Gareth Porter: Kerry sought to ‘send a message’ to Assad via cruise missile strikes against Syrian government positions but Obama refused proposal. Forcing Assad to Step Down
Gareth Porter: The ‘Plan B’ episode shows another moment of failed US policymaking on the Syrian crisis, revealing a familiar pattern of deep division.
Gareth Porter: President Obama, who once called the idea of “moderate” Syrian rebels a “fantasy,” has maintained the fiction to conceal the fact that many “moderates” are fighting alongside Al Qaeda’s jihadists, an inconvenient truth that is complicating an end to Syria’s civil war. Obama Syria
Cassandra Dixon: After a breakdown in mediation between the State of Israel and the Palestinian villages of Massafer Yatta, Israeli authorities destroyed 24 homes in the South Hebron Hills. Palestinian Homes Demolished
Ira Chernus: U.S. military action against IS is obviously self-defeating. It clearly gives the Islamic State exactly what it wants.
Mel Gurtov: People with a long involvement in US-Saudi relations naturally deplore the evolving gulf between the US and Saudi Arabia but insist that the Saudis are too valuable an ally to desert.
Cassandra Dixon: Between the settlement and the outpost, what remains of the road is closed to Palestinians. With one exception—children walk behind an Israeli military jeep to reach their school. Their parents are not allowed to walk with them.
Janet Phelan: The US engagement in the Middle East has an unexplored impetus and if allowed to continue unchecked will have unexpected and world-changing consequences.
Kristin Y. Christman: Instead of adding more killing to the killing in vain attempts to achieve physical control over people’s minds, the most powerful step the U.S. can take is to change its own behavior to reduce tension within Middle Eastern minds.
Ivan Eland: The reasons for the United States to go to war against Saddam after his invasion of Kuwait were much less clear cut than have been imagined.
Ivan Eland: Why can’t we see that the U.S. government’s post-9/11 attacks on or invasions of at least seven Muslim countries—Somalia, Yemen, Pakistan, Libya, Syria, Afghanistan, and Iraq—is far worse than Trump’s proposal in generating anti-U.S. blowback terrorism?
Gareth Porter: Bureaucratic self-interest trumped US military’s conviction that American security is being endangered by Obama’s policy of regime change.
Medea Benjamin: Instead of insisting on al-Nimr’s release during his years in prison and echoing Amnesty International’s condemnation of his “deeply flawed” trial, the US government was silent.