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Their Views

Obama must deliver on tough talk

No one wants to be at war. But the barbaric animals who fancy themselves the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria must be stopped. We cannot stand by as they murder Christians and Jews, behead journalists, throw children off cliffs, rape and enslave women and mass execute whichever demographic they don’t like.

Nail polish could help spot rapists

They’re not athletes or celebrities, but Ankesh Madan, Stephen Gray, Tyler Confrey-Maloney and Tasso von Windheim have gotten a lot of press lately — all because of some nail polish. The four N.C. State University students are working on a special kind of polish that can detect the presence of date-rape drugs.

EU surprises Putin for once with new, sensible sanctions

For the first time since Russia annexed Crimea six months ago, the European Union has surprised President Vladimir Putin instead of the other way around. Despite a cease-fire in eastern Ukraine, and despite Russia’s apparent withdrawal of troops from the region, the EU decided Thursday morning to impose new sanctions on Russia.

Scotland’s epic independence vote

WASHINGTON — Tucking into a dish of Scottish haggis is not a task for the fainthearted. There are various haggis recipes, but basically it is sheep’s pluck — the heart, lungs and liver — cooked together, then mixed with suet and oatmeal and boiled in a sheep’s stomach, then served, sometimes drenched with Scotch. People who pour whisky on oatmeal are not shrinking violets. Remember this on Thursday when Scotland votes on independence from the United Kingdom.

Critique from an Obama fan

I’m probably one of the few Americans left with some sympathy for President Barack Obama’s foreign policy, and even I have to admit that his Syria policy has been a mess.

Extremism in defense of re-election

WASHINGTON — Since Barry Goldwater, accepting the Republicans’ 1964 presidential nomination, said “extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice,” Democrats have been decrying Republican “extremism.” Actually, although there is abundant foolishness and unseemliness in American politics, real extremism — measures or movements that menace the Constitution’s architecture of ordered liberty — is rare. This week, however, extremism stained the Senate.

The global complacency on Ebola must end

The ebola epidemic now sweeping West Africa is a public health catastrophe, yet the world’s response has been to treat it like a faraway monsoon or volcano, perhaps frightening but not something much can be done about. This complacency is wrong-headed and dangerous. The catastrophe is worsening by the day because of the actions and inactions of people, those on the ground and those far away.