Foreign Policy

Manufacturing Fear on Iran Nukes

By embracing false or unproven allegations about foreign adversaries, U.S. policymakers may believe they are looking tough or pleasing some important constituent group. But they are also creating a situation that can get out of hand and get lots of people killed, as Lawrence Davidson notes is happening now with Iran over its nuclear program.

Three Deadly War Myths

Exclusive: The U.S. wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya have involved myths pleasing to Official Washington — about its own wisdom and the evil of the enemy – but these false narratives have caused President Barack Obama and other U.S. policymakers to base decisions on illusion rather than reality. Robert Parry examines three of these deadly myths.

Ellsberg on Pentagon Papers Release

On the 40th anniversary of Daniel Ellsberg leaking the Pentagon Papers, the Nixon presidential library is touting its release of the entire set, including a section on Vietnam peace talks that Ellsberg withheld to avoid disrupting the negotiations. The misimpression that much of Monday’s release will be new prompted questions from CNN producer Jay Kernis,…

Can Obama Escape from Afghan War?

Holdovers from the Bush administration, including Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Gen. David Petraeus, boxed President Obama into a counterinsurgency “surge” during the 2009 policy review for Afghanistan. Now, Obama has a chance to go in a different direction, but he may be too intimidated, observes the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland. 

Neocons Spin Two ‘Lost’ Wars

Exclusive: The looming U.S. defeats in Iraq and Afghanistan represent a threat to the political fortunes of America’s neocons — if they get blamed for the disasters. However, if they can hang the failures around President Obama’s neck, the two lost wars might help bring the neocons back to power as early as 2013, writes Robert Parry.

Al-Qaeda’s 9/11 Strategy Explained

Before his murder last month, Pakistani journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad detailed how al-Qaeda leaders used the 9/11 attacks to induce “cowboy” President George W. Bush to blunder foolishly into the invasions of two Muslim countries, thus advancing an al-Qaeda strategy to discredit the region’s U.S.-connected leaders, reports Gareth Porter.

Asian Alliance Supplants US Empire

While Official Washington grapples with how slowly to draw down troops in Afghanistan – and debates whether to complete the pullout from Iraq by year’s end – a new alliance of Asian states is expanding into the vacuum left by America’s decaying empire. By mid-June, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization may represent more than half the…

Gen. Keane Keen on Iran Attack

Exclusive: In Washington, retired Gen. Jack Keane is widely praised for his role in promoting the Iraq War “surge” in 2007 – and he is now seeking an escalation of tensions with Iran. However, at a Fordham event in New York, he was challenged by former CIA analyst (and Fordham alum) Ray McGovern.

American Exceptionalism’s Hypocrisy

U.S. politicians often speak of “American exceptionalism” as some God-given grant of special status that puts the United States above the rules that apply to other nations. In geo-politics, this concept has meant that international law is enforced against countries that offend Washington but not against those in Washington’s good graces, as Lawrence Davidson explains.

Hailing Gates for Pentagon ‘Savings’

Since becoming Defense Secretary in December 2006, Robert Gates has wallowed in flattering press clippings, most recently hailed as the heroic Pentagon budget cutter eliminating wasteful weapons systems. However, the reality is quite different as Gates ends his tenure at the Pentagon with more – and more costly – weapons systems than before his much-touted…