Ass-Backwards in the Middle East

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Ira Chernus: Obama shows no inclination to back his words with the power the U.S. government could wield. Until he does, those words won’t provoke any change in Israel’s domination of the Palestinians.

Prediction: The U.S. Stays in Iraq

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Tom Hayden: It is becoming almost certain that the U.S. succeed in forcing Iraq to “invite” thousands of American troops to stay indefinitely in the latest imperial outpost of the United States in the Arab world

Afghanistan: A Moment of Opportunity for Obama

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Tom Hayden: The targeted killing of Osama bin Laden is powerful evidence that terrorist threats, both real and hypothetical, can be more effectively suppressed by special forces operations than by deploying hundreds of thousands of American soldiers on the ground.

Defying Racial Stereotypes

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David Love: Given the paucity of positive images of Arabs out there, no single film can be all things to all people. And no film by itself can articulate the full breadth of the occupation or the Mideast conflict. But this is a good start.

If Cairo Came to Kabul

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David Swanson: It will come as a surprise to most Americans, and indeed to most Afghans, that a dedicated group of Afghan youth has begun building a principled and disciplined nonviolent movement for peace, independence, and unity in Afghanistan.

“White City” in Afghanistan; Black Heart in Florida

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Kirwin: Terry Jones’ Quran burning resulted in killings and extreme danger in Afghanistan. The United Nations ordered all of its personnel to remain locked down in their compounds. A credible rumor has it that the UN will decide whether to completely pull out of the country, despite multiple assertions to the contrary by the UN Special Representative, Staffan de Mistura, who is based in Kabul.

On Visiting an Unwinnable War

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David Swanson: If Afghanistan is to have peace, Galtung believes, it will need a loose federation of governments within and a confederation of allied countries without, including countries like Pakistan and Iran.

Who’s The Spoiler?

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Sharon Kyle: I believe that Marcy Winograd has demonstrated an unyielding commitment to stand for, do and say what’s in the best interest of the people regardless of the personal cost to her.

When “Good” Dictators Go Bad

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Norman Solomon: And so, the secretary of state condemns awful Iran, invoking “our sense of human dignity, the rights that flow from it and the principles that ground it.” But don’t hold your breath for any such condemnation of, say, Saudi Arabia — surely an “awful” government that “routinely violates the rights of its people.”

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