Trying to recreate Iraq’s multicultural ethno-sectarian mosaic after intense civil strife is an appealing idea, but the history of ethno-sectarian conflict shows it to be dangerous.
After the long-suffering civilian population of Iraq, whose “crime” was having oil — a country that has been rendered virtually unlivable—the big losers are the American taxpayers who are bleeding income, jobs, and quality of life, not just sacrificing family members, on behalf of a runaway war machine.
If the U.S. gives up fighting such ill-advised wars of choice and concomitant occupations, Rumsfeld’s concept of fewer ground forces and a heavier reliance on airpower can be viable. The concept is not the problem, but it’s not going to work if the United States continues such drawn-out imperial quagmires.
While the Iraq War has failed for a number of reasons, including the absence of a military draft and sustained media coverage, to provoke Vietnam era-style protests, the youth of the twenty-first century are technologically savvy and intent upon creating a world community to formulate solutions for environmental concerns of which the protesters of the 1960s were only dimly aware.
It is heartening to see the international community condemn the leaders of the coup against President Manuel Zelaya of Honduras. The United Nations welcomed him as an exiled hero and the Organization of American States has threatened to expel Honduras if the plotters do not reinstate Zelaya within days. President Obama and the State Department [...]
Many are calling Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez “Castro’s Heir”—a man destined to be the perpetual thorn in the side of the United States just as Castro has been for the last 50 years. Like Castro, Hugo Chávez wants to expel U.S. interests from Latin America while simultaneously expanding his own brand of socialism. But unlike [...]
It has become commonplace for Congress to ignore the public’s yearnings for peace and to support the Pentagon’s now habitual wars of aggression. Last November’s anti-war vote illustrates this disconnect between public opinion and public policy. War-weary Americans went to the polls believing they were voting for peace but President Obama has instead merely shifted [...]
In the movie “The Year of Living Dangerously,” the little guy Billy Kwan, brilliantly played by Linda Hunt, gives a news reporter Guy Hamilton, played by Mel Gibson, a talk about Indonesian puppets — the kind on sticks, which you can now sometime find in import shops in this country. The figures as shown are [...]
If I learned one thing from the recent rebellions in Iran, it is this: the Iranian people have a lot of heart. These are folks you would want with you when times get tough. Strong folks, to be sure, particularly the women. They have endured beatings from the Ayatollah’s paramilitary motorcycle gang, the Basij. And [...]
We’ve been lobbying the Department of Justice all these months without realizing that the key to justice lay in the Department of the Interior, and specifically in the National Park Service, which has told activist Steve Lane he will be prosecuted if he attempts to demonstrate waterboarding at Thursday’s anti-torture rally in Washington, D.C. The [...]
United States and British planes undertook a heroic mission into the Nazi-occupied part of the Netherlands during the final days of World War II. But their mission had nothing to do with striking the German army. Instead, the British and the Americans were dropping desperately-needed food supplies to the starving Dutch. One British pilot described [...]
The congressional elections of 2006 and 2008 were almost universally understood as shaped by public desire to end the war in Iraq. Last month, when a war supplemental spending bill (another $97 billion for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan) was expected to easily pass in the House with bipartisan support, 51 Democrats sought to please [...]
The executive director of something called the National Security Network, named Heather Hurlburt, offers — I kid you not, and that’s really her name, so try not to hurl — Six Reasons to Love the Supplemental and Celebrate Progressives in Government. Hurlburt begins with her own warning not to vomit: “Usually, there are lots of [...]
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s overwhelming victory in Iran’s presidential election disappointed many who had hoped for a president who is not an international embarrassment and loose cannon. That is the image portrayed in the western media, and with such an image, many find it possible to explain such a victory only by fraud and intimidation. But we [...]