May 18, 2005

Blogroll Restructuring

Over the coming weeks and months I am going to be putting up speciality sub-categories of blogs over to the right below the main blog-roll. There will be new subject matter categories (like finance-related themes) that I will be putting up, not only for my readers, but also for my own convenience. Most prominently, however, I will be looking to create clusters of regional or country-specific blogs. This will allow, say, a Russia follower to spend fifteen minutes or so browsing a half dozen or dozen Russia-related sites conveniently clustered together here.

So I figured I'd open up the floor to readers writ large for suggestions. I'm looking for recommendations re: excellent blogs that cover and/or are based out of places like Russia, China, India, Syria, Iraq, Georgia, Israel, Armenia, Japan, South Korea (are there any in the North?) Iran, Spain, Brazil, Argentina, Italy, U.K, France,(like this excellent, if left-leaning one), Pakistan, Afghanistan, Egypt. I realize too, of course, that there are excellent "area" blogs like, say, this one. We'll figure out how to categorize these too. My point being that if a blog covers the CIS writ large, not just Russia specifically, that's just fine and we'll figure out how to group it. I'll start out with countries that are of particular interest to B.D. (some initial ones listed above) and perhaps some others that B.D. readers think merit inclusion. Your suggestions for both what blogs to include and what other countries (and even re: any speciality subject matters beyond what's here now and finance) are greatly appreciated.

No, we don't have time for a B.D. "cafe" or "lounge" product just yet. But we are nevertheless going to keep doing our best, given time pressures and the like, to keep this site new and interesting. Freshness counts in this medium--and people smell staleness quickly and start deserting. I suspect this applies not just to the all important day in; day out content, but also things like changing the pictures every once in a while (it has been a while, no?) or updating the blog-roll. I think re-working the side-bars to the right in a way that might help readers (including any regional specialists out there) access helpful information about Georgia, for example, and in one centralized space--would be helpful indeed. So thanks to all for your help in advance. We'll be back later tonight, and if I'm getting good feedback, perhaps we'll even start the blog-roll update tonight (perhaps with Russia, say?). Drop recommendations in comments or at Belgravia's hotmail address. Thanks again.

UPDATE: Can you all please indulge me in a little whine for a second? I bust my chops about 12 hours daily at the day job, on average, and then spend a couple hours more on top of that trying to keep this space interesting. It's really fatiguing, trust me. And I don't ask for anything in return (indeed my only reward is the vitriole often heaved at me in comments! ed. note: Yes, I like the feedback, well, most of it). Save, occasionally, I post a request for info like this. Can't we do better than a dozen responses? Put differently, can't a few more of you get off your duffs and give me a little more feedback? I really want to get some good suggestions and I know there are more of you out there with interesting leads/links and so on. And a hearty thanks to all who have emailed or commented so far. Back likely post 10:30 PM...and, yes, mini-whine over.

MORE: Re-reading this today; I apologize for the whiney tone. It's not like I'm doing anyone any grand favors over here. I write, you maybe come, you maybe comment, you maybe don't comment, we are all busy, life goes on...etc etc.

But I'm updating really just to point out the anti-spam software I have has the rather lame effect of sometimes (though rarely, it's pretty good at smelling out the real spam) putting people's comments "on hold" (especially first time commenters). Please comment away, however, as your time will not have been spent in vain. I can, once daily or so, check the comments and get the non-spam on the main page. Meantime, I'll try to finesse this issue with my software guy.

Also, a head's up that blogging will be intermittent over the next few days. My younger sister is graduating Yale this weekend--so the family will be up in New Haven celebrating this wonderful accomplishment! I might sneak over to the keyboard at some point however...OK, see you soon.

Posted by Gregory at May 18, 2005 11:41 PM | TrackBack (12)

For Armenia, I'd suggest my friends at Blogrel.

Posted by: Nathan at May 19, 2005 02:18 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

For North Korea, definitely NK Zone, South Korea - Marmot, China and East Asia in general -

Posted by: DC Loser at May 19, 2005 02:34 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

consider these (not mine)

still looking for a good far east site.

Posted by: Huan at May 19, 2005 03:27 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

some of the arab countries have blog aggregators nowadays -- bahrain, egypt, kuwait -- plus, ethan zuckerman's global voices does a regular roundup.

