A Global Summit In Asia (without The United States)

China is happy to step in. We look at how the U.S. is doing in its pivot to Asia. Host country Indonesias President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, center wearing blue, and his wife Ani stand with other leaders of the Asia-Pacific region and their respective spouses, wearing traditional Balinese endek costume before a dinner hosted for the leaders during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Bali, Indonesia, Monday, Oct. 7, 2013. President and Mrs. Obama did not attend the summit this year. (AP) Guests Indira Lakshmanan, senior correspondent for Bloomberg News covering foreign policy, former Asia Bureau Chief for The Boston Globe. ( @Indira_L ) Susan Shirk , chair of the 21st Century China Program at the University of California-San Diego. ( @IRPS ) From Toms Reading List New York Times: Obamas Absence Leaves China As Dominant Force At APEC The partnership, a major element of Mr. Obamas pivot toward Asia, is intended to achieve open market access among the 12 participants, with the United States, Japan, Mexico and Canada as the major economies.The administration was hoping that the leader of South Korea, Park Geun-hye, would announce at the meeting that South Korea was ready to join the negotiations.

Homemade heroin first developed in Russia may have come to the United States

Scientists know very little about the homemade drug. Its psychoactive agent, desomorphine, was first synthesized in the United States in 1932 in the hope of finding a substitute for morphine that would be less nauseous and less addictive. But desomorphine is eight to 10 times as potent as morphine, and its effects come and go more quickly, which may be why the new drug proved even more addictive than the one it was intended to replace. The body metabolizes desomorphine quickly, which makes it difficult for doctors to know for sure whether someone has used krokodil. While the recent cases in Arizona are officially unconfirmed, the patients told physicians that they had taken the drug, according to a doctor at the Banner Poison Control and Drug Information Center in Phoenix. Desomorphine, however, is not why krokodil is so dangerous. About 10 years ago, Russians apparently discovered how to synthesize desomorphine at home using commercially available ingredients including red phosphorus, which they reportedly glean from the sides of matchboxes, and codeine, which until last year was available over the counter in Russia. The resulting substance contains several caustic byproducts. When you use the krokodil . . . really what youre doing is injecting red phosphorus and solvents into your body, said Matt Zuckerman, a toxicologist at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. With regular use, those toxins can rot flesh, causing abscesses and gangrene. A recent U.N. report attributed krokodils emergence to a heroin shortage in Russia.