Foreign Policy

The CIA’s Drone-Strike Revenge

Hakimullah Mehsud, who was killed in a reported CIA drone strike on Nov. 1, 2013.

Despite President Obama’s plan to curtail the use of lethal drones, he assented to a CIA strike this month against a Taliban leader as part of the CIA’s revenge for a 2009 suicide bombing that killed seven of its people, reports Gareth Porter for Inter Press Service.

Kerry’s Saudi-Israeli Appeasement Tour

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry delivers a greeting from President Barack Obama during a meeting with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia in Riyadh on November 4, 2013. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

Exclusive: Secretary of State Kerry is scurrying from capital to capital across the Mideast in what looks like an apology tour, seeking to soothe the hurt feelings of Saudi Arabia and Israel, but the appeasement may encourage more resistance to U.S. policies, writes Robert Parry.

Guns But No Butter

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin

The Right’s war on the poor rages on, driven in part by the belief that racial and ethnic minorities are getting much of the help. Yet, as food stamps are slashed, Congress lavishes money on military projects that are judged wasteful or useless, John LaForge writes.

US Distorts Iranian Nuclear Rights

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at a press conference in Iran. (Official Iranian photo)

The U.S. government and Israel – itself a rogue nuclear-armed state – insist that the Non-Proliferation Treaty doesn’t give Iran the right to enrich uranium for peaceful purposes. But the words of the treaty clearly say otherwise, as Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett note.

Trying to Derail Iran Talks

Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, waving to a crowd. (Iranian government photo)

Neocons won’t give up on involving the U.S. in more Mideast wars and are hard at work derailing negotiations on Syria and Iran’s nuclear program. Right now, the chief target is President Obama’s bid to reduce tensions with Iran, drawing resistance from hardliners on both sides, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Clarifying Snowden’s ‘Freedom’

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden speaking in Moscow on Oct. 9, 2013. (From a video posted by WikiLeaks)

A common angle from the mainstream U.S. media is that NSA leaker Edward Snowden will regret his asylum in Russia (rather than life in prison in the U.S.). A quote from ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern was used in support of that theme, but he has asked the New York Times to clarify it.

NYTimes Mentions Israeli Nukes

Exclusive: The U.S. press is very tolerant of Israeli cross-border attacks inside Syria, like the latest one against a military target in Latakia. Israel’s nuclear arsenal usually goes unmentioned, too. But the New York Times surprisingly deviated from that pattern, notes Robert Parry.

The Two Types of Spy ‘Scandals’

A common complaint from spy agencies is that they get blamed for “intelligence failures” when they miss something and they get attacked for “intelligence abuses” when they go too far with their espionage. The public veers from one type of “scandal” to the next, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar describes.

The Neocons’ Iraq War Mess

The neocons are rewriting more Iraq War history, arguing that if only President Obama had stayed the course on an open-ended U.S. military occupation, the regional situation would be a lot better. But the truth is that it was their invasion of Iraq that set loose the chaos, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

Neocons Push Israeli-Saudi Alliance

Exclusive: Early U.S. presidents warned against the dangers of “entangling alliances,” prescient advice that the neocons want President Obama to ignore amid demands from Israel and Saudi Arabia that America tie itself up in the endless and bloody sectarian conflicts of the Middle East, reports Robert Parry.