John Barry Kotch

For John Barry Kotch's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Commentary / World Nov 11, 2004

'Uniter' needs bipartisan foreign policy

SANTA FE, New Mexico -- The ballot counting goes on in New Mexico, the battleground state closest to Northeast Asia and U.S. Democrats' last stand, but to what avail? With the presidential election already decided, only the political arithmetic remains. Amazingly, only two states changed ...

Commentary / World Oct 28, 2004

Bush foes keep fingers crossed

CAMBRIDGE, England -- While the world looks on, tens of millions Americans will go to the polls next Tuesday, along with millions of American expatriates, for what is being billed as the election of the century, or at least the most important election in ...

Commentary / World Oct 17, 2004

Election at all costs may cost democracy

CAMBRIDGE, England -- Elections set a new nation or a broken one on a course of renewal. Therefore, the conditions under which they are conducted -- the presence of security and the absence of intimidation, the degree of public participation (or apathy), including the ...

Commentary / World Oct 8, 2004

U.S. must engage North Korea directly

CAMBRIDGE, England -- Caught in the crossfire of the first presidential debate between U.S. President George W. Bush and Sen. John Kerry, most Americans were likely taken aback by Korea's prominence and prospects. While it is highly unlikely that the positions of either candidate will ...

Commentary / World Sep 23, 2004

Look for a larger Russian role in Korea

SEOUL-- With the six-party talks in the deep freeze, South Korean President Roh Moo Hyun is looking east to help break the ice. In his summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow this week Roh is expected to both press Putin to play ...

Commentary / World Sep 11, 2004

U.S. troop shift rightly raises concern

SEOUL -- It was inevitable that Korea, at some point, would rear its complicated head as a campaign issue. In a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry said the withdrawal of 12,000 of the 37,000 U.S. ...

Commentary / World Jun 17, 2004

A fresh start in the West Sea

SEOUL -- Although the recent agreement between North and South Korea to set up a hotline, a shared radio frequency and a mutually recognizable naval signaling system to avoid future West Sea clashes -- which claimed scores of lives in 1999 and 2002 -- ...

Commentary / World May 16, 2004

Iraq has thrown off Bush's game plan

LONDON -- When the legendary New York Yankees manager Casey Stengel left the dugout for the pitcher's mound, there was only one question. Would he stick with his pitcher or signal to the bullpen for a reliever? Sometimes there was a brief discussion and ...

Commentary / World Mar 19, 2004

Roh's fate hangs on political pulse

SEOUL -- The always contentious South Korean political scene was shattered last week with the impeachment of the sitting president, Roh Moo Hyun, with both Korea watchers and Koreans themselves who take their young democracy very seriously caught off guard. Once again, South Korea was ...

Commentary / World Mar 13, 2004

Iraqi sovereignty remains a distant goal

SEOUL -- Let's start with the obvious but often overlooked topic of what isn't taking place in Iraq today. Commentary to the contrary, sovereignty is not being handed back to Iraqis on June 30; it isn't even on the table. The United States, as the ...