December 27, 2013 |
BEIRUT - The assassination by car bomb on Friday of a prominent Lebanese political figure who was critical of the Shiite militia Hezbollah has raised the specter of greater instability in Lebanon, fueled by the war across the frontier in Syria. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the enormous blast in Beirut targeting Mohamad Chatah, a former Lebanese ambassador to the United States. But the Syrian conflict has already left a lasting mark on its politically fragile neighbor.
December 9, 2013 |
A high-stakes operation to assassinate Iran's warmongering intelligence chief takes several unexpected turns on “Big Man in Tehran,” Episode 311 of Showtime's “Homeland.” Tasked by the CIA with the near-suicide mission is Nicholas Brody (Damian Lewis), the disgraced congressman and world's most-wanted fugitive. After barely surviving a hazardous crossing from Iraq into Iran, he requests political asylum by falsely confessing to the deadly attack at CIA headquarters. The plan calls for Brody to kill Iranian spymaster Danesh Akbari (Houshang Touzie)
December 6, 2013 |
K-pop star Choi Seung-hyun (a.k.a. T.O.P.) is convincing as a sensitive kid who becomes a trained assassin in "Commitment," a spy drama with a romantic heart. Boilerplate shootouts and conflagrations get the better of the movie's second half, but for the most part, first-time director Park Hong-soo strikes the right balance between take-no-prisoners espionage and teenage angst. Set in 2011, screenwriter Kim Soo-young's story spins, somewhat clunkily, around a vaguely defined network of warring sleeper cells from the North operating in Seoul; detectives helpfully point out Kim Jong-il's declining health and the factions' power plays.
November 26, 2013 |
With the passing of the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy last week, and the accompanying fusillade of documentaries purporting to prove there was a conspiracy behind it, we might expect (and hope) that cabalistic conjecturing will wane until the next big anniversary. Don't count on it. A poll this month found that 61% of Americans who responded still believe that JFK was the victim of a conspiracy, despite the fact that the preponderance of evidence points to Lee Harvey Oswald as the lone assassin.
November 26, 2013 |
MEXICO CITY - He admitted being a salaried killer for a drug cartel, the kind of assassin who preferred slashing his victims' throats. On Tuesday, after serving three years behind bars, he was released from a Mexican detention center and was on his way to the United States - where he would soon live as a free man. Or, rather, a free boy. The killer, Edgar Jimenez Lugo, known to Mexican crime reporters as "El Ponchis," is 17 years old. He...
November 22, 2013 |
Dozens of readers have sent us their memories of Nov. 22, 1963, the day of President John F. Kennedy's assassination in Dallas. In reading those letters, one common experience emerges: Almost all of those who wrote about where they were that day 50 years ago said they found out about Kennedy's death while at school. Some heard about it over their schools' PA systems, others remember teachers delivering the news tearfully or with little emotion at all, and some were dismissed from school suddenly with no explanation, only to find out what happened from their parents.