Human Rights

Double Standards on Civilian Deaths

Whenever U.S. forces inflict massive civilian casualties, it’s a “mistake” or the fault of the targets because they were “hiding” in populated areas. Yet, when civilian deaths occur in the country of a “designated enemy,” all ambiguity is swept aside and no excuses are accepted, a double standard addressed by John LaForge.

The Moral Challenge of ‘Kill Lists’

Exclusive: Counterterrorism adviser John Brennan has been called President Obama’s “priest” as they wrestle with the moral dilemma of assembling a “kill list” of “bad guys,” a role that recalls how established religions have justified slaughters over the centuries, writes ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern.

Pope Paul VI’s Error on Birth Control

After conservative U.S. Catholic Bishops sued the Obama administration over its health-insurance requirement for contraceptives, many assumed the Bishops were upholding settled doctrine. But Catholic theologian Paul Surlis says Pope Paul VI incorrectly removed the issue from the Second Vatican Council in 1965.

New Voice for Jailing Bank Execs

In a new book, Predator Nation, Charles Ferguson (who directed the Oscar-winning film “Inside Job”) says banking executives implicated in the fraud that devastated the economy in 2008 should go to jail, a position applauded by Danny Schechter, who has long advocated the same.

How al-Qaeda Exploits Palestine Cause

Exclusive: When U.S. Special Forces raided Osama bin Laden’s compound last year, they grabbed al-Qaeda documents describing internal debates, including how the terror group should continue exploiting Israel’s abuse of Palestinians as a crucial recruitment pitch, reports Robert Parry.

The Bible’s Vile Standards of Marriage

Religious fundamentalists object to same-sex marriage as a violation of Biblical standards. But the actual Biblical marriage standards treat women as chattel and let men have multiple wives, along with concubines and sex-slaves, an inconvenient truth that Rev. Howard Bess notes.

Honoring Troops with the Truth

America is awash in media detailing the lives of celebrities and the latest turns in political polls, but rarely addressing the painful questions about the dark side of U.S. foreign policy, a topic that Bill Moyers and Michael Winship say should be confronted this Memorial Day.

Lockerbie Doubts

From the Archive: In 2009, when Scotland released Libyan Ali al-Megrahi after his prostate cancer was deemed terminal, U.S. and UK pols and pundits thundered against freeing the “Lockerbie bomber,” an outrage reprised this week after his death. But Megrahi’s odd conviction was not questioned, as Lisa Pease noted.

Pan Am 103 Verdict: Justice or Politics?

From the Archive: With the death of Ali al-Megrahi over the weekend, the Western press was again filled with references to him as the “Lockerbie bomber,” even though the New York Times finally conceded how dubious his conviction was. At Consortiumnews.com, William Blum made that point in real time.

Two Victories Against Repression

With politicians wanting to look tough – and the public putting security over freedom – the “war on terror” has become an excuse to erode civil liberties, such as the freedom of association and the right to a fair trial. Yet, in the U.S. and Israel, pushback against repression won modest victories, writes Lawrence Davidson.