Nick Ottens is a journalist, former political risk consultant and former research manager for XPRIZE, where he designed prize competitions to incentivize breakthrough innovation in agriculture, food and health care. He has reported from Amsterdam, Barcelona and New York for various Dutch- and English-language media, including the Atlantic Council, EUobserver, NRC, Trouw and World Politics Review.
Nick writes about the politics of France, the Netherlands, Spain and the United States in Atlantic Sentinel and Wynia’s Week. In his spare time, he edits the online magazines Never Was and Forgotten Trek.
He is a member of the board of Liberal Green, the sustainability network of the Dutch liberal party VVD.
Where last month the European Council decreed that there can only be a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with Jerusalem as capital of both nations, American envoy to the Middle East George Mitchell is more nuanced, stating that Israel “annexed” East Jerusalem so that “for the Israelis, what they’re building in, is in part […]
Regulatory failure instead of a lax monetary policy bears the responsibility for the American housing bubble that produced the financial crisis of 2008, said Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke this Sunday. Bernanke rejected accusations that the Fed contributed to the fostering of the recession and argued that the interest rates set by the bank between […]
The war in Yemen is suddenly not so quiet anymore after an Islamic terrorist who was trained in the country tried to blow up an American airliner headed for Detroit this Christmas. Some forward-looking analysts recently identified the Yemen problem as probably President Obama’s greatest challenge ahead. Considering the regional dynamics involved, that assessment may […]
Not too long ago, Richard D. Fisher Jr. writing for The Washington Times, argued in favor of letting Japan in on the groundbreaking F-22 fighter aircraft. Current American law prohibits Lockheed-Martin from selling the plane overseas. According to Fisher there were two good reasons for letting Japan have the Raptor. “First,” he wrote, “the F-22 […]
Had we had another man for president this year, Iran’s nuclear facilities might well have been carpet bombed already. Certainly the United States would not have discouraged Israel from undertaking such a venture. But would it have been the smart thing to do? When even The New York Times advocates military action it must seem […]
Year’s end is near so journalists like to look back and beyond to what’s coming especially, it seems, for the Obama Administration. The president has had his fair share of “litmus tests” already: the overanalyzed “first hundred days” in office; his first foreign visits as head of state; the new Afghan war strategy; his Nobel […]
Last time we reported on Japan’s lingering in economic trouble, we identified decades of government interference as the cause of much of the country’s modern-day hardship. With the Democratic Party in power after years of Liberal Democratic leadership, there was reason to hope that the former would undo part of the Keynesian measures the latter […]
The European Union model is an example to many nations across the globe. The South American Mercosur is well underway to become an even more successful game plan for cooperation while in Southeast Asia, ASEAN provides a forum for states that might want to try to compete with their northern neighbors China and Japan. Even […]
It’s difficult to get about some eggs in the eastern parts of the Netherlands these days. Supermarkets are experiencing serious shortages there because large supplies of eggs have been bought up by German wholesalers. The Netherlands has always been one of the world’s greatest exportors of eggs but usually not at a disadvantage to the […]
When we asked here earlier this month whether the Western coalition can win in Afghanistan, the findings were ambivalent at best: while the United States could not appear to be scuttling from the country, President Barack Obama did announce a date for troop withdrawal to commence. Throughout his campaign, the president stressed the importance of […]
Turkey, or in the past the Ottoman Empire, has always been something of a bridge between Europe and the Near East. In recent years, it increasingly turned its attention westward, joining NATO and hoping, some day, to become part of the European Union. Decades of promises and negotiations have left the country frustrated with Europe […]
The ancient Italian city of Venice has slowly been sinking for many years. Early Wednesday morning, an unusually high tide flooded most of the city once again, forcing its denizens to wade through knee-high waters or make use of the improvised, elevated boardwalks set up in St Mark’s Square and other public spaces. The waters […]
The United States Senate sets to vote on a health-care bill over Christmas this Tuesday after what have been months of fierce political debate. As the opposition warned of “socialized medicine” and “death panels”, public support for “Obamacare” and the president himself understandably plummeted. Although America’s health care is among the most expensive yet one […]