• I just don't see it: crisis in Crimea 'the most significant geopolitical problem since the Cold War', says Fareed Zakaria. (Thanks Michael.)
  • Two data-rich posts on the military dimension of the Ukraine crisis: this one contains two maps of Ukrainian and Russian military forces in the region, and this one looks at Russian military assets in the Black Sea.
  • In  charting the rise of the modern economy and society, the elevator is every bit as important a piece of technology as the car. (H/t Browser.)
  • Can crowdsourcing help find Flight MH370.
  • India's malaise: 'How can a country with so much potential, entrepreneurship, and vitality become so torpid?'
  • Both China and the US have failed to be more open about their ambitions in the Asia Pacific. This carries risks, says Richard Bitzinger. (Thanks Malcolm.)
  • Long Rolling Stone interview with Bill Gates:

When you look on the horizon over the next 50 years, what is your biggest fear?
I think we will get our act together on climate change. That's very important. I hope we get our act together on large-scale terrorism and avoid that being a huge setback for the world. On health equity, we can reduce the number of poor children who die from more than 6 million down to 2 million, eventually 1 million. Will the U.S. political system right itself in terms of how it focuses on complex problems? Will the medical costs overwhelm the sense of what people expect government to do?

I do worry about things like the war in Syria and what that means. You wouldn't have predicted that that country in particular would fall into horrific civil war where the suffering is just unbelievable, and it is not obvious to anybody what can be done to stop it. It raises questions for somebody who thinks they can fix Africa overnight. I understand how every healthy child, every new road, puts a country on a better path, but instability and war will arise from time to time, and I'm not an expert on how you get out of those things. I wish there was an invention or advance to fix that. So there'll be some really bad things that'll happen in the next 50 or 100 years, but hopefully none of them on the scale of, say, a million people that you didn't expect to die from a pandemic, or nuclear or bioterrorism.