Posted by: praktike at May 19, 2005 03:32 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Shamelessly, let me suggest A Fistful of Euros, which covers most of Europe, if not quite the OSCE definition of the place.

Posted by: Doug at May 19, 2005 06:07 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

I haven't yet found a solid foreign policy blog devoted to China, though there are several good ones covering other subjects. For instance, (sorry don't know how to link) covers media and advertising, and does a fair job aggregating China related content in the US and foreign media.

I'd suggest my own blog,, but I really can't say with a straight face that my commentary would be of much use to BD readers- though anyone considering teaching English over here is certainly welcome to visit!

Posted by: MattSchiavenza at May 19, 2005 07:12 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Simon World is your gateway to all blogs China.

Posted by: praktike at May 19, 2005 02:19 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

If you aren't aware of it, The Head Heeb is a blog whose point of view and depth of analysis would be right at home on this one.

He is less regional oriented and posts more on human rights and the movement towards democracy (or the lack thereof) around the world, but is based in Israel so you will get maybe more analysis of middle east politics.

I'm not connected with the blog in any way, just a reader who would put it in my top ten list of blogs (a list which includes BD, FWIW :-)).

FWIW, I just noticed he breaks down his blog links by region too, so you may be able to get some ideas from there as well.

Posted by: David at May 19, 2005 04:23 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

I'm convinced that the Head Heeb is the smartest man alive.

Posted by: praktike at May 19, 2005 10:10 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Another shameless plug for Peaktalk as the blog expert on all things Dutch, together with Amsterdam-based Dutch blogger Zacht Ei.

Posted by: Pieter Dorsman at May 19, 2005 10:16 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Publius Pundit covers the Democratic Revolution around the world. Simon World is a great aggregator of Asia news. And Chicago Boyz has a great handle on things at home.

Posted by: Bruce at May 19, 2005 10:45 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Ever hear of Tom Barnett? A defense intellectual and strategist. I know you want country specific, but Barnett covers China, NoKo, Middle East, Russia, globalization, military-market nexus and much more in his own unique voice.

Definitely should read him and blog roll him.

Posted by: Matt at May 20, 2005 01:41 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Bolivia: MABB and Barrio Flores

Mexico: Rovlog and goleech, both in Spanish.

El Salvador: Tim and David Holiday (although David has taken some time off recently).

Cuba: Babalu Blog (run by some of the Publius Pundit folks)

All things Latin America: Randy Paul

And a shameless plug for myself, also covering Latin America and other democracy-like stuff:

Posted by: boz at May 20, 2005 01:52 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink




Various Asia:
Siberian Light - don't have the url off hand

Americas - mostly Venezuala

Hope this helps. I'm sure I have more but these were "handy" at the moment.

Posted by: Marvin at May 20, 2005 03:26 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Off the Instapundit blogroll, I know that Bjorn Staerk is still blogging about Norwegian media and politics. Bruce Rolston (Flit) is still writing about Canadian politics and military. Both are quite good, though neither posts as often as he used to.

I recently came across the Macam-Macam blog ( in which a Brunei-born Australian covers Indonesia and SE Asia. It has a roll of other SE Asian blogs.

Posted by: JEB at May 20, 2005 05:02 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Ok, this is probably more than you had in mind (I try to keep up with most of these guys at least once a week). Some have already been mentioned, like Peaktalk, Fistful of Euros, Publius Pundit, Zachtei, Head Heeb, Sandmonkey, etc. Anyway, here goes:

For Europe, the excellent Davids Medienkritic
No Pasaran!
Norm Geras

For Canada,
Angry In The Great White North

Fourth Rail
American Future
Democracy Arsenal
Geopolitical Review
Gates Of Vienna
The Counterterrorism Blog

These guys work at the State Department, doing a pretty decent job of serving the void that was left with the departure of the brilliant Diplomad
New Sisyphus
Daliy Demarche

Middle East,
Ammar Abdulhamid
Across The Bay
Iraq The Model
The Big Pharaoh
Syria Exposed
Beirut Spring
Abu Aardvark
Josh Landis

And the most important destination is of course
Lord Vader's blog (yeah sorry, but it's well worth it ;) )

Posted by: Mike at May 20, 2005 05:38 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

I forgot to mention some Russian blogs,

The Russian Dilettante

Posted by: Mike at May 20, 2005 06:11 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Just curious, but did you get my previous comment? I had a whole list typed up and it said to wait for a comment approval.

