- Taiwan beefs up its East China Sea naval capabilities. What would happen if a Chinese and Taiwanese vessel tangled in waters claimed by Japan? (Thanks Malcolm.)
- New Secretary of State John Kerry needs a good editor. (Thanks Michael.)
- A stunning piece of writing and a razor sharp analysis of modern Western culture: legendary rock critic Lester Bangs' 1977 obituary for Elvis Presley. (H/t Kottke.)
- The US is beefing up its forces on the Korean peninsula, but according to Gordon Chang, Washington seems less inclined to use forceful language against North Korea than was the case during the Cold War. No wonder South Koreans want their own nukes.
- The Economist: why has the global temperature flattened over the last 15 years while greenhouse emissions have increased?
- Scott Snyder says the latest Korea tensions can be read as more of the usual bluff and bluster, however...
...the intensity and frequency of threats in Kim Jong Un's first year of leadership is uncomfortably high, raising questions about whether junior Kim fully understands the ritualistic rules of the inter-Korean "threat-down"; whether he might be more accepting of risks than his father, and whether he's more likely to make miscalculations that could drive a hair-trigger situation over the edge.