The US governemt could without a doubt split up microsoft - worldwide. It is an american company which has a world wide presence, but its still american.

Completely wrong wrong wrong.

Any decision made by a US court could only ever be enforced in the US. Or does whoever wants M$ split up plan on filing claims in the high courts of all 200-odd sovereign nations?

Corporate law differs vastly in many countries. Read some legislation before you make such statements. Did it ever occur to you that in this world of globalisation (Of which the US Govt is a proud supporter) the idea is to rationalise and make the remaining entities as big as possible? I don't necessailry agree with this way of playing the game but that is the general idea of globalisation.

As an example: Royal Dutch Shell wanted to take over Woodside Petroleum (a dominant oil exploration company with rigs on the Australian North West Shelf). The Dutch Govt had no problem with the idea, that I was aware of. The Australian Commonwealth Govt did have a problem and blocked the takeover and is able to enforce it because the handshake would have taken place down here. When gold mining Co. BHP launched it's merge offer with Billitons in England it went ahead because the respective Govt's approved of it. When Campell's soup Co. bought out Arnott's biscuits it was approved because both respective Govt's approved of it, and most likely because Australia has more biscuit companies than oil companies.

To vcv: I agree wholeheartedly with your reply.
To Grimz: Yep, it seems that a monster has been created. grin