Posted by: Mike at May 20, 2005 06:16 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

lebanese political journal

Posted by: brian at May 20, 2005 07:53 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Well I was going to be modest - but since you asked specially I shall no longer hide my light under a bushel.

I live in France write about France, Europe and other places as the mood strikes me at my blog: -

And today, as every Friday, there is special Olive Tree Blogging - a unique act seen nowhere else on the web

Posted by: Francis at May 20, 2005 08:13 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

OK - Geez, DJ - give us some damn time - we're all busy too.

Posted by: Tommy G at May 20, 2005 02:30 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink



Middle East Media



Blogs with international links:

Posted by: Michelle at May 20, 2005 02:45 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink


Accross the Bay
Lebanese Political Journal
The Lebanese Bloggers

Syria Exposed


Posted by: ZM at May 20, 2005 04:53 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink


Accross the Bay
Lebanese Political Journal
The Lebanese Bloggers

Syria Exposed


Posted by: ZM at May 20, 2005 04:55 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Anyone who wants can grab my blogroll here:

Posted by: praktike at May 20, 2005 06:52 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Hi BD,

Any interest in a proliferation/wmd based blog that covers the issues across regions. I have some expertise in the area and track this stuff for academic purposes. I have been toying with putting a blog on these issues together and the possible incentive of being placed on the BD blogroll is dancing in my head.


Posted by: dundare at May 20, 2005 09:10 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Posted by: Michelle at May 20, 2005 10:49 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

This is a prety good personal blog form a lady living in Israel:

Barcepundit ( is indispensable for news from Spain and the rest of Europe.

Being American in TO ( is a well-written blog in Toronto and deals with All Things Canadian

Posted by: Jimmie at May 21, 2005 08:40 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Thanks to whoever it was that recommended TigerHawk. It would be truly an honor to be listed on The Belgravia Dispatch!

I read some (objectively) excellent Arab and Muslim blogs, most of which I do not agree with in the least on such matters as Israel and American foreign policy. I read them, though, to keep my head on straight.

Some of these are by Westerners located in the region, too.

Bethlehem Bloggers (

Desert Island Boy (Bahrain, and has a good regional blogroll) (

Jordan Planet (consolidator) (

Palestine Blogs (

Sabbah's Blog (

Saudi Jeans (

Subzero Blue (Tunisia) (

The Emirates Economist (

The 3rd World View (Bangladesh) (

I don't much like the politics of most of these guys (Emirates Economist excepted), but they do make you think.


Posted by: TigerHawk at May 21, 2005 10:39 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

I can only speak for Venezuela, where besides my blog Venezuela News and Views, (apologies for the shameful plug-in), there is also The Devil's Excrement that takes care of a lot of the economic issues. There is also a portal of sorts, Vcrisis, which compiles editorials and articles related to Venezuela

In addition there other folks named above (Babalu, Publius Pundit) who on occasion deal with Venezuela (and Cuba and other Latin American issues).

And ther eis a site with only links to all of what is realted to Venezuela, including chavista sites

Posted by: daniel at May 22, 2005 06:47 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Not exactly a blog, but far superior to the bloggers listed above:

Check also for Pavel Felgenhauer's column, and anything by Chris Weafer, Research chief at Alfa Bank.

Posted by: thibaud at May 23, 2005 06:42 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Fred at has a good daily roundup of local press reports from Pakistan and the rest of the subcontinent. (nb. the comments section's not for the faint-hearted)

Posted by: thibaud at May 23, 2005 06:44 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

A few people have already mentioned my Simon World for China. Also Richard at Peking Duck and I cannot recommend ESWN enough as a good link for China related stuff. Finally Danwei is a must for the China category.

Korea the top rung is Marmot.

Macam-Macam for SE Asia.

For Japan The White Peril, also Japapundit.

That's just for starters...but should be enough to get going.

Posted by: Simon at May 26, 2005 03:47 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Quick thoughts:
Germany - Davidsmedienkritik
Turkey - TKS at
Australia - Chrenkoff & Tim Blair

Posted by: Claudia Lane at May 26, 2005 05:46 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink
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