Foreign Policy & War

The Origins of America’s Warfare State

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Given that most Americans living today were born and raised under a massive military establishment, the CIA, and the NSA, a large number of Americans very likely believe that the United States has always had this type of government. Not so, as Michael Swanson shows in a new book, The War State. Swanson points out that America’s warfare state didn’t ... [click for more]

The Killing Years

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The Way of the Knife: The CIA, a Secret Army, and a War at the Ends of the Earth by Mark Mazzetti (Penguin Press 2013), 400 pages. Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield by Jeremy Scahill (Nation Books 2013), 680 pages. The young man reached across the table and pushed the timer’s red button. Looking up ... [click for more]

Egypt’s Lessons for Americans, Part 2

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Part 1 | Part 2 The ambivalent reaction of the U.S. government to the Egyptian coup should not have surprised anyone. While U.S. law requires a termination of U.S. foreign aid to Egypt in the event of a coup, the Obama administration ignored the law by simply refusing to declare that the coup was actually a coup. Keep ... [click for more]

The War State

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Of course the most famous warning about the power of the military came from Dwight D. Eisenhower, who commanded the Allied forces in Europe during World War II and went on to serve as president of the United States from 1953 to 1961. On his last day in office, he gave a televised farewell address to the nation in ... [click for more]

Syria Remains a Target of the U.S. Empire

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A Russian diplomatic initiative has forestalled U.S. military strikes against Syria. The U.S.-Russian-Syrian agreement would have Bashar al-Assad’s regime turn over its chemical-weapons to the UN Security Council so that they can be destroyed under international control. The deal was proposed by Russian President Vladimir Putin after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry made an apparently off-the-cuff remark suggesting that ... [click for more]

Egypt’s Lessons for Americans, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 The military coup in Egypt last summer holds some valuable lessons for Americans, especially with respect to such things as freedom, democracy, and the U.S. national-security state, which has been an important part of American life since the end of World War II. The coup provides an especially important lesson with respect ... [click for more]

The Kenyan Massacre’s Roots in America’s Somalia Policy

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Last weekend’s hostage-taking — and the murder of at least 61 people — at the Westgate Shopping Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, has its roots in the U.S. government’s intervention in Somalia, which began in the 1990s. Although there is no justification for killing innocents, it is fair to point out that al-Shabaab, the Islamist group that committed the attack ... [click for more]

Here’s How the U.S. Can Help Rid the World of Chemical Weapons

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If President Obama is serious about ridding the world, and not just Syria, of chemical weapons, he and America’s closest allies in the Middle East should lead the way. Although the United States has ratified the 20-year-old Chemical Weapons Convention, it has not destroyed its entire arsenal, as required under the CWC. In reference to the United States, the [click for more]

TGIF: The Cynical U.S. Policy on Chemical Weapons

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“I didn’t set a red line. The world set a red line.” That was President Obama’s response this week to those who believe he wants to attack Syria in order to defend his own credibility. Secretary of State John Kerry said the same thing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. They were referring to the 88-year-old [click for more]

We Must Not Be the World’s Policeman

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Even if everything Secretary of State John Kerry says about chemical weapons in Syria were true, the evidence would prove only that Bashar al-Assad committed crimes against civilians. It would not prove that the U.S. government has either the moral or legal authority to commit acts of war. These issues must be kept separate. We have reason to be ... [click for more]
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