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Their Views

Why we fight

Acentury has passed since the start of World War I, which many people at the time declared was “the war to end all wars.” Unfortunately, wars just kept happening. And with the headlines from Ukraine getting scarier by the day, this seems like a good time to ask why.

U.S. needs to arm the Kurds in Iraq

When he reluctantly announced America’s military return to Iraq, President Obama led with what was clearly his strongest case. Tens of thousands of minority Yazidi refugees were trapped on Sinjar Mountain without food or water — and the surrounding forces of the Islamic State intended to wipe them out.

Europe in the doldrums

Remember how Europe defied all the doomsayers and staved off the collapse of its single currency and a wider political crack-up? Well, it is becoming increasingly clear that stop-gap measures enacted by the European Central Bank in 2012, with the support of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, succeeded in buying time and not much else. It’s true the continent’s most heavily indebted governments — Spain, Italy, Portugal, Greece and Ireland — can still fund themselves, thanks to implicit ECB backing. But none of them has managed to rekindle much growth, and even Germany’s economy went into reverse during the second quarter of 2014. Increasingly, the talk is of deflationary risks and long-term stagnation like that which has afflicted Japan for the last quarter-century.

In a stew over inversions

WASHINGTON — Barack Obama, presiding over an unusually dismal post-recession economy, might make matters worse with a distracting crusade against the minor and sensible business practice called “inversion,” more about which anon. So, consider his credentials as an economic thinker.

Here comes Entrepreneur Barbie

WASHINGTON — Lego’s groundbreaking female-scientists set sold out almost immediately after it was released this month. But never fear, fans of feminist toys: A new Barbie doll, now in stock, is also shattering the plastic ceiling.

Ferguson police fumbled protests

From the chief of the police department to the president of the United States, government officials Thursday promised a different approach to the racially charged unrest in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson. But the situation demands a lot more than a stand-down by assault-rifle-toting police. It might require an act of Congress.

Containing Ebola means sending masks and gowns, not drugs

The question of how to fairly distribute scarce doses of experimental Ebola treatments is capturing the world’s attention. Yet, the fate of the epidemic doesn’t rest on getting these expensive and unproven drugs to the afflicted African countries. What medical teams there need most are protective masks, goggles, gloves, gowns and boots.