Obama Administration

About the bin Laden Anniversary

This week, there will be plenty of retrospectives on the U.S. Special Forces raid into Pakistan a year ago to kill al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. But the focus on that one attack and one  man may obscure the larger threat from the brand of terrorism that bin Laden represented, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Iran’s Rational Strategy

Official Washington’s view of Iran is that the Islamic state is dangerously irrational, requiring “crippling sanctions” to bully it into concessions over its nuclear program. But Iran’s negotiating strategy is actually more thoughtful and deliberate, Gareth Porter writes for Al Jazeera.

The ‘Drone War’ Expands

Military technology continues to spill over into domestic law enforcement as unmanned drones – used to hunt down and kill suspected “militants” abroad – are now touted as the latest tool for monitoring Americans, a development that has drawn scant attention, writes Danny Schechter.

Joe McCarthy’s Ghost Slithers Again

Right-wing paranoia knows no bounds, as propagandists stoke dark fantasies about President Obama that revive memories of “black helicopters” from the 1990s. But Tea Party favorite, Rep. Allen West reaches back even further to the days of Joe McCarthy, as Bill Moyers and Michael Winship explain.

Confronting the Big Empty

As the richest one percent consolidates its wealth and power, the 99 percent are fed junk food for the mind and the body, explaining the overwhelming sense of emptiness even amid the obesity of physical and mental over-consumption, a wrenching human dilemma that ultimately must be confronted, writes Phil Rockstroh.

SuperPAC Reporting Rule in Jeopardy

As SuperPACs dominate U.S. elections with unlimited spending on attack ads, the broadcasting industry is resisting a proposed federal rule requiring real-time posting online about those expenditures. The vote of one FCC commissioner could decide the outcome, says Michael Winship.

Danger of Hyping Foreign Dangers

Propaganda often involves taking the words of an adversary out of context and making them seem far worse or more dangerous than they are. When the news media joins in the distortion, the public can easily be stampeded into confrontation or war, a dilemma that ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar addresses.

The Value of Bradley Manning

Pvt. Bradley Manning faces possible life imprisonment for opening up windows into the unsavory actions of the U.S. government and many allies around the world. A valuable new book examines what turned the 24-year-old into one of history’s great whistleblowers, writes David Swanson at Warisacrime.org.

World Military Spending Still Rising

Despite economic recession and government austerity, the world’s military spending continued to grow last year, exceeding $1.7 trillion, with the United States accounting for more than two-fifths of that money, as Lawrence S. Wittner reports.

Mitt Romney: Professional Liar

Exclusive: Last week, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney claimed his dad had been attacked by President Obama, who “likes to attack fellow Americans.” Yet, Romney’s verbal assault on Obama was itself a multi-layered fabrication that revealed Romney consummate skill as a professional liar, writes Robert Parry.