In a disaster, humans rush to help. May they ever do so. But when rescue turns to recovery turns to rebuilding, there are smarter ways to offer a hand up without making it a hand out.
The spotlight of news usually falls on big, important issues -- "the rise of China," "the war on terror," "political conflict in Washington." But reporters gathering that news often find meaning in one-to-one relationships and small-scale incidents they encounter on the job. That's news too.
The simmering conflict in China's western province of Xinjiang boiled over again Wednesday, with state media reporting 27 people died in the latest violence to hit the largely Muslim region.
While neither Beijing nor Washington want to see North Korea's belligerence explode into actual conflict, Beijing is not willing to push Pyongyang too hard for fear of toppling the regime.
It has long since walked away from its founding principles, but the Chinese Communist Party still has a hammerlock on power in the world's most populous nation. How long will the Chinese people tolerate a ruling clique that can't be voted out of office?
In many countries, women have historically served in combat when demographics demanded it. But the US move is based on equal opportunity for women – and could become a model for others.
Policymakers in many of the world's hot spots have a common New Year's wish: for unity to usher in and consolidate political and economic stability.
The Chinese plane had already left the islands – known as Diaoyu in China and Senkaku in Japan – by the time the Japanese F-15s arrived.