Obama Administration

Why US Balks at Accord on Children’s Rights

Afghan children await school supplies from Allied forces at Sozo School in Kabul. (French navy photo by Master Petty Officer Valverde)

With its powerful political-media apparatus, America’s right wing can create hysteria over pretty much anything, even something as innocuous as a U.N. agreement on the rights of children, leaving the U.S. as one of only three countries not to ratify it a quarter century later, writes Joe Lauria.

Delusional US ‘Group Think’ on Syria, Ukraine

President Barack Obama delivers a statement on the situation in Ukraine, on the South Lawn of the White House, July 29, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

Exclusive: Official Washington’s “group think” on Syria and Ukraine is so delusional that it is putting the whole world in danger, but – as with the Iraq War – the mainstream U.S. news media is part of the problem, not part of any solution, writes Robert Parry.

EU Wobbles Amid Conflicting Priorities

President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron talk at the G8 Summit in Lough Erne, Northern Ireland, June 17, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: The 28-nation European Union was always a tenuous affair, pulling together historic enemies and nations with conflicting economic priorities, but now those stresses – a triple-dip recession and differences over Ukraine and immigration – are threatening to splinter the EU, writes Andrés Cala.

Ellsberg Discusses Decline of Democracy

Daniel Ellsberg on the cover of Time after leaking the Pentagon Papers

Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg discussed the threat of National Security Agency surveillance and the decline of American democracy in a late-night interview that he gave after a lecture at George State University in Atlanta.

The Confusion Around Net Neutrality

President Barack Obama announces the nomination Tom Wheeler, right, as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, on May 1, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

President Obama reaffirmed his support for “Net neutrality,” but his appointed FCC chairman Tom Wheeler continues to flirt with ideas for giving major Internet providers more options to charge extra for higher-speed service, reports Michael Winship.

The Double Standards on Bank Crimes

Timothy Geithner (left), then Treasury Secretary, meeting with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office. (White House photo)

The U.S. government has levied some billion-dollar fines on banks for offenses tied to the financial crisis, but bank officers have avoided the shackled frog-walk and time behind bars, humiliations dealt out routinely to criminals who make off with much less money, says ex-U.S. diplomat William R. Polk.

Picking a Fight with China

President Barack Obama shakes hands with staff and their families during a meet and greet at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, China, Nov. 10, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Amid the tough talk on Russia, President Obama is speaking more softly about China but still seems ready to brandish a geopolitical stick against Asia’s emerging superpower, another unnecessary confrontation, says the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland.

Should Christians Embrace Gay Marriage?

Rainbow flag of the gay-rights movement

The issue of gay marriage appears headed back to the U.S. Supreme Court where the justices may finally decide if states can bar gay couples from marrying or not. Currently, 33 states and the District of Columbia recognize gay marriage, including Alaska where Rev. Howard Bess lives.

Neocons’ Fateful Iraq ‘Surge’ Myth

Coffins of dead U.S. soldiers arriving at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware in 2006. (U.S. government photo)

After provoking the Iraq War debacle, America’s neocons found themselves on the defensive but soon came up with a “theme” to salvage their reputations – the  myth of the “successful surge” – what might be called the last lie of Iraq War I or the first lie of Iraq War II, as ex-CIA analyst Paul…

Punishing a Professor’s Criticism of Israel

Professor Steven Salaita.

Criticism of how Israel treats Palestinians has become a firing offense in some circles, including academia where professors must muzzle themselves or face accusations of anti-Semitism. In the case of Steven Salaita, Twitter posts about Gaza cost him his job, as Dennis J. Bernstein explores in an interview.