Foreign Policy

Poisoning the US-Iran Detente

Israel, Saudi Arabia and other enemies of Iran hope to poison improved U.S.-Iranian relations by blocking sanctions relief for Iran, even at the cost of losing new restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program, an emerging dilemma assessed by ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Syrian Rebels Embrace al-Qaeda

Exclusive: The leading Syrian rebel groups have declared their intent to transform Syria into a Taliban-style state that would collaborate with al-Qaeda-affiliated groups in the heart of the Middle East. This lifting of the veil presents President Obama with an even trickier policy dilemma, reports Robert Parry.

Why Netanyahu Spurns an Iran Deal

With new Iranian leadership eager for détente, a negotiated settlement over its nuclear program is within reach. But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appears determined to torpedo an agreement and press ahead toward war, a prospect that ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar addresses.

Christianity’s Contradictions on War

Though based on the pacifist teachings of Jesus, Christianity has been an accomplice to more wars and genocides than any other religion, a paradox reflected in the contradictory views of 16th Century protestant reformer Martin Luther and 20th Century civil rights martyr Martin Luther King Jr., as Gary G. Kohls explains.

Dangerous Addiction to Secrecy

Exclusive: After decades of mutual suspicions, the U.S. and Iranian governments appear headed toward face-to-face contacts. But mutual trust still awaits truth-telling about important facts that defined the relationship — and that may require breaking a dangerous addiction to secrecy, says Robert Parry.

Should Cruise Missiles Target Saudis?

Exclusive: Saudi Arabia – confident in its leverage over energy and finance and emboldened by a de facto  regional alliance with Israel – is throwing its weight around with threats against Russia. But this muscle-flexing is drawing a tough reaction from President Putin, reports Robert Parry.

The Better-Than-Worst Syria Option

The neocons still dominate Official Washington’s policy debates so it shouldn’t be a surprise that President Obama’s move toward diplomacy over intervention in Syria would draw criticism and denunciation. But sometimes the best course is the simply the one that’s not the worst, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

The Iranian Olive Branch

Iran’s new President Hassan Rouhani renounced again any Iranian interest in building a nuclear weapon and proposed serious negotiations with the West. But the question remains: Will the Obama administration spurn Rouhani’s offer of an olive branch? ask Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett.

Two-State Solution or Illusion?

Secretary of State John Kerry balances his bellicosity on Syria with his diplomatic appeals for reviving Israeli-Palestinian talks on a “two-state solution.” But the prospects for two viable states may be long since past and the negotiations just another excuse to evade hard choices, as Lawrence Davidson reflects.

Iran’s Rouhani Confounds Neocons

Official Washington’s still-influential neocons are still hoping they can sabotage progress toward a U.S.-Iranian rapprochement – and thus keep open the option of war – but the reasonable tone of Iran’s new president Hassan Rouhani is making the neocons’ job trickier, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.