Once humanity lived in 192 separate countries, it was like living in 192 separate boats. Now, in the globalised, shrunken world, all 7 billion of us live in 192 separate cabins on the same boat. But we have no captain or crew.
Japan emerged self-consciously as a Western power. China has made no pretensions in that direction. With the growing detachment between the West and the rest, India could resume its natural role as the meeting point for the great civilizations
The Chinese word for "crisis" is brilliant: It combines two characters: danger and opportunity. The crisis over the Danish cartoons on Islam presents many dangers, but also offers some opportunities to address hard questions head on.