Human Rights

Minnesota Battle Over Israeli Bonds

A legal fight is underway in Minnesota over the state’s investment in Israeli bonds that are used to support settlements and other Israeli actions in the West Bank deemed illegal under international law. Sylvia Schwarz, a plaintiff in the lawsuit, explains why she’s demanding the state’s divestiture.

National Outrage over Trayvon Case

Despite attempts in the right-wing media to smear 17-year-old Trayvon Martin with references to minor school disciplinary problems, the overall reaction across the United States has been outrage over his slaying and the lack of an arrest, what Sherwood Ross calls a positive change in a nation with a long history of racism.

How Friedman Fixes Mideast Faults

Official Washington treats New York Times pundit Thomas Friedman as an oracle on the Middle East, but his commentary is often pedestrian and wrongheaded, as it was disastrously on the Iraq War. But Friedman has now proclaimed what must be done to reverse U.S. failures in Muslim countries, Lawrence Davidson writes.

Nature of Self-Defeating Convictions

One of the curious realities of modern America is how many people – especially white males – have been propagandized into siding with a “free-market” power structure that treats them like tissue paper, to be used and thrown away. Poet Phil Rockstroh says he encounters many such confused souls in his native South.

Health Law Dispute Hinges on Timing

Exclusive: After three days of oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court, most analysts agree that the five Republican justices are likely to deliver a body blow to Democratic President Obama by declaring his landmark health-reform law “unconstitutional.” But the key issue is really quite narrow, Sam Parry says.

Israel to Iran, with Love

Almost drowned out by the pounding of war drums is the rare voice for peace and sanity, like that of Israeli graphic artist Rony Edry, who designed a poster with the message, “Iranians. We will never bomb your country. We love you,” a moment that brought back memories of similar gestures to Winslow Myers.

Calling Dr. Strangelove

Mitt Romney lashed out at President Obama for telling Russia’s President Dmitri Medvedev that after the U.S. elections, there will be more “flexibility” to deal with arms control. But the greater danger may be delays in eliminating land-based missiles that add to the risk of nuclear disaster, say David Krieger and Daniel Ellsberg.

Egypt Pushes Palestinians on Peace

The new Egypt – guided by relatively moderate Islamists of the Muslim Brotherhood – is seeking a unity among Palestinian factions as a way to advance peace talks with Israel. The next question will be whether Israel and the United States welcome or spurn this initiative, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Hunt for the Historical Jesus

For years there has been a debate over not only who Jesus was but whether he existed. Historians remain split on many Jesus-related questions – and the issue is fraught with religious overtones – but Rev. Howard Bess believes enough is now known about Jesus to put him in context for his (and our) times.

Lobby Behind Trayvon Martin’s Death

The slaying of unarmed teen-ager Trayvon Martin has shed light on the shadowy American Legislative Exchange Council, which dreams up pro-corporate legislation to peddle to the states and – as with the gun-toting “Stand Your Ground” law – can inflict suffering and death on innocent people, Bill Berkowitz reports.