement launching the Roberto Rocca Project, which will support collaboration between MIT and Milan Politecnico.  Photo / Donna Coveney

News Release

April 14, 2005

MIT-Italy brings "Roberto Rocca Project" to MIT

On April 14, 2005, MIT President Dr. Susan Hockfield and Dr. Gianfelice Rocca, Chairman of Italy's Techint Group, will sign an agreement formalizing the start of an important new collaboration between MIT and the Milan Politecnico, Italy 's top engineering school.