РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS RISKY TRIPS CURLING CLASSIFYING THE QUEST TO BUILD LEVEL OF DANGER A BETTER BROOM REACHING FOR THE STARS POWERFUL NEW ROCKET MARKS A SPACE MILESTONE BACK PAGE | TRAVEL PAGE 7 | BUSINESS PAGE 13 | SPORTS .. INTERNATIONAL EDITION | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 North Korea finds its way to Olympics World braces as an era of easy money draws to end Se-Woong Koo Stock plunge is a reminder that global market still takes its cues from U.S. economy OPINION SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA In the run-up to the Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, some South Koreans have been grumbling that this may as well be the “Pyongyang Games.” Since the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, announced on Jan. 1 that he was interested in sending a delegation to the Games, there has been a flurry of inter-Korean agreements. Twenty-two North Korean athletes will participate in the Olympics, and they will arrive with some 230 cheerleaders in tow. The two Koreas are fielding a joint women’s ice hockey team. And at the opening ceremony on Friday, they will march under a single flag, the Korean Unification Flag. The international news media has been buzzing about the new prospects for a secure peace on the Korean Peninsula, but not everyone in the South is happy about the welcome the North is receiving. And this time it’s not just the usual South Korean conservatives who Many South are moaning. Koreans are The idea that unhappy with people in the South the warm belong with their welcome Northern brethren isn’t universal, espePyongyang cially among the will receive at the Games. young. The exigencies of daily life — jobs, housing, income inequality — are far more pressing than uniting with what may as well be an alien country. Unification increasingly sounds like an abstract ideal, taught only in school and repeated ad nauseam by the political class. President Moon Jae-in appears to be paying a heavy political price for the rapprochement. Engagement to foster peace is worth exploring. But pulling out all the stops to accommodate Pyongyang on the basis that the two Koreas are one “minjok” (nation) — as Mr. Moon seems to be suggesting — comes across as outdated and out of touch. After all, we have seen this before. The two Koreas sent a joint team to the 1991 World Table Tennis Championship, and the women won a gold medal against China. That same year, they signed an agreement on reconciliation and nonaggression, seen as a significant step toward unification. Most South Koreans over 40 remember the national euphoria over these events. More hopeful years followed under the so-called Sunshine Policy of PresiKOO, PAGE 11 The New York Times publishes opinion from a wide range of perspectives in hopes of promoting constructive debate about consequential questions. BY PETER S. GOODMAN SERGEY PONOMAREV FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES A changing Chechnya Performers of Vainakh dance, a Caucasus staple, at the opening ceremony of a new ski resort in Chechnya. On slopes that once harbored Islamist militants, the multimillion-dollar Veduchi resort opened with a hotel, a helicopter pad, a spa and only one modest, half-mile lift, serving just one trail. PAGE 5 Rogues, despots and P.R. LONDON When British firm ignited maelstrom in South Africa, it charted its own downfall BY DAVID SEGAL If an autopsy could have been performed on Bell Pottinger, Britain’s most audacious public relations firm, the cause of death may have been summarized as “acute embarrassment.” This is ironic because Bell Pottinger always seemed defiantly beyond shame. During its 30 years in the upper echelons of Britain’s spin-doctoring game, it sought to polish the image of dictators (Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus), repressive regimes (Bahrain and Egypt, to name two) and celebrities accused of despicable crimes (the Olympic runner Oscar Pistorius after he was charged with murder). But in early 2016, Bell Pottinger signed a client that ultimately buried it in disgrace. The company worked for the Guptas, three brothers from India who built a sprawling, multibillion-dollar corporate empire in South Africa. Ajay, Tony and Atul Gupta had earned fantastic sums leveraging their friendship with President Jacob G. Zuma. By bullying officials and bending regulations to their will, they secured contracts in fields as varied as armaments, mining and railways. They offered ministerial jobs to politicians of their choosing. The Guptas and Mr. Zuma were so intertwined that critics had taken to referring to the “Zupta regime.” As the power of the Guptas and their holding company, Oakbay Investments, gained attention, the family wanted the public relations equivalent of a stun grenade — a distraction that would draw attention away from them and onto their many enemies. So Bell Pottinger was retained and given an assignment that initially sounded benign enough: grass-roots political activism intended to help poor blacks. By the following year, Bell Pottinger was embroiled in a national maelstrom. In TV reports, editorials and public rallies, it stood accused of setting off racial tensions through a furtive campaign built on Twitter bots, hate-filled websites and speeches. All were pushing a highly toxic narrative, namely that whites in South Africa had seized resources and wealth while they deprived blacks of education and jobs. The mes- GIANLUIGI GUERCIA/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE — GETTY IMAGES A protest against President Jacob G. Zuma of South Africa last year. Critics say the public relations firm Bell Pottinger, working for allies of Mr. Zuma, exploited racial tensions. sage was popularized with an incendiary phrase, “white monopoly capital.” How Bell Pottinger went bankrupt is a tale of corporate skulduggery. During the Gupta disaster, a vicious boardroom struggle unfolded, one that pitted a co- founder, Tim Bell, against James Henderson, who ran the firm in the years before it went under. Their conflict centered on the perennials of business potboilers, namely power and money. BELL POTTINGER, PAGE 4 Mere days ago, in what feels like a different era now, the biggest thing that people in control of money appeared to fear was complacency. Stock markets in the United States were surging, enthralled by the regulation-slashing, tax-shrinking predilections of President Trump. Every major economy in the world was expanding. The worst that could happen, the money masters averred, was that investors would be lulled into reckless investments, taking on too much risk in the belief that the dangers of the marketplace had been tamed. As it turns out, the dangers were already at work. A decade-long era of easy access to money engineered by central banks in Asia, Europe and the United States was ending, opening a new chapter in which corporations would have to pay more to borrow and ordinary people would have to pay more to finance homes, cars and other purchases. To digest the wild swings in stocks and bonds from New York to London to Tokyo is to absorb this uncomfortable realization taking hold. Investors concluded that interest rates would rise faster than they had anticipated, almost certainly in the United States, and perhaps eventually in Europe and Asia, too. They yanked their treasure out of stocks and entrusted it to safer repositories of wealth like bonds and cash. A wave of selling commenced in New York on Friday, continued in Asia and Europe on Monday and then completed its transglobal journey with a sharp drop where it had all started. While a global rout continued into Tuesday, anxiety subsided in the United States, with the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index up 1.7 percent at the close. The gains helped erase some of the losses over the past week, although the S.&P. 500 is still more than 6 percent off its peak in late January. No degree in finance was required to divine the lesson of the moment: Markets go down as well as up, a reality often drowned out by the euphoric celebrations to greet one record or another being shattered. While trading in the United States was clearly the initial source of alarm, the concerns spread to everywhere that MARKETS, PAGE 8 IGNORE THE STOCK MARKET SLIDE Economic data and bonds are better indicators than stock indexes of what investors can expect. PAGE 8 VOLATILITY MAKES PAINFUL RETURN Investors who bet big on continuing calm in global stock markets are feeling rattled. PAGE 8 РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S ‘Hollywood is changing,’ veteran activist says The actor Tim Robbins muses on Trump and the Weinstein scandal’s fallout BY MAUREEN DOWD So Tim Robbins and Donald Trump walk into a bar. Not together. They just happened to be in the same Greenwich Village club in New York City one night in the mid-1990s. But given the fact that fame is an irresistible magnet for Mr. Trump, the two men naturally ended up in a picture. “I was throwing a private party for a friend, and he tried to crash it and I wouldn’t let him,” Mr. Robbins recalls. But Mr. Trump is not that easily put off, even when his quarry has disdain for him. “We were in a little roped-off section of the club that I had rented out and I was leaving to go to the bathroom and all of the sudden, there he is. And before I know it, I turn around and there’s Y(1J85IC*KKNPKP( +&!"!$!z!] JAKE MICHAELS FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES “I was throwing a private party for a friend, and he tried to crash it, and I wouldn’t let him,” Tim Robbins said about Donald Trump before Mr. Trump became the president. photo flashes, and it was weird. He wanted a photo with me because I was famous. He used to do that a lot, by the way. He wanted to be photographed with famous people all the time.” It is strange that this onetime cardboard-cutout celebrity popping up at Gotham parties has turned into a psychic dentist drill, boring into Americans’ deepest, most painful schisms on race, gender and inequality. “Think about this,” Mr. Robbins says, over scallops, fries and espresso in the bar at the Crosby Street Hotel in SoHo. “You pursue celebrities your entire life when you’re a real-estate developer, and then you become the most powerful person in the country and no one wants to be photographed with you. This is the time when most celebrities will go to your side, and no one is going to his.” The Washington traditions that you’d think President Trump would have enjoyed, given his old party-surfing, glitterati-fawning ways — like the White House Correspondents Dinner and the Kennedy Center Honors — he has ROBBINS, PAGE 2 APPLY TO ATTEND NEWSSTAND PRICES Andorra € 3.70 Antilles € 4.00 Austria € 3.50 Bahrain BD 1.40 Belgium € 3.50 Bos. & Herz. 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РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION page two ‘Hollywood is changing,’ activist says lennial midlife crisis will be one for the ages.” He avidly supported Bernie Sanders in the primary before switching to Hillary Clinton in the general. (His ex Susan Sarandon, also an independent spirit, got heckled by Hillary supporters for refusing to support Mrs. Clinton; she said, “I don’t vote with my vagina,” and then switched to Jill Stein after Mr. Sanders was out.) “I think the Democratic Party is making a huge mistake right now, trying to caustically marginalize those people that voted for Bernie, because they’re not going to be shamed,” Mr. Robbins says. When he started his career, Mr. Robbins got offered a lot of roles as psycho killers. Then came “The Player.” Now, at 59, he says that “most of the parts I get offered are middle-aged dudes having existential crises.” He’s depicting another in Alan Ball’s new HBO series, “Here and Now,” which has its premiere on Sunday. Mr. Robbins’s character is a depressed philosophy professor named Greg Boatwright who plays Candy Crush and cheats on his wife, played by Holly Hunter, with a young hooker. In addition to their biological daughter, the couple, who met at Berkeley, has the “great experiment” of three adopted children (black, Asian and Hispanic), now grown. The show centers on the dynamics of having this pocket of progressivism in Portland, Ore., when white supremacy groups are lurking right outside of town. Mr. Robbins’s gloomy character sees “ignorance, hatred, terror and rage” winning, which makes his wife yearn to “smack him in the face with a big, wet fish.” Mr. Robbins has also been working on a memoir about growing up in a onebedroom railroad apartment with a dog, two cats, a rabbit and his folk singing family — his father, Gil, was a guitarist and songwriter with the Highwaymen — and meeting a lot of “crazy creative geniuses” in Greenwich Village. (Mr. Robbins lived nearby in Chelsea during his long relationship with Ms. Sarandon.) “My dad’s way of dealing with his depression was to build something, a harpsichord or cabinets or a loom,” he says. “I still have some of the things from his weaving period.” Mr. Robbins says he is “super-proud” of his children. Ms. Sarandon’s daughter with Franco Amurri, Eva — Mr. Robbins refers to Eva as his daughter — has two children and writes a parenting blog called “Happily Eva After.” Mr. Robbins has been producing short films for his oldest son, Jack, who got into Sundance last year and this year. And his younger son, Miles, is going on tour with his band and has roles in the upcoming “X Files” and “Halloween” movies. Perhaps because he got used to wearing the garter belt of Ms. Sarandon’s character in “Bull Durham,” Mr. Robbins was not bothered by Miles’s op-ed in HuffPost talking about how, even though he is “mostly heterosexual” — he has kissed a few men — he likes to wear dresses on stage sometimes or to parties. “He’s a showman,” said his father, adding that he himself wouldn’t do it because “You’ve got to have nice legs for that.” He is still very private about his twodecade romance with Ms. Sarandon, noting that accounts of stars’ personal lives are inevitably “artificial or manufactured because when you’re promoting a movie, you’re trying to tell people what they want to hear. And they’re operating in stereotypes from the past — younger man, older woman, whatever it is — different perceptions that have nothing to do with reality.” After dating for years, he says, “I’m with someone right now that I’ve been with for a while. I like my life right now.” He lives in Venice, Calif., in a charming house, where he has fun art parties and writes poetry and music and plays and screenplays. (His latest, “The Heretic,” is about a trio of Jesuses, one of whom gets waterboarded because his message of love is too radical for Christian consumption.) He is still busy with the Actors’ Gang, which he founded in 1981. Through the Actors’ Gang Prison Project, Mr. Robbins, who starred in “The Shawshank Redemption,” has had some success over the last decade in renewing interest and funding for arts programs in California prisons, which he believes can help change the behavior of criminals and teach social skills. Former Attorney General Eric Holder was a strong supporter, given the soaring incarceration rates, and Mr. Robbins says his prison plays, mingling black gang members and white supremacists, should be a bipartisan project. He says he would meet with Jeff Sessions, if Mr. Sessions were willing. He’s doing a documentary on the project. The latest production of the Actors’ Gang, “The New Colossus,” opens on Feb. 8, with 12 actors from 12 different parts of the world reminiscing about or playing their ancestors in their journeys from oppression to freedom. “All of our ancestors are related in a common desire,” Mr. Robbins says. “The tribalism, dividing us by race, is not who we are. It’s being manipulated for an economic cause. One night we had people from all over the world in our little hundred-seat theater and I was like, ‘This is America right here in this room.’ And it was so powerful. The division that’s happening now is all an illusion.” The other members of the group — Eddie Kendricks, Otis Williams, Melvin Franklin and Paul Williams — also sang lead, notably Mr. Kendricks. But Mr. Edwards was an essential part of the group’s new sound on songs like “I Can’t Get Next to You,” “Ball of Confusion (That’s What the World Is Today)” and “Shakey Ground.” Shortly after Mr. Edwards joined the group, the Temptations won their first Grammy, for the propulsive, upbeat “Cloud Nine” (1968); they won another for the funk anthem “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” (1971). That song, like two other Temptations hits from that period — “I Can’t Get Next to You” and “Just My Imagination” (on which Mr. Kendricks sang lead) — reached No. 1 on the Billboard pop singles chart. The group received a lifetime achievement Grammy in 2013. Mr. Edwards left the Temptations in 1977 to pursue a solo career but rejoined them some years later. In 1989, he was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, along with the five members from the Temptations’ mid-1960s heyday. Dennis Edwards was born to a preacher in Fairfield, Ala., on Feb. 3, 1943, and grew up in Detroit. As a teenager he sang in a gospel group and studied music at the Detroit Conservatory of Music before signing with Motown in the late 1960s. After parting ways with the Temptations, Mr. Edwards remained with Motown as a solo artist. In 1984 he had an R&B hit with “Don’t Look Any Further,” a duet with Siedah Garrett, which was later sampled for records featuring rappers like Rakim and Tupac Shakur. In the 1990s, he toured with a group billed as Dennis Edwards and the Temptations, which led to a legal battle with Otis Williams about the use of the Temptations name. He settled by touring as the Temptations Review featuring Dennis Edwards. Mr. Edwards’s marriage to Ruth Pointer, one of the Pointer Sisters, ended in divorce. His survivors include his wife, Brenda, with whom he lived in St. Louis; five daughters, Issa Pointer, Maya Peacock, Denise Edwards, Alison Turner and Erika Thomas; a son, Bernard Hubbard; and grandchildren. ROBBINS, FROM PAGE 1 shunned. “He doesn’t want to be in a situation where anyone has any kind of power over him,” Mr. Robbins theorizes. “And celebrities ultimately have the power to say, ‘No, I don’t want to be photographed with him.’ ” Like Tom Hanks saying he wouldn’t go to the White House to screen “The Post,” even if he were asked, or Tom Brady deflating President Trump and refusing to go to the Super Bowl ceremony at White House, no doubt because he feared the wrath of Gisele. “He’s that guy at work that you used to ignore, you know?” Mr. Robbins says of the president. “It’s like, ‘Oh, God, he’s at it again. Just leave him alone. Ignore him.’ And then he’s all upset he wasn’t invited to the party. ‘No, you’re an ass. You don’t get invited to the party. I’m sorry.’ ” I muse that it must be uncomfortable to follow the first African-American president, known for his grace and exemplary family life, into the White House and then have to spend all your time denying that you’re a racist or that you assaulted a string of women and paid off a porn star (whose interview with In Touch contained the revelation that the country’s most famous germophobe didn’t wear a condom). “‘Bob Roberts’ came true,” Mr. Robbins says, referring to the 1992 mockumentary he wrote and starred in. He prefigured the Trump phenomenon in the film, which is about a charismatic television entertainer and rich businessman who runs for office on the Republican ticket, sugarcoating his corrupt ways with an appeal to family values. He is hailed as a savior by his fans and as a crypto-fascist by his critics. When a young woman sends an admiring note to Bob Roberts, he writes back warning her to stay away from crack because “It’s a ghetto drug.” As Vincent Canby said in his New York Times review, “Bob understands the appeal of an ultraconservative political and economic policy even to those who have nothing: anticipating the day when they do have it all, they want to make sure they will be able to keep it.” Bob urges his followers to “take, make and win by any means” and asks them: “Why has your American dream been relegated to the trash heap of history?” When the movie was a big hit in Cannes, Miramax signed on as a co-distributor and Harvey Weinstein began hectoring Mr. Robbins to recut and reedit the film. “He must have called me 20 times and I just told him, ‘No, I’m not doing it,’ ” Mr. Robbins says. “He was so powerful because he had a company that was making movies that the studios weren’t making.” Aside from his monstrous behavior with women, Mr. Weinstein ravaged Hollywood in other ways, Mr. Robbins posits, adding that, though the producer was hailed for his good taste, “you could make the argument that Harvey’s overall impact on cinema was negative. “What happened is, when Miramax became as successful as it became, every studio all of a sudden wanted to have an independent arm,” he says. “So they all set up their little boutique companies that would do ‘independent’ films, quote unquote. And it wasn’t that they were independent or edgy or that the content was risky or provocative. It was more that it was independent of paying people what the studios had to pay them. And so it became this way of making films on the cheap and not committing full studio resources into those kinds of films.” When Mr. Weinstein asked Mr. Robbins to star in an indie called “Smoke,” shortly after the producer had sold Miramax to Disney for some $600 million, the actor remembers confronting him, saying: “‘Harvey, the talent made your company and you’ve been paying them scale for years. And you just put a fortune in your pocket. When are we going to see some of that?’” MONICA ALMEIDA/THE NEW YORK TIMES VINCE BUCCI/AGENCE-FRANCE PRESSE — GETTY IMAGES RICH POLK/GETTY IMAGES FOR IMDB Left, Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins in 1996 at the Academy Awards. Top right, inmates at the California Rehabilitation Center participate in the Actors’ Gang Prison Project, a workshop in improvisational theater led by Mr. Robbins in 2011. Above right, Mr. Robbins and his son Jack Henry Robbins at the Sundance Film Festival in January. He said that Mr. Weinstein called back an hour later to say that he would pay Mr. Robbins a million dollars to do the part but ordered him not to tell the other actors, who would still get scale. “ ‘You don’t get what I was saying,’ ” Mr. Robbins recalls telling him. “This wasn’t a shakedown for me to get money. This was about, What are you going to do overall for talented people now that you’ve been monetized in this way?” Mr. Robbins deadpans: “Needless to say, I never worked for him again after that conversation. Also, he was person- “I have been wise with my money. I don’t need to be an über-rich person. I’m happy where I am.” ally transforming the Oscars into an advertising campaign that was about a relentless pursuit of gold.” Mr. Robbins, who loves old Hollywood, is rueful about the dearth of great movies: a decay in Hollywood standards that gave Mr. Weinstein power, and cover, for a long time. “Since I won the Oscar for ‘Mystic River’ in 2004, I think I’ve worked in one studio film as a lead actor, which was ‘Catch a Fire’ at Universal,” Mr. Robbins says. “But I don’t know why that is. The way I look at it is, every movie I have done, I am proud of, other than one I did for money, ‘Green Lantern.’ Is it ‘Green Lantern’ or ‘Green Arrow’? I forget. I do have to pay the bills occasionally. But I’m not broke. I have been wise with my money. I don’t need to be an über-rich person. I’m happy where I am.” He agrees with the philosophy of the San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, who explained recently why charitable contributions matter: “Because we’re rich as hell, and we don’t need it all, and other people need it.” And you’re a jerk if you don’t give it. Asked about the tectonic shift for women in Hollywood, Mr. Robbins says he is happy that “the incredibly libidinous atmosphere in Hollywood is changing” so that men will be more afraid “to intimidate women into compliance in horrible, rapey ways.” “Everybody knew,” he says in a disgusted whisper about Harvey Weinstein. “Everybody knew.” He thinks there might actually be a fundamental shift, “not just on the manwoman thing but the male-male thing, too. That’s been happening for a long time.” He knows this is a supercharged moment, given the opprobrium that has descended on stars such as Matt Damon, who said people should acknowledge “a spectrum” of bad behavior among men. “It’s really, really important that women have the floor now to talk about this because it has been so pervasive throughout every industry as long as I’ve been alive,” Mr. Robbins says. But, he adds, “I don’t trust mobs of any kind, even when they’re advocating for things I support. People losing their careers based on innuendo or accusation is troubling for me. There is a process for this: a legal system. Convicting someone on an accusation is really dangerous territory to be living in.” He worries about overreach. “Is it possible for me to do a feminist film or a film about race and speak with any authority, or am I limited to telling stories about white men?” Mr. Robbins is passionate about politics but protests that he is not a radical. He does cop to driving in Santa Monica many years ago with his older son, Jack, when he was about 12, and when Mr. Robbins saw Henry Kissinger coming out of the posh Ivy at the Shore restaurant, he leaned out and yelled, “War criminal!” “And my son was like, ‘What? What? Why are you doing that?’ ” He does not regret speaking out against our misguided wars, even though, during the Iraq fiasco, he got denounced by conservatives as a “terrorist supporter” and a “Saddam lover.” “My children were young when 9/11 happened, and that was a traumatic experience,” he says. “And they saw how a traumatic experience was turned into using manipulated information to produce another catastrophe, which was the war. So it’s kind of a double trauma. And I don’t think they trust the institutions of power and so they’re looking to create their own. Many of our leaders are no longer on moral high ground. The millennials are living in a society where if you fail you succeed, from the bankers who almost brought down the economy and then got bonuses to Trump and his bankruptcies. It started with Nixon. The degradation of it all. Wouldn’t we be living in a different country right now if Richard Nixon went to jail?” He laughs, noting wryly that “the mil- РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S His resonant voice led the Temptations DENNIS EDWARDS 1943-2018 BY DANIEL E. SLOTNIK Dennis Edwards, who became a lead singer of the Motown hitmakers the Temptations in 1968 as they embraced psychedelic funk and won Grammy Awards for the songs “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” and “Cloud Nine,” died on Feb. 1 in Chicago. He was 74. His death, in a hospital, was confirmed on Friday by Rosiland Triche Roberts, one of his booking agents. She did not specify the cause. Mr. Edwards’s resonant, powerful voice, burnished from years singing gospel, was perfect for the driving soul music of the 1970s. “Marvin Gaye was a friend of mine, and he used to say, ‘Man, I wish I could sing like you, if I could have that growl in my voice,’ ” Mr. Edwards told The Tallahassee Democrat in 2013. “And I said, ‘Man, are you kidding me? I want to sing like you. Everybody wants to sing like you.’ ” Before joining the Temptations, Mr. Edwards sang with another Motown group, the Contours, best known for their 1962 hit “Do You Love Me” (recorded before he joined them). The Contours opened for the Temptations in the late 1960s, and when the Temptations’ lead singer David Ruffin left the group in 1968, he was asked to take over. Mr. Ruffin told him personally that he was going to get the job, showing up at his house very early in the morning, Mr. Edwards said. “I thought he was kidding,” he said. But at his first show with the Temptations, and some later ones, he recalled, Mr. Ruffin showed up, leapt onstage and took the microphone from him to sing some of his older hits. In time he left Mr. Edwards alone. Mr. Edwards joined the Temptations just as the group, under the direction of the producer and songwriter Norman Whitfield, was developing a grittier sound, one largely influenced by the psychedelic soul of Sly & the Family Stone and very different from their earlier songs, like “My Girl” and “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg.” LENNOX MCLENDON/ASSOCIATED PRESS Dennis Edwards, second from right, in an undated photo with other Temptations vocalists, from left, Otis Williams, Richard Street, Melvin Franklin and Glenn Leonard. 