Foreign Policy

Undercutting Iran Nuke Talks

Having won reelection, President Obama appears interested in a deal on Iran’s nuclear program. But key U.S. commentators continue to embrace baseless fraud charges about Iran’s 2009 election while pressing unrealistic negotiation demands, a recipe for failure, say Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett at RaceforIran.com.

The Death Toll of Watergate

Exclusive: Major gaps in the history of Watergate and Iran-Contra have let Republicans minimize those scandals by comparing them to the fabricated “scandal” over the Benghazi attacks. A fuller understanding of Watergate would reveal its links to Richard Nixon’s prolonging the Vietnam War, writes Robert Parry.

France Plunges into Syrian Quagmire

France, which governed what is now Syria after World War I, has stepped forward as the first Western power to recognize the opposition as the legitimate government. But the future course of the Syrian civil war remains dangerous and complicated, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Likening Palestinians to Blades of Grass

Exclusive: Israeli hardliners joke about the periodic need to decimate each new generation of Palestinian militants as “mowing the grass,” a process underway again in new bombardments of Gaza. This ugly metaphor has also penetrated the think-tank world of Official Washington, as ex-CIA analyst Elizabeth Murray learned.

A Closer Look at New Gaza Conflict

The new round of violence between Israel and Palestinians in Gaza is receiving the typical U.S. media treatment, blaming Hamas and absolving Israel. But the origins of the latest clashes are much more complex than that simplistic and one-sided version, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

How Mistress Helped Petraeus

A back story to the sex scandal that ended David Petraeus’s 14 months as director of the CIA is that his mistress, Paula Broadwell, was an apologist for abusive actions by the U.S. command in Afghanistan. She defended the leveling of an Afghan village deemed uncooperative, Gareth Porter says at Inter Press Service.

Separating War from the Vets

On Veterans Day, Americans make a point of thanking men and women who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces. But this appreciation has the effect of shielding today’s perpetual warfare from the critical examination it deserves, writes former Marine Matthew Hoh.

The Neocons’ Waterloo

Exclusive: The last week has witnessed what might be called the Neocons’ Waterloo as their bid to reclaim power was beaten back by President Obama’s reelection and their last major government ally, CIA Director David Petraeus, resigned amid a sex scandal, Robert Parry reports.

The ‘War on Terror’ Comes to Mali

Mali, where Islamists have claimed control of the remote north, is the latest front in the so-called “global war on terrorism,” partly a spillover of conflicts in northern Africa. But should the U.S. get involved, asks the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland.

Re-elected Obama’s Pluses and Minuses

There were positives in Barack Obama’s reelection, particularly the rejection of many reactionary Republican policies and offensive tactics, but Obama’s second term may be beset by many of the same failings as the first, writes Lawrence Davidson.