Obama Administration

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.

‘Occupy’ Eyes May Day ‘Strike’

The Occupy movement vows to reemerge this spring with a focus on May Day, the traditional day of workers’ protests. But Occupy’s call for a general strike on May 1 may be undercut by the movement’s unwillingness to lay out specific reforms to help the 99 percent, notes Danny Schechter.

Poland Probes CIA ‘Black Site’ Prison

Even as the Obama administration continues to ignore the worst crimes of George W. Bush’s presidency– including torture and aggressive war – authorities in Poland are investigating its alleged hosting of a CIA “black site” prison. An inquiry that may be the best hope for some measure of truth, writes Nat Parry.

A Voice for Domestic Workers

For 15 years, Ai-jen Poo has been fighting for the rights of domestic workers in the United States, an organizing task that many labor experts thought impossible given the sketchy information about who these housekeepers and caregivers are and where they work. But she has scored some stunning successes, Dennis J. Bernstein reports.

Will Big Bird Reject Attack Ads?

A federal appeals court has extended the Citizens United “logic” into the realm of public television, opening the door to cluttering up those stations with campaign attack ads like the rest of TV, an ominous development to Bill Moyers and Michael Winship.

Measuring Obama’s Record

It seems Campaign 2012 will turn more on how Americans view President Obama and what he has done than how they view his likely Republican challenger Mitt Romney, who comes across as a conservative cipher. So, Beverly Bandler says Americans should make a fair and clear-headed assessment of Obama’s record.

Iran’s Distrusted Fatwa Against Nukes

In a pre-Super Bowl interview, President Obama urged Iranian leaders to renounce nuclear weapons, which Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei did, labeling them a “grave sin.” But Khamenei’s fatwa against nukes was not new, just widely ignored by Official Washington, as Gareth Porter explains in this Inter Press Service analysis.