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Finding specimens is easy: Dr. Lyko can buy the crayfish at pet stores in Germany, or he can head with colleagues to a nearby lake. Wait till dark, switch on head lamps, and wander into the shallows. The marbled crayfish will emerge from hiding and begin swarming around your ankles. “It’s extremely impressive,” said Dr. Lyko. “Three of us once caught 150 animals within one hour, just with our hands.” Over the past five years, Dr. Lyko and his colleagues have sequenced the genomes of marbled crayfish. In a study published on Monday, the researchers demonstrate that the marbled crayfish, while common, is one of the most remarkable species known to science. Before about 25 years ago, the species simply did not exist. A single drastic mutation in a single crayfish produced the marbled crayfish in an instant. The mutation made it possible for the creature to clone itself, and now it has spread across much of Europe and gained a toehold on other continents. In Madagascar, where it arrived about 2007, it now numbers in the millions and threatens native crayfish. RANJA ANDRIANTSOA The marbled crayfish is a mutant species that is exploding in Europe but appears to have originated only about 25 years ago. PHOTOGRAPHS BY MACIEK NABRDALIK FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES The main gate at Auschwitz. By the end of World War II, six million Poles had been murdered, including three million Jews — nearly half of all the Jews killed in the Holocaust. Rending a shared bond of pain OSWIECIM, POLAND Poland’s Holocaust law tears at historical wounds inflicted during invasions BY MARC SANTORA When the Nazis looked to build Auschwitz, the most notorious death camp of the Holocaust, they chose this out-of-the-way village that had been home to a Polish Army barracks. Unlike France or Norway, Poland had no collaborationist government. The Nazis wanted to destroy the state and enslave the Poles. By the end of World War II, six million Poles had been murdered, including three million Jews — nearly half of all the Jews killed in the Holocaust. That shared pain has at times been a source of understanding. But it became a source of anger on Tuesday, when Poland’s president — over furious objections from historians, the Israeli government and others — signed legislation making it a crime to suggest that Poland bore any responsibility for atrocities committed by Nazi Germany. The law has two parts. One outlaws the phrase “Polish death camps,” a term that scholars agree is misleading, since the camps were erected and controlled by Nazi Germany. More troubling, historians say, is the second part of the law, which makes it a crime — punishable by a fine or up to three years in prison — to accuse “the Polish nation” of complicity in the Holocaust and other Nazi atrocities. They say that the nationalist government is trying to whitewash the role of Poles in one of history’s bloodiest chapters. On Tuesday, Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson criticized the law, saying that it “adversely affects freedom of speech and academic inquiry.” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel has gone further, likening the law to Holocaust denial. Poland’s government on Monday canceled a planned visit by Israel’s education minister, Naftali Bennett, after he criticized the law. “The blood of Polish Jews cries from the ground, and no law will silence it,” Mr. Bennett said in response. The law is the latest controversial act РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S “We may never have caught the genome of a species so soon after it became a species,” said Zen Faulkes, a biologist at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, who was not involved in the new study. The marbled crayfish became popular among German aquarium hobbyists in the late 1990s. The earliest report of the creature comes from a hobbyist who told Dr. Lyko he bought what were described to him as “Texas crayfish” in 1995. The hobbyist — whom Dr. Lyko declined to identify — was struck by the large size of the crayfish and its enormous batches of eggs. A single marbled crayfish can produce hundreds of eggs at a time. Soon the hobbyist was giving away the crayfish to his friends. And not long afterward, the so-called marmorkrebs was showing up in pet stores in Germany and beyond. As the marmorkrebs became more popular, owners grew increasingly puzzled. The crayfish seemed to be laying eggs without mating. The progeny were all female, and each one grew up ready to reproduce. In 2003, scientists confirmed that the marbled crayfish were indeed making clones of themselves. They sequenced small bits of DNA from the animals, which bore a striking similarity to a group of crayfish species called Procambarus, native to North America and Central America. Ten years later, Dr. Lyko and his colleagues set out to determine the entire genome of the marbled crayfish. By then, it was no longer just an aquarium oddity. For nearly two decades, marbled crayfish have been multiplying like Tribbles on the legendary “Star Trek” episode. “People would start out with a single animal, and a year later they would have a couple hundred,” said Dr. Lyko. Many owners apparently drove to nearby lakes and dumped their marbled crayfish. And it turned out that the marbled crayfish didn’t need to be pampered to thrive. The marmorkrebs established growing populations in the wild, sometimes walking hundreds of yards to reach new lakes and streams. Feral populations started turning up in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Croatia and Ukraine in Europe, and later in Japan and Madagascar. The rich genetic detail gave the scientists a much clearer look at the freakish origins of the marbled crayfish. It apparently evolved from a species known as the slough crayfish, Procambarus fallax, which lives only in the tributaries of the Satilla River in Florida and Georgia. The scientists concluded that the new species got its start when two slough crayfish mated. One of them had a mutation in a sex cell — whether it was an egg or sperm, the scientists can’t tell. Normal sex cells contain a single copy of each chromosome. But the mutant crayfish sex cell had two. Somehow the two sex cells fused and produced a female crayfish embryo with three copies of each chromosome instead of the normal two. Somehow, too, the new crayfish didn’t suffer any deformities as a result of all that extra DNA. It grew and thrived. But instead of reproducing sexually, the first marbled crayfish was able to induce her own eggs to start dividing into embryos. The offspring, all females, inherited identical copies of her three sets of chromosomes. They were clones. In December, Dr. Lyko and his colleagues officially declared the marbled crayfish to be a species of its own, which they named Procambarus virginalis. The scientists can’t say for sure where the species began. There are no wild populations of marble crayfish in the United States, so it’s conceivable that the new species arose in a German aquarium. All the marbled crayfish Dr. Lyko’s team studied were almost genetically identical to one another. Yet that single genome has allowed the clones to thrive in all manner of habitats — from abandoned coal fields in Germany to rice paddies in Madagascar. In their new study, published in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution, the researchers show that the marbled crayfish has spread across Madagascar at an astonishing pace, across an area the size of Indiana in about a decade. Thanks to the young age of the species, marbled crayfish could shed light on one of the big mysteries about the animal kingdom: why so many animals have sex. Only about 1 in 10,000 species comprise cloning females. Many studies suggest that sex-free species are rare because they don’t last long. In one such study, Abraham E. Tucker of Southern Arkansas University and his colleagues studied 11 asexual species of water fleas, a tiny kind of invertebrate. Their DNA indicates that the species only evolved about 1,250 years ago. There are a lot of clear advantages to being a clone. Marbled crayfish produce nothing but fertile offspring, allowing their populations to explode. “Asexuality is a fantastic short-term strategy,” said Dr. Tucker. In the long term, however, there are benefits to sex. Sexually reproducing animals may be better at fighting off diseases, for example. If a pathogen evolves a way to attack one clone, its strategy will succeed on every clone. Sexually reproducing species mix their genes together into new combinations, increasing their odds of developing a defense. The marbled crayfish offers scientists a chance to watch this drama play out practically from the beginning. In its first couple decades, it’s doing extremely well. But sooner or later, the marbled crayfish’s fortunes may well turn. “Maybe they just survive for 100,000 years,” Dr. Lyko speculated. “That would be a long time for me personally, but in evolution it would just be a blip on the radar.” by a government that has curbed media and judicial independence, while pushing a populist narrative that casts Poland in a bitter battle with the European Union to regain its sovereignty. Germany is the dominant power in the bloc, and analysts say it is no coincidence that Poland’s nationalist government talks regularly about the crimes of World War II. For instance, it routinely brings up the idea of Germany’s paying war reparations, an issue that nearly all of the authorities consider settled as a matter of international law. Critics say the new law pits two narratives of immense suffering against each other. “It is understandable that Poles want people to know their story,” said Timothy Snyder, a Yale historian who lamented that few people know that the death toll in the failed 1944 Warsaw Uprising was higher than in the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan. “But the worst thing about a law like this is that it convinces you that you understand yourself,” Mr. Snyder added. “Your confidence in yourself grows as your knowledge of yourself goes down.” There is a widespread feeling among many Poles — even those who oppose the governing Law and Justice Party — that the nation’s wartime experience, as victim and resister, has not been properly told and is not adequately understood. Invaded first by the Nazis and then by the Soviets, Poland and its people, gentiles and Jews alike, suffered immensely. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki has compared the Nazis to bandits invading a home shared by two families: If the bandits slaughtered one family and killed several members of the other, he suggested, how could the second family bear any culpability in the bandits’ crimes? But nearly all scholars who have weighed in call that analogy dangerously simplistic. Although many Poles risked their lives to save Jews, others energetically took part in pogroms, murdering at least 340 Jews in the town of Jedwabne in 1941 and 42 in the city of Kielce in 1946, after the war ended, to take two notorious examples. Still others extorted or betrayed their Jewish neighbors. Yad Vashem, the Holocaust remembrance center in Jerusalem, formally recognizes more than 6,700 gentiles in Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki of Poland at a museum dedicated to a family killed for sheltering Jews. He said a new law aimed to ensure the telling of “true history.” Poland as “righteous among the nations” because they risked their lives during the war to save Jews — more than from any other country in Europe. It estimates that 30,000 to 35,000 Polish Jews were saved because of such efforts. In a statement last week, the center said that the term “Polish death camps” was undoubtedly a historical misrepresentation, but that it was a mistake to restrict what scholars can say about the “direct or indirect complicity” of Poles in the Holocaust. Poland’s president, Andrzej Duda, said he would ask a Constitutional Court to review the legislation to determine whether the law violates freedom of speech and is clear about what kind of speech could be prosecuted. But the court is controlled by people appointed by the governing party, and it is unclear when the review would be conducted. Historians say Poland has generally been a responsible steward for the six main Nazi extermination camps in Poland, including Auschwitz-Birkenau. Here, visitors learn about suffering by Poles, Soviet soldiers, Roma and Jews, largely without politics getting in the way. But how to refer to places like Auschwitz is a matter of contention. Poles have long chafed at the term “Pol- ish death camps.” For years, one of the tasks of interns in Polish embassies across Europe was to scour news media accounts for the phrase so that complaints could be filed, said Jagoda Walorek, who worked in the Berlin Embassy in 2007. Last week, the prime minister flew with a group of foreign journalists to visit a museum dedicated to a Polish family who were killed for sheltering Jews. On March 24, 1944, Jozef and Wiktoria Ulma were executed along with their six young children and the eight Jews the family had been harboring. The aim of the new law, Mr. Morawiecki said, was to ensure the telling of “true history,” adding that it simply needed to be explained better. Jan T. Gross, a Polish-born historian at Princeton, was not reassured, saying that the law was an attempt “to falsify the history of the Holocaust.” In an opinion piece for The Financial Times, he said it could even put Holocaust survivors at risk of prosecution. “I’ve read hundreds of survivors’ testimonies, yet I do not recall a single one where the writer has not described an episode of betrayal, blackmail or denunciation on the part of their fellow Polish citizens,” he wrote. Richard Pérez-Peña contributed reporting from London. Secrecy shrouds U.K. decision to grant parole to serial rapist LONDON BY RICHARD PÉREZ-PEÑA Only a handful of people know what happened in a hearing at Her Majesty’s Prison Wakefield, but all of Britain knows the result: a decision to release on parole one of the country’s most notorious criminals, a former London cabdriver said by the High Court to have drugged and sexually assaulted more than 100 passengers. A decade ago, the case of John Worboys prompted charges of police incompetence and mistreatment of rape victims, led to promises of reform and raised fears about the safety of a London institution, the black cab. Now, it is once again provoking criticism, this time about a secretive parole process that usually receives little attention. For now, Mr. Worboys, 60, remains in prison, pending a High Court hearing this week. Some of his victims and accusers have petitioned the court to keep him locked up and to order the parole process opened to public scrutiny. For victims and their advocates, the cloak of secrecy surrounding parole decisions is a prime source of frustration. The parole board does not release records of its hearings, explanations of its decisions or even the names of the board members who hear and then decide a particular case. “We don’t know what was said, we don’t know who heard the statements and we don’t know if they were able to take into account the women who were attacked but whose cases were never prosecuted,” said Harriet Wistrich, one of the lawyers for Mr. Worboys’s accusers, who are trying to have the parole decision reversed. Nick Hardwick, the chairman of the Parole Board for England and Wales, agrees, and said he would welcome more openness. But the board is bound by laws passed by Parliament and administrative rules set by the government, he noted, and only they could change the process. He also defended the work of the board members who heard the Worboys case, saying that they had reviewed 363 pages of records, heard testimony from psychologists and prison staff members and questioned Mr. Worboys at length. Mr. Worboys’s accusers believe he remains dangerous, Ms. Wistrich said. “Some of them are terrified for themselves, their daughters, their neighbors,” she said. Victims say that Mr. Worboys, a former stripper and pornographic actor, could be charming and persuasive, and they expressed a fear that he had ma- nipulated the parole board. As a London cabby from 2002 to 2008, he would show a passenger a satchel full of cash, which he said he had just won at a casino or in a lottery, and urge her to share a celebratory drink that he had spiked with a sedative. After assaulting the drugged woman in the back of his cab, he would drive her home. Though their memories were cloudy, several women reported the assaults, but the police repeatedly declined to take the complaints seriously, brushing off the women’s claims of being drugged and failing to connect the attacks despite obvious similarities. Several officers were later disciplined for their roles in the case, which prompted the Metropolitan Police to create a unit focusing on serial sex offenders. In a lawsuit filed by the victims, a High Court judge ruled in 2014 that the police had made basic investigative mis- takes and ignored their own policies for handling sexual assault cases, allowing Mr. Worboys to continue preying on women. After Mr. Worboys was caught in 2008, investigators said that he had attacked well over 100 women, a figure also cited in the 2014 High Court ruling. But the charges against him excluded most of those assaults. Prosecutors said a broader case risked overwhelming the jury and would have diluted the strongest charges with weaker ones. The chief prosecutor at the time, Keir Starmer, is now a prominent Labour lawmaker. Though the prosecution service has said that Mr. Starmer was not directly involved in the case, some critics of the parole decision have demanded that he explain why more charges were not filed. After Mr. Worboys was convicted in 2009 of 19 charges involving assaults on 12 women, a judge gave him an open- ended sentence with eligibility for parole after eight years. Women’s groups and his victims said the mandatory part of the sentence should have been longer, but prosecutors assured them that he stood no real chance of being set free. Then came the news in early January that a parole panel had decided to release Mr. Worboys, a year after another panel had decided that he was too dangerous to parole. Victims are supposed to be alerted in advance of a parole hearing, so they can make statements to the panel — the job of notifying them falls to another government office, not the parole board — but many of the women assaulted by Mr. Worboys were not told. Across the political spectrum, that prompted angry reactions, and insistence that if Mr. Worboys were to be released, he should be subject to tight restrictions, like banishment from London. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS 4 | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 .. THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION world DAVID HARRISON/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE — GETTY IMAGES ANDREW TESTA FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES MARTIN RHODES/GALLO IMAGES President Jacob Zuma, left, of South Africa answering questions in Parliament in 2016; the London headquarters of Bell Pottinger; and Atul, left, and Ajay Gupta, two of the three brothers who earned fortunes leveraging their friendship with Mr. Zuma. Rogues, despots and spin doctors BELL POTTINGER, FROM PAGE 1 The story is also an inside look at the tormented state of politics in South Africa. Allegations of Gupta-related corruption surfaced gradually over the years, as officials and the media described how this once unknown family was ransacking South Africa and its institutions. President Zuma has since been swept up by investigations into the brothers amid an outcry that he let them hijack the government. With the economy sputtering, Mr. Zuma’s own party has called for his ouster. The scandal has engulfed the nation. Mr. Zuma is a member of the African National Congress, the party of Nelson Mandela and post-apartheid comity. His alliance with the Guptas, and their exploitation of racial animosity, has underscored just how far the party has wandered from its roots after winning its first election in 1994. Though the only corporate fatality, Bell Pottinger is just one of the companies tainted by the Guptas. A small coterie of multinationals is now under investigation by the South African authorities, including local units of three companies, the consulting firms McKinsey and KPMG, and the software giant SAP. The Guptas’ most devastating legacy is the harm they did to the cause of economic reform. With so many blacks in South Africa mired in poverty, the topic is urgent, but discussion about it has been debased by its association with a notorious and self-serving P.R. campaign. In the midst of that campaign, racial tensions rose to levels that had not been felt since apartheid. “White monopoly capital,” a phrase that for years had been confined to left-wing academic circles, was suddenly unavoidable. A political group with reported links to the Guptas warned of a coming civil war. When Bell Pottinger’s role became public, protesters rallied against the company, both in South Africa and outside the firm’s London office. A subsequent investigation by the Public Relations and Communications Association, a trade group in Britain, ended with the ejection of Bell Pottinger. “In my years of running the P.R.C.A., I have never seen anything worse, never seen anything equal to it,” Francis Ingham, director general of the trade association, said in an interview. “The work was on a completely new scale of awfulness. Bell Pottinger may have set back race relations in South Africa by as much as 10 years.” Within days of the firm’s removal from the trade association, clients were fleeing. By the end of September, all 250 employees were laid off and Bell Pottinger was finished. UNIQUE CLIENT LIST DUMITRU DORU/EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY SARAH LEE/EYEVINE SIPHIWE SIBEKO/REUTERS Clockwise from above left: The leaders of Bell Pottinger, Tim Bell, left, and James Henderson, in 2013, and some of their clients, the former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, the Belarussian president Alexander Lukashenko and the Olympic runner Oscar Pistorius. the dark arts of search engine manipulation to people it thought were potential clients. In fact, they were undercover members of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, a nonprofit organization that works with a variety of media. Posing as executives from the made-up Azimov Group, these “representatives” said the company had ties to the Uzbekistan regime, which has been criticized for repression and for using forced child labor during its cotton harvest. The Azimov executives said they worried about blowback. Fret not, said Tim Collins, a Bell Pottinger managing director, per transcripts published by The Independent, a British newspaper. After the company applied its tech wizardry, “You get to the point where even if they type in ‘Uzbek child labour’ or ‘Uzbek human rights violation,’ some of the first results that come up are sites talking about what you guys are doing to address and improve that, not just the critical voices saying how terrible this all is.” Mr. Bell never challenged the transcripts, but he denounced the sting at the time as an “unethical, underhand deception to manufacture a story where none exists.” BEGINNING OF THE END employees recalled. The corporate campaign was the first sign that altruism had little to do with the £100,000 a month, or about $140,000 a month, that Bell Pottinger would earn during what was initially a three-month project. The second was the anger of the company’s other South Africa clients when they learned of the arrangement. But by the end of March, only one client — the banking and asset management company Investec — had severed ties with the P.R. firm. After that, Bell Pottinger tried to find middle ground by signing a new contract with the Guptas, this time with a codicil literally called an anti-embarrassment clause. It allowed the firm to terminate the account “without notice” if the brothers brought discredit to the business. “The work was on a completely new scale of awfulness. Bell Pottinger may have set back race relations in South Africa by as much as 10 years.” Mr. Bell said he soon resolved to quit the company because he felt undermined and undervalued by Mr. Henderson. “He made my life a misery from start to finish,” said Mr. Bell, speaking one recent afternoon in the living room of his home near Sloane Square in London. After negotiating a £3.5 million exit package, Mr. Bell resigned in August 2016. For his part, Mr. Henderson declined in a recent interview to indulge in the put-downs that come so easily to his antagonist. Seated at a conference table in temporary offices in the Mayfair district of London, where he is starting a new P.R. firm, he said Bell Pottinger’s dissolution was too recent to discuss. “I have huge empathy for all those impacted,” he said, “and believe now is not the appropriate time to go into details.” РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S London is now home to a cluster of P.R. firms catering to foreign governments, raising worries that the city has become “the global capital of reputation laundering,” as The Evening Standard put it a few years ago. Bell Pottinger established the template of this lucrative niche. It was largely the brainchild of Tim Bell, who had earned his reputation, along with a knighthood, helping Margaret Thatcher win three elections. He came to fame with the “Labour isn’t working” ads that helped the Conservative Party gain control of Parliament in the 1979 general election. Colleagues actually coined the phrase, and he talked Mrs. Thatcher into adopting it. “There were many conversations in which she shouted at me and told me I was an idiot,” he recalled. “I just had to stand my ground and say, ‘I know what I’m doing.’ ” Now 77, Mr. Bell appears to have stepped directly out of an Evelyn Waugh novel with everything but a smoking jacket. Gray haired with an owlish pair of black glasses, he speaks with jaunty indifference and ingratiating candor, a combination that always made the tsktskers who disapproved of his client list sound unworldly and naïve. “Morality is a job for priests,” he deadpanned in a recent interview, between puffs of an ever-present cigarette. “Not P.R. men.” With the company co-founder, Piers Pottinger, Mr. Bell conceived a “go anywhere, do anything” ethos, as they called it. When the pair started working together in the mid-80s, Mr. Bell was sought after by political leaders and corporations who wanted some of the communications magic he had provided to Mrs. Thatcher. When the company’s client list did not generate news, its methods did. In 2011, it was caught boasting about its skills in JOSE AGURTO/REUTERS Bell Pottinger’s slide into oblivion began with a visit to the Guptas in January 2016. Mr. Bell, who had worked in South Africa for years, said he had no idea what the brothers wanted, but he and several colleagues flew to Johannesburg to find out. The family already had a fortune, Tony Gupta told the small entourage. Now, he and his brothers wanted to help poor blacks. To that end, they wanted a P.R. campaign that pushed the idea of economic emancipation. “So we went back to London and wrote a strategy,” said Mr. Bell. “Town hall meetings, marching in the street, that kind of thing. Draw attention to the economic imbalance, then tell people they should protest and demand change.” The company drafted a two-page proposal, a copy of which was reviewed by The New York Times. Among its recommendations was “a non-party political narrative around the existence of economic apartheid” that Bell Pottinger would package “into speeches, news releases, website content, videos/broadcast content, slogans and other material required.” Soon, the Guptas said that their company needed communications help, too. Most South Africans, the Guptas maintained, had an inflated notion of how much of the family’s revenue came from government contracts, which harmed their interests, several Bell Pottinger by the Guptas, like ANN7, a 24-hour news channel, and The New Age, a daily newspaper. As the campaign spread, leaders at groups like the A.N.C. Youth League gave inflammatory speeches, decrying the “stranglehold” that rich whites had on the economy. Leaked emails would later show that the groups received media training, and in some cases funds, from Oakbay. An atmosphere of menace slowly pervaded the country. In July 2016, the police minister announced the creation of a task force to investigate the murder of more than a dozen political figures. In the run-up to municipal elections that year, Mr. Zuma described the Democratic Alliance, the A.N.C.’s main rival, as a “white party,” adding that it could not “run this country no matter how they cover up by getting a few black stooges.” New and radical groups like Black First Land First sprang up, holding public rallies to fulminate against whites. At one, in May 2016, a pastor named Xola Skosana told the crowd, “We have been wounded beyond measure. Let us find the pillars and bring the house down. Black people must be avenged.” For the first time in years, whites felt a rising sense of personal danger. Nicholas Wolpe, a white South African whose father was a pioneer of the anti-apartheid movement, remembers a palpable anxiety. “There was a shift toward intolerance,” he said. “Gradually, the debate about white monopoly capital was everywhere and the people talking about it were loud and belligerent. It struck a nerve.” In a related and secret campaign, the Guptas were being recast as warm- hearted people eager to help the downtrodden. A website connected to Black First Land First ran editorials defending the brothers, suggesting in one that they should be “praised for saving jobs.” “Me and others felt that there was something strange going on under the surface of this onslaught,” said PieterLouis Myburgh, author of “The Republic of Gupta.” “Long before Bell Pottinger’s role became known, we smelled a rat.” The campaign coincided with a period in which the Guptas badly needed a makeover. The brothers had moved to South Africa from Uttar Pradesh State in India in 1993 at the behest of their father, who thought the end of apartheid was a terrific business opportunity. The Guptas befriended a variety of A.N.C. luminaries, including Mr. Zuma. Relationships with politicians were soon producing results, said Mr. Myburgh. In 2016, South Africa’s Sunday Times listed Atul Gupta as the seventh-richest man in the country, with a net worth equivalent to more than $700 million. The brothers had operated in relative obscurity until 2013, when a jet filled with some 200 guests attending the four-day wedding of a Gupta niece was given permission by a highly placed official to land at an air force base that ordinarily banned commercial traffic. The public was incensed. From there, the publicity would only get worse. Politicians described being summoned to the Gupta compound and offered ministerial jobs and, on occasion, multimillion-dollar bribes. In March 2016, a onetime A.N.C. member of Parliament, Vytjie Mentor, wrote on Facebook, and later in a sworn affidavit, that the Guptas said she could become minister of public enterprises, though only if she helped cancel the India route flown by South African Airways. (The Guptas had links to a rival.) When she declined, Mr. Zuma ambled into the room and told her, in Zulu, “It’s OK, girl. Take care of yourself,” according to the affidavit. Bell Pottinger’s work for the Guptas was not widely known until November 2016, when a video interview of Ajay Gupta, arranged by the company, leaked to the media. The content of the interview was largely banal. It was proof, though, that one of Britain’s most famous P.R. firms was helping the brothers. The leak alarmed Mr. Henderson because the video resided exclusively on the company’s servers. Mr. Henderson hired Pelican Worldwide, a corporate intelligence firm, to determine whether someone had hacked Bell Pottinger’s system. When no signs of hacking were found, suspicion inside the company fell on Jonathan Lehrle and Darren Murphy, two executives who would depart in December 2016 and start a new P.R. firm with Mr. Bell. Both men deny involvement. MISMANAGING ITS OWN CRISIS Bell Pottinger’s links to the Guptas went full-on radioactive in March of last year, when a mysterious 21-page report was posted on the website of the South African Communist Party. Written anonymously and without any cited sources, the report laid out the history of Bell Pottinger’s work for the Guptas, tagging the firm as the brains behind Twitter hashtags, like #HandsofftheGuptas and an array of bogus social media accounts. Mr. Henderson issued a news release asserting the report contained statements that were “wholly untrue.” He had a point. Although Bell Pottinger was widely blamed for the social media campaign, a forensic analysis performed by the African Network of Centers for Investiga- INFLAMING TENSIONS The P.R. campaign in South Africa, which started in 2016, was intended to raise the temperature of race relations. And it worked. More than 100 fake Twitter accounts were created, all of them retweeting content from other Twitter accounts with names like @economycapture, according to media reports. Popular hashtags included #WhiteMonopolyCapital and #RespectGuptas. The campaign involved some 220,000 tweets. There were also attack websites with names like WMC Leaks and WMC Scams. Another part of this ecosystem were mainstream media outlets owned MUJAHID SAFODIEN/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE — GETTY IMAGES Demonstrators in South Africa in April 2017 against the president and the Gupta family after the finance minister was ousted and the Guptas were allowed to buy a bank. tive Reporting concluded that it was created and overseen by employees and affiliates of the Guptas. Instead, the role of Bell Pottinger was to keep a close eye on social media related to the Guptas and their enemies. A cache of some 200,000 internal documents tracks mentions of the Guptas and a list of hashtags and keywords, some pro-Gupta, some anti-Gupta. The 21-page document had credibility, however, because it contained details that only insiders could have known, some of which were utterly gratuitous. Like the cost to rent the Italian villa for the wedding of Victoria Geoghegan, the Bell Pottinger executive who led the South African team. A few days after the report went public, an anti-Zuma demonstration in South Africa included anti-Bell Pottinger placards. One showed a photograph of Ms. Geoghegan with blood dripping from her lips and the words “Gupta’s Girl” over her head. A demonstration in front of Bell Pottinger’s London office soon followed. In April, Bell Pottinger canceled its deal with the Guptas, citing “increasingly strong social media attacks on our staff and our business.” It didn’t help. Nor did Mr. Henderson’s “unequivocal and absolute apology” in July, or his resignation in September the day before Britain’s P.R. trade group tossed out Bell Pottinger. The company suffered £8 million worth of client losses in 48 hours and layoffs began soon after. Other companies linked, both directly and indirectly, with the Guptas are just beginning to deal with fallout of their own. The South African Companies and Intellectual Property Commission is pursuing criminal complaints that emerged from an investigation into state contracts and the Gupta-Zuma nexus, which have ensnared KPMG, SAP and McKinsey. A KPMG spokeswoman said in a statement that apologies were made “to those affected,” adding that nine senior partners at the company had departed. SAP, in a statement in October, apologized “wholeheartedly” and noted that three staff members had been placed on leave. McKinsey has denied involvement in acts of bribery or corruption and issued a statement saying, “We are sorry for the distress this matter has caused the people of South Africa. Its errors notwithstanding, Bell Pottinger ended up being blamed for an even greater number of misdeeds than it actually committed, and it is worth asking how that happened. Former employees contend that they were the target of — what else? — a furtive P.R. campaign. ‘DAMAGE DONE’ The Gupta-Bell Pottinger campaign backfired on just about everyone, especially the Guptas. In an August statement, the brothers said they intended to sell all of their South African holdings by the end of 2017. Mr. Zuma could soon be removed by his party over issues of corruption and the stagnant economy. His term was supposed to end in 2019, but Cyril Ramaphosa, the man who became head of the A.N.C. in December, has called for Mr. Zuma to step down. A judicial inquiry was recently announced to investigate “state capture” and the president’s relationship to the Guptas. A spokesman for the Guptas did not return emails. President Zuma has repeatedly denied all accusations of corruption. Mr. Henderson lost everything when the firm failed, starting with his reputation. He became known as the guy in charge of a public relations company that perished in a public relations fiasco. But arguably the greatest casualty of the Gupta-Bell Pottinger campaign is the very cause it nominally championed, helping impoverished blacks. Like most propaganda, the ideas promoted by the Guptas contained kernels of truth. The economic advancement of blacks post-apartheid has indeed been painfully slow. The topic is now exponentially more fraught, given its association with the Guptas, who tried to use it as a way to enrich themselves and expand their power. For a young democracy that is grappling with a history of institutionalized racism and trying to spread wealth more evenly throughout the country, the results have been tragic. “The damage done by this campaign is not over,” said Sipho Pityana, a businessman who headed the Department of Labor under the Mandela administration. “It shapes the discourse about inequality in South Africa to this day.” .. THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 | 5 world A shop at the ski resort selling traditional Chechen instruments. The resort opened with only one lift, serving just one trail. Ramzan A. Kadyrov, the Chechen leader, attended the resort’s opening. “I am confident it will become popular,” he said. In Caucasus, seeing an upside to downhill VEDUCHI JOURNAL VEDUCHI, RUSSIA A ski resort is rising on slopes that once harbored Islamist militants BY ANDREW E. KRAMER Sporting a camouflage ski suit, Ramzan A. Kadyrov, the leader of Chechnya, pulled a gigantic ceremonial lever to start this once war-wrecked region’s first ski lift. “God is great!” some spectators yelled as the machine whirred to life. High in the Caucasus Mountains, a ski resort is rising on slopes that once harbored Islamist militants. The Veduchi resort, which takes its name from the local village, is a multimillion-dollar development featuring a hotel and spa center, chalets and a helicopter pad. It is the centerpiece of an improbable effort for Russia to ski and snowboard its way out of a long-simmering insurgency. The potential for winter sports as a method of diplomacy came into focus recently in South Korea, which is preparing to welcome North Korean athletes to the Winter Olympics this month. But Russia has a longer-term strategy: putting winter sports to use as a tool for economic development and pacification in a decades-old conflict in the Caucasus. A state-owned company, North Caucasus Resorts, is building a string of ski resorts in the restive, predominantly Muslim areas of the Caucasus. Three have opened so far, the most recent here in the Argun Gorge of Chechnya. The intention is to create jobs, though even the developer conceded that it might be difficult to convince winter sports enthusiasts of the merits of Chechnya, where Russia brutally repressed an Islamist insurgency and where thousands of militants may be returning from Syria after fighting for the Islamic State. “I am confident it will become popular not only with the Russian population but also with foreign countries,” Mr. Kadyrov said at the opening this week. Ruslan Timukayev, a spokesman for the regional government, said the region had seen an uptick in tourism as “Chechnya became a brand.” About PHOTOGRAPHS BY SERGEY PONOMAREV FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES The Caucasus Mountains. About $35 million has been invested so far in the Veduchi ski resort in Chechnya. The plans call for 19 ski lifts and 28 miles of trails. 100,000 tourists came to Chechnya last year, he said, adding with a shrug, “Some people like extremes.” About $35 million has been invested so far in the Veduchi ski resort, which is expected to cost $500 million when completed. The plans call for 19 ski lifts and 28 miles of trails fanning out over a serene alpine valley, though the resort opened with only one modest, half-mile lift, serving just one trail. After pulling the lever to start the lift, Mr. Kadyrov, who does not ski, hopped on for a ride. The lift stalled briefly, leav- ing him dangling for a few moments before jerking back into motion. Professional skiers flown in from St. Petersburg zigzagged down the slope for the television cameras, and local children were offered free lessons. The war in Chechnya has mostly petered out; the last insurgent attack in near Veduchi took place in 2009, officials say, and the last significant terrorist attack in Chechnya was in 2014. But rights groups have documented a staggering cost of peace and of propping up the rule of Mr. Kadyrov, a former rebel whose powerful family allied with President Vladimir V. Putin in 1999. They have cataloged an array of continuing abuses, including arbitrary arrests, house burnings as punishment, and the detention and torture last spring of about 100 gay men. “How is a ski resort going to solve all that?” Tanya Lokshina, the Russia director of Human Rights Watch, said in a telephone interview. “How is it going to solve the problem of a state within a state, where lawlessness and abuses are the norm?” More recently, rights groups have expressed alarm at what they see as a cruel and capricious response from Mr. Kadyrov to the cancellation last month of his Facebook and Instagram accounts. Facebook, which also owns Instagram, said it had deactivated the accounts after Mr. Kadyrov was added to a United States sanctions list over rights abuses. The block came as a blow to Mr. Kadyrov, who had amassed millions of followers by posting pictures of himself cud- dling a cat and lifting weights, along with the dead bodies of his enemies. “He rejoiced in it, really, and he was clearly livid about losing it,” Ms. Lokshina said. On Jan. 10, Oyub Titiev, the Chechnya director of the rights group Memorial, was arrested, ostensibly over possessing marijuana. But Mr. Kadyrov went on television a few days later to criticize rights activists as “enemies of the people,” adding that he would “break the spines of our enemies.” While talk like that might scare foreign tour operators and other visitors from traveling to Veduchi, it seems to have had little effect on the main market: Russians. While conceding that many impressions of Chechnya start with a “negative background,” Khasan Timizhev, the director of North Caucasus Resorts, said market research had shown that Russian skiers were more concerned about the condition and safety of the slopes rather than lawlessness or terrorist attacks. Whatever doubts outsiders might harbor about Chechnya, the few who turned out from nearby villages were more enthusiastic, saying the only other living to be made was in sheep herding. “We think the Chinese will come,” said Albert Rabuyev, principal of the ItumKale village middle school, gazing at the chairs of the new lift gliding up and down the mountain. Mr. Rabuyev said he would even welcome gay men, because as visitors they would “rent rooms, rent skis and then leave.” Isa Abkarom, a vendor at a stand selling cups and other collectibles, said the long-promised resort came as good news for Chechnya. “Everybody was just waiting for normal life to return,” he said. “We are happy to see the last of the war.” The vision of ski resorts as pacification tools sprang from preparations for the 2014 Winter Olympics in the Black Sea resort of Sochi. The North Caucasus insurgency had raged over mountain territory, and so winter sports were a logical postwar development goal, officials said. Two additional resorts are planned by 2025, one in Ingushetia and the other in Dagestan. The two other resorts opened last season in neighboring regions reported 383,000 skiers combined. Turkey gets help in Syria from rebels once backed by U.S. KILIS, TURKEY he said. “They were very pragmatic to gain their own ends — an independent state.” Syrians forced to flee to Turkey are bitter at the Kurdish militants. As such, the Free Syrian Army has embraced the Turkish fight against the Kurdish militants with gusto. Free Syrian Army soldiers posted video on social media showing themselves heading to the border to join the Turkish operation. Syrian volunteers have flocked to a recruitment center in the town of Urfa to sign up. “People are volunteering,” Colonel Hammadin said. “It’s good they want to apply, but our numbers are enough.” Hunched over a coffee table in another part of Kilis, two Syrian brothers, Murshid and Bashar Sheikh Naif, explained why their family supported Turkey’s latest operation. They had joined the uprising against the Assad government from the start in 2011. Murshid, 32, a former policeman, was imprisoned by the government for 18 months. He was released when the Free Syrian Army exchanged captured government soldiers for him. Of eight brothers in the Naif family, five have joined the Free Syrian Army over the years. They have fought multiple enemies — first Syrian government troops, then Russian and Iranian forces, then extremists of the Islamic State, and now American-backed Kurdish militias, whom they blame for forcing them from their home. Two brothers were killed, one fighting against the government and one against РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S BY CARLOTTA GALL a mountain south of the border. He is a former Syrian Army officer and a commander of the Levant Front, the largest faction of the Free Syrian Army. Colonel Hammadin, 40, explained that his Syrian force shared aims with Turkey, first in wanting to see Mr. Assad go, but also in its dislike for the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, known as the P.K.K., which has waged a separatist insurgency for three decades against Turkey. Like most members of the Syrian opposition in Turkey, the colonel described all the various Kurdish militant groups, no matter which side of the border they were on, as part of the same P.K.K. organization. “Turkey has a right to attack the P.K.K. for its own national security,” he said. “It has the right to clear the area because the P.K.K. can attack its cities from the border.” While he and his forces want Mr. Assad gone, they also want a united Syria. The Kurds, whose population straddles Turkey, Syria and Iraq, have long wanted to carve out their own nation. “The most important reason to fight them is that they are separatists,” he said. “They want their own cantons on the northern border.” The Kurdish militias had frequently sided with the Syrian government against the Free Syrian Army in the war, he said, helping enforce the siege of Aleppo, displacing Arab communities from their villages, and oppressing their own Kurdish people. “They committed many violations,” Turkey is relying on a newly reconfigured, 20,000-member American-trained force with three army corps as it tries to carve out a buffer zone within Syria. The force has already taken 16 casualties in two weeks of fighting on the front lines. But the soldiers are not Turks. Rather, they are the mostly Arab fighters of the Free Syrian Army, once trained and assembled by the Central Intelligence Agency and Western allies to oust President Bashar al-Assad of Syria. Since the routing of the Islamic State, alliances in Syria have been scrambled. The latest round of the conflict, in fact, features two American-trained forces fighting each other. The Free Syrian Army, out of favor with the United States and badly depleted after seven years of fighting on multiple fronts, has long had common cause with Turkey, whose incursion has angered the Americans. On the other side are Kurdish groups, under the umbrella of the Syrian Democratic Forces, who are the United States’ favored fighting tool on the ground but who are disliked by local Syrians for driving them from their homes and seen by Turkey as a security threat. Last week, in a cafe in Kilis, a small Turkish city a few miles from the Syrian border, Lt. Col. Mohammed Hammadin was back for a few hours after leading an assault against Kurdish positions on MAAN AL-SHANAN/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE — GETTY IMAGES Syrian rebels alongside Turkish soldiers on the Syrian-Turkish border in January. Some were formerly trained by the C.I.A. to fight against President Bashar al-Assad. the Islamic State. Bashar, 22, was wounded fighting the Islamic State in an earlier operation alongside the Turkish Army. Two more brothers have joined the latest operation against the Kurdish militias in the enclave of Afrin, they said. “We were neighbors,” the elder Mr. Naif said of the Kurdish fighters. “There were no problems until the S.D.F. became an enemy and pushed us out of our villages.” The family fled to Turkey as the Kurdish militia seized their hometown, Tal Rifaat, and surrounding villages in 2016, he said. “So we have a common cause,” Mr. Naif said. “There is a common interest in fighting against the P.K.K. with Turkey. Turkey is our personal ally and they helped the people a lot.” President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey gave the Free Syrian Army a strong endorsement in a speech on Tuesday, comparing them to Turkey’s National Forces, which fought for independence in the early 20th century. “The Free Syrian Army is a civil for- mation, organized by people who gathered to protect their own country,” he said, addressing legislators from his Justice and Development Party. “We are happy to be side by side with our Syrian brothers in their freedom struggle.” Nationalist support for the military campaign is running high in Turkey and dissent largely stifled. About 300 people, including members of the Turkish Medical Association, have been detained for expressing criticism of the operation on social media. Some Syrian refugees in Turkey warn that Syrian fighters are being used by foreign powers. “Afrin is not our battle,” said an opposition activist, Yusuf Mousa. “As Syrians, we respect that Turkey is an ally of the Syrian revolution, but they are trying to make actions for their benefit.” Yet while Turkey’s operation in Afrin has been cast as a narrow fight against Kurdish separatists, seizing the territory would raise the standing of the Free Syrian Army. The group has steadily lost ground as an opposition force as the Syrian Democratic Forces, which the United States regards as its most effective partner in the fight against the Islamic State, have gained prominence. Colonel Hammadin did not say how far his soldiers would go, but he ruled out any confrontation with American troops. He said he hoped for the United States’ support against Mr. Assad. “America has the ability to do anything,” he said. “We look forward to them making the Assad regime leave.” 6 | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 .. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION world Alist of billionaires who now may not be SAN FRANCISCO Just as prices fall, Forbes publishes register of rich virtual currency holders BY NATHANIEL POPPER TOM BRENNER/THE NEW YORK TIMES President Trump during a discussion on the dangers to the United States of the violent Salvadoran gang MS-13 on Tuesday at the White House. Trump shifts on shutdown WHITE HOUSE MEMO WASHINGTON President’s latest surprise comes amid wrangling over immigration policy BY MARK LANDLER A week ago, President Trump stood before Congress as an improbable unifier. “Tonight,” he declared, “I call upon all of us to set aside our differences, to seek out common ground and to summon the unity we need to deliver for the people.” This week, Mr. Trump is back to being a disrupter. After accusing Democrats of being un-American and even treasonous for refusing to applaud during his State of the Union speech, he said on Tuesday that he would welcome a government shutdown if he could not reach a spending deal with Congress that tightened immigration laws. A week ago, Mr. Trump called for a grand compromise with Democrats on the legal status of the undocumented immigrants known as Dreamers — a deal, he said, “where nobody gets everything they want, but where our country gets the critical reforms it needs.” After all, the president added, “Americans are dreamers too.” On Tuesday, his chief of staff, John F. Kelly, said that many Dreamers had failed to register for protected status because they were “were too afraid to sign up” or were “too lazy to get off their asses.” He said he doubted that Mr. Trump would extend the March 5 deadline that shields them from deportation. Mr. Trump’s threat of a shutdown seemed to have little effect on the delicate negotiations on Capitol Hill to raise spending caps on military and nonmilitary spending — an agreement that, if passed by both houses of Congress, would pave the way for long-term deal to fund the government. It was also not clear whether Mr. Kelly’s charged language about the Dreamers would affect the charged negotiations on immigration that will soon consume Congress, though it was the latest evidence that Mr. Kelly, a retired Marine general once viewed as a curb on Mr. Trump, shares some of his most hard-edge views. Head-spinning reversals, of course, are nothing new for Mr. Trump. His positions on issues can gyrate more wildly than the Dow Jones industrial average. His is a presidency that has made the extraordinary ordinary. After these latest remarks, the White House swung into its customary role of cleanup. The deputy press secretary, Hogan Gidley, played down Mr. Trump’s charges of Democratic treason as “tongue-in-cheek,” while the press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, muddied the waters on whether the president really planned a shutdown. Mr. Trump’s casual embrace of a shutdown — after the last brief shutdown, which he portrayed as a Democratic betrayal of America’s troops — drew an impassioned response from Representative Barbara Comstock, a Republican who represents a moderate district in Northern Virginia, an area that is home to many federal workers. “We don’t need a government shutdown on this,” she said, imploring Mr. Trump. “Both sides have learned that a government shutdown was bad. It wasn’t good for them.” For others in Washington, however, there was a creeping sense of numbness. Mr. Trump has said so many outrageous things, has broken so many taboos and has insulted so many people that his latest outbursts no longer shock. To some, they seem more of the same. It fell to Senator Jeff Flake, the lameduck Arizona Republican who has emerged as a prime nemesis of Mr. Trump, to point out the novelty of an American president branding members of the other party as traitors because they did not celebrate him. “Have we arrived at such a place of numb acceptance that we have nothing to say when a president of the United States casually suggests that those who choose not to stand or applaud his speech are guilty of treason?” he said from the floor the Senate. “I certainly hope not.” For many, the breaking of taboos has ceased to be a shock. Mr. Flake noted that “the president’s most ardent defenders use the nowweary argument that the president’s comments were meant as a joke, just sarcasm, only tongue-in-cheek.” “Treason,” he thundered, “is not a punch-line, Mr. President.” Part of the problem is that Mr. Trump’s most inflammatory comments do sometimes appear tossed-off. His claim that Democrats were guilty of treason came during a rambling speech at an Ohio factory, where his celebration of the recent tax cut gave way to a litany of complaints about the stone-faced Democratic reception of his speech. “Can we call that treason?” Mr. Trump mused. “Why not? I mean they certainly didn’t seem to love our country very much.” The president embraced the idea of a shutdown during a White House meeting meant to dramatize the dangers of the gang MS-13. After listening to Representative Michael McCaul, Republican of Texas and the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, talk about how loopholes in the immigration laws allow violent criminals to get into the United States, Mr. Trump suddenly upped the ante with Democrats. “If we don’t change it, let’s have a shutdown,” he declared. “We’ll do a shutdown. And it’s worth it for our country. I’d love to see a shutdown if we don’t get this stuff taken care of.” Later, Ms. Sanders noted that the president did not view the spending bill and immigration as “mutually exclusive,” meaning that he would not necessarily precipitate a shutdown if Congress agreed on spending without meeting his demands on immigration. For many in Washington, the best defense against Mr. Trump is to treat him as less than serious. On Monday, he went after the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Representative Adam B. Schiff of California — or, as Mr. Trump nicknamed him, “Little Adam Schiff” — for being, he said, a liar who illegally leaked confidential information. Mr. Schiff has drafted a Democratic rebuttal to the classified House Republican report that raised questions about the conduct of the F.B.I. in investigating links between the Trump campaign and Russia. “Must be stopped!” Mr. Trump said on Twitter of the congressman. Mr. Schiff, taking a page from Senator Bob Corker, Republican of Tennessee, when Mr. Trump subjected him to ridicule on Twitter a few months ago, replied with the tone of a weary parent, coping with an unruly toddler. “Mr. President,” he wrote, “I see you’ve had a busy morning of ‘Executive Time.’ Instead of tweeting false smears, the American people would appreciate it if you turned off the TV and helped solve the funding crisis, protected Dreamers or...really anything else.” The creators of the famous Forbes rich list have made their first attempt to identify the wealthiest people in the virtual currency industry. Yet the list that was published on Wednesday, right after major drops in virtual currency prices, inadvertently also served as a reminder of the fleeting nature of that wealth. While the list in Forbes magazine, which was assembled in recent weeks, identifies about 10 virtual currency billionaires, most of them were not billionaires by the time the feature went online on Wednesday morning. On Monday alone, the prices of many virtual currencies plummeted over 20 percent, before stabilizing on Tuesday. At the top of the list is Chris Larsen, a founder of the Ripple virtual currency. Mr. Larsen was briefly estimated to be wealthier than Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg last month when Ripple’s price peaked, taking his net wealth to nearly $60 billion. Since then, the price of Ripple’s digital token, XRP, has fallen more than 80 percent. Forbes put Mr. Larsen’s wealth at around $8 billion, but the same holdings were worth less than $6 billion by Wednesday. Mr. Larsen is followed on the Forbes list by Joseph Lubin, an early investor in the Ethereum virtual currency network; Changpeng Zhao, founder of the virtual currency exchange Binance; the brothers Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, longtime Bitcoin investors who are famous from their legal battles with Mr. Zuckerberg over Facebook; and Matthew Mellon, the banking heir who is now a major holder of XRP. The list is a reminder of how the biggest gains in virtual currencies have been reaped by a small number of early adopters — despite the early promises that virtual currencies could democratize the financial system and spread wealth more evenly. Nearly all of the people on the list either helped found virtual currencies or have been involved with them for years. Recent efforts to quantify the inequality among Bitcoin holders have found that it is significantly higher than in even the most stratified countries, which may sting many people who recently rushed into virtual currencies and are now sitting on losses. For early virtual currency adopters like the people on the Forbes list, the recent price declines are not catastrophic. The price of Bitcoin is still up 600 percent from a year ago, and up 70,000 percent from when the Winklevoss twins began buying in 2012. Identifying the richest people in the secretive and paranoid virtual currency realm is far from easy. The normal Forbes billionaires list is easier to compile because the richest people in the world generally have most of their wealth tied up in stock holdings, which usually have to be disclosed for big public companies. With virtual currencies, it is not necessary to disclose your identity, and the system was created by people who were interested in protecting financial privacy. Many large holders of virtual currencies are loath to acknowledge their holdings for privacy and security reasons, and many people who are rumored to have massive Bitcoin stockpiles are not on the Forbes list. Perhaps the most notable omission is Satoshi Nakamoto, the mysterious creator of Bitcoin, whose identity has been guessed at many times but never confirmed. Researchers have guessed that Satoshi, as the creator is known, likely amassed about one million Bitcoins during the network’s first year, when few other people were mining new tokens. Those Bitcoins would now be worth around $7 billion. Others have publicly claimed to have large holdings without verifying those holdings. Brock Pierce, a former child actor and the leader of a virtual currency community in Puerto Rico, has said he would donate $1 billion of his virtual currency fortune to charity, but Forbes said, “He refuses to provide documentation that proves he has anywhere near that much money.” The magazine estimated Mr. Pierce’s wealth at between $700 million and $1 billion. The list suggests that inventing virtual currencies can end up being less lucrative than investing in them. The magazine estimated that the inventor of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin, is less wealthy than two early investors, Mr. Lubin and Anthony Di Iorio, who had previously managed his family’s patiodoor business in Canada. And while three big holders of Ripple’s token, XRP, are on the list, the inventor of the digital token, Jed McCaleb, is not. VINCENT TULLO FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES Bitcoin is up 70,000 percent from when the Winklevoss twins, Tyler, left, and Cameron, began investing in the cryptocurrency in 2012. Stimulus moves stoke fears of inflation and deficits WASHINGTON nomics at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, wrote in a research note on Tuesday, “the U.S. stands out in terms of its deteriorating deficit.” The Republican tax law’s $1.5 trillion deficit-financed price tag over the next decade is front-loaded. It will reduce federal revenue by $416 billion over this year and next, before accounting for additional economic growth, the Joint Committee on Taxation estimates. Many corporations are showing evidence of that in their quarterly earnings releases, as companies like JPMorgan Chase & Company and Verizon project billions of dollars in tax savings in 2018. Administration officials say the law will spark enough growth to pay for itself, a claim that no rigorous outside analysis supports. They also say the cuts will not stoke inflation, because they will increase the supply of capital in the economy and boost productivity. Economic modeling by the administration suggests growth from such tax cuts “does not put upward pressure on prices,” Kevin Hassett, the chairman of Mr. Trump’s Council of Economic Advisers, told CNBC on Tuesday morning. Still, he said, “it’s clear that the data are so strong that the markets are beginning to worry about Fed policy” and rising interest rates. Republicans have not offered similar reassurances about deficit-financed spending increases. Those appear increasingly likely as congressional leaders work toward a deal to shatter caps on military and domestic spending, imposed in the back half of Mr. Obama’s first term to instill fiscal discipline, to РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S BY JIM TANKERSLEY officials said last week that the United States will need to borrow $441 billion in privately held debt this quarter, the largest sum since 2010, when the economy was emerging from the worst downturn since the Great Depression. The added stimulus is drawing some quiet cheers from liberal economists, who say a fiscal shot at a time of low unemployment could boost typical workers’ wages in ways unseen for two decades. But it is raising alarms among fiscal hawks. “This is exactly the wrong fiscal policy at the wrong time,” said Maya MacGuineas, the president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. “We should be bringing down the debt and ensuring we have room for stimulus during downturns. Instead we are overheating the economy and selling out the future. It’s shortsighted and foolhardy.” The threat of rate increases is a major reason some economists, including those at the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation, project only a modest boost in economic growth from the tax law over the next decade. The tax cuts and spending increases could add up to more than $800 billion in additional federal deficits over the course of 2018 and 2019. Analysts project they will hasten the return of trillion-dollar annual budget deficits, and set the United States apart from other industrialized economies, which have reined in their fiscal expansions as growth picks up. “In a world of deficit discipline,” Ethan S. Harris, the head of global eco- Republicans are pouring government stimulus into a steadily strengthening economy, adding economic fuel at a moment when unemployment is at a 16year low and wages are beginning to rise, a combination that is stoking fears of higher inflation and ballooning budget deficits. The $1.5 trillion tax cut that President Trump signed into law late last year, combined with a looming agreement to increase federal spending by hundreds of billions of dollars, would deliver a larger short-term fiscal boost than President Barack Obama and Democrats packed into their $835 billion stimulus package in the Great Recession. The administration is also expected to soon roll out its $1.5 trillion infrastructure package, which would include $200 billion in new federal spending, offset by unspecified cuts elsewhere. The question is how much added fuel is good for the economy. Fears that the extra economic boost could spark faster inflation and prompt the Federal Reserve to accelerate the pace of interest rate increases appear to be at least partially driving the stock sell-off that has rattled markets over the last several days. Higher interest rates would raise federal borrowing costs as the United States continues to borrow heavily — the national debt has topped $20 trillion and annual deficits are creeping up toward $1 trillion. Treasury help pave the way for a long-term spending package. The likely spending increases include money for the military, domestic programs and disaster aid, along with a plan to shore up faltering multiemployer pension plans. The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget estimates that those increases will cost more than $500 billion, and that con- DOUG MILLS/THE NEW YORK TIMES President Trump signing the $1.5 trillion tax cut bill in December. gressional negotiators are mulling roughly $100 billion in revenue increases to offset them, yielding a deficit increase of $400 billion. Those figures do not include any potential deficit spending from an infrastructure bill, which the White House hopes to push Congress to approve this year. Mr. Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act included about $300 billion in additional spending for 2009 and 2010, according to the Congres- sional Budget Office, and slightly less than $300 billion in tax cuts and refundable tax credits. Adjusting for inflation, that would be a combined stimulus of about $675 billion in today’s dollars. Each of those amounts is lower than the comparable projections for the new tax law and the contemplated new spending increases. The 2009 stimulus package was passed when the unemployment rate was almost twice as high as it is today, and the national debt was half what it is now. At that time, Republicans called it a dangerous borrowing spree. “This bill sends us on a worldwide borrowing binge,” Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin, now the House speaker, said in 2009. “We’re going to go out and borrow four times as much money this year than we ever have in the history of this country in a single year.” Fiscal hawks say that assessment is more applicable to the economy today. “We have a growing economy, the labor market’s tight, we don’t have a lot of idle resources,” said Matthew Mitchell, the director of the Project for the Study of American Capitalism at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. “Basically, the very best argument for Keynesian economics doesn’t apply now. So it really is the time to be austere.” While divided government in the last six years of Mr. Obama’s term produced constraints on spending, Mr. Mitchell noted, Republican control under Mr. Trump appears to be ripping them up. Democrats are helping to do that on the spending side. The spending agree- ments pending in Congress appear to be so large, in part, because Democrats have demanded domestic discretionary spending increases alongside large increases in military spending pushed by Republican defense hawks. Democrats largely denounce Republicans for playing down deficit concerns now, after years of warning that government borrowing was holding the economy back. “There was a far greater need for economic stimulus in 2011 than today,” said Neera Tanden, a former Obama adviser who is the president and chief executive of the Center for American Progress think tank. But some liberals welcome the extra fiscal juice and its potential to help workers who struggled in the slowgrowth years after the recession. Jared Bernstein, a liberal economist at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities who was one of the Obama administration’s stimulus architects in 2009, opposed the Trump tax bill but supports efforts to stimulate the economy when unemployment is low, in hopes of boosting wage growth. “There’s a kind of recklessness of Team Trump that could kind of rebound to the benefit of people,” Mr. Bernstein said in an interview, before alluding to the possibility that there are still workers outside the labor force who could be drawn back to work by a hotter economy. “As long as there is still slack in corners of the labor market,” he said, “then this kind of fiscal stimulus of the economy near full employment is a kind of test I support.” .. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 | 7 Business Sounding alarms over what they wrought SpaceX reaches for the stars KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. Powerful new rocket launched successfully by private company SAN FRANCISCO BY KENNETH CHANG From the same pad where NASA launched rockets that carried astronauts to the moon, a big, new American rocket arced into space. But this time, NASA was not involved. The rocket, the Falcon Heavy, had been built by SpaceX, the company founded and run by the billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk. “It seems surreal to me,” Mr. Musk said during a news conference after the launching on Tuesday. The launching of this turbocharged version of the workhorse Falcon 9 rocket, which has been carrying cargo to space for years, is an important milestone in spaceflight, the first time a rocket this powerful has been sent into space by a private company, rather than a government space agency. The rocket carried a playful payload: Mr. Musk’s red Roadster, an electric sports car built by his other company, Tesla. Strapped inside the car is a mannequin wearing one of SpaceX’s spacesuits. They are expected to orbit the sun for hundreds of millions of years. “It’s kind of silly and fun, but silly and fun things are important,” Mr. Musk said. The success gives SpaceX momentum to begin developing even larger rockets, which could help fulfill Mr. Musk’s dream of sending people to Mars with a new-generation rocket called B.F.R. (the B stands for big; the R for rocket) that might be ready to launch in the mid-2020s. The near-flawless performance of the Heavy on Tuesday “gives me a lot of confidence we can make the B.F.R. design work,” Mr. Musk said. He added that he hoped the launch would encourage other companies and other countries to aim for more ambitious goals in space. “We want a new space race,” he said. “Races are exciting.” Mr. Musk’s visions include humans living both on Earth and Mars. He’s part of a new generation of entrepreneurial space pioneers that includes Jeffrey P. Bezos, the founder of Amazon, who has said one of the goals driving his rocket company, Blue Origin, is the prospect of millions of people living in space. Planetary Resources, an American company with a large investment from Luxembourg, hopes to mine asteroids for profit. Moon Express, based in Florida, sees a business in providing regular transportation to and from the moon. For now, the Heavy will enable SpaceX to compete for contracts to launch larger spy satellites, and some experts in spaceflight are encouraging NASA to use private rockets like the Heavy instead of the gigantic and more expensive rocket, the Space Launch System, that is currently being developed in part to take astronauts back to the moon. “It basically gives them another tool in their toolbox for accomplishing the Technologists who helped build Facebook and Google challenge the companies BY NELLIE BOWLES REUTERS Two of the Falcon Heavy’s boosters returning to Earth at the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Fla., eight minutes after takeoff. TODD ANDERSON FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES Elon Musk, the founder of SpaceX, on Monday at Launch Pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center, where the Falcon Heavy rocket behind him was launched on Tuesday afternoon. space community’s goals,” said Phil Larson, an assistant dean at the University of Colorado’s engineering school who previously worked as a senior manager of communications and corporate projects at SpaceX. Although delayed by high-altitude winds, the countdown proceeded smoothly, without any of the glitches that have bedeviled other maiden launches of new rockets. The Heavy roared to life, a plume of smoke and steam shooting sideways from the launchpad. It rose from the pad, with an impossibly bright glare of 27 engines beneath it. Some eight minutes after launch, a pair of sonic booms rocked the area as the two side boosters set down in near synchrony on two landing pads at Cape Canaveral. In the past few years, SpaceX has figured out how to routinely bring a booster stage back in one piece to fly again on future flights. The one blemish on the mission was that the center booster, which was to set down on a floating platform in the Atlantic, slammed into the water instead, because some of the engines failed to ignite for the final landing burn. Once in orbit, the rocket sent back video of the mannequin in the car, with a hand on the steering wheel. On the dashboard were the words “Don’t Panic,” a nod to Douglas Adams’s book “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.” The spacecraft journeyed through Earth’s Van Allen radiation belt. About seven hours after the rocket took off, Mr. Musk announced that a third and final burn had put his sports car on an elliptical orbit away from Earth and around the sun beyond Mars’s orbit. Since 2010, the company has been sending the smaller Falcon 9 rocket into orbit, deploying satellites and carrying cargo to crews aboard the International Space Station. The company has disrupted the global launch business with its lower prices and reusable boosters. The Falcon Heavy is capable of lifting 140,000 pounds to low-Earth orbit, more than any other rocket today. Because all three boosters are to be recovered to fly again, a Falcon Heavy launch costs not much more than one by the company’s existing rocket, Mr. Musk said. SpaceX lists a price of $90 million for a Falcon Heavy flight, compared with $62 million for one by Falcon 9. Mr. Musk estimated that his company had spent more than half a billion dollars on Falcon Heavy and said that the program was almost canceled three times. SpaceX has booked coming Heavy flights for Arabsat, a Saudi Arabian communications company, and the United States Air Force. However, the market for the Heavy is smaller than what Mr. Musk envisioned when he announced development of the rocket in 2011. Back then, he expected that SpaceX’s launches would be evenly split between Falcon 9s and Heavies. But the development of the Heavy took years longer than anticipated — the central booster had to be redesigned to withstand the stresses of the powerful side boosters — and with advances in miniaturization, the trend is toward smaller satellites. SpaceX also boosted the capability of the Falcon 9, which now can launch many of the payloads that would have originally required a Heavy. Loss of dynamism is impeding growth Eduardo Porter Start-ups on the decline The rate of business formation is declining in the U.S. and other nations. Start-up and shutdown rates among all United States firms Can the market economy still deliver prosperity? That may seem an odd question to ask when the United States is more than eight years into a sustained expansion and the world’s major economies are finally following suit. Unemployment is at its lowest since the end of the dot-com bubble at the end of the Clinton administration. The stock market’s sugar high, fueled by juicy profits and falling taxes, is being tempered only somewhat by fear that the Federal Reserve will take the punch bowl away. And yet a broad sweep of statistics reveals a peculiar weariness spreading through the economy. Belying breathless headlines about the fabulous opportunities that technology is about to bestow on society, it suggests that many rich market democracies have lost much of their dynamism. Their companies are getting old, and their labor markets are getting stuck. Productivity growth has slumped. And many workers in their prime are peeling off from the labor force. The pattern is particularly striking in the United States, where the share of adults with a job remains well below its peak at the end of the 20th century, and productivity growth has trundled along over the last decade at the slow- Start-ups as a a share of all firms In selected O.E.C.D. countries 18% 0% 3 6 9 12 15 Britain 15 Companies starting up 12 РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S ECONOMIC SCENE est pace since the end of World War II. But signs of lethargy are showing up elsewhere in the industrialized world. Productivity is at a crawl in most rich economies. Though not as intensely as in the United States, men in their prime, 25 to 54 years old, are leaving the labor force across the nations of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. While women have picked up some of the slack, the labor supply across the O.E.C.D. as a whole has flattened. Most notably, the economy’s ability to generate and support new businesses — agents of creative destruction that bring new products and methods into the marketplace — appears to be faltering across the world. In the United States, the rate of company formation is half what it was four decades ago. And it is slowing in many industrialized countries. One might blame the recession that crippled the world almost a decade ago, in the wake of the global financial crisis set off by the implosion of home values in the United States. But the weariness extends beyond the latest turns of the economic cycle. The stagnation poses a threat to the market economy’s main claim to legitimacy: that it delivers prosperity. The income of the typical American household is roughly the same as it was in the 1980s. It is unlikely to be a coincidence. In a study published on Tuesday by the Hamilton Project at the Brookings Institution, Jay Shambaugh, Ryan Nunn and Patrick Liu explore what economists have figured out about the American economy’s inertia and the fallout for wages and living standards. The evidence paints a distinct picture of decline: Fewer start-ups mean fewer new ideas and fewer young, productive businesses to replace older, United States New Zealand 9 6 Companies shutting down Sweden Australia Spain 3 0 ’77 ’80 ’85 ’90 ’95 ’00 ’05 ’10 ’15 Italy Denmark 2001 – ’04 2005 – ’08 2009 – ’13 Sources: Brookings Institution, “How Declining Dynamism Affects Wages,” by Jay Shambaugh, Ryan Nunn and Patrick Liu; Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development less productive ones. Researchers have found that the decline in companies entering the market since 1980 has trimmed productivity growth by about 3.1 percent. The dearth of new businesses is also cutting off one of the main paths to workers’ advancement: the outside job offer. Changing jobs allows workers to shift to positions in which they are more productive, and better paid. But labor market fluidity — job switching, creation and destruction — has been declining since the 1980s. Clear though the pattern may be, the researchers acknowledge that we haven’t yet figured out what is holding the economy’s dynamism back. “This is one of those big, economywide trends,” Mr. Shambaugh told me. “There is room for a lot of stories.” Can the corporate landscape become THE NEW YORK TIMES more dynamic again? “None of the potential policy explanations have been conclusively shown to account for the bulk of the decline in dynamism,” Mr. Shambaugh and his colleagues note. The critical question that remains is whether there is a set of policies that might restore the economy’s vitality. This isn’t just about demographic and social change. Sure, we are aging. Older workers will be less likely to move to a new job across state lines. Families with two earners will have a harder time relocating when one gets a new job offer. Stratospheric rents will make it tough to migrate to some of the most vibrant labor markets. Policy has certainly played a role: Labor market regulations can gum up the sorting of workers into the best possible jobs, where they will be at their most productive and most highly paid. Specifically, state occupational licensing rules fence off some of the most desirable, well-paid jobs. But this alone cannot explain away stagnation. Explaining stagnation requires explaining not only why there are so few well-paying jobs but also why there are so few emergent companies ready to employ productive workers. Well into the information age, in a business ecosystem with low barriers to entry, where venture capital stands ready to throw itself at the next good idea, the economy has somehow forgotten how to create companies. My best guess is that this is all about the decline of competition. Mr. Shambaugh and his co-authors note how noncompete agreements and other devices used by businesses to stop their employees from seeking jobs elsewhere are preventing many workers from taking the better job that pays more money. I would argue that the failure is bigger: By allowing an ecosystem of gargantuan companies to develop, all but dominating the markets they served, the American economy shut out disruption. And thus it shut out change. This is not the only possible diagnosis, I understand. Many economists will reject my proposition that the nation’s economy has been given to oligopolies; that antitrust law has proved no match for the ferocious concentration of market power in the hands of a few businesses that have been allowed to impose their will on the economy as a whole. It fits, however. An economy controlled by big, entrenched companies will have little place for the kind of disruption that could push productivity onto a higher plane. That description looks very much like the economy that many American workers are coping with today. A group of Silicon Valley technologists who were early employees at Facebook and Google, alarmed over the ill effects of social networks and smartphones, are banding together to challenge the companies they helped build. The cohort is creating a union of concerned experts called the Center for Humane Technology. Along with the nonprofit media watchdog group Common Sense Media, it also plans an anti-tech addiction lobbying effort and an ad campaign at 55,000 public schools in the United States. The campaign, titled The Truth About Tech, will be funded with $7 million from Common Sense and capital raised by the Center for Humane Technology. Common Sense also has $50 million in donated media and airtime from partners including Comcast and DirecTV. It will be aimed at educating students, parents and teachers about the dangers of technology, including the depression that can come from heavy use of social media. “We were on the inside,” said Tristan Harris, a former in-house ethicist at Google who is heading the new group. “We know what the companies measure. We know how they talk, and we know how the engineering works.” The effect of technology, especially on younger minds, has become hotly debated in recent months. In January, two big Wall Street investors asked Apple to study the health effects of its products and to make it easier to limit children’s use of iPhones and iPads. Pediatric and mental health experts called on Facebook last week to abandon a messaging service the company had introduced for The effort will be aimed at educating students and teachers about the dangers of technology, including the depression that can come from heavy use. children as young as 6. Parenting groups have also sounded the alarm about YouTube Kids, a product aimed at children that sometimes features disturbing content. “The largest supercomputers in the world are inside of two companies — Google and Facebook — and where are we pointing them?” Mr. Harris said. “We’re pointing them at people’s brains, at children.” Silicon Valley executives for years positioned their companies as tight-knit families and rarely spoke publicly against one another. That has changed. Chamath Palihapitiya, a venture capitalist who was an early employee at Facebook, said in November that the social network was “ripping apart the social fabric of how society works.” The new Center for Humane Technology includes an unprecedented alliance of former employees of some of today’s biggest tech companies. Apart from Mr. Harris, the center includes Sandy Parakilas, a former Facebook operations manager; Lynn Fox, a former Apple and Google communications executive; Dave Morin, a former Facebook executive; Justin Rosenstein, who created Facebook’s Like button and is a cofounder of Asana; Roger McNamee, an early investor in Facebook; and Renée DiResta, a technologist who studies bots. The group expects its numbers to grow. Its first project to reform the industry will be to introduce a Ledger of Harms — a website aimed at guiding rank-and-file engineers who are concerned about what they are being asked to build. The site will include data on the health effects of different technologies and ways to make products that are healthier. Jim Steyer, chief executive and founder of Common Sense, said the Truth About Tech campaign was modeled on antismoking drives and focused on children because of their vulnerability. That may sway tech chief executives to change, he said. Already, Apple’s chief executive, Timothy D. Cook, told The Guardian last month that he would not let his nephew on social media. Mr. Steyer said, “You see a degree of hypocrisy with all these guys in Silicon Valley.” The new group also plans to begin lobbying for laws to curtail the power of big tech companies. It will initially focus on two pieces of legislation: a bill being introduced by Senator Edward J. Markey, Democrat of Massachusetts, that would commission research on technology’s impact on children’s health, and a bill in California by State Senator Bob Hertzberg, a Democrat, to prohibit the use of digital bots without identification. .. