Jeffrey LewisBowling for Bioweapons

This is not Nam. This is bowling. There are rules.

Five years after the United States brought an early end to a review of an international treaty banning biological weapons, conference delegates have resurrected a casualty of that diplomatic breakdown (see GSN, Nov. 20).

It is not, however, a resumption of discussion of treaty verification measures, the issue that brought the 2001 meeting to jarring halt before a final declaration on the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention had been completed. That issue has been largely laid to rest.

Last week, Swiss, Dutch and Malaysian officials brought back the tradition of diplomatic bowling, a quirk apparently unique to this treaty’s meetings and stretching back at least to 1998, and perhaps to 1996 depending on whom you ask.


  1. Vicenzo (History)

    Good thing you’ve got a strict regimen to keep your mind limber.

    See you tonite.

  2. Haninah

    Ah, yes. American arrogance and European frivolity. Throw in some Russian and Chinese mercenary lack of principle and a dangerous combination of resentment and short-sightedness from certain non-aligned nations, and you have all the components that have contributed to the utter failure of multi-lateral crisis management over the last decade-plus in one neat parable.