Foreign Policy & War

Thank Government for the Mess We’re in

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The first presidential election in the post–9/11 era has people thinking hitherto unthinkable thoughts: Should the election be postponed if a terrorist attack occurs before election day? What if there is an attack on election day? What happens if an attack takes the lives of the winner of the ... [click for more]

Mr. Bush, Are You There?

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If President Bush is trying to convince us that he hasn’t the slightest understanding of the Middle East, then he’s doing an outstanding job. Every statement he makes — and this goes for his secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, too — is soaked in ignorance. Any American who is paying attention should be ... [click for more]

The Irish Soldiers of Mexico, Part 2

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Part 1 | Part 2 Most of those who had settled in America in the 18th and early 19th centuries had no real sense of national identity. Those in Virginia considered themselves Virginians, those in Texas, Texans or “Texicans,” and those from Maine, “Down Easters.” Allegiances were territorial rather than nationalistic. When the victorious American army finally entered Mexico ... [click for more]

Should We Have Faith in the Government?

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Ever since the attacks of 9/11, unsanctioned alternative explanations of what happened and why have been in ample supply. What are the American people to make of these explanations? That depends on the alternative offered. My purpose here is not to lend credence to any of them, but rather ... [click for more]

The Irish Soldiers of Mexico, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 One of the least-known stories of the Irish who came to America in the 1840s is that of the Irish battalion that fought on the Mexican side in the U.S.-Mexico War of 1846–1848. They came to Mexico and died, some gloriously in combat, others ignominiously on the gallows. United under a green banner, they ... [click for more]

Kerry: An Echo, Not a Choice

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In 1964 an incumbent president, Lyndon Johnson, was faced by a challenger, Barry Goldwater, who offered “a choice, not an echo.” In 2004 an incumbent president, George W. Bush, is faced by a challenger, John Kerry, who offers an echo, not a choice — a mere variation on a theme. That’s ... [click for more]

Government Is Not “Us”

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“America is not what’s wrong with the world. I read all this stuff — people hate us, people don’t like us. The fact of the matter is, people line up to come into this country every year because it’s better here than other places, and because they respect the ... [click for more]

Terrorism Debacles in the Reagan Administration

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Many Americans are unaware of the dark side of U.S. foreign policys past. Some conservatives think that Ronald Reagans foreign policy began and ended with the thwarting of the Soviet Union. Unfortunately, there were many other U.S. actions during his reign that did not reflect favorably on the U.S. governments devotion to human rights. There were few common-places that offended ... [click for more]

Book Review: A History of Force

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A History of Force by James L. Payne (Sandpoint, Idaho: Lytton Publishing, 2004); 296 pages; $23.95. Tune in to most news broadcasts and you will probably hear one or more stories dealing with the use of force: armed conflicts in the Middle East; crimes; riots; and more. It often seems that we live in a violence-saturated world. Perhaps so, but political ... [click for more]

The Pentagon’s Plunge into Barbarism

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A British citizen, Jamal Harith, who was held in Cuba for two years without trial by Pentagon officials, is alleging that U.S. troops committed the same kinds of abuse in Cuba that they committed in Iraq — severe beatings, forced injections, sleep deprivation, shackling in painful positions, and sexual ... [click for more]
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