January/February 2002 January/February Issue

Cover Story: An End to Sweet Illusions by Bill McKibben
The lesson of September 11? Wealth, power, and geographic isolation notwithstanding, America just joined the rest of the world.


Clueless in Langley by Ted Gup
The CIA knows how to bug embassies, translate Russian documents, and funnel weapons to guerrillas. Can it learn to tackle terrorism — or is it time to abolish an agency still stuck in the Cold War?

Political Intelligence by Ken Silverstein and David Isenberg
When official Washington doesn’t like the conclusions of spies in the field, the response is simple: ignore the messenger.

Airline Insecurity by Barry Yeoman and Bill Hogan
For more than a decade, the airline industry and its Washington friends consistently blocked efforts to improve airport security, placing the bottom line above the public’s safety.

Touching Ground Zero
Conscience of Place: The World Trade Center Site
by Verlyn Klinkenborg
Something more than morbid curiosity keeps bringing New Yorkers to the edge of the disaster site: the urge to bear witness.

Recruiting the Class of 2005 by David Goodman
Junior ROTC programs are invading public schools in the nation’s cities. The military says they offer discipline and build character. But who really benefits when kids are primed for duty?

Big Brother and the Bookie by George Anastasia
When the FBI broke into the computer of the South Philadelphia wiseguy, it created an unlikely poster boy for electronic privacy.


Readers sound off Iraq sanctions, fish farming, sterilizing drug-addicted mothers, and more.

Nuclear Denial: For two decades, the nuclear industry has ignored warnings that its reactors were vulnerable to terrorists acts — all while racking up an embarrassing record of security lapses.
A Biodefense Boondoggle?: As pharmaceutical companies line up for multimillion-dollar contracts to make bioterrorism vaccines, some question whether the industry is up to the job.
Up Close and Personal: High-tech identification devices could produce reams of data on law-abiding citizens — but may be useless in fighting terrorists.
Document Not Found: Government agencies scramble to take sensitive information off their web sites.
An Engineered Controversy: Farmers fear that genetically altered tobacco will contaminate their crops.
— Hellraiser: Sohail Mohammed works overtime to defend detained Arab- and Muslim-Americans.

Ammunition for the pill wars; striking a sales pose; rent-a-K-9.

Notebook by Todd Gitlin
Why do some on the left, usually quick to condemn brutality around the world, find it so hard to see Americans as victims?

The Commons by Sue Halpern
In a new kind of war, a congregation of pacifists wrestles with its ideals.

How Pakistan learned to love the bomb.

Media Jones
Racing the welfare clock; Arundhati Roy on the politics of power; plus book, music, and film reviews.

Re: Action
Resources for getting involved.

Cartoon by Barry Blitt.