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS 8 | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION business Global market bracing for end to easy money MARKETS, FROM PAGE 1 SPENCER PLATT/GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. The stock market has lost ground since the start of the year, thanks to the sharp sell-off Monday. Ignore the slide on Wall Street BY NEIL IRWIN What is the stock market telling us with its precipitous drop over the last several days? In all likelihood, not much of anything. That’s because the stock market, though crucial in the long run for individuals accumulating wealth and companies raising capital, is so erratic as to be useless in providing information about the short run. The 8.5 percent drop in the S. & P. 500 through Monday’s close (before a 1.7 percent rebound on Tuesday) could signify the onset of a global recession. But it could just as well mean only that some trading algorithms at a big hedge fund collided in weird ways. For what really matters — the wellbeing of the economy and the ability for individuals and companies to prosper in the years ahead — look first to fundamental economic data, especially those that tend to be leading indicators. Second, look to the bond market and other financial market indicators that are more reliable measures of investors’ expectations than stock prices. There is good news on both fronts, as both point to a global economy that will continue growing steadily in the months and years ahead, perhaps with inflation that is a bit higher than in the recent past. That contrasts this market sell-off with drops in 2011, 2015 and 2016, which coincided with pessimistic signals in both economic data and the bond market. The stock market can, when looked at in concert with these other indicators, provide some useful insight. Right now it appears to be more noise than signal. The economic data has been solid in recent weeks. Just Friday, the Labor Department reported that the United States added a robust 200,000 jobs in January. The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta tracks incoming economic data to estimate current growth of gross domestic product, and its indicator is pointing toward robust economic expansion — a 4 percent annual rate. Of course, there is plenty of statistical error built into those numbers, and they may turn out to be incorrect. But even many of the real-time indicators that tend to work as early warnings of an economic slump are looking just fine. The Conference Board’s index of leading economic indicators ticked up in its most recent release, and weekly claims for unemployment insurance benefits have hovered near record lows in recent weeks. Just Monday, the Institute for Supply Management said its index of activity at service companies rose sharply in January, which made it one of those curious days when good economic news coincided with a steep market sell-off. The bond market is also looking optimistic about the future, with prices suggesting that continued growth — without inflationary overheating — is the most likely future. Economic data and the bond market paint a brighter picture. The stock market has lost ground since the start of the year, thanks to the sharp sell-off Monday. But the yield on 10-year Treasury bonds is up in that span, from 2.4 percent to 2.8 percent at Tuesday’s close. That suggests bond investors think that continued steady recovery will allow the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates gradually. Bond investors are pricing in higher inflation than the United States has experienced in recent years, but roughly in line with the 2 percent the Federal Reserve aims for. Prices for inflation-protected bonds imply 2.09 percent annual inflation over the coming decade, up from 1.98 percent at the start of the year. Other market indicators that might signal global economic troubles, like the price of oil, instead point to a steady-asshe-goes global economy. None of this makes a case for economic complacency. There are plenty of things that could go wrong in the world, from conflict on the Korean Peninsula or in the Middle East to destructive trade wars. But if the stock market was actually giving us any insight into the likelihood of those outcomes, we would expect to see moves in bond and commodity markets that just aren’t happening. Think of it this way. The economy is like a horse race — and what we really care about is which horse wins, places or shows. The bond market is the equivalent of the people betting directly on the race. And while of course gamblers get it wrong sometimes, the market is efficient enough that there’s a fairly direct relationship between the odds a horse pays and its probability of victory. The stock market, by contrast, is like a weird side game in which people bet one another on which gambler is going to have the best day. It’s erratic, volatile and a couple of degrees removed from the underlying horse race on which it is all based. And that’s why the best way to make sense of the drop in the stock market is to think of it as a sideshow to the broader trajectories of the United States and global economy, which for now look perfectly fine. Volatility inflicts pain without gain Investors who bet big on a continuing calm are feeling rattled Market volatility The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index, known informally as VIX, through Tuesday. “People are scared out of their minds — they are in really rough shape.” 40 BY LANDON THOMAS JR. 30 29.9 20 РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S As stocks maintained their smooth and steady climb in recent years, few trades were as alluring, or as profitable, as a bet that volatility as measured by Wall Street’s so-called fear gauge had vanished. Hedge fund titans in their Manhattan offices and day traders in their living rooms have poured billions of dollars into opaque, debt-fueled funds known as exchange-traded notes, racier versions of the exchange-traded funds that track every variety of index or investment and can be bought and sold just like a stock. Now stocks are swinging wildly and volatility is soaring — and investors who piled into these funds, confident that the calm would continue, are getting rattled. On Tuesday, Credit Suisse, the sponsor of the most popular fund for making such bets, said it was closing down the fund. Credit Suisse closed the fund — informally called XIV, which moves in the opposite direction of the fear gauge, known as VIX — after it experienced a fall of greater than 80 percent, a price drop that left XIV trading at a deep discount relative to the value of its assets. It had been an extraordinary ride for XIV, formally known as the Velocity Shares Daily Inverse VIX Short Term ETN. It was one of a number of funds tied to VIX, known officially as the Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index, some of which move in the same direction, tracking the index up or down. VIX, which measures investor expectations that stocks will rise or fall sharply in the future, has been at extreme lows in recent years, making XIV very attractive to investors and pushing it to $1.8 billion in size. Just last week, it took in a record $500 million, as invest- 10 0 Jan. 2 Jan. 8 Jan. 15 Source: FactSet ors stuck even more firmly to their belief that volatility was not a concern. In the two years from January 2016 to the middle of last month, XIV’s value shot up more than 500 percent, reaching a recent peak of $134. After VIX surged on Monday, XIV dropped like a rock, falling from $99 to $7 in after-hours trading. In just two days, investors in XIV and a similar fund, ProShares Short VIX Short Term Futures (SVXY), saw their assets shrink dramatically, from a combined total of $3 billion to about $150 million. “People are scared out of their minds — they are in really rough shape,” said Seth Golden, who left his job as a manager at a Target store to take up shorting VIX as a full-time business from his living room in Ocala, Fla. Profiled in The New York Times last summer, Mr. Golden exemplifies, perhaps in a cautionary way, how easy it has become to gamble on whether volatility in the stock market will be high or low. He has been able to do so because in- Jan. 22 Jan. 29 Feb. 5 THE NEW YORK TIMES vestment banks have created more than 30 high-risk, high-return securities that allow any investor to bet against VIX. Some of the products require large amounts of leverage, debt that can amplify gains and losses. Mr. Golden’s preferred vehicles are the iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures and ProShares Ultra VIX ShortTerm Futures, which he has been betting against for years in trades that have been lucrative — until now. After VIX shot up 100 percent, the largest move in its history, to 35.73 on Monday, Mr. Golden acknowledged that he was feeling some pain. On Tuesday, the index spiked again, reaching 50 before falling back to just below 30. “It is really stressful,” he said. “I was up until the wee hours, checking my phone to see where VIX futures were trading.” Nonetheless, he said on Tuesday that he was still wagering 21 percent of his portfolio, or $600,000, that volatility would fall as it had in the past. That Mr. Golden and others like him are getting hurt on these risky niche trades should not, in theory, have a wider effect on the market. While investments in these funds have been substantial recently, their combined value is just $4 billion, a blip in a market worth trillions of dollars. But volatility specialists have warned for years that the popularity of the investments has skewed the broader VIX index, keeping it artificially low in good times and pushing it higher than it should go in times of stress. That was the case on Monday, bankers and traders said, when XIV collapsed as VIX soared in late-afternoon trading. That was because as XIV and SVXY plummeted, traders were forced to scoop up hundreds of millions of dollars in VIX futures to cover the short positions they had on the index. That drove it higher and prompted computerized trading systems to sell stocks and bonds by the truckload. “These products definitely had an impact on the VIX,” said Pravit Chintawongvanich, the head of derivatives strategy at Macro Risk Advisors. “And that exacerbated the decline in stocks. It was a vicious circle.” Some investors have taken the other side of this trade, betting that the low levels of volatility were distorted and that the index was likely to spike soon. When that happens, watch out, these people warned, as they estimated that $2 trillion in investor money had been directly or indirectly wagered on the markets remaining quiet. “This is just an appetizer for what has yet to come,” said Chris Cole of Artemis Capital, a hedge fund for investors who believe in such an outcome. “The world won’t end tomorrow, but there has been such a massive bet on stability and low volatility that this could lead to a multiyear unwind.” money changes hands. The American economy had swapped the frivolity of a stock market party for the grim trappings of a bedside vigil. The result was gloom and anxiety in every reach of the financial sphere. “The United States is by some distance the largest market on earth,” said Gaurav Saroliya, director of global macro strategy at Oxford Economics in London. “Growth in the United States has a huge bearing on economies everywhere. If the largest market is selling off, that has a very powerful effect on investment sentiment. It makes people risk averse.” The fear that seized the United States was the spawn of good times. As the feeling sank in that stock trading was governed by a surplus of exuberance, the odds increased that the Federal Reserve would dampen the festivities by lifting interest rates faster than policymakers had previously telegraphed. Not for nothing, central banks are seen by investors as crucial yet funaverse grown-ups charged with solemnly watching for trouble. When crises emerge, they make money available to encourage commerce while keeping terror at bay. The global economic expansion underway now is in large part a product of the Fed’s swiftly unleashing an overwhelming surge of credit after the start of the financial crisis in 2008, combined with the slower yet, eventually, effective torrent of cash delivered by the European Central Bank. But when the party gets raging — when economies accelerate and stock prices ascend to levels out of whack with fundamentals — central bankers play killjoy, lifting interest rates to snuff out attendant dangers. Higher rates diminish speculation that can end badly, by making credit more expensive. They slow economic growth while making stocks less appealing, because corporations must pay more to keep up with their debts. Investors can make more just by keeping their holdings in cash or bonds, rather than by accepting the higher risk of stocks. The bitter irony of the current swoon is that it was set off by the emergence of something the world has been awaiting for years: higher wages for workers. Even as unemployment rates have lowered drastically in Britain, Japan and the United States, companies have continued to find new ways to make more products and sell more services without paying more to their employees. This has been a major source of unhappiness among working people, and a subject of consternation among policymakers. Then, last Friday, the latest monthly snapshot of the American labor market revealed that wages had climbed 2.9 percent in January compared with a year earlier. The tight job market was forcing employers to pay more. This appeared to presage a strengthening of American consumer power. If more working people take home more money, they will presumably be more inclined to buy houses and cars, generating jobs in construction and at auto plants from Michigan to South Carolina. They will fill restaurants, necessitating more truck drivers to ferry the food, and more mechanics to keep the trucks running. This same virtuous cycle appeared to be amplifying global growth. More cars made in the United States would require more brake linings made in Mexico and more circuitry forged in China, using copper mined in Chile. More construction would require equipment from Germany and Japan, and more iron ore from Brazil to make steel. This interconnectivity has been central to the anticipation that a strengthening economy in the United States would lift fortunes around the world. But the increase in wages for American workers meant something else. It was a flashing warning to investors about potential inflation, or rising prices, which have crippled many economies. The Fed, always vigilant, wields a standard tool for snuffing out inflation if necessary: higher interest rates. This is how a positive jobs report, pre- sumably a sign of a strengthening American economy, wound up as the impetus for the dumping of stocks from Taipei to Toronto. It enhanced the likelihood that the Fed would raise rates faster. It prompted investors to wonder how long the European Central Bank could maintain its own ultralow rates. In the past year, the European Union has shaken off perpetual worries of a grinding decline to emerge as one of the faster-growing major economies on earth. Inflation remains weak in Europe, undergirding expectations that the central bank will be slow to take back its free money. But if the Fed were to lift rates faster, that could prompt Europe and perhaps even Japan to follow suit. Otherwise, the United States would be in a position to capture an outsize share of global investment, as rates presumably rise on American government bonds. All of this is playing out amid a transition in central bank leadership. At the Fed, Janet L. Yellen, the economist who was the chairwoman of the Board of Governors, on Monday completed her term and handed power to her successor, Jerome H. Powell. Mr. Powell is widely expected to continue Ms. Yellen’s cautious march toward higher interest rates. Still, as a newcomer taking the tiller in the midst of extraordinary volatility, he is a variable. Mario Draghi, the Italian who heads the European Central Bank, is scheduled to complete his eight-year term late next year. At the Bank of Japan, Haruhiko Kuroda’s term as governor expires in April, and there is uncertainty over whether he will be reappointed. The return to higher interest rates is inevitable, a healthy turn for a world economy that can finally close the books on the global financial crisis. Some economists think that the dour talk is overblown and that the stock markets are running on emotion untethered from economic reality, a narrative that gained force as markets in New York snapped back from the depths on Tuesday. The fundamentals of the United States expansion remain intact. Rising wages should indeed give people money to spend without resorting to some newfangled credit bubble that ends tragically. Whatever the interest rates, central banks retain trillions of dollars on their balance sheets earmarked for buying up financial assets, making credit available. And the return to higher interest rates is inevitable, a healthy turn for a world economy that can finally close the books on the global financial crisis that began a decade ago. “We have gotten used to this low-interest-rate environment,” said Robert Bergqvist, chief economist at SEB, a global investment bank based in Stockholm. “This is not the normal situation.” The global economic expansion has occasioned hopeful talk that the world now has multiple engines of growth, inoculating it against trouble in any single region. But the events of recent days have challenged that notion, given that a sudden deterioration of stock prices on Wall Street quickly burst into a global rout. Sentiments are clearly a viral phenomenon. Yet the distress in global markets also underscores the fact that real economic fortunes are fused. If General Electric, Ford and other multinational companies see their share prices brought down as borrowing costs climb, they could limit plans for expansion. The trend would be felt in diminished orders for computer chips made in Taiwan, flat-panel displays forged in South Korea and auto parts built in the Czech Republic. It could cool demand for raw materials harvested from Argentina to India to South Africa. “Business cycles across different markets are more correlated than they have ever been,” said Mr. Saroliya, of Oxford Economics. “It’s the global supply chain.” Bonds suggest an improving outlook The bond market is not flashing warnings of economic weakness, even amid the stock market downturn. 2.80 % 10-year Treasury bond yield 2.75% 2.60 2.40 Drop in stock market 2.20 2.00 June July Aug. Source: U.S. Treasury Department Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec. Jan. Feb. THE NEW YORK TIMES .. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 | 9 Opinion Pepé Le Pew vs. Donald Trump What the president has in common with Looney Tunes’ unseemly skunk. Jennifer Finney Boylan Contributing Writer He grabs pussies. He kisses females without concern for the revulsion and horror they feel for him. He grabs them in unexpected places. Does he ever experience rejection? He does not. “Most men would get discouraged,” he says, referring to those he comes on to. “Fortunately for her, I am not most men.” He is Pepé Le Pew. Does he remind us of anyone else? In advance of Valentine’s Day, and to better understand the inner workings of a man who appears to have no inner workings, I bypassed last week’s State of the Union address and spent the evening watching all 17 Pepé Le Pew cartoons, from his 1945 debut in “Odorable Kitty” to 1962’s “Louvre Come Back to Me!” And I can now share what I have learned — about love, the French, narcissistic personality disorder, men, women, the president of the United States and the smell of Limburger cheese. But first, for younger readers: Pepé Le Pew is a Warner Bros. cartoon character, part of the Looney Tunes stable during the golden age of American animation, alongside Bugs In the Bunny, the Road #MeToo era, Runner, Daffy Duck Pepé Le Pew’s and Porky Pig. antics make He was never a you want to marquee star of the same magnitude of, cover your say, Bugs Bunny or face with the Road Runner. He your paws. appeared in just 17 stand-alone cartoons, virtually all of them directed by Chuck Jones. Still, he made a fragrant impression: “For Scent-imental Reasons” (1949) won the Academy Award for best animated short film. If it seems surprising that there were only 17 Pepé Le Pew cartoons, it may be because they seem so similar. Each begins with a cat, usually but (interestingly) not always female, getting a stripe of white paint on its back, usually (but not always) by accident. This makes our hero, Pepé, mistake the cat for one of his own kind — and his response to those of his own kind is always deep and passionate love. He has a curious way of expressing it, though. Even though he is French (which in the Looney Tunes world is shorthand for relentless amour), his terrible smell repulses the objects of his affection, who struggle valiantly to get away, sometimes successfully, sometimes not. “Odor-able Kitty” ends with Pepé with a chain around his ankle. “Now we are inseparable, are we not, darling?” he says. The shot follows the chain across the room to the cat, whose leg is also bound. The last we see of the pussy, she is desperately hacking away at the chain, trying to get free. That’s all, folks. It is fair to say these cartoons have not aged well (not a rare quality; see also Disney’s “Song of the South”). But in the #MeToo era, Pepé Le Pew’s antics make you want to cover your face with your paws. Virtually his whole oeuvre is a series of jokes about males who — no matter how clearly the point is made — cannot possibly comprehend the magnitude of their own disgustingness. Which leads us back to the president, who is kind of like Pepé Le Pew SAM ISLAND with neither French nor stench. This inspires me to ask you to join me in a game, which we’ll call Who Said It — Donald Trump or Pepé Le Pew? “You know, I’m automatically attracted to beautiful.” “She thinks that by running away she can make herself more attractive to me. How right she is!” “I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet.” “I am stupid, no?” “I’m like, smart!” Answers at the end, if you actually need them. There is one thing that I did not know about Pepé Le Pew before watching his collected works: He’s not really French. In his very first appearance, Pepé’s lovemaking is interrupted by his wife, who calls out his name, “Henry!” Behind her are Pepé’s two little children. He tries to explain himself, and as he does, he speaks in his real voice, which has an American accent. His wife responds — not by taking a plane alone to West Palm Beach but by whacking him on the head with an umbrella. Pepé’s entire persona — the French accent, the image of a carefree bachelor, his very name — is a delusion. Just like Donald Trump and his failed university, and his failed steak company, and his failed casinos. Pepé Le Pew is fake meows. It’s worth noting that Pepé Le Pew isn’t the only Warner Bros. character who provides a model for the looney tunes era we live in now. In “Show Biz Bugs” (1957), Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny are engaged in a talent competition; all of Bugs’s performances succeed while Daffy’s fail. At the conclusion, in a last-ditch attempt to win over his audience, Daffy swallows gasoline, nitroglycerin, “a goodly amount of gunpowder” and uranium-238. He lights a match and explodes. The crowd goes wild. Is there a better metaphor for the election of 2016? There we were, mouths agape, as the most craven soul ever to aim at the White House ran, and won. Ratings went through the roof as everything we ever thought we knew about our country’s decency exploded. But one wonders whether Donald Trump has the same insight on the consequences of this stunt that Daffy does. When Bugs asks him for an encore, Daffy, now a ghost, slowly floats toward heaven. It’s a great trick, he agrees sadly, “but I can only do it once.” Answers: Trump; Le Pew; Trump; Le Pew; Trump. is a professor of English at Barnard College and the author of the novel “Long Black Veil.” JENNIFER FINNEY BOYLAN РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S Everyone is going all the way There’s a recurring theme in Israel, Washington and many other hot spots. Thomas L. Friedman TEL AVIV It is hard to spend a week in Israel and not come away feeling that Israelis have the wind at their backs. They’ve built an awesome high-tech industry, and everyone’s kid seems to work for a start-up. Even Israeli Arabs have caught the bug — the number studying for B.A. degrees at Israeli universities rose 60 percent in the last seven years, to 47,000. Regionally, the Arabs and Palestinians have never been weaker, and under President Trump, Israel has never had a more unquestioningly friendly United States. Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, asking Israel for nothing in return. The Arab states barely made a peep. Alas, though, all of this wind has whetted the appetite of Israel’s settlers and the ruling Likud Party to go to extremes. Reuters reported on Dec. 31 that the “Likud Party unanimously urged legislators in a nonbinding resolution . . . to effectively annex Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, land that Palestinians want for a future state.” Sure, the world would scream “apartheid,” but Israeli rightists shrug that the world will get used to it. And then it popped into my head: I’ve seen this play before. It was May 17, 1983 — the day Israel, a year after invading Lebanon, signed a peace accord with Beirut. “Signed” isn’t exactly right. Israel (backed by the U.S.) imposed virtually all its security demands on a weak Lebanese government, including a framework for normalizing trade and diplomacy. Back then, Israel also had a rightwing leader, Menachem Begin, embraced by a superfriendly President Ronald Reagan. Egypt had just signed a peace treaty and dropped out of the conflict, and another young Arab leader — Lebanese Christian warlord Bashir Gemayel — beckoned Israel to join him in crushing the Palestinians and remaking the Middle East together. My Washington Post Beirut colleague Jonathan Randal wrote a book about that moment, “Going All The Way: Christian Warlords, Israeli Adventurers and the War in Lebanon.” I always loved that title — going all the way. It’s a recurring theme out here, and it almost always ends with a “Thelma and Louise” moment — partners driving over a cliff — and so it did with Israel in 1983. Lebanese militias, led by Hezbollah, quickly emerged to resist the May 17 treaty. On March 5, 1984, only 10 months after it was signed, I wrote in this paper ‘Thelma from Beirut: “Lebaand Louise’ non today formally moments canceled its troop all over. withdrawal accord with Israel,” marking “the end of the socalled ‘Israeli era’ in Lebanese politics and to shift Lebanon solidly back into the Syrian-Arab fold.” Why do I tell this story? Because everywhere I look today I see people going all the way. I see Republicans trashing two of our most sacred institutions — the F.B.I. and the Justice Department — because these agencies won’t bend to Trump’s will. I see Iran controlling four Arab capitals: Damascus, Sana, Baghdad and Beirut. I see Hamas still more interested in building tunnels in Gaza to kill Israelis than schools to strengthen Palestinian society. I see Turkey’s president silencing every critical journalist in his country. I see the Egyptian and Russian presidents eliminating all serious rivals in their upcoming elections. I see Bibi Netanyahu trying to derail a corruption investigation by weakening Israel’s justice system, free media and civil society — just like Trump and for the same purposes: to weaken constraints on his arbitrary use of political power. Worst of all, I see an America — the world’s strongest guardian of truth, science and democratic norms — now led by a serial liar and norms destroyer, giving license to everyone else to ask, why can’t I? Can anything stop this epidemic of going all the way? Yes: Mother Nature, human nature and markets. They’ll all push back when no one else will. How so? Well, look at Gaza. Due largely to Hamas’s malevolence and incompetence, but also some Israeli restrictions, Gaza has limited hours of electricity each day. Result: Gaza’s already inadequate sewage plants are often offline, and waste goes untreated straight into the Mediterranean. Then the prevailing current washes Gaza’s poop north, where it clogs Israel’s big desalination plant in Ashkelon — which provides 15 percent of Israel’s drinking water, explains EcoPeace Middle East, the environmental NGO. In both 2016 and 2017, the Ashkelon plant had to close to clean Gaza’s crud out of its filters. It’s Mother Nature’s way of reminding both that if they try to go all the way, if they shun a healthy interdependence, she’ll poison them both. Iran’s military boss, Qasem Suleimani, thinks he’s a big man on campus. His proxies control four Arab capitals. All bow down. But then out of nowhere Iranians back home start protesting against Suleimani’s overreach; they’re tired of seeing their money spent on Gaza and Syria — not on Iranians. And, just as suddenly, the biggest internet meme in Iran becomes an Iranian woman ripping off her veil and holding it up on the end of a stick. And if you don’t think markets have a way of curing excesses, you didn’t read the top story in The Times. So to all of you going all the way, I say: Watch out for the market, Mother Nature and human nature. Because, noted Israeli political theorist Yaron Ezrahi, the first two are “uncontrollable and the other is irrepressible.” 10 | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS .. THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION opinion It’s time for an immigration enchilada A.G. SULZBERGER, Publisher Jorge G. Castañeda Contributing Writer DEAN BAQUET, Executive Editor MARK THOMPSON, Chief Executive Officer JOSEPH KAHN, Managing Editor STEPHEN DUNBAR-JOHNSON, President, International TOM BODKIN, Creative Director JEAN-CHRISTOPHE DEMARTA, Senior V.P., Global Advertising SUZANNE DALEY, Associate Editor ACHILLES TSALTAS, V.P., International Conferences CHARLOTTE GORDON, V.P., International Consumer Marketing MEXICO CITY Immigration has been on JAMES BENNET, Editorial Page Editor HELEN KONSTANTOPOULOS, V.P., International Circulation JAMES DAO, Deputy Editorial Page Editor HELENA PHUA, Executive V.P., Asia-Pacific KATHLEEN KINGSBURY, Deputy Editorial Page Editor SUZANNE YVERNÈS, International Chief Financial Officer the United States-Mexico agenda for years. In recent times, three American attempts at comprehensive immigration reform, which included amnesty for undocumented Mexicans in the United States and a temporary-worker visa program, have failed. A bilateral effort between 2001 and 2003 also collapsed. Nothing affects Mexico more than United States immigration policy, and the centrality of the issue in American politics is more prominent than ever. The most urgent challenge is to find a way forward for the so-called Dreamers, the beneficiaries of President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action on Child Arrivals program. Nearly 800,000 young people brought to the United States by their parents as children applied for and were given protected status by the Obama administration. Thanks to DACA, they no longer needed to fear deportation, were able to work legally and had realistic hopes that one day they would be on a path to citizenship in the only country they knew. More than three-fourths of the Dreamers are Mexican. That’s why people here follow their fate closely. President Trump rescinded Mr. Obama’s DACA policy. He has proposed a four-pillar overhaul of American immigration policy that most Democrats and Latinos in the United MR. TRUMP, MEET THE MARKETS The global financial markets are not in crisis. Though some pundits stoked panic with their coverage of several days of market plunges before Tuesday’s leap, stock prices are still near their record highs, the economy is creating jobs and many workers are finally getting decent raises after years of stagnant wages. Which doesn’t mean that there’s nothing to worry about. In recent months, time after time, both the current administration and its allies in Congress have called into question their credibility and competence to manage the economy or handle a financial crisis if one were to occur. President Trump has repeatedly patted himself on the back for a surging stock market, seemingly unaware that stocks can go down, not just up. His Treasury Department in December released a one-page analysis that made outlandish economic assumptions to justify giant tax cuts for corporations and wealthy families. Republican lawmakers in Congress went even further, attacking the Congressional Budget Office and Congress’s Joint Committee on Taxation, both nonpartisan, because those analysts had the temerity to warn that the tax law would add to the federal deficit. Mr. Trump wants everyone to know that his election delivered a booster shot to the economy and stocks. “The reason our stock market is so successful is because of me,” he told reporters in November. Truth is, the president was just lucky enough to have inherited a growing economy and a rising stock market. Though his tax cuts were an expensive gift to investors, he has not been in office long enough to have fundamentally changed that trajectory. But his erratic behavior and poor policy choices are clearly worrying the majority of Americans who disapprove of the president. One reason some investors have become nervous recently is they fear that the tax cuts, which Mr. Trump and Republican lawmakers sold as a way to stimulate the economy, could end up hurting the economy in the not so distant future. The tax law and a push by the Trump administration to increase military spending will reduce federal revenue and force the Treasury to borrow more money when the economy is close to full employment. This could stoke inflation and prompt the Federal Reserve to tighten monetary policy. That, in turn, would slow the economy. The prospect of a recession or financial crisis on Mr. Trump’s watch is unnerving, because he is as confident in his own abilities as he is lacking in knowledge and sound judgment. When confronted with criticism, he lashes out like an intemperate child. On Monday, he said Democrats who did not applaud during his State of the Union address were un-American and treasonous. If the stock market falls further, will the president try to reassure the public, or will he launch a Twitter fusillade blaming the drop on, say, a conspiracy hatched by the Senate minority leader, Chuck Schumer, and Tom Steyer, the billionaire hedge fund manager who wants Mr. Trump impeached? Many people would have been more sanguine about the Trump presidency had he surrounded himself with competent aides and advisers. Instead, he has stacked his administration with incompetent yes men, rightwing ideologues and Washington swamp dwellers. Consider the Treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, a former investment banker, who unnerved the currency market last month by suggesting that the United States was trying to weaken the dollar. His statement broke with the longstanding practice followed by Treasury secretaries from both parties to avoid making careless public pronouncements about American currency. Mr. Mnuchin and Gary Cohn, the White House’s chief economic adviser, also debased their credibility last year by arguing with no evidence whatsoever that the Republican tax cut would pay for itself. Over in Congress, the Republican House speaker, Paul Ryan, tried to pass off as good economic news that a public school secretary would take home an extra $1.50 a week as a result of the tax law. Then there is the harm wrought by the tax law. By greatly expanding the deficit, it will limit the federal government’s ability to stimulate the economy in the future when it actually needs a jump-start. In many ways the tax law is already having a perverse effect. Mr. Ryan, for one, is citing the deficit to make the case that the government needs to slash Medicaid, Medicare and other important government programs. Other members of his party are using the deficits to argue that the government cannot afford to repair and upgrade the country’s dilapidated infrastructure. A big drop in stock prices focuses minds, especially when it comes after years of relatively steady gains. But the real crisis is in Washington, not on Wall Street. Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Obama. Mr. Trump’s third pillar is the most insulting for many Americans, since it eliminates the family reunification principle for accepting legal immigrants from abroad. Intended to deter “chain migration,” it would replace the family criterion with a merit-based system. In the future, only spouses and underage offspring (as opposed to parents and siblings today) of American citizens would be allowed permanent residence, and eventually citizenship. The net effect would be to “whiten” immigration and limit the share of Mexicans. Since the largest group of foreigners applying for family reunification is by far Mexican (three times as many as Chinese citizens, for example), this would reduce the number of applicants from Mexico who get green cards. Nearly 200,000 Mexicans got green cards in fiscal year 2016; halving that number through a lengthy and tedious procedure that frustrates many Mexicans would not be as bad as shutting down the whole program. The last pillar would suppress the lottery system that grants a small number of immigrant visas to applicants from underrepresented nations, mainly African. Again, this would surely “whiten” immigration and is thus a despicable proposal, but it does not affect Mexico. There is no lottery system for Mexicans. So, viewed somewhat cynically from the perspective of strict Mexican national interests, the four-pillar plan has inconveniences for Mexico but also many advantages. That it is racist as well as unworthy of the American immigration ideal and inflames the worst demons in American society is another matter. As Mr. Trump says, countries have to look out for their own interests. To make this plan attractive to Mexico, its leaders need to persuade the American president to increase the number of temporary-worker visas. Again, by far the largest number of these permits are extended to Mexicans. H-2A visas, for seasonal agricultural workers, have no congressional cap; H-2B visas, for seasonal nonagricultural activities, do, but it can be lifted and has been for several years. The Trump administration can increase these numbers significantly without congressional approval. An immense reconstruction effort is underway in Texas and Florida after Hurricanes Harvey and Irma and, with virtual full employment, there is a huge demand for low-skilled, low-wage labor in those regions. It can come only from Mexico. Were Mr. Peña Nieto to make such a suggestion and were Mr. Trump to accept it, both countries’ interests would be well served. In the early years of this century, a comprehensive package like this was called “the whole enchilada.” Half a loaf, or whatever nutritional metaphor one prefers, is not bad. JORGE G. CASTAÑEDA, Mexico’s foreign minister from 2000 to 2003, is a professor at New York University and a member of the board of Human Rights Watch. MIKE NELSON/EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY Supporters of the Deferred Action on Child Arrivals program in Los Angeles this month. Being a patient with the N.H.S. Britain’s National Health Service turns 70 this year, amid warnings of an existential crisis. At the end of last year, we interviewed several staff members to ask them what they hoped and feared for the system’s future. Now, readers tell us about their and their families’ experiences with the N.H.S. Here are their stories, edited for length and clarity. РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S What would happen if a genuine financial crisis occurred on this president’s watch? States detest. Strangely enough, however, it might benefit Mexico, especially if it is accompanied by additional changes in the issuance of temporaryworker visas, and in particular those known as H-2A and H-2B. The first pillar of Mr. Trump’s proposal — regularizing the status of the Dreamers and a million other young people who also could qualify for DACA status with a long and winding road to citizenship — works to Mexico’s advantage. Somewhere near 1.5 million of these young people are Mexico and Mexican; that is the U.S. roughly one-quarter would be well of all undocumented served by an Mexican citizens in arrangement the United States. Granting them the based on the equivalent of amnesfour-pillar ty, with the beacon of overhaul eventual citizenship, proposed satisfies one of Mexiby Trump. co’s most crucial immigration demands. The second pillar — $25 billion for a border wall — is obviously offensive to Mexico, but the country’s lame-duck president, Enrique Peña Nieto, has been much more adamant in his opposition to paying for the wall than to its actual construction. Mr. Peña Nieto either doesn’t believe it will ever see the light of day or lacks the backbone to oppose it. But Mr. Trump’s wall is something Mexico can simultaneously reject and live with, particularly if it will take years to build and if it merely complements segments of fences erected by I BELIEVE THEY DID ALL THEY COULD In 2015 my husband died from cancer at 35. It was a short time between realizing something was wrong and him dying, most of which we spent in the hospital. The staff were all caring and professional. I believe they did all they could, and when it became clear that he would die, they were very supportive. I was 20 weeks pregnant at the time, and they went above and beyond to look after us both. One example: We had decided not to know the sex of the baby, but when we realized he wasn’t going to make it to the birth, the midwives in the hospital brought a mobile scanner up to the ward so that my husband could have a last look at the baby, and we could learn the sex together. That meant so much to us. And after he died I had extra appointments and scans (at no extra cost) to reassure me that the stress and emotions hadn’t affected the baby. Again, not everything was perfect, but I just can’t imagine going through all of that, and having to deal with insurance companies and money worries as well. — Kate Trouw, United Kingdom I WOULD NOT WISH THE U.S. MEDICAL SYSTEM ON ANYONE I am an American living in Britain. I would not wish the U.S. medical system on anyone. When I had a baby in Britain, all was paid for. Suspected meningitis in my baby? Hospital stay and all tests paid for. Sexual health screenings? Free. Dermatologist check-up on my Southern Californian skin? Free. Possible cancerous mole removal? Free. Father-in-law treatment for cancer? Free. End-of-life care for my mother-in-law? Free. Lengthy hospital stay plus live-in rehab unit for an elderly grandparent? Free. If Britain reverts to a U.S.-style system, this country will truly lose what it means to be British: care and compassion for everyone. — Jennie Vian, United Kingdom THERE’S BEEN NO HELP We’re meant to lionize the N.H.S., here in the U.K. But it’s not always that great. My youngest son has been on waiting lists for the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services for four years. The process is so slow, I had to get my member of Parliament to intervene just to get an initial assessment. We wanted him to get some help for anxiety and autism-related problems before he moved on to senior school. There’s been no help, and he had to start senior school. It went very badly for him. We’ve since had to withdraw him from the school system. The N.H.S. is full of wonderful clinicians and nursing staff who put patient care first. But to refuse to acknowledge its problems does it a disservice. — Sean Fleming, United Kingdom THE N.H.S. IS PART OF OUR NATIONAL IDENTITY The N.H.S. is amazing and vital and part of our national identity. One story among many: My son had an infection just after birth. The nurse who suspected something came back after her shift was up as it was on her mind; she’d just caught that his breathing was very slightly fast. She herself was going through a difficult break-up, it was New Year’s, and she must have been exhausted. And yet, but for that sense of something not quite right, my son would be dead. — Owen Hewlett, United Kingdom MY FAMILY AND I WOULD NOT HAVE SURVIVED WITHOUT IT I have received mental health services through the N.H.S. I was diagnosed MITCH BLUNT N.H.S., PAGE 11 .. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 | 11 opinion Gulp. I’m guilty of treason. Frank Bruni Being a patient with the N.H.S. N.H.S., FROM PAGE 10 with depression and anxiety, and at a low point I was hospitalized at the mental ward in an N.H.S. hospital. The environment was safe and allowed me to take the first steps to being a calmer, happier person. A few years later I’m able to have a job — something that my intense anxiety wouldn’t have allowed for beforehand. I also received cognitive behavioral therapy which has allowed me to regain control of my life. I am so happy to have this resource as I know my family and I would not have survived without it. — S. Rae, United Kingdom I WANTED TO LOVE THE N.H.S., BUT COULDN’T My husband and I (both Americans) worked and lived in London from 2013-17, during which time we were N.H.S. patients for our baby’s birth and my cancer diagnosis. For us, the N.H.S. was great until it was terrible. When we moved to the U.K. for my job, I was offered private insurance by my company and turned it down because the N.H.S. seemed high-quality. I gave birth to our baby there in 2015, and we loved the N.H.S. for so many reasons. However, in 2017, I found a lump in my breast. It took three visits and two months to convince my N.H.S. doctor that I should go to the hospital. He was certain it was breast-feeding related, which was a misdiagnosis. The N.H.S. hospital revealed stage III breast cancer. It took weeks to get the pathology results, then follow-up tests and results. It took almost a month to get staging, and it would have taken months to get treatment. Delays at every step, and lots of long waits. Fears of operations cancelled or postponed. The delays were so agonizing that we moved to the States. I’m so disappointed because I wanted to love the N.H.S., but I couldn’t. — Laura Bacon, United States I CALLED UP THE LOCAL HOSPITAL AND WAS STUNNED I studied abroad at Swansea University in the United Kingdom as an undergraduate. I managed to avoid my usual springtime cold up until the end of my time in Wales — I got pretty sick and figured I needed a check-up just to be sure nothing more serious was going on. I called up the local hospital, and was stunned when I was put straight through to a physician, who calmly walked through my symptoms. He advised that I come into the hospital that evening, to the Accident and Emergency department, for him to have a look. As any American can understand, my first question on arrival was: Do you know if you accept my insurance? The folks at the front desk had no idea. I assumed I would need to make use of my travel insurance, at the very least. The concept was totally foreign to the staff. Once I saw the doctor, found out I was going to be just fine, and got some good advice, I asked the same question again: Where do I pay? Do you know if my insurance is accepted here? Again, a blank look. “Health care in Britain is free at the point of delivery,” he said proudly. He was incredulous that I had come in worried about who would pay for my simple check-up — and proud to be part of a system in which such a question would be considered absurd. — Chris Collins, United States IF THEY’D HAD MORE TIME, THEY’D HAVE SEEN THE D.N.R. NOTE With my grandma, there were a number of issues that went wrong. First, when my family called the emergency services, the ambulance came, and they checked her over and they said there wasn’t really anything wrong with her. They said she was just playing up to be sickly, which would not have been something my grandma would do. They left her at her house, and then about two hours later, a second ambulance was called. They decided that she did need to go to the hospital, so they took her in. It took quite a while to figure out what was wrong. They wouldn’t listen to my parents, who were describing the symptoms she was presenting with. It was only when she had a heart attack in front of the medical staff that they realized she’d been having multiple heart attacks. She must have been in tremendous pain, and it’s quite frustrating that the underfunding of the N.H.S. meant the priority was “we need a bed for someone who really needs it” rather than providing decent palliative, end-of-life care for someone. Junior doctors just don’t get given the time to familiarize themselves with patients’ notes. And it’s very unfortunate because if they had had that extra time, they would have seen the do-notresuscitate note. But unfortunately, they brought my grandma back. She survived the night and then the next day she passed away. — Bryony Jackson, United Kingdom North Korea comes to the Olympics KOO, FROM PAGE 1 Institute of National Unification, a state-funded think tank, revealed a big gap in how the young and the old approach unification (and North Korea by extension): Nearly 50 percent of respondents under 30 didn’t think being a single people required a single state, while only 20 percent thought unification was necessary. Among those 60 and older, the answers were the other way around, with almost 50 percent saying there should be one state for one nation. And a study published by the institute on Jan. 30 showed that more than 60 percent of respondents in their 20s said “unification is not an immediate goal.” Across all age brackets, respondents greatly prioritized the economy over unification. Mr. Moon’s government has appeared to be blind to this critical shift in popular sentiment, instead promoting the idea, to take a line from a presidential office Facebook post, that “We are one” with the North. As Mr. Moon pushed the one-nation rhetoric, his approval ratings took a dive, falling 10 percentage points in January, which coincided with interKorean dialogue on the Olympics (some say his attempt to regulate the cryptocurrency trade, a hot topic in South Korea, is another reason for his decline in favorability). His popularity has eroded even more among voters in their 20s — usually the more progressive segment of the population — dropping 14 percentage points between the second week of January and the beginning of this month. Even as a clear majority of South Koreans seem supportive of North Korean participation in the Games, different polls indicate that people are divided about flying the Korean Unification Flag, with one survey putting the public opposition at nearly 50 percent. To be clear, the Moon administration is playing nice with Kim Jong-un for strategic reasons. Yet the president’s government is doing a poor job persuading those who say it’s unfair to give North Koreans spots on the women’s ice hockey team at the expense of South Korean players who trained hard. Nor does the government appear to have a credible strategy for when Pyongyang acts out. Moon Jae-in is in a tight spot. Reaching out to a thankless regime under the pretext of shared nationhood may contribute to an immediate reduction in tensions, but he is alienating a large segment of the South Korean electorate. The alternative — pursuing a hard line — may seem like common sense, but not when President Trump overtly threatens war against North Korea, thus putting the South in Pyongyang’s cross hairs. Mr. Moon needs to do a better job explaining why it matters to court Pyongyang at this time. It’s for the safety and well-being of all Koreans, not because of the shared blood between the two countries. РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S dent Kim Dae-jung, the first progressive politician to take power since the adoption of a democratic Constitution in 1987, who held office from 1998 to 2003. The two Koreas marched together at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, flying the Korean Unification Flag. Cooperative economic ventures, limited to some border areas, were next. Everything came to naught in late 2006 when Pyongyang conducted its first nuclear test. And now North Korea seems closer than ever to becoming a real nuclear power (some say it already is). No matter who shoulders the blame for the North’s nuclear status and the tensions that have arisen as a result, the fact remains that Pyongyang is a difficult regime to deal with, one that is quick to take offense and doesn’t hesitate to rain artillery fire on the South. Young South Koreans, who have little sense of connection to the North, tend to see only these current realities. Enthusiasm for unification is waning. A report last year by the Korea POOL PHOTO BY AHN YOUNG-JOON North Korean cheering squads bound for the Olympics in Pyeongchang arriving at the Korean-transit office near the Demilitarized Zone in Paju, South Korea, this week. SE-WOONG KOO is Exposé. the publisher of Korea After more than five decades of reasonably virtuous living, I’m now told that I have betrayed my country and committed the ultimate crime. I did not clap during President Trump’s State of the Union address. Granted, my hands were otherwise engaged. They pounded my laptop’s keyboard as I frantically took notes: “clean coal,” “disastrous Obamacare.” And I’m limited in my appendages and much too clumsy to approximate applause with my feet. But even if could, I wouldn’t have. That’s not because I’m rooting against America. It’s because I’m rooting for it — and believe that we deserve better than a leader who uses language as sloppily and poisonously as Trump does, who reacts to every unwelcome message by smearing the messenger, and whose litmus test for patriotism is this and this alone: Do you worship me? On Monday afternoon he visited a manufacturing plant outside Cincinnati, where of course he complimented himself, lavishly. He complained as he often does about the insufficient credit that he gets. He mused with audacious selectiveness about all the blessings he was bringing to us. No plummet of the Dow punctures his self-regard. But something that he said stood out, not just because it went so ludicrously far, even by Trumpian standards, but because it so perfectly captured his distinctive madness and meanness. Recalling that many Democrats sat on their hands for much or all of his speech before Congress last week, he pronounced them “un-American,” adding: “Somebody said ‘treasonous.’ I mean, yeah, I guess, why not? Can we call that treason? Why not? I mean, they certainly didn’t seem to love our country very much.” My favorite touch is the “some- body.” With Trump, the darkest and most conspiratorial notions are never his doing or responsibility. He heard it somewhere. He read it someplace. And he’s merely assenting in his openminded and agreeable way. “I guess.” “Why not?” Far be it from him to challenge this unspecified wisdom out there. That meandering air masks a considered ploy: As a distraction and deflection, he routinely accuses his adversaries of the very wrongdoing that can more credibly be attributed to him. “Treason” is a word too grand to be thrown around casually, but it applies better to a president who minimizes and denigrates clear evidence that a foreign power meddled in an American election — and makes no real effort to prevent that from happening again — than it does to a bunch of lawmakers who decline to salute him. Their actions are largely theatrical. His are substantively dangerous. Never has a president been so gifted at projection, the psychological tic by which a person divines in others what’s so deeply embedded in himself. By Trump’s Democrats, he said, loose and were “selfish,” ludicrous putting their own definition, feelings above the a robust lot country’s welfare. The man who signed of us are un-American. tax legislation that benefits his business empire and spends roughly one of every three days at a Trump-branded property wouldn’t know anything about that. He doesn’t engage the substance of any opposition to him or investigation of him. He just invalidates the agents of it. That diverts the discussion from facts to name-calling, which is a game that nobody ever wins. If journalists are documenting his falsehoods, they themselves must be fabulists. If judges rule against him, they must be biased. If federal law enforcement officials have suspicions about him or people who worked for him, they must be corrupt hacks. If Democrats don’t congratulate him for making America great again, they must be traitors. Soon there is no one to trust but Trump, or no one to trust at all. That’s the point. He’s inoculating himself, and WIN MCNAMEE/GETTY IMAGES President Trump at the State of the Union address last week. On Monday he called Democrats “un-American” for not applauding during his speech. no price — not the reputations of individuals who have behaved honorably, not the viability of institutions that are crucial to the health of our democracy — is too steep to pay. Treason: It’s a word that he has used before, to characterize an F.B.I. agent whose text messages made his distaste for Trump clear. Maybe the president is cheapening the term. When he degrades language, he diminishes its potency against him. But if you accept his loose definition of treason, hasn’t he committed it? I’m not referring to Russia; I’m referring to his effort to delegitimize President Barack Obama by insisting, with no evidence, that he was born outside the United States. That’s infinitely more defiant and destabilizing than Nancy Pelosi’s inert hands and anguished mien as Trump delivered his big speech. But he doesn’t mention it anymore, so we, as good Americans, are supposed to forget about it, too. I think it does the country a greater service to remember. I think it’s more patriotic to withhold applause than to grant it too readily. Do I wish for Trump to be an excellent president? Yes, and I’ll clap heartily — with my hands and my feet — if that happens. Until then I decline, and if that’s treason, I plead guilty. Whatever happens next, we’ll help you make sense of it. Newspaper subscription offer: Save 66% for three months. In unpredictable times, you need journalism that cuts through the noise to deliver the facts. A subscription to The New York Times International Edition gives you uncompromising reporting that deepens your understanding of the issues that matter, and includes unlimited access to NYTimes.com and apps for smartphone and tablet. Order the International Edition today at nytimes.com/discover Offer expires June 30, 2018 and is valid for new subscribers only. Hand delivery subject to confirmation by local distributors. Smartphone and tablet apps are not supported on all devices. 12 | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS .. THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION FashionNewYork In the wake of #MeToo BY VANESSA FRIEDMAN Talk about fighting for eyeballs. Squeezed in between the Super Bowl and the Oscars, competing with the Olympics for attention, the first fashion month of the post-Weinstein era may be easy to overlook. And yet, as the style circus moves from New York (where it begins on Thursday) to London and Milan, before finally coming to an end in Paris on March 6, there will be much to see, including designer debuts, political statements and many rumors to tease the ears. Here’s what we’ll be watching for, and what you need to know about the forces that will shape our wardrobes in the months to come. JENNIFER S. ALTMAN FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES BEN SKLAR FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES TIME’S UP AND #METOO Last year at this time, fashion became, at least in New York, as politicized as it has ever been, with words and phrases appearing on catwalks and clothing. There’s a good chance the trend will continue, given the recent popularity of using fashion to make a statement everywhere, from the Golden Globes to the State of the Union speech. Curious showgoers will keep their eyes peeled not just for pins (Time’s Up and Recy Taylor are possibilities, judging by the president’s address), but also for slogans and shapes. And speaking of Time’s Up . . . MARCHESA IS BACK, KANYE AND RIHANNA ARE NOT Or rather, Marchesa is back . . . kind of. Once a red carpet stalwart, thanks in part to Harvey Weinstein and his understanding of film-fashion synergies and strong-arm tactics, the label has been conspicuously absent from the awards shows. But after going extremely quiet after the Weinstein exposés were published in The New York Times and The New Yorker, Marchesa, designed by Mr. Weinstein’s estranged wife, Georgina Chapman, and Keren Craig, is back on the schedule. Originally the designers had considered the usual runway show, which sent the watching world into a lather, but in the end they opted to tiptoe back into the industry eye with one-on-one appointments for retailers, who have remained Marchesa friendly and insist that the label continues to sell. Discreet as it is, the fashion week appearance will be the first time Ms. Chapman and Ms. Craig have raised their heads above the professional parapet since the world changed. Will the clothes they make, once heavy on fantasy and fairy tale, have changed, too? It remains to be seen, but one change is certain: Arguably the two biggest draws of N.Y.F.W. (at least the buzziest), and the names that changed the tenor of the city, placing it at the forefront of fashiontainment, are off the schedule. Last week Kanye West, gazumping fashion week at its game, opted to replace his traditional show with direct-toconsumer Instagrams of his wife, Kim, in his collection and viral memes of famous Kim-a-likes in the same clothes. As fort, Rihanna, well, all we know is that her Fenty x Puma brand is not on the schedule, and the company is staying mum about future plans. This will make for a very quiet New York Fashion Week, even taking into account Philipp Plein, whose characteristically humble self-titled show “Space Invasion: Conqueror of the Universe” will feature a guest appearance by the hip-hop trio Migos. AND THOSE ARE NOT THE ONLY HELLOS AND GOODBYES These days it just isn’t fashion week without some designer churn or experi- Before the bow BY MELANIE ABRAMS A designer may appear on the runway for only 30 seconds at the end of a show, sometimes merely poking her head out from backstage to wave (Miuccia Prada, Phoebe Philo), sometimes doing a full catwalk canter (Michael Kors, Alexander Wang). Either way, they know people will be watching — and Instagramming. “We dress up and dress down on purpose,” said Roksanda Ilincic, a London Fashion Week stalwart. “We are all making statements.” Here, three designers reveal what they will be saying this season, and why. OLIVIER ROUSTEING set, followed by a blowout party. In return, Tommy Hilfiger is bringing his #Tommynow fun-fest to Milan. And Poiret, the French design house that closed in 1929, will return to the Paris runway under a new chief executive, Anne Chapelle (of Haider Ackermann and Ann Demeulemeester), and the designer Yiqing Yin. watch given to him by his father. “When you go on a runway for 30 seconds and receive some love and some hate, you want protection and comfort,” he said. JASON WU SIMONE ROCHA FROM LEFT, PASCAL LE SEGRETAIN/GETTY IMAGES, JOHN PHILLIPS/BFC, VIA GETTY IMAGES FOR THE BRITISH FASHION COUNCIL, DOLLY FAIBYSHEV FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES WHAT “I always stick to skinny pants and boots, sometimes with a jacket or white shirt depending on my mood,” Mr. Rousteing said. The pieces come from the previous men’s wear show. He likes to show skin because, he said, it gives him confidence, especially now that he runs the length of the catwalk. (At first he would only step out from backstage.) “Jackets can be formal and bland, so РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S Creative director of Balmain, Paris Fashion Week mentation with format. In New York, Victoria Beckham is eschewing a full show in favor of intimate small-group chats, the way she did when she was starting out — preparation, perhaps, for next season when she is leaving New York for London to celebrate her 10th anniversary. This will also be Alexander Wang’s last show during the New York Fashion Week schedule — he is moving to June and December later this year — though what sort of #Wangfest is in the offing is still a mystery. The big goodbye in London will be Christopher Bailey, holding his last show for Burberry after 14 years as designer. And in Paris, Céline’s first postPhoebe Philo collection will be created by the internal team to better clear the decks for Hedi Slimane’s big debut come September. (Ms. Philo’s own last collection was pre-spring, which will be released in May.) Bruno Frisoni is also saying farewell, to Roger Vivier, after 16 years. New names to watch include Nathan Jenden, introducing his first collection for Diane von Furstenberg in a low-key presentation — logical, given that he only got the chief design officer job in January. Bottega Veneta is ocean hopping from Milan to New York to celebrate the opening of its biggest store in the world with the first-ever show at the American Stock Exchange, where the designer Tomas Maier collaborated with Scott Pask (“The Book of Mormon”) on the showing skin balances the formality,” he said. WHY “You always remember the designers with a strong identity, like Yves Saint Laurent or Karl Lagerfeld,” he said. And there’s the commercial consideration: “Customers buy what I’m wearing after the show, and pop stars will want it, too.” LUCKY CHARM A charm bracelet including an evil eye from a Bali beach and a Founder of Simone Rocha, London Fashion Week WHAT A black and white dress or a skirt with pockets and Nike sneakers or flats. WHY “The black doesn’t distract me when I’m working backstage,” Ms. Rocha said. “The skirt length allows me to move around, and I have always been a skirt rather than a trousers wearer, so this adds a level of femininity to a work uniform.” Pockets are “good for carrying my phones, headphones and lip balm.” WHEN She makes her final decision the night before the show, having had the chosen pieces dry-cleaned. “It’s one less thing to think about on the day of the show,” she said. WHAT ELSE SHOULD WE WATCH FOR? The treatment of models is still very much on the agenda, with health issues now having expanded to include sexual harassment. Condé Nast has put a new code of conduct in place to protect models on magazine shoots, but Sara Ziff of the Model Alliance is skeptical about the efficacy of single-player action, and has corralled a host of industry insiders to lobby for a third-party watchdog and enforcer to truly change the culture. And models themselves are getting evermore vocal, using social media to call out brands that they felt behaved badly. People will be watching. As they will Miroslava Duma, a front row fixture and fashion-tech proselytizer who was at the center of a social media uproar at the couture shows thanks to allegations of racism, homophobia and transphobia. She was effectively cast out of the front row as her behavior spurred a discussion of fashion’s history of willful blindness. Will she be back? Or will some long-awaited industry soulsearching actually occur? The next four weeks will tell. Founder of Jason Wu and artistic director of Boss women’s wear, New York Fashion Week WHAT For his own label: Acne jeans, an A.P.C. tee or an Undercover sweatshirt and Adidas or Converse white sneakers. For Hugo Boss: a Boss black silk suit and tie, white shirt and brogues. WHY “At Jason Wu shows, I’m presenting as me because it’s my women’s wear label,” Mr. Wu said. “At Boss, I’m representing another brand, which has its own DNA and men’s suiting, so I wear something that represents them.” Stress affects his style choices. “If I’ve pulled an all-nighter, I’ll want to be as casual as possible,” he said. WHEN “After 10 years, I’m comfortable in my own skin, so it’s last minute,” he said, adding that his wardrobe is all black, white and navy, and he has multiples of everything, so it’s easy to choose an outfit at 6:30 a.m. on show day. Left, Bella Hadid and Prabal Gurung at his show during New York Fashion Week last February. Above, the Marchesa designers Keren Craig, left, and Georgina Chapman at their fall 2016 show in New York. From far left, Olivier Rousteing, Simone Rocha and Jason Wu. РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS 14 | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS .. THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION Culture U.F.O. hovers over sacred terrain OSLO Proposal in Norway raises questions about protecting Edvard Munch’s legacy BY THOMAS ROGERS For the last 28 years of his life, the artist Edvard Munch lived in a villa in a hilly, forested area that was then on the outskirts of this city. He completed hundreds of paintings and drawings there, and the estate, Ekely, has become a pilgrimage site for fans of his art. Although Munch’s villa was demolished in 1960, and an artists’ colony now exists on the site, his enclosed winter studio remains, and visitors can walk among the nearby trees to discover the surroundings that inspired many of his later works. Recently, however, plans by a Norwegian artist and an architectural firm to build an unusual home on a nearby hillock have set off a heated debate over the preservation of the “Scream” painter’s legacy. The proposed building, officially untitled but generally referred to as “A House to Die In,” is to be the home of Bjarne Melgaard, one of the country’s best-known and divisive contemporary artists. It has raised questions about how far the Norwegian authorities should go to protect the legacy of Munch, one of Norway’s most admired figures, and whether the groundbreaking design of “A House to Die In” is an exciting development in Norway’s culture or a threat to it. In the coming weeks, the country’s top heritage conservation authority will decide whether to grant a permit for the project. Artists and journalists have raised concerns in the Norwegian news media that it would alter the last remnants of the landscape Munch painted and would overshadow the historical importance of the site. The design for the house, like a black crystalline U.F.O. resting on several columns shaped like woodland animals, emerged from expressive drawings Mr. Melgaard provided to Snohetta, the architecture firm behind the opera house on the Oslo waterfront and the National September 11 Memorial Museum in New York City. Snohetta argues that the Melgaard project represents a unique fusion of art and architecture, and that the concerns about the landscape are unfounded. Mr. Melgaard, who is gay, also suggested that the opposition was partly fueled by homophobia. In an interview, he said that the house’s unofficial moniker had emerged from his desire to invert Scandinavian architectural ideas around durability. “Nothing continues forever, so I was interested in the notion that you can have a house to die in, where you say, ‘It’s my end station,’” he said. He was also inspired by the homes of drug lords, like the poppy palaces of Afghan opium barons, which are not just haunted by the specter of death, he said, but also “have these crazy mixes of architectural styles.” Snohetta and Mr. Melgaard aim to use burned wood for the house’s exterior, and tentative plans for its interior include movable walls and a room that combines an eating area and a swimming pool. Martin Brunner, one of the Snohetta architects who worked on the project, also explained that the firm had tested a prototype for an item of inflatable furniture to be included in the house, which he described as a “sex pillow.” They also built a model for a “drug room,” which the architects said would be suspended from the house’s walls and ceiling, and which is intended not MIR AND SNOHETTA Above, a rendering of a “A House to Die In.” From far left: Edvard Munch’s former studio at Ekely, his estate in Oslo; the artist Bjarne Melgaard, who is seeking to build the new house; and Halvard Haugerud, a painter who opposes it. for the use of narcotics but to create a feeling of disorientation. Proposals to include a cavernous, tiger-shaped underground studio and a 40-foot tower were rejected by the preservation authorities. Mr. Melgaard, who is known for exploring sexual and drug-related themes in his work, is sometimes referred to as the enfant terrible of Norwegian art. In 2014, his sculpture of a chair shaped like a semi-naked black woman spurred a mini-scandal, and a 2015 exhibition at the Munch Museum in Oslo that juxtaposed his works with Munch’s drew outrage from some commentators. “I believe this talk about the legacy of Munch is ridiculous,” Mr. Melgaard said, ANDREA GJESTVANG FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES ANDREA GJESTVANG FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES ANDREA GJESTVANG FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES noting that the deceased artist’s property had already been altered by the construction of the artists’ colony, and that a building had stood at the site planned for “A House to Die In” in Munch’s day. Opposition to the project has been spearheaded by the residents of the artists’ colony, established in the 1950s and home to 44 working artists. “This is the only place where Munch lived and worked for 30 years,” said Halvard Haugerud, a painter who has lived in the colony for two decades. “We just want to keep what’s left of Munch.” Munch, who was born in 1863 in Adalsbruk, a village about 70 miles north of Oslo, left behind an enormous body of work. “The Scream,” a series of expressionist depictions of an agonized figure, is among the world’s most recognizable artworks, but he also completed countless landscapes and other paintings, and he has become a particular point of pride in Norway. “On a conscious or unconscious level, all Norwegians are influenced by Edvard Munch,” said Stein Olav Henrichsen, the director of the Munch Museum, which regularly hosts events at Ekely. “He’s a big part of our cultural history and identity.” Officials in Oslo are hoping that popularity will draw more visitors to the city: A towering new building for the Munch Museum is being built on the city’s waterfront. As the debate over Munch’s legacy has played out in the Norwegian news media, it has taken on pointed turns. Mr. Melgaard and Per Maning, one of the colony’s artists, have insulted each other’s work in interviews with the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation, with Mr. Maning calling Mr. Melgaard’s career “over.” According to Snohetta, a protected plant species was found on the site in the second of two environmental assessments, arousing suspicions that someone might have put it there to derail the project. The foundations of the demolished building at the proposed site for the house were spray-painted with antigay graffiti. Mr. Melgaard says that homophobia has been a driving factor in opposition to the project. “They are not interested in gay men or women taking up too much space in our society,” he said. Hans Henrik Klouman, the chairman of the board of the Edvard Munch’s Studio Foundation, which had raised questions about the project’s impact on sightlines from the studio, said the group was merely trying to preserve Mr. Munch’s legacy. The Directorate for Cultural Heritage, Norway’s top authority for architectural preservation, is set to give its verdict on the project within the next few weeks. If the project is approved, it will then go to a building authority and to the City Council for final approval. “We have to recognize that it’s an emotional debate,” said Kjetil Traedal Thorsen, a founding partner of Snohetta. “If there weren’t any emotional points of view connected to this, then it would have meant most of the Norwegian population would have been ignorant of it.” РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S In a dark forest, song and dance shine MUSIC REVIEW A Washington company brings a rare double bill of Baroque works to the stage BY ALASTAIR MACAULAY The spirit behind Opera Lafayette’s new double bill is so enterprising that you applaud the idea as much as the achievement. Both works are Baroque; both are set in a dark forest; both take their stories from the 16th-century Italian poet Torquato Tasso. Opera Lafayette, a company based in Washington, plays both pieces with period instruments. The program — half opera, half dance-drama — reached the Gerald W. Lynch Theater in New York last Friday night. The first work is Act I of Alessandro Scarlatti’s 1723 opera “Erminia” (the only act that survives); the second is a dance drama, Francesco Geminiani’s “La Forêt Enchantée” (“The Enchanted Forest,” 1754/1761). The enterprise is made bolder by giving the ballet to Kalanidhi Dance, a troupe that performs the classical Indian genre of Kuchipudi, choreographed by Anuradha Nehru. Richard Ouellette’s décor, with a central pavilion amid a grove, serves for both productions, with slight emendations. This Lafayette-Kalanidhi collaboration is a sequel to their 2013 work on Félicien David’s opéra-comique “Lalla Rookh” (1862), a drama set in India. Last August, some of the Kalanidhi “Lalla Rookh” scenes (set to taped music) were brought to New York under the aegis of the Erasing Borders festival of Indian dance; I loved those, especially Ms. Nehru’s use of tableaus that, swaying as if in the wind, evoked several layers of Orientalism. In the new “Forêt” staging, however, nothing in the Kalanidhi performance matched the pulsating vigor of the score. Tasso’s characters are Christians and Muslims in a fictional version of the Crusades; it was perfectly fine to translate them, as here, into Mughals and Hindi Marathas. But the music kept charging on, rattling through five acts in less than an hour, whereas Ms. Nehru’s choreography, seldom connected to the music’s strong meters, concentrated on the picturesque elements. You saw the Maratha spirits and rulers, the Mughal leader and warriors — costumes, by Meriem Bahri, were gorgeous and evocative — but this was storytelling without force; you did not sense any of the best aspects of Kuchipudi genre. The Scarlatti “Erminia” — a tale of love, jealousy and disguise, with shepherds real and counterfeit — was a Left, members of Kalanidhi Dance rehearsing “La Forêt Enchantée.” Above, André Courville and Julia Dawson in rehearsal for “Erminia.” PHOTOGRAPHS BY LOUIS FORGET very different kettle of fish. The orchestra was larger, with a more striking assortment of color, but much of the music’s power was concentrated in its four solo voices: the mezzo-sopranos Erminia (Julia Dawson) and Tancredi (Allegra De Vita), the bass Pas- tore (André Courville) and the tenor Polidoro (Asitha Tennekoon). In arias, the coloratura writing is often intense, so that — as in some Handel operas, only more so — each character plunges at once into a vortex of emotion conveyed by the knots and chains of the rapid-moving vocal line. Thanks to the conductor Ryan Brown and the four singers, the recitatives between the set pieces stayed suspenseful; the act took us through quite a spectrum. At moments, admittedly, the immediate flare-ups of temperament in the succession of arias become formulaic. Virtuoso emotional display seems more crucial than character or narrative tension. But it is also possible that Scarlatti wanted a yet greater range of tone (absurdity, humor) than Lafayette gave us. The emotionalism became more (or less) three-dimensional according to who was singing. Ms. Dawson, beautiful in face and voice, was commanding, conflicted, touching as Erminia. Ms. De Vita, in the smaller male role of Tancredi, proved yet more remarkable, with incisive diction: Her vocalism burns like a dark flame. It was a pleasure to hear the accomplishment of Mr. Courville and Mr. Tennekoon; but their vocal characters remained far sketchier and less engrossing. How often do we hear music by either Alessandro Scarlatti (father of Domenico) or Geminiani? I cherish the Lafayette impulse to fill a gap in audiences’ knowledge. Notwithstanding more than 40 years of attending both opera and dance, this was the first theatrical performance I had heard of music by either composer. Now I will seek out more of both. .. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 | 15 culture Stone Age tools, or art, or both? ART REVIEW DALLAS A Texas show of artifacts from the Paleolithic era rewrites aesthetic history BY JASON FARAGO The Nasher Sculpture Center here is devoted to the art of the modern era, and its elegant pavilion and garden, designed by Renzo Piano, have recently welcomed exhibitions by living masters like Roni Horn, Pierre Huyghe and Giuseppe Penone. Its new show, though, exhibits sculptures from far, far earlier: so far back in human history that the artists — and we will come back to whether that term applies — are not even of our own species. “First Sculpture,” an alternately fascinating and flummoxing exhibition of Paleolithic stone artifacts, travels as far from the present day as possible to propose a new genealogy of art history. Stones carved and collected by Neanderthals 150,000 years ago appear in vitrines. Large hand axes, sitting in view of steel sculptures by Mark di Suvero and Richard Serra, date from 300,000 years ago or earlier. Think those are old? “First Sculpture” also includes tools from North Africa 800,000 years old, and a spheroid gewgaw, found in South Africa, that was collected by Australopithecus 2.5 million years before today. Though you may have seen tools like this in natural history museums, the proposition of “First Sculpture,” from its title onward, is that these are not merely instruments but art; that they were crafted not just for functional reasons but for aesthetic ones. Moreover, the naturally occurring patterns in some stones — holes or circular depressions that resemble eyes, for example, or protuberances like noses — supposedly reveal a hard-wired hunger for representation: an aesthetic impulse in our evolutionary forebears. Are these 80-odd tools, eons more ancient than the ancient world, indeed artworks? Can we ever really know? With no artistic statement from our Stone Age ancestors, the show takes on a strange admixture of science and guesswork, paleoanthropology and wishful thinking. Still, the uncertainty of its thesis is part of its pleasure; a great work of art, after all, is always a thing we do not fully understand. Whatever their status, the objects are astonishing. It convinces most in the section devoted to hand axes. Stone Age humans, principally the species Homo erectus, would use rocks, bones or antlers to fracture larger boulders, hewing sharp tools in a laborious process known as knapping. Though Australopithecus (four million to three million years ago) made blunt cutting tools, Homo erectus (1.9 million to 100,000 years ago) fashioned finer implements, tapering from the butt to the point and flaked on two sides, to form the familiar teardrop now paradigmatic of early man. There are dozens here, and at a display by the PHOTOGRAPHS BY BRANDON THIBODEAUX FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES Clockwise from above: objects in the Nasher Sculpture Center’s new exhibition; hand axes from Mauritania (center), Niger (left) and Israel (right); and another from Niger. entrance of “First Sculpture,” visitors can handle three specimens, each 7 or 8 inches long and weighing about five pounds, crafted by our fellow hominins between 200,000 and 700,000 years ago. Their satisfying heft and ergonomic shape offer an unnerving haptic trace of human life before contemporary humankind. The hand axes do disclose evident aesthetic choices. Two examples, crafted in England 300,000 years ago, have curving edges whose sinuousness offers no functional advantage — a Paleolithic echo of Hogarth’s line of beauty. Some are punctured with holes, usually near the center of the tool. (You could not use them as a grip; you would break your finger.) One found in England has a shell embedded in it. Others have atypical colors or textures. An ax of iron stone from South Africa has alternating yellow and gray grooves, like the ridges of a topographic map; another, from Mauritania, was hewed from a block of striated gneiss that could well have been chosen for its beauty. Five oversize axes, more than a foot tall, would have been too heavy for a single hand to wield; they may also have been for show. Most of these artifacts come from the collection of Tony Berlant, a Pop artist in Los Angeles and a lay authority on prehistoric art, who has cocurated “First Sculpture” with Thomas Wynn, an anthropologist at the University of Colorado. (Collector-curator shows can raise hackles — the museum’s prestige stands to increase the collection’s value — but the catalog notes that Mr. Berlant and Mr. Wynn first sought loans from nearly two dozen museums worldwide. Though they borrowed objects from the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, the British Museum in London, and institutions in France, Israel, Tanzania and South Africa, the pair found that Mr. Berlant’s own objects were often of greater quality than those in public collections. The Nasher’s director clarified to The Times that Mr. Berlant does not intend to disperse his collection in the future.) The curators have surely put their fingers on the scale by staging the show at a modern art center, where the hand axes and stones appear in an immaculate light far from the dinosaur bones and dioramas of the universal museum. And they have overplayed their hand on the question of aesthetic intent. Can we really say that eight hand axes from the British Museum, as Mr. Berlant and Mr. Wynn claim, were made by four individual members of the species Homo heidelbergensis, “by far the oldest individual artisans ever recognized”? Yet the axes themselves, finely tuned weapons whose ridged faces resemble oyster shells, certainly have a visual attraction that exceeds pure function. Even earlier hand tools, the largest here 1.5 million years old, were hewed into nearly ideal spheres whose shape did not increase their utility. If we define art as a form that exceeds use, then these are indeed some of the oldest aesthetic objects on earth. Someone a little like us invested extra time and effort to enforce these shapes on hard stone. Did they also find meaning in the shapes those stones naturally displayed? The bolder, even foolhardy second half of “First Sculpture” suggests so through a collection of “figure stones,” or objects that early humans supposedly appreciated for their resemblance to animals or human faces. Some are functional objects, such as a quartzite cleaver from Mauritania with two circular bumps that produce, as the catalog has it, “a feline face.” Others have no clear function. Mr. Berlant has acquired a suite of stones from Fontmaure, France, which Neanderthals supposedly chipped and knapped to accentuate the faces they saw in them. One large rock has two holes above a jutting knob: a face, if you turn right side up. Another bears an almost comic resemblance to a Picasso profile. It falls to us, the overdressed apes in contemporary museums, to make sense of these incomprehensible rocks. On the one hand, imputing figures into these stones projects modern ideas of proportion and beauty onto “artists” of not just another culture, but another species. This is a primitivist impulse, and should be avoided, especially when these supposed art objects could merely be junk from the cave floor. We see faces here — but we see faces in clouds, too. On the other hand, art itself no longer means what it did when the first paleoanthropologists ascribed artistic intent to our fossil kin. Before the 20th century, art was understood as a direct act of creation, whose earliest manifestation would be cave paintings from 30,000 or 40,000 years ago (quite recently, in the timeline of “First Sculpture”). After Duchamp’s invention of the ready-made, the definition changed. Art could be an encounter between an object that already existed — a urinal, a bicycle wheel, a stone in a grotto — and an idea about that object, fused into a new union beyond functionality. By that definition, the 2.5-millionyear-old Makapansgat pebble, lent to this show from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, could indeed be the world’s first work of art. It is made of jasperite, a stone not present at the site where it was found, and it bears two shallow indentations like eyes, another beneath where a mouth should be, and a hatch mark like a brow above. A member of Australopithecus, whose brain was just a third the size of ours, must have found this stone and brought it some distance. And if he or she did see a face in its surface — not out of the question; other primates’ brains have evolved for face recognition, one of the most important skills in social relationships — then this Australopithecus would have been thinking like an artist. We can never be sure whether any individual stone or spheroid is an intentional creation, or just a leftover from prehistoric industry. What we can say, and what this intelligent, imprudent and thoroughly enjoyable exhibition does show, is that art has a far deeper tradition than usually acknowledged. Hegel famously argued that art was born from spirituality, and that modern painting and sculpture could never equal the old stuff. But if “First Sculpture” is correct, the impulse for art predates that of religions by uncountable millenniums, and might even predate humanity itself. Right or wrong, that was a lot to absorb in Dallas, as my eyes shuttled across the Pleistocene and my fingers swiped the touch-screen of the blunt hand ax I tote everywhere. The never-ending war BOOK REVIEW DIRECTORATE S: THE C.I.A. AND AMERICA’S SECRET WARS IN AFGHANISTAN AND PAKISTAN By Steve Coll. Illustrated. 757 pp. Penguin Press. $35. РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S BY ANDREW J. BACEVICH Yet mission accomplishment remains nowhere in sight. Over the past year, the Taliban have increased the amount of territory they control. Opium production has reached an all-time high. And corruption continues to plague an Afghan government of doubtful legitimacy and effectiveness. For a war now in its 17th year, the United States has precious little to show, despite having lost over 2,400 of its own soldiers and expending an estimated trillion dollars. After 9/11, “the United States and its allies went barreling into Afghanistan,” Coll writes, “because they felt that they had no alternative.” Once in, they were soon plunged into a quagmire. Rarely has a great power undertaken a major military campaign with such a flawed understanding of the challenges ahead. Yet first Bush and then Barack Obama concluded that the United States had no choice but to persist, a view that Donald Trump has now seemingly endorsed. Drawing on some 550 interviews, Coll describes in granular detail how senior officials, intelligence operatives, diplomats and military officers struggled to comprehend the problem at hand and to devise a solution. A neverending cycle of policy reviews, surveys and reassessments, along with efforts to find common ground with Afghan and Pakistani counterparts, produced one new strategy after another. None lived up to expectations; in falling short, each created a rationale for trying something a bit different, the Trump administration’s recently announced escalation — a few more troops and lots more bombing — offering the latest example. In each chapter of this very long but engrossing book, Coll takes a deep dive Steve Coll has written a book of surpassing excellence that is almost certainly destined for irrelevance. The topic is important, the treatment compelling, the conclusions persuasive. Just don’t expect anything to change as a consequence. The dean of Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism, Coll is a seasoned and accomplished reporter. In 2004, “Ghost Wars,” his account of conflict in Afghanistan from the 1979 Soviet invasion to the eve of 9/11, earned him a Pulitzer Prize, his second. “Directorate S” — the title refers to the arm of Pakistani intelligence that covertly supports the Afghan Taliban — is a sequel to that volume, carrying the story up to 2016. That story is a dispiriting one, abounding in promises from on high, short on concrete results. In December 2001, with Operation Enduring Freedom barely underway, President George W. Bush declared it America’s purpose “to lift up the people of Afghanistan.” Bush vowed that American forces would stay until they finished the job. In December 2017, during a brief visit to the Afghan capital, Kabul — unannounced because of security concerns — Vice President Mike Pence affirmed that commitment. “We’re here to stay,” he told a gathering of troops, “until freedom wins.” BRYAN DENTON FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES Members of the United States Army with an Afghan Army sergeant, right, in 2013. into some particular facet of the conflict. Readers will eavesdrop on contentious policy debates conducted at the highest levels in Washington. They will also accompany soldiers and spooks in the field. Yet among policymakers and operators alike, the sense of futility is palpable. If “Directorate S” has a unifying thread, it is this: Policies formulated on the basis of trial and error are not likely to work as long as they fail to take critical factors into account. In Coll’s telling, two such factors in particular stand out. The first is an absence of trust between Washington and Kabul. The longer the Americans stayed, the more difficult it became to persuade Afghans that their presence was helpful and their purposes benign. Over time, Hamid Karzai, the West’s chosen leader of “liberated” Afghanistan, came to see the United States as an occupying power — part of the problem, rather than part of the solution. Karzai believed, not without reason, that United States officials paid lip service to his concerns, were willing to cut deals behind his back and on occasion plotted to replace him with someone more accommodating. For their part, Americans who dealt regularly with Karzai concluded that he was indecisive, unstable and given to bouts of paranoia. When he first became leader of Afghanistan in December 2001, Washington had celebrated Karzai as an Afghan Mandela. By the time he vacated the premises 13 years later, he had become in American eyes an Afghan Mugabe. Of even greater significance, in Coll’s view, is Washington’s dysfunctional relationship with the government of Pakistan, or more specifically with the Pakistani Army, which effectively calls the shots on all matters related to internal and external security. Pacifying Afghanistan was always going to pose a challenge. Absent full-throated Pakistani collaboration, it would become next to impossible. The United States needed two things from Pakistan: first, that it would permit supplies bound for coalition forces in landlocked Afghanistan to transit its territory; and second, that it would prevent Qaeda and Taliban remnants from using Pakistan as a sanctuary and operating base. From Washington’s perspective, these expectations, premised on an assumption that Pakistan could be cajoled into complying with America’s purposes in Afghanistan, seemed eminently reasonable. Yet that assumption proved wildly off the mark. While the generals commanding the Pakistani Army and directing the Inter-Services Intelligence made a show of cooperating, they were simultaneously working to undermine coalition military efforts. Imbued with the conviction that Afghanistan is vital to Pakistani national security, they had no intention of allowing the United States to determine its fate. So while accepting subsidies amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars — Washington even elevated Pakistan to the status of “major non-NATO ally” — the Pakistanis still actively supported the Taliban. Pakistan’s military leaders were playing a double game. United States officials knew they were being had, yet could do little about it. With its own well-established record of having broken promises to Pakistan, Washington was not exactly in a position to call in any markers. Despite being nominally the superior power, the United States found that it could exert minimal leverage. Officials could ask, but not demand, while Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal limited its susceptibility to threats and sanctions. Although American officials went to almost comic lengths in attempting to befriend or flatter their Pakistani counterparts — Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, called on Pakistan’s army chief no fewer than 27 occasions — such efforts proved to be of no avail. In Afghanistan, Pakistan has never ceased to support the very enemy that the United States and allied forces have been struggling to defeat. Its army and intelligence service remained throughout “an incubator and enabler of extremism.” Coll concludes that Washington’s inability “to solve the riddle” of the Inter-Services Intelligence and “to stop its covert interference in Afghanistan” constituted the “greatest strategic failure of the American war.” “I believe victory is closer than ever before.” The words are Mike Pence’s, uttered during his recent trip to Kabul, but the sentiment is one that any number of high-ranking American officials, civilian and military alike, have expressed over the years. Readers of “Directorate S” will find no reason to take such assurances seriously. No matter: The Afghanistan war will no doubt continue on its endless course. Andrew J. Bacevich is the author, most recently, of “America’s War for the Greater Middle East: A Military History.” . .. РЕЛИЗ ГРУППЫ "What's News" VK.COM/WSNWS 16 | THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2018 THE NEW YORK TIMES INTERNATIONAL EDITION travel BRYAN DENTON FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES DANIEL RODRIGUES FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES Above, Herat in Afghanistan, one of the Level 4 countries that the State Department advises travelers not to visit. Right, Porto in Portugal, a country that is ranked Level 1, the lowest risk. Many travelers found the previous ranking system difficult to grasp. New advisories rank countries’ safety risks THE GETAWAY U.S. State Department has classified every nation on a scale from 1 to 4 BY STEPHANIE ROSENBLOOM Planning to travel abroad this year? The State Department has new advisories at Travel.state.gov that rank every country on a scale of one to four to help travelers make informed decisions about their personal safety. The agency introduced the rankings this month to replace its longstanding system of warnings and alerts, which many travelers found difficult to grasp. “Frankly, I personally was tired of explaining the difference between a travel warning and a travel alert, even to some of my colleagues,” Michelle Bernier- Toth, the Bureau of Consular Affairs acting deputy assistant secretary for overseas citizens services, said during a conference call about the rankings. Many people were not sure what differentiated travel warnings from alerts and what they were supposed to do when either was issued. Under the new ranking system, the lower the number, the lower the risk, with Level 1 being “exercise normal precautions,” Level 2 being “exercise increased caution,” Level 3 being “reconsider travel” because of serious risks to safety and security, and Level 4 being “do not travel” because of the greater likelihood of life-threatening risks and the United States government’s limited ability to provide help. On first blush, the rankings may seem like laws. For instance, if you search for a country and it’s a Level 4, as Afghanistan is, it has a bright red heading and the words “Do not travel.” But the State Department does not bar private citizens from traveling to a particular country — even one that it advises they not visit. (In the case of North Korea, however, there is a general travel restriction on the use of a United States passport.) The rankings, even those that are Level 4, are recommendations, not rules. Each level has a corresponding color: blue for Level 1, yellow for Level 2, orange for 3, and red for 4. What the department thinks each country’s particular risks are is detailed on its page. If a country has a ranking higher than Level 1, the agency also shows certain letters on the country page to indicate the threat or threats at a glance: C for crime, T for terrorism, U for civil unrest, H for health risks, N for natural disasters, E for a time-limited event like an election that may pose a safety risk and O for other. Ms. Bernier-Toth said the State Department had not changed how it assessed a level of threat in a country — just the way threats are presented and described to travelers. Iran, Libya, Syria and Somalia are among the Level 4 countries with “do not travel” recommendations. Canada, Portugal, Cambodia and Vietnam are some of the Level 1, lowest-risk countries. Brazil, which said on its government news site, BrazilGovNews, that it would soon begin allowing American citizens to apply for an e-Visa instead of making an appointment at a Brazilian consulate, is a Level 2 country, because of crime. Cuba is an example of a Level 3 country, a ranking that reflects the agency’s reduced staffing in Havana and limited ability to help travelers, as well as concerns that Americans may be at risk after the mysterious attacks in 2016 that affected employees of the United States Embassy there. In addition to an overall ranking, there can be different rankings within a country. Mexico, for instance, is a Level 2 country, which simply calls for increased caution — that’s the same ranking as other favorite vacation destina- tions like France, Italy and Britain. Yet certain areas within Mexico — Colima, Guerrero, Michoacán, Sinaloa and Tamaulipas states — that experience violent crime from gangs and criminal organizations were given the highest ranking, Level 4. Those particular states, not all of Mexico, have the same ranking as countries like Afghanistan and Somalia. Read what the State Department says about the states in Mexico and you will see that the threat is violent crime. In Afghanistan, the agency says the threat is not only crime, but also terrorism, civil unrest and armed conflict. This is why it is important to look not just at the ranking number, which lacks that nuance. The smartest way to use the rankings to help decide if a trip is right for you is to read the explicit risks on the country page, which on the overhauled website are more clearly explained. In general, the guidelines, including the differentiation between states in Mexico, for example, are a reflection of the restrictions that United States government personnel in the country adhere to. “Where they can go,” Ms. Bernier-Toth said, “where they’re not allowed to go, where they can go with very specific security precautions.” Travelers who choose to follow the guidelines are doing what United States government employees themselves are doing. The agency plans to routinely reassess the rankings. Levels 1 and 2 will be reviewed at least once a year, unless a new threat emerges or there has been a change in circumstances that warrants a review. Level 3 and 4 countries will be reviewed every six months, or more if circumstances call for it. Travelers who were already familiar with the department’s online country pages will still find entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, and health conditions. The website is now mobile-friendly as well. Getting the most out of Norway Ms. Brennan encourages travelers to book these instead of private tours because they’re often 75 percent cheaper and are equally enjoyable when shared with others. Learn more about available group excursions through your hotel’s concierge, an online search or through a local tourist office. TRAVEL TIPS BY SHIVANI VORA Scandinavia can be one of the most expensive places in the world to visit, according to Kelly Brennan, a travel adviser at the New York City travel company Indagare. However, Norway — a country with a bustling capital (Oslo), an unspoiled countryside and stunning fjords — is the exception. “Norway is a great choice for travelers on a limited budget who want a luxury experience, because it’s still upand-coming in popularity,” Ms. Brennan said. She offered some tips on how to enjoy a luxury vacation in Norway without emptying your wallet in the process. STAY AT UPSCALE HOTELS The best hotels in Norway are a bargain, compared with those in other countries in Scandinavia and other global tourist destinations. Luxury properties like the Storfjord Hotel, which is the best place to stay to explore the fjords and the charming town of Alesund, have rates starting at $200 a night. “Upscale tourism is still new to Norway, so travelers don’t have to break the bank to enjoy high-end accommodations,” Ms. Brennan said. SPLURGE ON PRIVATE ACTIVITIES LARS LEETARU VISIT OSLO IN THE WINTER While Oslo receives very little sunlight in the winter, the season is a great time to visit the city because hotel rates and prices for airline tickets and tours are at their lowest. Ms. Brennan said that travelers will also be rewarded with a lively atmosphere. BOOK SHARED EXCURSIONS Many of Norway’s best activities are offered as small-group experiences. Consider gathering a small group and booking a sailboat tour in the fjords, going dog-sledding and ice-fishing in Tromso, or enjoying a boat tour with cocktails in Oslo. Whether it’s spending the night in a 150year-old restored lighthouse in Alesund, seeing the Northern Lights by car or another special excursion, Ms. Brennan said that intimate activities are the ones worth booking privately. She noted that it’s not going to cost travelers more than a few hundred dollars per person to book for an individual or a couple. CHECK OUT FREE ATTRACTIONS Many of Norway’s iconic landmarks are outdoor sites that are free to see. They include the magnificent Geiranger Fjord, the Trollstigen, a serpentine mountain road, and National Tourist Routes, a collection of scenic highways throughout the country with great views. The country also happens to be a paradise for driving, Ms. Brennan explained. “Car rentals are affordable, driving around is easy, and if you get lost, most Norwegians speak English,” she said. A SUMMIT FOR INNOVATORS AND EXPERTS РЕ Л VK "W ИЗ h .C a ГР O t's У M N П /W e П w Ы SN s" W S SPEAKERS INCLUDE Adventures in a sidecar TRENDING BY SHIVANI VORA Sightseeing tours in motorcycle sidecars are taking off around the world. Riding in a three-wheeled vehicle with a driver who’s also your local guide is a fun way for travelers to explore a destination. It can be an attention-getting way to explore a city, too. Remi Di Nino, a founder of the Paris sidecar tour company Retro Tour Paris, said that spectators often snapped pictures of the sidecars during excursions. “They’re not your typical way of getting around, so people get excited when they see them,” he said. “Also, the riders on the tours get a completely different perspective of Paris than they would by sitting on a bus.” Mr. Di Nino’s company offers four excursions around Paris, ranging from 40 minutes to seven hours, in stylish Ural sidecars. The tours can be customized based on what travelers want to see, or their guides can lead the way and take them to their favorite spots. Prices start from 69 euros ($85) a person; the price for a ANDBEYOND A view of Chapman’s Peak in Cape Town. second rider starts at €20 more. Book on their website. BrightSide Tours offers seven excursions in Barcelona, also in Ural sidecars. The three-and-a-half hour Foodie Ride is a popular pick, and the tour includes stops at three popular tapas bars to enjoy traditional Spanish fare. It also includes a stop at Montjuic, a hill with views of the city, for a toast with Spanish sparkling wine. Prices start at €240 for one passenger and €320 for two passengers. Book on their website. AndBeyond offers an eight-hour tour in and around Cape Town in a vintage World War II motorcycle with a sidecar. Travelers ride through the scenic suburb of Camps Bay, along the edgy cliffs of Chapman’s Peak, to Boulders Beach to see the colony of penguins, and to the Constantia Winelands, where they’ll visit two wineries. Bookings start at $241 for two people. Reserve by email: contactus@andBeyond.com. Beijing Sideways has several sidecar tours of Beijing in a Chang Jiang 750 Chinese motorcycle. One option is the two-hour Beijing by Night, which includes more than a dozen stops around the city, including at the gate of the Forbidden City. Also among the destinations are the National Center for the Performing Arts, an eggshell-shaped building designed by the French architect Paul Andreu, and Tiananmen Square. Prices are about $181 for the first passenger and $91 for the second. Book by email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Some hotels also offer sidecar tours. The Royal Mansour, in Marrakesh, Morocco offers a sidecar excursion to the home of the French perfumer Serge Lutens. After tour, their driver will take them on a ride to see popular sites in Marrakesh. Prices are around $400 for two people and are for hotel guests only. Book by email: email@example.com. AI WEIWEI Artist DANIEL H. WEISS MICHAEL GOVAN President and C.E.O. The Metropolitan Museum of Art C.E.O. and Wallis Annenberg Director Los Angeles County Museum of Art ELIZABETH DILLER Founding Partner Diller Scofidio + Renfro OLAFUR ELIASSON Artist ANN TEMKIN The Marie-Josée and Henry Kravis Chief Curator of Painting and Sculpture MoMA This April, The New York Times will convene the new Art Leaders Network, a select group of the world’s most distinguished art experts and influencers—dealers, gallery owners, museum directors, curators, auction executives and collectors—to define and assess the most pressing challenges and opportunities in the industry today. Through provocative interviews and riveting discussions, senior New York Times journalists will explore myriad topics, from the impact of economic events on the arts to the outlook for galleries in the era of the mega-dealer, from the future of museums in this technological age to the undiminished fascination with contemporary art, and much more. This invitation-only gathering will take place in Berlin, a city whose story of renaissance and reinvention mirrors the essence of this groundbreaking event. DAVID ZWIRNER Art Dealer and Owner David Zwirner Gallery MARC PORTER HEADLINE SPONSOR Chairman, Americas Christie’s APPLY TO ATTEND ARTLEADERSNETWORK.COM For more information on sponsorship opportunities, please contact Carina Pierre at firstname.lastname@example.org.